Crozet Land Use Meeting Recap

There was a big land use meeting the other day. Here’s the blog post with the agenda, and below are the attachments sent out after the meeting. These land use decisions affect everything. Housing, schools, roads, trails, jobs, parks, and virtually everything else.

Note that the County are having Office Hours on 2 October. Read on for details.

These quick thoughts are part of an email that I sent to someone asking for my thoughts after the meeting. I wasn’t going to write a story until I was asked, so here it is.

(here’s the accompanying FB post)

Quick thoughts

  • We need creative density, commensurate with infrastructure improvements
  • There are a lot of people who say they want affordable housing, but want it somewhere else
  • Seems like a lot of Crozetians don’t like the current growth patterns, and want to shut down development. At least the ones speaking out.
  • Some of the stuff that is being built around Crozet is certainly contributing to the changes in Crozet
  • We need affordable housing here. Not “over there.”
  • I agree with the commenters that this feels somewhat rushed, but we still need to do something soon
  • We need a developer to come and propose/put up something like this that is functional and creative.
  • Ceasing development is not a good or viable solution (I’m working on a follow up post on this, and would welcome citations in favor or against this argument)
  • Zoom meetings are fantastic in that they open the meetings in a way that make them much easier to access, jump in and out, and learn.
    • No driving or parking
    • Meetings are recorded and put on YouTube
    • Transcripts of the meetings!

Attachments


From a Nextdoor Thread

(bolding is mine; this is part of the email from the County Staff as a followup

Thank you for attending yesterday afternoon’s Crozet Community Advisory Committee meeting. This was by far the highest-Zoom meeting we have had since we were forced to move engagement to a virtual format, with the turnout surpassing some of our public input opportunities that were open for over three weeks at a time. If you were unable to attend, please take some time to provide input through our questionnaire at https://publicinput.com/O2561.

I’ve had a number of requests for the video from the meeting as well as the Q&A list, chat, and presentation and wanted to provide those here. The meeting video can be viewed here: https://youtu.be/gCUKw8b4Mb0.

The Q&A list, chat log, and presentation slides are attached. We also wanted to create some additional opportunities for community members to chat directly with staff to provide feedback and ask questions about the Master Plan. Next Friday, October 2 from 11AM-1PM we will be hosting (virtual) office hours. Please consider joining us to learn more about the draft future land use plan, ask questions, and share your feedback! You do not have to attend for the entire time and can join whenever is convenient for you. You can pre-register/access the meeting here:

https://albemarle-org.zoom.us/meeting/register/tJwtduispjojHNKmukxCG-93SNoEQpybeAqp/.


Continue reading “Crozet Land Use Meeting Recap”

Crozet Land Use Meeting – 23 September at Noon

This looks like an important meeting. Land use affects everything.

Note: this is a great podcast episode that gets into land use in the last half; it’s worth listening.

via email:

Please find attached materials for our special meeting scheduled for () Wednesday, September 23 from 12:00 – 1:30. Zoom information for the general public is included in the agenda and below as well.

You all provided us with some feedback at last week’s meeting that you didn’t feel there was enough detail to provide informed feedback, yet too much information or detail was provided. In response, we’ve provided a summary list of land use changes as well as a simplified version of the land use table to help with your preparation. Please take some time to begin by reviewing the agenda and the discussion questions before jumping into the attachments:

(Jim’s note: attachments are at the bottom of this post)

  • Attachment 1 provides a comparison of the 2010 and draft 2020 land use plans
  • Attachment 2 provides the list of changes to accompany the map
  • Attachment 3 provides simplified descriptions of land uses
  • Attachment 4 is a list of draft recommendations that builds upon the guiding principle and goals you discussed in May.

Responding to concerns about community engagement and awareness of the draft land use map, we have also provided an opportunity for community input and review here: https://publicinput.com/O2561. Please share this information with your neighbors, HOAs, or other interested groups so we can hear their input. We will plan to leave this input opportunity open indefinitely.

Looking forward to a productive conversation! Have a great weekend.

HOW TO PARTICIPATE IN THIS MEETING

ONLINE:
Download Zoom. Use this link https://albemarle-org.zoom.us/j/97118038548 to join the webinar.

BY PHONE/CALL-IN:
Dial (301) 715-8592. Type in the Webinar ID 971 1803 8548 followed by the pound (#) sign.

Andrew Knuppel

Senior Neighborhood Planner
Albemarle County
aknu…@albemarle.org

434-296-5832 ext. 3313

401 McIntire Road, North Wing, Charlottesville, VA 22902

Trees Go Fast; New Development next to Crozet Park

Walking by Crozet Park last week, we saw heavy equipment. I noted that the surrounding trees would likely be gone within a week, and was right.

Looks like this is a separate part of Glenbrook at Foothills. Phase V, to be specific, so not necessarily a “new neighborhood” as it’s an extension of Glenbrook, but it’s “new” in that it looks like a standalone neighborhood that is replacing trees.

Lots of comments on the Facebook thread.

Layout of the new neighborhood. Site plan is here.

Learn more at Albemarle’s site; it looks like they won’t have sidewalks, but are using Crozet Park’s paths instead.

(a lot of links are broken at the new Albemarle County site).

As I tell my clients

If you don’t own it, it’s going to change.


Location of Glenbrook at Foothills V
https://www.google.com/maps/@38.0649872,-78.6888014,17z
Continue reading “Trees Go Fast; New Development next to Crozet Park”

Crozet Land Use and the Planning Commission – 1 September

This stuff matters, folks. And the voices that speak up are the ones that are heard, and the ones that write the policies we live with.

6pm on 1 September. See here how to attend.

NB: the County Calendar is useful.

via email

The Board of Supervisors directed staff to begin work on the Crozet Master Plan update on September 4, 2019. The purpose of this work session is to provide the Planning Commission with an update about public feedback related to land use and to receive the Commission’s guidance on revised land use categories.(Andrew Knuppel)

And from the PDF

Discussion/Recommendation: Staff recommends that the Commission review the attached background information,feedback summaries,and draft land use information and provide direction to staff on the questions below.

Q1 Do you agree with staff’s recommendation to create a Middle Density Residential land use category to support the stated goals within Crozet?

Q2 Do you see applicability for this category in similar contexts in other areas of the County (to be considered with future Master Plan updates)?

Q3 Do you have any feedback on the recommended density, housing types, or form guidance within the land use table?

Q4 Do you agree with staff’s recommendation to create a Downtown Neighborhoods Overlay to support the stated goals within this area of Crozet?

Q5 Do you have any feedback on the recommended criteria for increased density, housing types, or form guidance within the land use table?

I’ve put the PDF here, so that it will be here the next time Albemarle changes their website and urls.

Moving to Crozet? (via Reddit)

This question on Reddit was a fun writing prompt for me.

Hi all hoping you can give me the local’s perspective of Crozet. My wife and I are lifelong Marylanders seriously looking at moving away from the DC area to the greater Charlottesville area in the next 2-3 years. We’ve got two kids in elementary school and are looking for a lot of what the area has to offer. We came down earlier this summer and stumbled upon Crozet as a potential area of interest.

Is it really as nice as it seems? What are you’re thoughts? We want to be close enough to Charlottesville but be able to maintain a small-town feel.

And my answer

Lots of people from NoVa/DC/Maryland move to Crozet/Charlottesville.

Crozet is a great place to live; we’ve raised two kids here. Close to mountains, hiking, biking, 25-30 minutes to Charlottesville, and Crozet is becoming more self-sufficient all them time. The mountains aren’t going anywhere.

But … as I tell my clients (yes, I’m an agent), there’s a ton of growth yet to come, and in my opinion (as someone who’s lived in Crozet for 20 years, and as a Realtor), this growth comes with challenges. Much of the growth is homogeneous with limited character, but that’s the nature of such production-built-homes, schools are crowded, and traffic (yes, really) can be a challenge. 64 can be a disaster, but they are improving 118B.

Keeping the “small town” feel is one of the key points in the Crozet Master Plan, and is often discussed. But … I don’t have great confidence in the Plan being followed; it’s an aspirational document it seems. If you live close to the elementary schools (there are two, Brownsville Elementary and Crozet Elementary), you can walk or ride bikes to school with your kids. This was one of the best things I did as a parent.

Quite a few links:

I’d be happy to put you in touch with clients who have made the same move.

Continue reading “Moving to Crozet? (via Reddit)”

100+ Townhomes Coming near Green Olive Tree

I put Green Olive Tree in the title, as that’s an area that most people can reference. It’s close, though. I could have said, “near the new car wash,” or “the veterinarian” but there are two veterinarians on 240, with those being different parts of 240.

And I can’t find anything in the news or on the County’s site about the results of the meeting. * Update below

Also, submit comments at this link until I think 17 August (watch the video to confirm).

That said, from the public notice of last week’s meeting (bolding mine)

Dear Neighbor,

We, Meridian Planning Group,invite you to share comments and ask questions regarding our request to rezone the parcels described below from Rural Area (RA) to Neighborhood Model (NMD). The project incudes (sic) 101 townhomes, 14 single family detached homes and will (sic) the Crozet Veterinary Clinic will remain as a commercial use. This proposed project is located at 5258 Three Notch’d Road (TMP 0560-00-00-74A0) and 1263 Parkview Drive (TMP 056-00-00-067B0).

PDF of the letter is here.

Continue reading “100+ Townhomes Coming near Green Olive Tree”

Verizon Cell Tower in Greenwood?


Update 27 July 2020


Most of us want more and better internet and cell coverage.

Albemarle County’s Annual Survey says so.

(note: surely someone else can do a better report/story on this)


If you’re in support or opposition of the tower, say so here at the County’s site.

PROPOSAL DESCRIPTION: This is an application to construct a one hundred and eight (108) feet tall monopole tower with two (2) antenna arrays and related ground equipment. A special exception has been requested to exceed the flush mount distances to the tower (SE202000006).

APPLICATION PLAN: https://tinyurl.com/y8tq84rq

VISIBILITY ANALYSIS: https://tinyurl.com/y728glnj

To find out more information and view other documents associated with this proposal, click https://tinyurl.com/yb5gbtf9

To learn more about Albemarle County’s development review process, click https://tinyurl.com/yx5g5wdm

To review regulations and policies applicable to this project, click https://tinyurl.com/y8b4dz46 (18-5.1.40 Personal Wireless Service Facility regulations) or https://tinyurl.com/ybfh9dvt (18-33 Special Use Permit regulations).


via Nextdoor

… which is unavailable to those without accounts, so I’m posting it here for those Albemarle County residents who don’t have Nextdoor accounts with access to this post.

(go for the comments, but stay for the conspiracy theory)

Tall Verizon Cell Tower Plan near Septenary Winery. Verizon Wireless is proposing to construct a huge cell phone tower directly adjacent to the entrance to Septenary Winery, and Albemarle County is moving to review/approve at a closed hearing in the first week of August.

The wine industry is a major benefit to the County with low impact. If you love the views and the history of properties like Seven Oaks Farm both will be negatively impacted by this project. The proposed tower is 108 feet high with a 30 foot by 30 foot base and a large concrete pad to accommodate additional equipment – all starting just feet away from the vineyard entrance! Time is short and there will not be a public hearing on this due to COVID-19 restrictions.

So how can you help? You can go to: https://tinyurl.com/y7jo6bk9 to comment or you can email the lead reviewer – Christopher Perez, with your comments at [email protected]. Please let the County of Albemarle know if you think the tower at the entrance to the vineyard would diminish your enjoyment of the property’s views, serenity and history as well as that of neighboring properties in Greenwood. If you visit the vineyards regularly, or bring family and friends, please let the County know that too.

The proposed site is part of a much larger property and it would seem reasonable to ask the County to consider it be moved to another part of that farm making it far less obtrusive to the small business of the winery.


One of the best comments on that post

The real question is do you want better cell reception/telecom in western Albemarle? I would assume that you do. This whole NIMBY BS is just that, BS… Stop being entitled/nostalgic and grow up. We’re in 2020 so guess what, there will be cell towers and (especially if you want 5G) they will literally be everywhere.

Did you know that if you agree to have a tower on your property you actually get paid?

Did you know that if you want 5G in Old Trail there will be dozens of towers required to cover the area?

Did you know that our local businesses need this infrastructure development to survive post COVID?

If anything in this COVID world has taught us, it’s support your community and think from a community perspective. Who cares if there is a tower at the entrance because guess what, you’ll have better service, the ability to be contactless and better reception when you’re surfing your phone while patronizing the winery in question. Not to mention the additional benefits for everyone in the area.

Educate yourself rather than be offended by technology. If you want unobstructed views of whatever then guess what, you wont have access to the world that we live in. Move out of Old Trail to BFE to be a luddite if you care that much. Thanks Roger for setting me off on this.


There’s another tower planned in Crozet

And likely more, but this is referencing the one proposed near Wild Turkey Lane (see the not searchable PDF below), and was also discussed at the last in-person CCAC meeting.


This is a good, timely, and related podcast

Intelligence Squared U.S. Debates

Agree to Disagree: Broadband for All?

Crozet Elementary’s Addition – Coming Soon

Thanks to Katherine Knott at the Daily Progress; make sure you click through to read the whole thing.

Crozet Elementary addition and renovations

Although construction funding is not certain for a long-awaited expansion of Crozet Elementary, the school division is moving forward on designing the $20.4 million project.

Ken Thacker, with VMDO Architects, walked the Albemarle County School Board through preliminary schematic designs Thursday during the board’s monthly work session. The plans include a three-story addition, new bus loop, improved play areas and an expanded gym and cafeteria.

The 28,000-square-foot Crozet expansion was identified as the division’s top capacity-related construction project by an advisory committee last year in order to ease overcrowding in the western feeder pattern. Nearby Brownsville Elementary has nearly 900 students while the building’s capacity is 764. At Crozet, enrollment is up to 360 students, 30 more than the building’s capacity.

Yancey Mill Special Exceptions

Remember the noise and discussion about the Yancey Mill noises at the November CCAC meeting? Looks like the conversation with Albemarle County is ongoing.

The following email from Bill First with Albemarle County was forwarded to me by a neighbor of Yancey Mill about the upcoming County meetings about the Mill, which has been in its location for decades.

As an aside, I’ve found the County to be quite good at communicating with citizens and doing all that they can to keep people informed, about this, and almost anything else.

Planning Commission – Tuesday March 24.  The staff report and agenda will be available approximately one week prior to the meeting.  If you would like comments included in the report please provide them to me no later than March 13.  Comments received after that date will be forwarded to the Planning Commission and the Board of Supervisors they just won’t be included in the Planning Commission report.

Board of Supervisors – Wednesday April 15.  The staff report and agenda will be available approximately one week prior to the meeting.  All information received for the Planning Commission meeting will be automatically forwarded to the Board of Supervisors.  You do not need to resubmit comments.  However, if you did not provide comments for the Planning Commission or have new comments please send those comments to me no later than April 1st.  Again, if you provide comments after that date they will be forwarded to the Board they just won’t be in the report packet.



Tangentially Related

When Did Crozet Become a Growth Area?

Crozet Comp Plan from 1977

Crozet is growing, and it’s going to continue to grow. It’s been planned that way for nearly 50 years.

Q: When Did Crozet Become a Growth Area? (before a lot of people in Crozet were born)

A: 1971.

Fun fact: The average year built of a home sold in Crozet in 2019 was 2003

From Cvillepedia

Crozet was first designated as a designated growth area with the 1971 revision of the county’s comprehensive plan[1].



Old Comp Plans

Continue reading “When Did Crozet Become a Growth Area?”