via email. This will be a lot of fun, with one of the best things about Crozet.
The Crozet Trails Crew invites the community to Mint Springs Park on Sunday at 4:00 to celebrate and dedicate the new amphitheater, built by the crew and paid for by Paul McCartney!
We’ll have an interesting story about the stage, pizza and lemonade, trail maps and advice, and music by the Crozet Jam Band led by Jim Pyles. Plus it’s your chance to find out more about the Crozet Greenway system, what we’re planning, and how you can help.
Since September 2019, Albemarle County has been exploring alongside the Crozet community how to best reflect the community’s vision for future development in the latest update to the Crozet Master Plan. This month, we’ve focused on sharing the draft transportation recommendations that have been developed based on feedback gathered over the past 15 months.
The draft guiding principle for the Transportation chapter is to “create a multimodal transportation network that is safe and accessible for all community members, regardless of age, race, income and ability.”
We invite you to share your feedback with our project team. Community feedback will be shared with the Planning Commission and Board of Supervisors as part of the review process. The Board of Supervisors will provide final direction and approval on the Crozet Master Plan.
Click the buttons below to read the draft or share feedback.
The questionnaire will be open from February 2nd – February 19th, 2021.
You may also submit your comments directly to Rachel Falkenstein, Planning Manager [email protected].
I thought about titling this story, “Trees Gone, Why Were We Surprised?” But that felt click-baity.
From a neighbor and guest author*:
When the clearing for Foothill Crossing began along Parkside Village and Crozet Park a few weeks ago, we watched close-up as the woods began to disappear in such a grinding, brutal fashion. But the fact was we knew that it was going to happen one day as progress and development continues in Crozet and Albemarle.
We were, however, surprised by the number of trees that were cleared right down to the Stream. We had always understood that a 100 ft buffer was to be maintained on both sides of this Creek.
We contacted Frank Pohl with the county engineer’s office about the clearing and he responded quickly and directly, sending an inspector out to the site. He confirmed that too many trees had in fact been cut down and that Erosion and Tree protection had not been installed. The contractor was notified of the violations and the required remediation.
This brought our attention to the plans/drawings that the County makes available on their website. After spending more time reviewing those plans supplemented with the approved Erosion and Sediment Control drawings, we realized that a 20 FT. wide, 82,000 lb. rated Access Road over a simple 36’ concrete pipe culvert is planned to cross the Creek.
According to the plans, this same Road is alternately labeled and identified in a number of ways:
1. Paved Emergency Access . . .,
2. Access Road to be extended to Park Ridge drive until roadway infrastructure for Foothills Phase II is complete,
3. Proposed 20’ Asphalt Emergency Access and Bicycle /Pedestrian Access. , and 4. Detailed in an equally broad “Asphalt Paving – Emergency Access Road & Pedestrian/Bicycle Pathway & TOT Lot/SWM Access Pathway. Mr. Pohl also clarified that while the road was not currently approved as a Construction Access road for Foothill Phase II, he did not see why that could change in the future.
We have expressed our disappointment with the fact that the Stream Buffer had been compromised so easily for such an unclear purpose. The drawings also appear to go out of their way to downplay the Installation of this Road.
Certainly there is an emotional reaction when development occurs “nextdoor” – just like it did for local residents with the development and construction of our house.
It has raised these questions for us –
Did we pay enough attention when the plans were first proposed?
Is the County and Planning commission in tune with the impacts of these aggressive Developments on its neighbors?
Does the contractor/developer think about people when they stage/setup the most disruptive of their work alongside our neighbors when they have acres of options?
I’ve said it before, that being a citizen is hard. Knowing what is happening next door to you is important. Knowing what is happening in your community is important too. You may live near Chiles Orchard or Old Trail, or down Miller School Road, but these trees and developments affect you, too.
If you have other links, tools, tips about how to get involved or research, please share!
Update: here are some ideas!
You could try talking to your neighbors.
Maybe identify one per month to watch the Albemarle County Board of Supervisors, Planning Commission, CCAC meetings, and any other relevant ones, and then write something on a blog somewhere.
My opinion: Nextdoor & Facebook are not great for sharing information because those are walled gardens, closed sites, and are not searchable by search engines.
Heck, I’ll create a page or a section here on RealCrozetVA if anyone wants to take up this idea for your neighborhood. Then you can send the link to your neighborhood and it can be shared and searched for posterity. Let me know if you’re interested.
That should not have been a surprise to anyone who knows a) Crozet is a growth area and b) knows to look at the Crozet Master Plan. If you’re curious if those trees are going to stay, the answer is probably “no.” But get curious; investigate for yourself. And then talk to your neighbors.
*re: the “guest author”: I know them, they’re neighbors.
The Master Plan contains a future land use map and a table describing the various land use categories. The idea is that these documents provide a legal basis for the county to evaluate landowner requests for zoning changes and to make changes to zoning regulations. During the presentation, Knuppel highlighted a specific property—White Gate Farm—for which county staff recommended an increase in housing density.
White Gate Farm is a 12-acre parcel on Rt. 240 between Wickham Pond and Western Ridge which is currently classified as rural green space in the 2010 Master Plan. The property owners have requested that its designation be re-evaluated for the 2020 Master Plan, as they are unable to build on the land in any way under current zoning. (See nearby map.)
The proposed project will be called Old Dominion Village and lays out plans for 101 townhouses and 14 single-family detached homes on the combined 24-acre expanse. The current Crozet Master Plan designates Dr. Schulman’s property as 4.5 acres Urban Density Residential, 10 acres Neighborhood Density Residential, 5.5 acres Greenspace, and 4 acres Rural Agricultural. The Urban and Neighborhood classifications allow 12 and 6 units per acre, respectively. Old Dominion Village is requesting a zoning change to “Neighborhood Model” for all 24 acres.
Neither parcel is included in the Albemarle County Service Authority (ACSA) jurisdictional area for water service (though the Vet Center itself is currently connected to county water). Thus, an application to add the parcels to the ACSA service area will also be submitted for county approval along with the zoning request. Since a majority of the land in question is below the elevation of Rt. 240, a private gravity sewer system and pump station will have to be designed and installed to serve the development.
The Western Albemarle Rescue Squad plans to build a new station on two lots in downtown Crozet that it has purchased from lifelong Crozetian Sandy Wilcox. Though only a quarter-mile south of its current location on Crozet Avenue across from Green House Coffee, the squad’s new spot behind the Blue Goose Building will give it room to expand and better access to area residents who need their help.
Crozet resident Hanna Clark has launched an online petition aimed at stopping the Rivanna Water and Sewer Authority (RWSA) from constructing a raw water pipeline along the boundaries of her family’s property. A recent WAHS graduate, Clark has lived on land bordering Beaver Creek Reservoir for 17 years and was shocked when her parents received notice from the RWSA that crews would be surveying the property this summer to determine a potential path to connect the pipeline between a pump station in the reservoir and the Crozet Water Treatment Plant.
The Albemarle County School Board voted 4-3 to offer solely online learning for the vast majority of public school students for the first nine weeks of school beginning September 8. In-person instruction inside school buildings will be limited to students who are English language learners (in grades 4-12), those with special education needs, and those who lack adequate internet access at home. All other students will receive virtual instruction in various forms both synchronously (“live” with an online teacher) and asynchronously (via recorded videos and online assignments).
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)
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).
Crozet Fireworks were canceled. Trains were quiet. Power was out. Very few had generators, so Crozet was quiet.
The Derecho was 8 years ago. A storm came, ripped off shingles, knocked out power for a week, it was freaking hot, trees were down everywhere. Crozet Fire Department was distributing water. It was so hot.
The people at Mudhouse were manually grinding coffee, music was playing on a radio, and they were boiling water on their gas stove to make the community coffee.
Facebook was already awful, and Twitter was already better for rapid information dissemination.
Two Crozet beekeepers will share their experiences and lessons learned with their honeybees over the years in a lighthearted talk at Crozet Artisan Depot on March 14 from 11:00am-12:00pm. If you are curious about the importance of bees, love honey, thinking about getting into beekeeping, or in the midst of a personal crisis with your bees, come in for a lively talk about the peaks and valleys of beekeeping and sample some local honey. This event is presented in the historic Crozet train depot, 5791 Three Notch’d Road, and is part of Second Saturday Crozet, a community-wide day of arts events in the Crozet area.
Ian Henry has been involved with bees all his life and is active with the VA State Beekeepers Association, the Central VA Beekeepers Association, and the Eastern Apicultural Society. He rescues bees, collects swarms, and mentors other beekeepers. Buzz Barnett is relatively new to beekeeping but has been stung many times. Though he received his nickname as an infant, he didn’t realize his connection to bees until 7 years ago when he founded Jarmans Gap Apiary. “Buzz’s Best Honey” is produced just outside Crozet.
Crozet Artisan Depot is a hub for the artist community of central Virginia, representing more than 80 regional artisans. For more information: www.crozetartisandepot.com or www.facebook.com/crozetartisandepot.
Terra Voce, one of Virginia’s musical gems, thrills audiences with lively concert programs that explore a colorful array of musical styles from Baroque to tango. Local musicians Elizabeth Brightbill, flute and Andrew Gabbert, cello will play selections from their acclaimed CDs as well as new arrangements!
Crozet Artisan Depot is a hub for the artisan community of central VA, representing over 80 artists and crafters showcased in the historic Crozet Train Depot. Open Mon-Sat 10-5, Sunday 12-5. www.crozetartisandepot.com
Claudius Crozet Park is excited to announce the return of the Crozet Winter Brews Festival, a celebration of dark beers from Virginia brewers! Join us December 7, 2019 on the Park Festival Grounds in historic Crozet, VA.
The 2nd Annual Crozet Winter Brews Fest is presented by Starr-Hill Brewery and will feature 16+ Breweries, over 30 brews to sample, musical performances by Lord Nelson and Matthew O’Donnell’s Blue Ridge Bards, Food Trucks, a heated Starr-Hill Lounge, a Winter Market, and more!
All proceeds benefit Crozet Park, a 501(c)3 non-profit charity and our mission of affordable recreation to all.