STAFF PERSON:                                                                              MARGARET DOHERTY

PLANNING COMMISSION:                                                          JUNE 22, 2004

BOARD OF SUPERVISORS:                                                          JULY 14, 2004


ZMA 04-03     AVON PARK

Applicant’s Proposal:

The applicant and property owner, Weather Hill Development, LLC, proposes rezoning a 9.976 acre parcel, located on Avon Street Ext., from R-1 (Residential) to R-6 (Residential) to allow 59 dwelling units (See Vicinity Map – Attachment A).  The applicant has provided a set of proffers (Attachment B) and conceptual elevations (Attachment D).


Petition for Rezoning:

Request to rezone 9.976 acres from R1, Residential to R6, Residential to allow 16 single family and 43 townhouse units.  The property, described as Tax Map 90 Parcels 32 is located in the Scottsville Magisterial District on Avon Street Ext. (Route 742) approximately one-half mile south of the intersection of Avon Street Ext. and Stoney Creek Drive.  The Comprehensive Plan designates this property as Neighborhood Density, recommended for 3-6 dwelling units per acre, in Neighborhood Four.

Existing Conditions:

The site is located on the west side of Avon Street Ext. about a quarter mile north of the intersection with Route 20.  The site currently has one single family house and is surrounded on two sides by similar small houses on large lots.  The property rises to the west and then drops off towards the southern end of the Mill Creek South development. 

Subdivision and Zoning History:

There is no subdivision or rezoning history on this parcel. 

By-right Use of the Properties: 

The parcel is approximately 9.976 acres of R-1 (Residential) zoned land, therefore, the applicant could build up to nine single family detached dwelling units, as of right.  Using the bonus provisions, an additional three dwelling units are possible.

Applicant’s Justification for the Request: 

The applicant has proposed a mix of single family detached and townhouses with a variety of sizes and parking configurations.  The application includes 15% of the dwelling units as meeting the County’s goal for affordable housing. 


Staff recommends approval of the rezoning (ZMA 04-03) with the attached proffers.

Staff Analysis:

Conformity with the Comprehensive Plan:

This section assesses the ability of ZMA 04-03 to meet the goals set forth in the Comprehensive Plan’s Land Use Plan, Neighborhood Model Principles, Community Facilities Plan, and Open Space Plan.

Conformity with the Land Use Plan

The Land Use Plan calls for Neighborhood Residential (3 to 6 dwelling units per acre) on this property.  With the proposed 59 units on 9.976 acres, the projects density is approximately 5.95 dwelling units per acre.  Thus, it is at the top of the density range allowed by the Land Use Plan’s recommendation, which meets the County’s goal of maximizing development potential in the Development Areas.

Conformity with the Comprehensive Plan’s recommendations for Neighborhood 6

The following are the Comprehensive Plan’s general recommendations for Neighborhood 4 which are applicable to this project (in italics). 

 “Provide additional water storage in the southern portion of the Neighborhood to support demand and ensure adequate fire flow.”

The applicant has agreed to proffer the construction of an 180,000 gallon water storage tank to serve this development, which can be expanded by the Albemarle County Service Authority to serve future development in this portion of the Neighborhood. 

Conformity with the Neighborhood Model

Below staff assesses the ability of ZMA 04-03 to meet the twelve principles of the Neighborhood Model. 

Pedestrian Orientation

Sidewalks are provided throughout the project and along the frontage of Avon Street Ext.

Neighborhood Friendly Streets and Paths

The project proposes two public roads, which will provide public pedestrian and vehicular connections to Avon Street Ext. and to adjacent parcels to the north and south, with curb and gutter, sidewalks and street trees.  There is a private alley behind a portion of the townhomes and a small private street serving more townhomes.

Interconnected Streets and Transportation Networks

The project provides public road connections to adjacent parcels to the north and south.

Parks and Open Space

The project provides open space along Route 20, to create a visual buffer from the Entrance Corridor, front yards for the single family homes and a small neighborhood park in the center of the townhomes. 

Neighborhood Centers

The project’s location and relative isolation makes it ill-suited for a mixed-use center.  The project is close to several smaller shopping developments on Avon Street Ext. that could, through time, redevelop into neighborhood centers.





Buildings and Spaces of Human Scale

The applicant has proffered conceptual architectural plans (Attachment D and Attachment B, Proffer 3).  Staff believes that this, combined with ARB review of the buildings visible from Avon Street, will provide the necessary regulatory control to ensure that the buildings’ mass will be of an appropriate scale.

Relegated Parking

Almost all of the parking will be provided for in garages, except where smaller townhome units have parking in parking lots and on-street parking.

Mixture of Uses

The project does not provide for a mixture of residential and non-residential uses; however, staff believes that the project’s terrain and relative isolation makes it ill-suited for a mixture of uses.

Mixture of Housing Types and Affordability

The applicant has proposed several smaller townhouse units that will be priced less that than the other condominiums.  The applicant has agreed that these units will be affordable according the county’s guidelines.


This project does not retain the existing house.  The house was inspected for historic significance and none was found.

Site Planning that Respects Terrain

Staff believes that the applicant has carefully situated the buildings in order to minimize the impacts to critical slopes and stepped the buildings up the slope to minimize the amount of grading required

Clear Boundaries with the Rural Areas

The proposal does not have a common boundary with the Rural Areas.


Conformity with the Community Facilities Plan/CIP:

The Community Facilities Plan calls for a library branch in or near Neighborhood Four, a small water tank on Avon Street to increase flow, and additional water storage in the southern portion for the Neighborhood to support demand and ensure adequate fire flow.  Additional items in the CIP include a southern elementary school, Monticello High School improvements, southern area park and sidewalk improvements along Avon Street Ext.  The project includes a water tank to provide adequate flow and support demand in the southern portion of the Neighborhood, an internal park and sidewalks along Avon Street Ext.  Additionally, the applicant has proffered a donation of $59,000 towards the County’s Capital Improvement Program ($1,000 per unit).

Conformity with the Open Space and Natural Resources Plan:

The Open Space Plan identifies “Wooded Areas” on this property.  The woods are at the top of the hill, as seen on the existing conditions exhibit, provided by the applicant.  These woods will be mostly removed to allow for the development of the townhomes and the water tower.  The woods are not a part of a drainage system or stream buffer.  The applicant would like to keep as much of the woods to screen the water tank, although this may not be practical. Generally, staff finds that the benefits of the development outweigh the loss of this wooded area.

Conformity with the Entrance Corridor guidelines:

The Architectural Review Board reviewed the application and expresses no objection to the rezoning, however, the offer the following comments, which can be incorporated into future site plans:

  1. Provide landscaping to help limit visual impacts of the residential units climbing up the slope, including but not limited to: trees along the main public road, along the alley, and at the perimeter of the park to reduce visual impacts.
  2. Show on the plan existing trees to remain sufficient to reduce visibility of the proposed tank or show additional landscape screening for the tank.
  3. Demonstrate on the landscape plan that the detention/retention pond will have the appearance of a fully landscaped water feature that is fully integrated into the surrounding landscape.
  4. Provide new landscaping to help tie the new development into the adjacent properties.
  5. Provide landscaping that shows how the EC frontage and the open spaces along the EC will be landscaped to achieve visual continuity along the corridor.
  6. Lighting shall be appropriately limited.

Analysis of the Rezoning Request:

Relationship between the application and the purpose and intent of the requested zoning district

The applicant is requesting a rezoning to R-6 (Residential).  The intent statement in Section 16   of the Zoning Ordinance for R-6 district is as follows:

In general, this proposal is in keeping with the intent statement.  It provides for a mix of medium density housing types and developmental amenities.

Anticipated impact on public facilities and services:


VDOT is requiring a 200' right turn lane and 150' taper. The existing right of way should be adequate for sidewalks and street trees, however a grading easement may be necessary.  The Transit Development Plan conducted by Charlottesville Transit Service recommends for transit service to be extended to Avon Street Extended, the Mill Creek neighborhood, and Monticello High School.   Staff recommends that funds being proffered be dedicated towards the extension of transit along the Avon Street corridor.

Water and Sewer

An existing 12” water main is located approximately 1000 feet from this site. This line is served by a pumping station with no capacity for additional connections.   An existing 8” sewer main is located approximately 500 feet away, in the Mill Creek South subdivision.   A significant portion of the proposed development (single family homes near Avon St. Ext.) would have to be served by individual private grinder pumps.  Staff does not recommend the use of grinder pumps, but defers to the Albemarle County Service Authority for the final decision.  Grinder pumps often become a maintenance issue for the individual property owners.  The Engineering Department has strong reservations against the use of grinder pumps as they often result in staff time trying to negotiate with the builder and homeowners to find solutions.  The gravity sewer that would eventually serve this property is under consideration for construction by the owners of the Kappa Sigma and Avon Street Rezoning projects, although even when extended to serve those projects, it will be very far away from this property and the extension is cost-prohibitive.

Stormwater management

Staff has reviewed the applicant’s conceptual stormwater management plan and has determined it to be feasible from a conceptual standpoint. 


Impacts to the school from the proposed 52 additional townhouse dwelling units will be minimal.

Fiscal Impact

A fiscal impact analysis has been performed for the project (Attachment C).  The applicant asked staff to consider new assumptions when running the model, therefore, three scenarios are provided:  1) current zoning; 2) proposed rezoning given standard assumptions; and 3) proposed rezoning given developer-supplied assumptions.  The fiscal impact given our standard assumptions is $69,000/year, the fiscal impact given the developer-supplied assumptions is $29,000/year. 

Anticipated impact on cultural and historic resources

There are two properties in the generally area which have been surveyed for their potential historic significance, but no historic resources are located on-site.  No adverse impacts to the historic properties are anticipated.

Anticipated impact on nearby and surrounding properties

There are two potential impacts on surrounding properties.  Adjacent to the south is property, also zoned R-1, which has a dog kennel.  The owner of the property contacted staff and advised that we will likely get calls from the new residents of this development about the barking dogs at his kennel, but that he has no intention of moving.  The applicants show an evergreen screen between this property and the development.  A second impact is on the Mill Creek South development, which is being asked to provide an easement through their open space to extend sewer service to this development.  The sewer connection will result in a wide swath of clearing to provide access down a steep wooded slope to lay the sewer line.  The loss in mature vegetation will be a significant negative impact on the Mill Creek South development and especially the adjacent home owner.  However, there are no reasonable alternatives to provide sewer to this site, therefore, Mill Creek HOA has agreed to the easement with conditions regarding the resulting vegetation (see letter as Attachment D).

Public need and justification for the change

This plan provides for a quality infill project that is in line with the County’s growth management policies and addresses most of the Neighborhood Model principles.  Also, the project provides 15% of the total dwelling units as meeting the County’s goals for affordable housing.

Private Roads

The project includes a private loop road, which if the applicant wishes to sell the townhouses as individual units, will have to be approved by the Planning Commission under Section 14-232, subsection A (1 & 4).  A private road waiver request can only be processed with a subdivision plat, which has not been submitted.  However, staff has reviewed the rezoning application with the knowledge that private roads will be necessary to support this rezoning.  Staff will support an eventual private road request if it is accompanied with a plat that is in general accord with the rezoning and County private street requirements.


Staff has identified the following factors, which are favorable to this rezoning request:

Staff has identified the following factors, which are unfavorable to this request:

Recommended Action:

Staff recommends approval of the rezoning (ZMA 04-03) with the attached proffers. 


A.     Locator  Maps

B.     Proffers

C.     Fiscal Impact Analysis

D.    Mill Creek South HOA letter

E.     ZMA 04-03 Application Plan and Building Elevations

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