COUNTY OF ALBEMARLE

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

 

 

AGENDA TITLE: SP 2004-0052 KENRIDGE

 

 

 

SUBJECT/PROPOSAL/REQUEST:

Kenridge, LLC, has requested approval for a special use permit to allow development of a 66 unit residential complex on a 16.5 acre property located on Route 250 West across from the Birdwood Golf Course.

 

 

STAFF: Claudette Grant

 

 

PLANNING COMMISSION DATE: July 26, 2005

 

BOARD OF SUPERVISORS DATE: To Be Determined

 

 

PROPOSAL:

The applicant, Kenridge, LLC, is seeking approval for a special use permit to allow development of a 66 unit residential complex on a 16.5 acre property located on Route 250 West across from the Birdwood Golf Course. The residential units would include 5 detached units, 48 (42 foot wide) villas, and 12 (24 foot wide) townhouses. The existing 8,000 square foot manor house and 3,000 square foot carriage house have the option of being used for residential and/or office use. The special use permit would allow for R-15, Residential use in a CO, Commercial Office district. The site is located in an Entrance Corridor. The site is currently developed with a main house and 3 dependent buildings. The buildings on the site are currently vacant. This site was the former national headquarters for Kappa Sigma Fraternity and a non-profit foundation. The building is designed for office use and includes an auditorium. The property slopes down towards Route 250 and down towards the railroad track in the rear of the site. The proposed density is 4 dwelling units/acre. (See Attachment A).

 

BACKGROUND: 

The applicant requested a special use permit in September 2004. The plans initially submitted with the request were very schematic, and lacked sufficient detail to know the applicant’s intent on the parcel. A Planning Commission work session occurred on December 14, 2004 to ascertain whether the use and scale were appropriate, and whether the plan proposed was generally acceptable. Staff also brought up the question of how the historic buildings should be incorporated into the development. There was substantive discussion and the Planning Commission conveyed direction to the applicant. The applicant revised the Kenridge plan and requested a Planning Commission public hearing, which occurred on March 29, 2005. At that time staff could not recommend approval due to extensive issues that still needed to be addressed. During the public hearing a few members of the public voiced their concerns regarding the special use permit request. The applicant requested an indefinite deferral during this meeting. (See Attachment B for the Planning Commission Public Hearing minutes).

 

Since the public hearing, staff has met with the applicant’s representatives several times and a revised plan was submitted to the County on June 16, 2005. Although staff told the applicant it did not believe the plan addressed all of the Commission’s concerns, the applicant requested this public hearing.

 

DISCUSSION/FINDINGS:

The applicant has made the following changes to the plan since last meeting with the Commission in March:

· The total number of residential units has been reduced from 80 units to 66 units consisting of single-family detached, villa and townhouse units, and the existing manor house and carriage house to be used as residential and/or office.

· A critical slope waiver has been submitted.

· Pedestrian connections and road connections to adjacent properties are shown.

· The open space area is labeled.

· The tree inventory was completed.

· Grading is shown on the plan.

 

There are still several items that staff believes need to be adequately addressed on the subject plan. The following lists matters pertinent to the consideration of the Kenridge re-submittal:

 

Layout and Design:

· All units have front loaded garages, which results in extensive parking in front of all the units. Because of this orientation (rows of parking) there is little on street parking opportunities. There is no rear access and no parking on the side of the units. This layout gives the appearance of driving into a continuous parking lot and is not the type of private street that creates the streetscape described in the Neighborhood Model. Therefore the internal parking is not appropriately relegated. There is also question regarding whether the parking as shown is going to meet parking requirements.

· The layout of the site also causes the need for extensive grading to accommodate a design that creates fairly extensive slopes.

 

Grading and Stormwater:

· The existing trees on the site are significant. Although a tree inventory was done, no indication has been made as to vegetation that will be removed. It does not appear that existing vegetation, except for that associated with the manor house, will be retained.           

· The stormwater management concept is better defined; however the grading on the development plans does not match the stormwater management concept plan. There is still the concern that the features required for the pond, perimeter berm, and biofilters (forebay, 3:1 sideslopes, shelves, etc) will not fit when final grading is provided.

           

Transportation:

· The applicant is requesting private streets. Staff recommends the neighborhood model road standards be followed. Currently, these standards are not shown on the plan to describe the road system. The applicant has noted that the interior roads will be designed to urban road standards; however, the applicant wishes the entrance road to be designed to rural road standards in the development area. While the entrance road for the adjacent White Gables development was conditioned for urban road standards, staff believes the rural cross-section in this location would be in keeping with the existing landscape and help maintain the historic integrity of the site.       

· It is recommended (and included in the recommended conditions) that the applicant provide a signal at Route 250 when warranted, and show a left turn lane, on Route 250, on the site egress.  The traffic study is concerning because it appears to be based on measuring traffic in and out of the Birdwood golf course across Route 250 on two rainy days in October. Projected Kenridge site traffic generation also appears low, using the ITE numbers averaging around 6.6 trips/day, instead of a VDOT standard 10 trips/day.  A 40% split of site traffic going west in the morning is also suspect.  The golf course traffic is 90% (east) towards town in this study.  Considering the efforts the County and VDOT have gone through (with White Gables and the National Legal Research Firm next door) in obtaining a frontage road to consolidate entrances across from the golf course, it is logical and inevitable that there will be a signal at this location in the future, regardless of warrants in this study.  This is the purpose of the frontage road.  Please read conditions 6 and 8 of the Special Use Permit approved for White Gables on 19 March 2003 (See Attachment I), which outlines in detail the entrance closure and signal installation at the expense of White Gables.  This development should pay a proportionate share.  It is noted that at least three signals have been added to this corridor recently at public expense, due to demand from the residents, long after the opportunities were available to have them installed with the original developments. Prior to the Board of Supervisor’s public hearing, staff will confirm with engineering staff if the left turn lane can be resolved at the site plan stage.

· See Attachment F for comments from the Route 250 West Task Force.

 

Affordability:

· Affordable housing has not been addressed.

 

Architectural Review Board:

· The ARB staff report is Attachment E. The ARB met on July 18, 2005 and has no objection to the Special Use Permit for Kenridge with the following conditions:

1.      All attached single family buildings in Zone a. shall be red brick with gable roofs.  All detached residences in
      Zone a. shall be either red or white brick. 
2.
      Provide tree protection areas on the grading plan and site plan drawings that assure the retention of the
       majority of the existing trees in the 275’ buffer zone located between the main house and the Route 250
       West EC.
3.
      The site wall immediately adjacent to Route 250 West shall be included on all drawings that include its
      context.  All grading, road alignments, turning lanes, etc. shall be adjusted to assure that impacts to the wall
      only include closing the existing entrance and adding a single entrance.  Notes shall be included on the
      grading and site layout plans that indicate: ‘Existing site wall to remain.  Disturbance shall be limited to the
      closure of the existing entrance and the opening of the proposed entrance into the site.’  Any changes to the
      wall shall be minimal and articulated to blend with the character of the existing wall.  Stone pillars shall be
      provided at any proposed entrance to replace those removed.    
4.
      The design of all single family detached residences, including changes to the main house at Kenridge, shall
       be subject to ARB approval. 

The ARB made the following comments for the applicant’s next submittal regarding the site plan and building designs:

1.      All attached single family buildings in Zone a. shall be red brick with gable roofs.  All detached single family
      residences in Zone a. shall be either red or white brick. 
2.
      Include the site wall immediately adjacent to Route 250 West on all drawings that include its context. 
      Adjust all grading, road alignments, turning lanes, etc. to assure that impacts to the wall only include closing
      the existing entrance and adding a single entrance.  Include notes on the grading and site layout plans that
      indicate: ‘Existing site wall to remain.  Disturbance shall be limited to the closure of the existing entrance and
      the opening of one proposed entrance into the site.’  Any changes to the wall shall be minimal and
      articulated to blend with the character of the existing wall.  Provide stone pillars at any proposed entrance to
       replace those removed.
3.
      Provide tree protection areas on the grading plan, and site plan drawings.  Include a note on the grading
      plan that limits the movement or storage of heavy equipment and materials to areas outside the tree
      protection areas.  Provide a drawing that clearly indicates what trees will be lost, and which will be retained
      in the context of this proposal.  
4.
      Provide a schematic site planting plan that reflects the existing landscape typology.  The development shall
      include site architecture to the satisfaction of the ARB.    
5.
      Provide an elevation from Route 250 West, showing the entire southern side of the ridge with proposed
      conditions or provide a model of the proposed changes.   
6.
      The design of all single family detached residences, including changes to the main house at Kenridge, shall
       be subject to ARB approval. 

 

 

 

Zoning:

· Parking shown on the plan is consistent with residential uses. However, if the carriage house were to be used as office space, it would require 12 spaces rather than the 6 shown on the plan. Furthermore, if the manor house were to be used as office space, it would require 32 spaces. A parking area is shown on the plan at the manor house, but no parking spaces are shown. Parking will need to be adjusted if office use is implemented, potentially requiring changes to the layout of the plan and site.           

 

Open Space

· Sheet A-2 in Attachment A shows a proposed lot division plan. More specifically, the open space/amenities is shown subdivided with the manor house. As shown, if the manor house were to be sold as a residential unit, the open space would be part of the manor house parcel. The open space and amenities, if it is to be part of the manor house parcel, still needs to be made available to all units in the development.

 

Historic Resources:

· Staff at the State of Virginia Department of Historic Resources, and the Architectural Historian hired by the applicant concur that there is no potential historic significance to the Kappa Sigma auditorium, and that minor changes to the carriage house in order to restore the historic site to it’s former appearance is acceptable.  If the auditorium is to be demolished, or alterations occur to the carriage house, staff requests reconnaissance level documentation, to include black and white photographs and a brief architectural description.

 

RECOMMENDATION:

The applicant has made changes to the plan in an attempt to address several prior comments of the Commission. The Architectural Review Board has recommended favorably regarding the design with conditions. Some still outstanding issues regarding the plan, such as transportation, open space and historic resources, can be addressed through conditions. However, staff is still not able to recommend approval of this project because the following items have not been satisfactorily addressed and cannot be addressed through conditions.

· Internal parking could be better relegated.

· Stormwater management, and grading need to be consistent with each other. Stormwater management needs
    to be able to work.

· Affordability needs to be addressed.

If the Planning Commission believes the project as proposed is acceptable, staff believes the following conditions should be considered:
 

  1. The approved final site plan shall be in general accord with Conceptual Plan (June 16, 2005 revision). Parking is limited to what is shown on the plan. If additional parking is required for the office spaces, the applicant will need to do an amendment to the plan.
  2. There shall be a minimum distance of two hundred seventy five (275) feet between the southern-most structure and the front (southern) property line as shown on the proposed development plan; side and rear setbacks shall be shown on the plan.
  3. All roads on the property connecting to adjacent properties as shown on the Conceptual Plan shall be constructed by the applicant to an urban section standard, with a minimum width of twenty (20) feet, final width to be determined at the time of final site plan approval by the Director of Engineering and Public Works. All roads connecting to adjacent properties shall include a sidewalk or other appropriate pedestrian path along one side, constructed to a standard acceptable to the Departments of Planning and Engineering and Public Works, providing a connection to the public sidewalk at Ivy Road.
  4. Upon request by the County, an access easement shall be provided on the property for traffic from the former ITT property (Tax Map 60, Parcel 28) across the Kenridge property to its entrance at Ivy Road, as shown on the Conceptual Plan. This access shall be constructed by the applicant to the same standard as required in Condition 3.
  5. The applicant shall comply with all requirements of the VDOT related to design and construction of the entrance to the property, as shown on the June 16, 2005 revision concept plan. The applicant shall be responsible for contributing to the cost of traffic signal improvements at the intersection of Route 250 West and an access point serving the property approved by VDOT and the County’s Director of Engineering, as provided in this condition.
  6. Screening adjacent to the railroad shall be provided to the satisfaction of the Director of Zoning and Community Development as a means of mitigating the impact of the railroad on this use. (It appears that adequate area has been provided for landscaping.).
  7. A reconnaissance level documentation, to include black and white photographs and a brief architectural description shall be provided to the satisfaction of the Historic Preservation Planner, if the auditorium is to be demolished, or alterations occur to the carriage house.  
  8. The open space and amenities, shall be made available to all units in the development, if it is to be part of the manor house parcel.
  9. The neighborhood model road standards shall be shown on the plan to describe the road system.
  10. The interior roads shall be designed to urban road standards and the entrance road shall be designed to rural road standards.

11.  All attached single family buildings in Zone a. shall be red brick with gable roofs.  All detached residences in Zone a. shall be either red or white brick. 

12.  Provide tree protection areas on the grading plan and site plan drawings that assure the retention of the majority of the existing trees in the 275’ buffer zone located between the main house and the Route 250 West EC.

13.  The site wall immediately adjacent to Route 250 West shall be included on all drawings that include its context.  All grading, road alignments, turning lanes, etc. shall be adjusted to assure that impacts to the wall only include closing the existing entrance and adding a single entrance.  Notes shall be included on the grading and site layout plans that indicate: ‘Existing site wall to remain.  Disturbance shall be limited to the closure of the existing entrance and the opening of the proposed entrance into the site.’  Any changes to the wall shall be minimal and articulated to blend with the character of the existing wall.  Stone pillars shall be provided at any proposed entrance to replace those removed.    

14.  The design of all single family detached residences, including changes to the main house at Kenridge, shall be subject to ARB approval. 
 

Should the Commission recommend these and/or any other conditions, Planning staff will need to work with Zoning staff and the County Attorney to finalize the conditions before the Board of Supervisors holds it public hearing. Also, the applicant has responded to the most recent staff comments (See Attachment G), and has included some language in terms of wording potential conditions. Planning staff will collaborate with Zoning staff and the County Attorney to incorporate appropriate language for conditions that the applicant has recommended in the attached memo dated July 12, 2005.

 

The applicant is requesting private streets. Curb-and-gutter, street with sidewalk and planting strip that meets the neighborhood model recommendations do not appear on the plan. With the exception of the entrance road, staff recommends that the County’s neighborhood model matrix be used by the applicant.

 

A critical Slope Waiver was requested and reviewed. (See Attachment H). There are no engineering concerns which prohibit the disturbance of the critical slopes as shown.

 

Action on the private streets and critical slopes should also be considered.

 

 

ATTACHMENTS:

 

A –      Concept Plan

B –       Planning Commission, March 29, 2005, Minutes

C -       Tax Map

D –      Vicinity Map

E -       Architectural Review Board Staff Report dated July 18, 2005

F -       Memo from Route 250 West Task Force, dated July 26, 2005

G -       Memo from Steve Blaine, dated July 12, 2005 

H-        Memo from Glenn Brooks, dated June 27, 2005

I-         Executive Summary for White Gables, dated March 19, 2003
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