Mountain Overlay District

Rural Areas Resource Protection

Joint Work Session



Mountain Overlay District Proposal for Protection of Albemarle County’s Mountain Resources




Tucker, Foley, Davis, Kamptner, Graham, Cilimberg, Benish, McDowell







January 10, 2007 Joint Work Session


ACTION:     X                      INFORMATION:   



  ACTION:                           INFORMATION:   











At its joint work session on December 13, 2006 with the Planning Commission, the Board of Supervisors continued its discussion begun at the work session on September 13, 2006, pertaining to the Mountain Overlay District (MOD) Committee’s Proposal for Protection of Albemarle County’s Mountain Resources (Attachment A).  The Board discussion focused on the MOD Proposal in order to obtain a sense of the willingness of the Board and Commission to move forward on each of the MOD provisions.  The Board also decided that it would take up the possibility of extending certain MOD provisions to the remainder of the Rural Areas after it concluded its discussion on the application of the provisions within the Mountain Protection Areas.  Following the discussion, the Board requested that staff schedule another work session to provide a two-hour time period for the Board to conclude its discussion. 


The Board reached general consensus to move forward with revised ordinance provisions for the following:

  1. Critical Slopes (restrictions for roads and driveways across critical slopes)
  2. Erosion and Sediment Control Plan (require a Plan instead of an Agreement in-lieu, in order to obtain a grading plan)
  3. Stream Buffers (200’ wide stream buffers, in order to protect steam head waters)
  4. Safe Access (ensure that safe access is provided to buildings)


Some Board members did want it understood that while they were agreeing to move forward, they were not committing to vote favorably for any particular provisions as they had not yet seen the particular details.




Goals 4:  Effectively Manage the County’s Growth and Development. 

Objective 4.2:  By June 30, 2010, increase the protection of the County’s rural areas by implementing the key strategies of the Rural Area Plan.



The remaining provisions of the MOD proposal to be discussed on January 10 are as follows:  

  1. Height Restrictions (building heights below the crests of ridges)
  2. Waiver or Modification (waivers available, if the purposes of the ordinance can be met; administrative or Planning Commission decisions should be discussed)
  3. Guidelines for Incorporation into a Future Rural Cluster Subdivision Ordinance for the MOD (existing Rural Preservation Development standards would be applicable to the MOD)
  4. Additional Protection for Mountain Resources (conservation easements, property tax adjustments, Transfer of Development Rights)



Also, if time permits, the Board will discuss the implications for extending certain MOD regulations throughout the remainder of the Rural Areas.  The December 13th Board Executive Summary (Attachment B) provides information regarding extending the MOD provisions into the remainder of the Rural Areas. 


A Power Point presentation to illustrate the progression of a subdivision through the application process will be given by staff at the beginning of the work session in order to clarify some of the issues raised at both the September 13 and the December 13 work sessions.



After the Board has completed its review noted above and provided direction, staff will prepare a budget impact analysis to accompany the proposed ordinance amendments as they are deliberated. It is anticipated that additional staff resources would be required to process, inspect, and enforce many of these additional regulations. If the Board elects to do so, those additional costs may be recovered in permit fees.  Additionally, it is anticipated that providing accurate surveys and detailed plans, as well as any additional permit fees, would increase upfront costs to builders.   It is anticipated that all of the builders’ costs would be passed on to the future homebuyers.  While economic theory suggests these increased costs would constrain development activity in the Rural Areas, staff cannot speculate on whether the additional costs would have an appreciable effect on the rate of Rural Areas development.    




On September 13, 2006, staff recommended that the Board adopt a Resolution of Intent for the Mountain Overlay District based on the recommendations in the Comprehensive Plan and the recommendation of the MOD Committee (Attachment C). Staff continues to support proceeding with Mountain Overlay District provisions and recommends that the Board complete review of the provisions of the MOD proposal.  Furthermore, staff requests that the Board consider extending certain MOD regulations throughout the Rural Area as discussed in the December 13th Executive Summary (Attachment B).  Based on direction given at the January 10, 2007, work session, staff will develop the necessary Resolutions of Intent that comply with the Board’s direction and bring those to the Board for adoption at a subsequent meeting. 




A          Mountain Overlay District Committee recommended Proposal for Protection of Albemarle County’s Mountain Resources

B          Executive Summary, Board of Supervisor’s December 13, 2006, Joint Work Session with the Planning Commission

C          Resolution of Intent for the Mountain Overlay District

 Return to regular agenda