ZMA-2001-008 Rivanna Village at Glenmore – Work session to discuss street sections, proposed interconnections, building heights, “White Gables” product, firm elements of the plan and elements for which there are several options, and uses as proposed in the Code of Development (Elaine Echols)


Mr. Craddock recused himself because he was on the Board of Directors of the East Rivanna Fire Department.  He left the room at 6:31 p.m.


Ms. Echols summarized the staff report.  (Attachment – Staff Report for ZMA-2001-008, Rivanna Village at Glenmore)


In summary, the Planning Commission held a work session on ZMA-2001-008, Rivanna Village at Glenmore, to discuss street sections, proposed interconnections, building heights, “White Gables” product, firm elements of the plan and elements for which there are several options, and uses as proposed in the Code of Development. The Commission provided comments and suggestions and answered the questions posed by staff. 


Question for the Planning Commission:  Is it acceptable to have a continuous sidewalk from the back of the curb rather than a separation between the curb and sidewalk by using street trees along the private commercial streets?


The Commission concluded that a continuous sidewalk, as an option, was approvable at 7 feet, provided the sidewalks were widened to 9 feet in front of buildings that front the street.  Trees, as shown on the General Development Plan, should be planted along the street.  Grates were viewed as an acceptable way of incorporating both sidewalks and street trees in this area.


Question for the Planning Commission:  Are three connections to adjoining properties sufficient and are the locations shown appropriately?


The Commission said that the three connections shown on the plan were located appropriately.  A fourth connection was requested through Block C, to the adjoining property through the parking lot shown on the plan near the adjoining parcel to the south.  The street could be a rural cross-section; however, it must have sidewalks and street trees.  It could be either public or private.  The connection could be a private access easement.


A pedestrian connection was viewed as essential between Block C, through Block F (the Fire Station parcel) to the rest of the development, especially Block E and the park.  Staff said it was working with the East Rivanna Fire and Rescue Company on this issue already.


Question for the Commission:  What is the appropriate height for buildings in the area under review for the rezoning?


The heights may go to 55 feet for residential buildings in Block E; however, they should be limited to 4 stories.  For non-residential buildings in Block E, the limitation was 45 feet and 3 stories.  The table indicating maximum building heights should contain both maximum heights in feet and maximum stories or floors. 


Questions for the Commission:  Is the product type, form of development, and building height appropriate in Block C?


The Commission was satisfied with the multifamily buildings, the “White Gables” type of development and maximum building heights of 45 feet with 3 stories. 


Question for the Commission:  Should commitments be made to other plan elements or is this level of flexibility acceptable?


The Commission was satisfied with the list of fixed elements shown on the plan.  They expressed the need for greater, not lesser densities and asked the applicant to increase the minimum number of units by block in the development for all but Blocks B, H, and K (the single-family residential blocks), Block A (the entrance with the church and bed and breakfast), Block F, the fire station, and Block I the park.  It was suggested that the applicant commit overall to a minimum of 4 dwellings per acre.  Staff said it would work with Zoning and Current Development to find the most appropriate way to make this commitment.


Question for the Commission:  Are the proposed uses acceptable in the locations shown on the plan?


Staff noted that the need to limit some of the accessory uses for the Fire Station was being worked on between staff and the Fire Company.  All of the other uses were viewed as satisfactory and appropriate.


Frank Cox, Steve Runkle and Michael Fenner, representatives for the applicant, were present to answer questions. 


The Commission took public comment at the end of the session. 


Dennis Ordinov, head of the Master Planning Steering Committee in the Village of Rivanna, said that they submitted a Comprehensive Plan Amendment that was rejected because the Commission said that it was informative for future use.  One of the things that they emphasized in the CPA was the protection of the historical area, which comprises Glenmore and the Village of Rivanna.  There is an equestrian horse path there.  This is also the entrance to Glenmore. For what it is worth, everything that Mr. Runkle said tonight was factually true with regards to some people coming to him and saying that they wanted the White Gables product.  But, that was never voted on by the people in Glenmore. Subsequently, they ran a survey and people were overwhelmingly against it because it interferes with the scenic and historical area.  However, they have talked with Mr. Runkle, had a meeting with Bob Tucker and other persons and were wiling to accept it because there is no other place to put it.  It would be an economic setback to them if they did not have it.  However, they don’t want the roofline of any of these units to be seen from an area, which would then have it jut out and disturb that area even with a 100’ setback.  They realize that in the winter time these units would be seen.  But, the height of the roofline above the trees is what bothers us.  They are concerned about what they discussed and that height being set before they clearly understand whether the roofline will be seen above the tree line.  It will upset the scenic view of that particular vista. The other thing that he might mention to the Commission with regards to density is that they have been in discussions with the developer and the County Parks and  Recreation supports them in line with their original discussion to preserve as much of this as possible and not have playing fields.  There is a possibility that this could be a practice field.   Then they would have essentially 14 acres of parks instead of fields in this area.  He did not know if that was done with the minimum densities required and whether that would doom that possibility.  Parks and Recreation’s preference is for a larger park because as they say they would have larger flexibility.  He said that he just wanted to bring that to the Commission’s attention.


There being no further public comment, Ms. Joseph thanked everybody for coming.


Ms. Echols said that additional work sessions will be scheduled to discuss transportation, the Entrance Corridor, proffers and affordable housing.


The Planning Commission took a ten minutes break at 7:55 p.m.  The meeting reconvened at 8:02 p.m.


Mr. Craddock returned to the meeting at 8:02 p.m.



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