Albemarle County Planning Commission

December 19, 2006

 

            Work Sessions:

 

ZMA 2005-017 Biscuit Run (Signs #52, 56, 63)

PROPOSAL:  Rezone approximately 920 acres from R-1 Residential (1 unit/acre), R-2 Residential (2 units/acre) and RA--Rural Area: agricultural, forestal, and fishery uses; residential density (0.5 unit/acre) to NMD Neighborhood Model District - residential (3 - 34 units/acre) mixed with commercial, service and industrial uses. Maximum number proposed residential units: 3,500. Commercial uses proposed also.

PROFFERS:  Yes

EXISTING COMPREHENSIVE PLAN LAND USE/DENSITY:  Neighborhood Density Residential in Neighborhoods 4 & 5-residential (3-6 units/acre) and supporting uses such as religious institutions and schools and other small-scale non-residential uses.

ENTRANCE CORRIDOR: Yes

LOCATION: Between the east side of Old Lynchburg Road and the west side of Route 20; adjacent and to the south of the Mill Creek subdivision, adjacent and to the west of the intersection of Avon Street, Extended and Route 20.

TAX MAP/PARCEL: 90/5, 90/6D (portion), 90/17D, 90-A/3,

90/A1-1, 90/A1-1E, 90/15A, 90A/1A, 90A/1B, and 90A/1C.

MAGISTERIAL DISTRICT: Scottsville

STAFF:  Claudette Grant

 

Ms. Joseph noted that ZMA-2005-17, Biscuit Run is not a work session as listed on the agenda. It will be a 20 minutes presentation from the applicant to go over some of the proffers that have been offered and the project itself.  She acknowledged that there were some City Planning Commissioners present.  The discussion of the traffic is scheduled for the Commission’s January 30 meeting. At that point it will be a work session and the City Planning Commission will be invited again to participate.  She apologized for any miscommunication that happened.  Staff will present the staff report, comment will be taken from the applicant and then public comment will be taken.

 

Ms. Grant summarized the staff report and presented a power point presentation.

 

The applicant is proposing to rezone approximately 920 acres from R-1 and R-2, Residential to Neighborhood Model District.  Approximately 3,100 residential units, a school and a neighborhood center, which would include commercial uses, are proposed. A 92 acre park site is proposed for some adjacent land zoned rural area.  This park site was originally part of the rezoning request, but is not longer proposed to be rezoned. 

 

The purpose of this evening’s meeting is primarily for the applicant to provide the Commission an overview of the traffic impact analysis addendum and present information regarding the proffers that relate to transportation impacts as identified by the applicant. 

 

Some background information regarding this particular aspect of the Biscuit Run submittal is that on June 13 the Commission held a work session to discuss the scope of the traffic study.  The original traffic study was submitted in September. Reviewers include the City of Charlottesville staff, the MPO staff, VDOT staff and County staff.  Several comments and requested changes resulted from the September study.  A copy of this information was included in the Commission’s packet. 

 

In response to staff’s comments the applicant submitted an addendum to the traffic study on December 4, 2006.  The traffic studies are very lengthy and detailed.  Staff is working on review of the December 4 addendum submittal and currently does not have completed analysis to provide the Commission. 

 

Some quick pertinent changes that staff has noticed are:

 

·        The decrease in total proposed residential units from 4,970 units to 3,100 units. 

 

·        The applicant has verbally specified that the interconnection between Biscuit Run and Biscuit Run and Mill Creek will be pedestrian.  The initial traffic study did not specify the details of this interconnection.

 

·        Last, the applicant has stated that the neighborhood center will be of a neighborhood scale and not regional.  The neighborhood center is proposed to be located towards the eastern portion of the site near Route 20 and where most of the residential density for this development is proposed to be located. 

 

·        Proffers have been submitted and included in the Commission’s packet.

 

·        The applicant has met with the City regarding traffic impacts on City streets.  Correspondence from the City to the applicant has also been included in the Commission’s packet.

 

·        In conclusion, no action on the proposal is sought this evening.  As previously mentioned this is primarily an information meeting.

 

·        In terms of our future schedule with the Biscuit Run project, the following schedule has been tentatively set.

 

January 16, 2007 – (Next meeting) At this meeting a revised application plan, Code of Development and proffers not related to transportation will be discussed as found from staff review.

 

January 30, 2007 – The traffic studies (TIA), traffic proffers and transportation proffers will be discussed based on staff review.

 

February 6, 2007 – Tentatively scheduled summary meeting at which time staff can tie up any loose ends.

 

February 10, 2007 (Saturday) – Public Forum scheduled where the public has the opportunity to come and speak and ask questions related to the project. 

 

February 27, 2007 – Planning Commission Public Hearing is scheduled.

 

April 11, 2007 – Board of Supervisor meeting is scheduled.

 

If there are any questions Juan Wade, Transportation Planner, and herself are available for questions.

 

There being no questions for staff, Ms. Joseph invited the applicant to address the Commission.

 

Steve Blaine, representing the applicant Forest Lodge, LLC, said that as reported the forum tonight is to hear a brief overview from us about the proffers and a little bit about the traffic study.  They don’t want to get too much into the details of the traffic study because they appreciate that the reviewing agencies have not included their analysis.  That information will be provided at the January 30 meeting as mentioned.  Tonight they want to listen again to more comments.  They appreciate the availability of the Planning Commission from the City to be here to hear their rationale for their proffers and hopefully they will be in a better position to direct staff on some particular concerns for their analysis and then have a very productive work session in January. 

 

There are two things that he wants the Commission to take away from this meeting.  In Biscuit Run they have an excellent opportunity here for some growth management planning where they can leverage private dollars for public improvements in the infrastructure that can really have a beneficial impact to accommodate growth for the next 15 to 20 years.  They also have in Biscuit Run through this Neighborhood Model in this capacity an opportunity really to be transformational in altering some of the habits that they have obtained over time in transit use of motor vehicle and some of the benefits that they recognize now that come from the Neighborhood Model.    

 

He felt that any discussion of transportation infrastructure has to first start with the Comprehensive Plan. Why does the Comprehensive Plan designate this area for growth?  A lot of time they hear about the Comprehensive Plan and it designating the growth areas to have growth in an area and to discourage growth in the rural area.  They lose sight of the fact that it is not an abstract 5 percent of the area of the County that they have just designated.  It is an area that has been designated because the infrastructure is already there or readily available.  It is important as a back drop for Biscuit Run because the Comprehensive Plan deliberately intends housing for this area because there are important high capacity transportation corridors already in place.  In a power point presentation he noted that is illustrated by this stepping back to 30,000 feet and looking at the Comprehensive Plan overall in the green lightly shaded area, which is the growth area surrounding the central business district of Charlottesville.  The darker green shown in the slide is the Charlottesville City limits.  The Biscuit Run property is at the southern extremity of the growth area is shown in the lighter shade.  What they see here is at least 3 high capacity transportation corridors in Fifth Street certainly from their future entrance on the north end becomes a 4-lane facility.  Route 29, Fifth Street and Route 20 are already existing high capacity transportation corridors.  The challenge in looking at a rezoning of this is how can they take advantage of these existing high capacity corridors and make sure that they are enhanced or maintain a free flow through the future planned development in anticipated growth of the area.  It is a sharp contrast if you look at these corridors compared to the northern end of the growth area where they really only have one significant high capacity corridor in Route 29.  In some sense their planning has almost been upside down because they have these transportation corridors on the south end of the growth area that have been under utilized and they yet have a disproportioned amount of growth in the northern end of the growth area.

 

The emphasis that they are taking to give a preview of their proffer strategy is that these other corridors, which are still vital corridors to this central business district being Old Lynchburg Road in the City and Avon Street through our proffer strategy can be less viewed as a regional corridor and more of a local connector.  As they go through the proffers he would go more into detail of that.  

 

Mr. Blaine presented a booklet entitled “Biscuit Run Traffic Work Session” for the Commission’s review.  The traffic study is one that the County requested to be done.  They received input from VDOT, the City as well as the County.  It is unprecedented in terms of its scope.  It is much above and beyond what is typically done in a project of this size.  It is extremely conservative and over engineered.  He presented an illustration showing the overall traffic study area.  There are 12 intersections within the City limits that were studied.  The study asked them to assume over the next 15 years that there would be an annual 2 percent growth in traffic not just in the County but also in the City.  Then on top of that they were asked to layer in the traffic generation from Biscuit Run. So there was double counting in that sense.  The traffic study analysis and the scope that they were asked to conduct does not take into account the full transportation benefits in the Neighborhood Model.  They were asked to use the conventional trip generation tables, which did not account for internal capture trips that were part of the foundation of the Neighborhood Model. 

 

One of the major selling points of the Neighborhood Model was how it might actually transform life style with attitudes and behavior in terms of the automobile and making it more appealing for alternative modes of transportation.  Therefore, they would have pedestrian friendly, sidewalks and trails.  They have blocks that are shorter lengths that are more conducive to non-vehicular modes of transportation.  As the Torti Gallas plan shows, they have 2 areas where they would anticipate a village center that would provide employment as while as well as services within the community.  The obvious benefit from the transportation standpoint was the residents of Biscuit Run would have these opportunities within the community and thus reduce the external trips to the external road network.  They have also located a school within the central portion of the project.  It their expectation and vision that these homeowner associations would work with the school district to actually implement programs like “Walk to School.”  They can make this happen in Biscuit Run. 

 

They have a huge opportunity to integrate a trail system for the existing residents in the southern neighborhoods 4 and 5 and future residents in Biscuit Run into an overall community wide trail system, which includes the Rivanna Trail System.  There is an internal trail system linked underneath I-64 linked to the City.  This internal trail could be used by cyclists and pedestrian to really provide an alternate mode for transportation.  Even Chuck Proctor of VDOT recognizes that they don’t fully account in their traffic analysis these alternative modes of transportation and he is a fan for the trail system.

 

They have an opportunity for enhanced transit with our plan.  The plan shows a connecting road from Route 20 through the project up to the high capacity area for Fifth Street where it is 4 lanes.  This provides a loop for transit, which makes it more efficient for bus service. 

 

There are some residents in Mill Creek that are very concerned about the impacts to Avon Street Extended.  He had a Foxcroft resident comment that doesn’t this eliminate the need for the Southern Parkway.  They are not advocating that the Southern Parkway has to come off the road plan or the Comprehensive Plan.  The Southern Parkway is proposed for a link from Avon Street to Fifth Street in this general area.  Their proposed connector would provide a preferred length between a higher capacity transportation facility and Route 20 and Fifth Street.  It obviates the need for this movement for people who are coming up Route 20 and want to cut over to Fifth Street to have to make the movement on Avon Street and cut over on the Southern Parkway.  He felt that people were starting to see that and that is what they hope to accomplish.

 

In terms of their proffers what they were asked to do is assume that there will be no state or public funding for our relative build out.  What they did in their proffers as they looked at the projected build out the need for improvements and looked at what improvements that they could actually most likely bring about that would have the greatest efficient impact on the road network.  They have proffered to widen Route 20 from the southern boundary all the way to Route 53.  That is about a 5.5 million dollar cost for construction.  That is 2.3 miles.  That would be the largest single contribution to a public road that he is aware of in Albemarle County.  When he mentioned that to Bruce Davies, who is our Commissioner on the Transportation Board, he said wow.  He said that he would like to meet and talk about how we could make certain that they can make sure that this road can happen.  He acknowledged that staff and VDOT were going to look at their cost estimates of this, but he would submit that 5.5 million, which was about $500 per linear foot, should cover the cost of design and construction.  They understand that there are right-of-way and utility challenges here.

 

What they are trying to do with this proffer strategy is making certain that they are enhancing the main transportation corridors that have a regional impact. So they do that by widening and making Route 20 a safe and efficient corridor by widening it to 4 lanes and providing the link to the high capacity Fifth Street.  They acknowledge that there are potential choke points with one at Sunset and Fifth Street. They would propose signal improvements to keep the free flow at the juncture.  They acknowledge a potential choke point at Interstate 64, which they propose turn lane improvements at this juncture.  So the strategy is to have these be the commuting points to the central business district and take the emphasis off of Avon Street, which their vision becomes more of a local connector or local street for the communities along Avon Street.  They can do such things such as putting long green times for movements here and a long red time for a left turn.  So commuters coming up to the central business district will find this as a preferred route as oppose to making the cut through on Avon Street.  If they can keep Fifth Street as a free flowing high capacity corridor it provides an alternative to those commuters who perhaps are using Old Lynchburg Road, which should be a neighborhood street.  They are aware of the City’s budget and their proposal to make traffic calming improvements on Old Lynchburg Road.  They would support those and provide whatever support they can from a technical standpoint.  They are in communications with the City about overall network improvements and ITS improvements that would involve the integration of signals not just in the County, but also in the City, so they would have an integrated signal system with on-site cameras that can make field adjustments as traffic conditions warrant.   They would like to do this with concurrence with the County and State with an overall integrated approach before they talk about who is responsible for what portion of those improvements.

 

In conclusion, he wanted to just leave them with what they think is an opportunity for making deliberate infrastructure planning and leveraging the private dollars that their project can contribute and then in using that for the generation of planning to not miss the opportunity to implement the Neighborhood Model perhaps in the most significant way that they may see for a long time.

 

There being no questions for Mr. Blaine, Ms. Joseph noted that there was a list of persons signed up to speak.  The first person on the list is Jean Chase.

 

Jeanne S. Chase, resident of Old Lynchburg Road for 30 years and as a member of Fry’s Spring Neighborhood Association, asked what the plan is for taking the high volume and speeding traffic off of our neighborhood street of Old Lynchburg Road.  It is a very present problem.  Old Lynchburg Road was never to have been used for such as seen in the history of deliberations of this area involving traffic.  Once again she reminded the Commission that Old Lynchburg Road is a city residential street of 25 miles per hour from Azalea Park to JPA, which is narrow with no shoulders, sidewalks and blind curves. Over 45 residences have driveways that open onto this stretch of road.  What is the plan?  They need to hear the voices from the developers, from UVA, from both the City and County Planning Commissions as well as from the County’s Supervisors and City Council as to what the Comprehensive Plan is going to be to deal with the current and future traffic problems.  By hearing those voices it is a stamp of approval to what is happening now, which is totally unacceptable to the Fry’s Spring Neighborhood.  Many pedestrians make their way along Old Lynchburg Road from both County and City residences to the bus stops on JPA or to walk the distance into the City to their destinations.  Currently they have problems with people using the City residential street as a high speed cut through ignoring the 25 mile per hour speed limit by many miles over the posted speed ignoring the pedestrians and safe driving practices.  Our marvelous City Police Traffic Division is being stretched thin.  They are one of the largest neighborhoods in the City of Charlottesville.  Our neighborhood needs relieve.  The volume of traffic on our residential street needs to stop.  She asked that the Commission delay action on Biscuit Run until there is something in place to solve the current and future traffic problem.   She asked where the traffic from Biscuit Run be directed to come?  She asked where the traffic will be directed to from the new Woodlands, which recently started as a development of 300 units to be ready by August, 2007. 

 

Vanthis Nguyen, resident of 1116 Little High Street, spoke in opposition to the request.  She noted that what they were planning to do was to give away almost 1,000 acres of woodland and streams to be destroyed forever.  It will be done to make a few developers rich.  She asked that the Commission be mindful of what they want to leave behind.  She encouraged the Commission to resist this trend to pave over everything and to further the deadening of ourselves.  She asked that the Commission preserve the County, the natural world and the planet for the future generations.  She was not sure if they remembered the slogan of their youth, which was be a realist, demand the impossible.

 

Doug Arrington said that he lives in the 1100 block of Old Lynchburg.  The road at this point is over traveled. He spoke in opposition to the request.  There are a number of driveways and private roads that come onto Old Lynchburg Road that were approved 20 to 30 years ago.   He happened to live on one of those.  Traffic coming south on Old Lynchburg Road at best during the day the best one can do is listen for traffic coming and then pull out and hope that no cars are coming.  He did not see the reality in Biscuit Run not impacting Old Lynchburg Road.  He did not see how it could not if for no other reason than the traffic generated going south.  There already exist safety concerns resulting in accidents in this area, which deal with the traffic congestion.  These existing problems need to be addressed for public safety.

 

Peter Hedlund, resident of 204 Todd Avenue and Vice-President of the Fry’s Spring Neighborhood Association, spoke in opposition to the request.  Recently more than 90 percent of the residents of Old Lynchburg Road in the City signed a petition supporting the closure of Old Lynchburg Road at the County line.  Narrow and lacking sidewalks makes anyone who has ever traveled on Old Lynchburg Road acknowledge that it is not designed to handle large volumes of traffic.  The Fry’s Spring Neighborhood on Old Lynchburg Road in particular have become overwhelmed with the current levels of traffic and are very concerned about any additional traffic created by the Biscuit Run Development.  Their neighborhood lies directly between Biscuit Run and the University of Virginia.  The quickest way to get from one to the other is through our neighborhood traveling Old Lynchburg Road.  He was not sure that traffic calming efforts would be sufficient to narrow the traffic on Old Lynchburg Road.  In addition to Biscuit Run, other projects such as the Woodlands, the Granger property and the 474,000 square foot retail development between Fifth Street and Avon Street will all impact our neighborhood.  The Southern Area B Study recommended a connector between Fontaine Avenue and Sunset Avenue Extended. While this is not a silver bullet to deal with all of the future traffic, it would be a significant step in the right direction.  While this development may fit into the County’s Comprehensive Plan the people in the Fry’s Spring Neighborhood will ultimately pay the price.

 

John Pfaltz, resident of 153 Rugby Road, said that he has briefly looked at the addendum to Ramey Kemp & Associates Traffic Impact Analysis Report for the Biscuit Run Development dated November, 2006.  Based on a rather incomplete comparison of the addendum with the original report, he had 2 observations and 5 questions that he hoped would be answered at the January 30 meeting.

 

Observations:

 

  1. Although only 75 percent of the residences are being proposed (3,100/4,100), the resulting peak traffic is only dropping to 90 percent of the expected traffic described in the earlier report.  The reduction in dwelling units has little effect on the area traffic.
  2. The conclusion of the former study listed 5 roads that would need to be widened (page 54), 4 in the city and 1 in the county.  These are not listed in the amended report, although indirect reference is made on page 74.  Similarly, the need to widen the bridge on Fifth Street Extended over I-64 is discussed in the addendum (page 9), but not listed in the recommended improvements (page 76).  There is a lot of money involved in widening a bridge.

 

Questions:

 

  1. Why is there no change in the expected vehicles per day (ADT at the 6 sites listed on page 8 of the first report) as shown in Figure 4-A, B, C, D.  Were these not recalculated?
  2. Why is the only through cross connection (page 2) slanted so as to facilitate traffic from Route 20 to Old Lynchburg Road, but to discourage traffic in the reverse direction?
  3. What is the nature of the retail that “is not expected to be constructed as a regional traffic destination?”  (page 1)
  4. Why has the connection to Mill Creek South been deleted?  Are they not expected to patronize the retail center?
  5. At intersection #16, Mountainwood and Old Lynchburg, there are more vehicles entering the city past Azalea Park in the PM peak hour (398) than in the AM peak hour (355).  This is contrary to intuition (Old Lynchburg Road is the major route to the University and its Medical complexes) and contrary to behavior at other intersections bordering the city.  For example, at intersection #9, Avon Street and Southern Parkway, we have 1,107 entering the city in AM peak hour and only 627 in PM peak hour.  Is there an explanation for this phenomenon?  (Attachment:  “Remarks to Albemarle County Planning Commission 18 December 2006”)

 

Jack Marshall, representative for the 300 members of the Advocates of Sustainable Albemarle ASAP.  It seems that Albemarle County has backed itself into a corner knowing that Biscuit Run will disrupt traffic in the County and knowing that it will require new schools to be built, impose tremendous demands on water and sewer, raise taxes to pay for more infrastructure and more about the impacts of this development of an unprecedented scale for our community we nevertheless seem to do little as the developers change the character of Albemarle County.  One of the maddening things is that these powerful interests in most part are working within rules that we have set.  It makes one wonder if our planning apparatus is so short sided and feeble that we have no choice than to let our future be determined either by accident or by the desires of a handful that make a profit from relentless development.  Twenty-six years ago County leaders including the Commissioners recognized the population growth in the Rivanna Reservoir Watershed would have unacceptable consequences.  They took the long view and changed the rules. They made the courageous and far sighted decision to rezone a huge amount of the County. That was a quarter of a century ago.  It still stands as a grave decision. It is time to ask new questions about those old decisions.  What do we learn from the apparent inevitably Biscuit Run Development and from the County’s inability to access it in the context of the cumulative impact of the many other developments approved in an endless stream.  Does our community need a new vision of something that reflects a new awareness of the cost of growth?  Of course it does.   It is time to ask ourselves what we want to become.  Will our community honestly be improved with 3,000 to 4,000 new homes and 7,000 new residents and their cars or another 50,000 or 100,000? When do we stop?  How will the Biscuit Run development help those of us who are here now?  They can define and control our demographic destiny.  One step is to support the comprehensive plan amendment requested by ASAP, Sierra Club and Citizens for Albemarle.  This common sense amendment would the require the County to identify an optimal sustainable population size or range for our community and then it could help guide future County planning that involves land use and development decisions.  Imagine if they had that now.  How would their decision be based in the context of the other developments being approved?  If they can’t avoid Biscuit Run development now, please spare us future ones.

 

Tom Olivier, a member of the Executive Committee of the Piedmont Group of the Sierra Club said that he was speaking on behalf of that group.  Their group represents approximately 1,100 members.  The Sierra Club is dedicated to the protection of our environment and is greatly concerned about population growth and its consequences such as sprawl.  The Biscuit Run proposal if built will add thousands of residents to the Scottsville District.  Obviously, such a development will alter the site on which it is built.  Over the past year in work sessions there has been much discussion in revision of the site plan aimed at protecting open space resources on the site. The Sierra Club commends those efforts.  However, Biscuit Run if built will have major impacts on the surrounding still largely rural areas of the Scottsville District.  No doubts there will be some benefits perhaps in better or more convenient shopping.  However, there will be many more negative impacts including more traffic, the need for more school facility, more air pollution, water quality degradation, wildlife habitat loss and fragmentation.  The potential negative impacts of Biscuit Run and surrounding areas of the Scottsville District appears to have gotten very little attention even though those effects may be the most important.  The Piedmont Group of the Sierra Club believes that the decision on the Biscuit Run proposal should be withheld until they have a much fuller understanding of its impacts on the surrounding rural areas.  Finally, the Advocates for the Albemarle Sustainable Population or ASAP has proposed that Albemarle County identifies a sustainable optimal population size for the Charlottesville/Albemarle community and then require consideration of the state of our population relative to the optimum in land use decisions.  This optimal would be a kind of best trade off between the benefits of development and the need to protect our environment.  The Sierra Club has endorsed the ASAP Optimal Population proposal. They believe that if it was established already it would provide a much needed big picture guidance in considering proposals such as Biscuit Run.

 

Doug Corwitz, resident of Mill Creek South, asked to start with a simple question.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Don Sladous, resident of 104 Fourth Street, asked to talk about the difference between the person and the individual.  A lot of people get these terms mixed up.  He asked that the County build for people and not just for cars.  Instead of putting all of the resources in making these giant sprawl communities that increase the traffic they could put their resources towards things like a train system of sorts.  He felt that people would use a train system if they did not build more roads.  It is about putting infrastructure in place.  He asked the Commission to vote no on the Biscuit Run proposal and the shopping center.  It is going to kill the traffic into the city.  When he walked to the meeting this evening he found the front door locked and he had to go to the parking lot entrance.  He asked that the Commission take this into consideration.

 

Christine Gesture, resident of 1090 Old Lynchburg Road, said that the foot of her driveway was directly across the street from Forest Lodge Lane. Therefore, she could not be any closer to this development.  She said that her husband commutes on bike to work everyday on Preston Avenue.  She asked that the development be made small and that they put bike lanes in from the City to Walnut Creek Park.  She fears the safety of her children and husband on Old Lynchburg Road and would really appreciate the addition of a bike lane.  As you make decisions for our community, please remember how deeply it affects our lives.

 

Armstrong Straus, resident of City, acknowledged that there is a certain amount of development allowed by right. He feared that if this process goes anything like Hollymead or North Point that ultimately the Board of Supervisors would pass it after a lot of going back and forth with the developer.  He suggested that the County consider the Neighborhood Model that is based on public walkability since they are asking the developers to fit into that kind of way of building.  But yet the County does not provide the walking, biking and transit facilities that make that kind of development possible.  The Commission does not have a lot of say in what type of transportation infrastructure gets put in, which makes their job difficult. The one major thing he would like to say is that they need to have walking, biking and transit facilities that are going to make it worth the developer’s while to build the kinds of places so people can use those forms of transportation. 

 

Tassey Oswald, resident on Old Lynchburg Road, said that the presentation was very disturbing.  She did not understand what Biscuit Run is benefiting by cutting down almost 1,000 acres of woodlands, which makes this area such a nice place to live.  She opposed the proposed development.  It seems to be benefiting developers who don’t live down there.  It is a bad idea.

 

Shawn Vista, resident of 234 Montavista in the City, acknowledged that growth was enviable and going to happen.  But, they do have the chance to change things.  The growth needs to be better managed.  It is important to think about what is going to happen to the outside community.  He urged the Commission to make sure that transit is provided so that it is safe for the pedestrians and bicyclists.  He encouraged the Commission to consider the safety concerns on Old Lynchburg Road and to respect the City.

 

Bruce Halaven, resident in southern Albemarle, said that he was deeply moved by the comments that he had heard.  He commended everyone for taking time out of their holiday schedule to come and voice their opinions tonight.  He asked that the Commission to listen and take into consideration all of the comments.

 

Shirley Dorrier, resident of Scottsville, said that she found Route 20 one of the most beautiful drives in the State of Virginia.  But, it will not be when they add the 4,000 new units at Biscuit Run.  It is ridiculous to say that will not change Route 20.  It is one of the most historic roads in the State of Virginia. She asked that Biscuit Run not be allowed to be so big. She requested that the Commission make the development as small as possible and preserve the County. 

 

Wren Dalton Olivier, resident of Albemarle County, asked to echo some of the sediments that had been made.  She asked that the Commission think about what another 50 years will do to our County if they continue to do what they are doing.  Mr. Blaine said that they need to accommodate growth.  She questioned if they really need to do that.   She suggested that they think about what we want to do with our County and the kind of life we want to have here.

 

Jennifer Conner, resident of Little High Street, echoed and endorsed every comment that has been made tonight.  In the past she commuted once a week to work along Old Lynchburg Road. She felt that the map was not very clear in the presentation regarding bike and pedestrian walking trails.  In this process she hoped that was clarified.  She hoped that those things come through the entire process and don’t get lost along the way or shuffled to the back.  As a bicyclist she noted that this area was currently very dangerous and with the proposed development she feared that it would worsen.

 

There being no further public comment, Ms. Joseph reviewed the upcoming schedule one more time.  On January 16 at the Planning Commission meeting there will be a revised application plan, Code of Development and proffers not related to transportation to be discussed in a work session.  The Commission invited the City Planning Commission.  On January 30 at 6:00 p.m. the Commission will be having a work session discussing traffic and transportation proffers.  On February 6 there will be another summary meeting.  On Saturday, February 10 there will be comment session, with the time and location determined at a later date.  On February 27 there will be a Planning Commission public hearing.  Then on April 11 there will be a Board of Supervisors meeting.  These are all tentative dates depending on what type of information comes out at each of these meetings.  But, that is the schedule so far.  She asked if Mr. Blaine had any responses to what had been discussed.

 

Mr. Blaine said that since the evening was late that he had nothing further to discuss unless there were questions.

 

There being no further questions, Ms. Joseph thanked everyone for coming.

 

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