Albemarle County Planning Commission

June 5, 2007

 

 

ZMA2006-00015 Livengood (Glenmore Section S5) (Sign # 26 & 30)

PROPOSAL:  Rezone 32.24 acres from RA - Rural Area zoning district which allows agricultural, forestal, and fishery uses; residential density (0.5 unit/acre)

to PRD - Planned Residential District - residential (3 - 34 units/acre) with limited commercial uses to allow for 45 dwelling units. This proposal is an expansion of the Glenmore PRD and does not include commercial uses.

PROFFERS:  Yes

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

ENTRANCE CORRIDOR: No

LOCATION: 2000 feet south of the intersection of Route 250 East and Hacktown Road, North of Pendowner Lane (in Glenmore), and east of Carroll Creek

TAX MAP/PARCEL: Tax Map 80, Parcel 48 and Tax Map 94, Parcel 1

MAGISTERIAL DISTRICT: Scottsville

STAFF: Sean Dougherty

 

Mr. Dougherty presented a power point presentation and summarized the staff report.

 

 

Ms. Joseph asked if there were any questions for staff.  She asked if the typical street section would look like the existing streets and if there were no sidewalks in this development.

 

Mr. Dougherty replied that there were some pedestrian paths that go along some of the larger arterial type roads and also a bridal trail that goes around the majority of the neighborhood including along the Rivanna River.  The bridal trail is mainly dirt.  There are no sidewalks in the existing community.  In terms of the connection to Rivanna Village from this proposal staff does not know what the applicant has proposed other than he has proposed a connection.

 

Ms. Joseph said on page 16 of the proffers it talks about contributing $1,000 per unit as the building units come in.  It talks about allocating that money to the schools or Stone Robinson School.  She asked if that is still being done.

 

Mr. Dougherty replied that the proposal is for the existing proffers that still govern a number of houses that are not yet built which will go the schools.  He was not sure if the money goes to Stone Robinson School specifically.  The proposal is to maintain the proffers that are in place for additional lots that are yet to be developed.  They propose to have one set of proffers that accounts for those houses that need to be built under that standard and also to have proffers that can move forward with this property and the rest of Glenmore to be built to the standard that has changed quite a bit since that time.

 

Ms. Joseph noted that she was curious on page 17, proffer 7C where it talks about the applicant contributing $70,000 to an escrow fund to be established for master planning, road design and construction in the Village of Rivanna.  She asked if that was just the little village part or will it cover something else.

 

Mr. Cilimberg noted that it has already been contributed and will be used for the Rivanna Master Plan.

 

Mr. Dougherty noted that it was for the whole village of Rivanna and not Rivanna Village.

 

Mr. Zobrist said that in proffer 6 the reversion of land by 2010 seems like it awfully short.  That is the green space around the outside where the riding trails are going to be.  If the County does not ask for it by 2010 then it reverts back to Glenmore Associates and the proffer goes away.

 

Mr. Dougherty said that they could look at extending that.  What staff is hoping will happen is that a deed for an additional contribution of much more land than this anticipated will be worked out.  There was some detail about that in the staff report, but essentially what has been determined is that in order to cross several streams and tributaries to the Rivanna River along the border of Glenmore and the river the extent to which that land and the trail was proffered with this proffer the extent to which it can move back from the river the disturbances for creating that trail will be less and the crossing may be reduced.  To run the trail close to the river will require a lot more engineering and structures to be in place.  Then if it is moved back they would need that dedication to be larger.  Right now they don’t have a proffer for that dedication.  But, staff including Parks and Rec and legal has been working with the applicant to try to secure a deed that addresses their concerns for bringing basically what would be public close to fairways and things like that.  Also, they want to wrap up some of the other details with the deed in terms of signage and those sorts of things.  Staff is currently working on that and does not have anything to report tonight.  Certainly if they maintain the existing proffer, which would not be the preference of Parks and Rec, they certainly could ask the applicant to extend the date.  They hope something better will be received to replace this.  It would have to happen between now and the Board hearing.

 

Mr. Zobrist asked if the proffers are currently inaccurate including this one.

 

Mr. Dougherty replied yes, but he would not put this in the same category as the cash proffer being inadequate.  But, certainly in terms of what they are proffering versus what the Board has indicated was more acceptable for residential development the figure is inadequate.  Because they have already accepted this 100’ greenway since the beginning of Glenmore it is hard to call it inadequate at this point.  It is less desirable than the 15 acre dedication.

 

Mr. Zobrist asked what would happen if staff does not work something else out.

 

Mr. Dougherty replied that they would go with the existing proffer and based on what was said they would extend that date.

 

Mr. Zobrist noted that 3 years was a very short time.

 

Mr. Dougherty agreed.  He suggested that the applicant might be able to give an update on the deed.  It has taken a while for the County to get their comments out.  The applicant has indicated that they are willing so long as they are asking for it to give a larger dedication.

 

There being no further questions for staff, Ms. Joseph opened the public hearing and invited the applicant to address the Commission.

 

Michael Barnes, of KG Associates, presented a power point presentation and explained the Livengood request. 

 

Ms. Joseph asked if there were any questions for Mr. Barnes.

 

Mr. Edgerton asked for clarification on the path around the lake.

 

Mr. Barnes replied that the path currently does not follow the roads, but follows around the lake and ties back in to the road network.  They are willing to extend that up along the road and down to the cul-de-sac.

 

Mr. Edgerton asked if that would be part of the lots or road.

 

Mr. Barnes replied that it would be part of the road.  There are on some of the principal roads separated from the trail on the other side of the ditch line there is a paved asphalt walking trail.  They are willing to extend that in this development also.

 

Mr. Edgerton asked if the proposal was only on one side.

 

Mr. Barnes replied yes, that was a typical scenario that is found out there.  Providing the asphalt path would be in keeping with the other places.

 

Ms. Joseph asked what the stub out from Livengood would connect to.

 

Mr. Barnes replied that in part the Commission had asked for that connection coming out of Livengood.  Out of the Rivanna Village aspect of it they provided several interconnections and agreed to them.  The one being referred to in Rivanna Village was left open.

 

Ms. Joseph noted that she thought it was going to be some sort of logical connection to this. 

 

Mr. Barnes said that the way this thing works either one would go north from the cul-de-sac and hook in or extend the road out into the series of parcels.  There are several options.  The interesting thing about having the policy for interconnections is that they can bring it up next to the property line with the direction that it ultimately ends up going to whoever ends up controlling the parcels in the area shaped like a polygon.

 

Ms. Joseph said that the geometry between the Rivanna Village and the end of this road just does not look like it is going to work to make a connection through there.

 

Mr. Barnes said that they have roughly looked at that.

 

Don Franco, representative for KG Associates, said what they envision happening is that road could turn and tie in and then the rest of the growth area parcels could develop in a fashion that could be double loaded and essentially tie into an extension of their internal road going straight.  They have made a provision for that whole end to be open to make the tie in.  Worse case scenario if they were looking for off site parcels to make this connection in the future they could take the funny shaped parcel between their property and the road that is single loaded by the park it is hard to get through that and leave any development ability for that last tract of land.  So he did not envision some one would come in and rezone that to get one lot in order to build a connecting road.  So that is one of the reasons they have left that available, but he would not count on that being the direction that makes the connection.  They think that it is a logical place to in the other direction towards Glenmore Way and Ashton Road as the logical end.  But, they are going to have to wait to see how that other section develops.

 

Ms. Joseph opened the public hearing and invited public comment.

 

Mike Stoner, resident of 3636 Victoria Lane in Glenmore, said that he recently moved into the area.  When he learned that this was going to be a construction road he was shocked and disappointed.  The existing roads meet a high level of service.  He asked that the Commission substitute the word “safety” for “service”.  Ferndown Road has no sidewalks.  There are many elementary school children who walk up to Ferndown to catch the bus.  The children ride their bicycles on the road.  He was deeply concerned about the level of safety that will occur when the construction is going on if Ferndown is the only entry point into a 43 house development.  Alternatives are always available.  But, it is the cost of the alternative that is at question.  He asked the Commission to look at the costs of a tragic incident.  He asked why the emergency entrance could not be opened up at least for the construction period.

 

Trevor Joscelyne presented a power point presentation concerning the safety with Darby Road.  The road has the ability to handle the traffic, but not the pedestrian safety.  That was the issue he wanted to address.  After studying the situation with the proposal for this area he suggested that the developer be asked to proffer a sidewalk for Darby Road as a contingency on approving the Livengood application.  All the residents on the road, excluding one, have agreed that a sidewalk would be acceptable.  In terms of giving up their property the areas on each side of the road is owned by the developer for 15’.  There is an easement whereby the developer will have to modify the grading of certain properties in order to allow the drainage to take place, which will mean the sidewalk could cause some properties to have to regrade their front lawns to allow the drainage to take place.  That depends upon the detailed design of the sidewalk as it gets implemented. 

 

Dick Levine, resident of Darby Road, spoke in support of the sidewalk.  The existing sidewalk only serves about a half of the residents to get to the park.  The other half have to use the 20’ wide road to get to the park. With cars traveling on the road at 40 miles per hour it creates an unsafe situation.  There has been a traffic study in Glenmore that indicates that cars tend to go 10 miles over the speed limit.  That creates a very serious safety issue. He urged the Commission to consider that a sidewalk be installed on Darby Road as a result of the increased traffic from the proposed developments.

 

Thomas Grismall, Glenmore resident, agreed with the previous two speakers.  The cut through drivers who live in other sections of Glenmore poses a distinct risk to the lives and limbs of Glenmore residents especially the young children playing in the park.  He has had to jump off the road into the culvert to keep from being hit by a car.  It is expected that the 45 homes to be built in Livengood if the proposal is approved that these homes could easily be expected to add to the traffic density on Darby Road.  It was originally explained when he purchased his home in 2003 that east Darby Road would be closed at Piper Way upon the completion of construction now under way.  The County has now decided that it will not be closed.  This life endangering hazard to pedestrians on Darby Road has not been solved over the past year as it was explained earlier.  New homes in the Livengood section as proposed will only make matters worse.  The problem they now face with Darby Road, which will be aggravated by additional construction in Glenmore, has been caused by poor planning.  As a former Director of the Glenmore Community Association and the Chairman of the Committee that wrote the initial Glenmore 5-year strategic plan he urged the Planning Commission to at least table this Livengood proposal and not allow it to be considered further until the Darby Road situation has been properly corrected.  He suggested that perhaps a proffer from the developer to install sidewalks on Darby, which would not detract from the rural setting, might be appropriate.  Further since the developer planned and built Darby Road it is his distinct opinion that the developer be the sole source of funding to correct this planning mistake.  During his 20 year as a naval officer he learned the 6 P Concept, Prior Proper Planning Prevents Poor Performance.  He questioned how the roads would be tied together.  He asked that they work together to enhance the quality of life in Albemarle County.

 

Margaret Stickly, resident of Darby Road, voiced concern about Darby Road not being able to handle the increased traffic and the safety of the public.  She opposed putting more traffic on Darby Road.

 

There being no further public comment, the public hearing was closed and the matter before the Commission.

 

Mr. Cannon said that a sidewalk along Darby Road would be a good proffer if that is a creditable proffer.  The larger issue is whether they can send this along without a list of proffers that the Commission can say meets the current requirements of the Board of Supervisors.

 

Mr. Craddock said that was one of the questions that he had.  This proposal has been in the process even longer than Biscuit Run. It is up to the Board whether they will hold to what they have discussed or do they want to modify it.

 

Ms. Joseph noted that it felt more comfortable with the Biscuit Run because they were giving so many other things that were hard to put in that list.  Proffering a 400 acre park it is hard to quantify it in a list.

 

Mr. Craddock agreed.

 

Ms. Joseph said that there nothing to that extent.  Therefore, she was having trouble with that aspect, also, of why this should not be.  It certainly will be placing a burden on the community even though it has been in the process for a while.

 

Mr. Morris asked staff if during the meetings with the applicant if the question of Darby Road and the sidewalk ever discussed prior to tonight.

 

Mr. Dougherty noted that the traffic study said that they are looking at issues about the vehicular capacity.  The applicants were going to work with the home owners to address the concerns of safety.  In meeting with the residents some ideas were expressed, but the applicant has not responded to those ideas.  Staff received the traffic study from the applicant about 6 to 8 weeks ago, but it was not done in a manner that the county engineer had wanted to see.  So revisions were requested.  When the revisions were submitted it was still not what the county engineer wanted to see.  Staff finally received the information needed after the county engineer performed the work himself.  The problem is that focus has been on the vehicular traffic so much that the discussion on the pedestrian issues was not as center stage as they could have been.  The focus had been on vehicular and not pedestrian.  Staff’s discussion with the applicant has not been too extensive with the pedestrian issues.  The traffic study says that there are some ideas that could be done, but they have not had any formal proposal of any of those things from the applicant in terms of pedestrian safety and traffic calming.

 

Mr. Edgerton asked if all of the roads are private, and Mr. Dougherty replied that is correct.

 

Mr. Edgerton asked if the roads were built to the standard rural cross section.

 

Mr. Cilimberg noted that the roads were designed to meet the mountainous terrain standards.  It was more in the vertical curvature.  That was the standard that was accepted at the time that Glenmore was originally approved.

 

Mr. Edgerton asked for some reassurance from staff on the proffers because he was not at the meeting when the Board discussed the per unit amounts.  In the staff report it says, “It was also the consensus of the Board that with the exception of affordable housing all new rezonings will pay the equivalent of their full impact as determined by the cash proffer calculations applied to the accepted per unit rates.”  If that was their directive he did not think there was any discussion.  But, again he was not at that meeting.

 

Mr. Cilimberg said that the question was asked of the Board if they intend for new development to pay for its impact and the Board said yes.  The Board further said that there would be credits against that impact that they would allow for in different elements.  They were using a number that was somewhat different than that recommended by the Fiscal Impact Committee because of the percentage of the total cost that they assumed was already available as revenue for capital projects through the general property taxes.

 

Mr. Craddock noted that this proffer has not been itemized because the applicant has not provided anything.

 

Mr. Edgerton said that the parks and trails might have some value.

 

Mr. Cilimberg said that the parks and trails were internal.  So they are generally considered to be a benefit to the project rather than the general public.  They are design features.  While no number has been put on design features it is something the Commission felt last week with Biscuit Run was worth some consideration.

 

Mr. Dougherty said that they were talking about the park that is in the central open space in the project and not the larger 15 acre dedication.

 

Ms. Joseph noted that the 15 acres has to do with the greenway.

 

Mr. Cannon noted that would be available to the public.

 

Mr. Dougherty agreed if it went through.

 

Mr. Zobrist felt that the project had been designed well, but he was a little distressed that the issue of the safety of the pedestrians is only coming up now.  He had not heard anything about it in the other work sessions.  Frankly, he thought that the residents have a real issue with safety.  He had an issue with safety in those neighborhoods.  The applicant needs to get back with the residents to resolve this issue.  It goes to the other two developments, too.  With Biscuit Run they went to a vote and they decided that they should not have done it and they came back to the Commission with the right numbers.  The Commission has a right to have an adoption by the applicant of the philosophy of the Board even if not the exact numbers.   At least the Commission could send it to the Board with a commitment by the developer to do what the Board has publicly stated that they want to do.  He requested that the applicant be invited to address the issues.

 

Mr. Franco said that they would be happy to follow the philosophy of the Board as outlined.  He did not think that the internal park would count towards anything.  The question is what kind of credit they get for the 15 acres of greenway that is being asked above and beyond.  That is a number that the Board has to put out there which they can negotiate into that.  All it would really take is a negotiation of what the proffer amount is from that issue to what the credit is going to be. They are happy to follow that number, but they want adequate credit for the 15 extra acres that is being requested at the lower end. 

 

Mr. Zobrist said that he was okay with that. The staff report says that they are not willing to proffer any more money.  The Commission knew what the number was for the Biscuit Run proffer, but then they talked about the credits.  He was okay with that philosophy that if they knew what the numbers were then they could talk about the credits.    He asked if the 15 acres was the only item they needed credit for.

 

Mr. Franco said that the other questions were about some of the other items discussed as to how the proffer number was developed. It was based on an average price for the unit and these will be above that.  He asked if there was more room for negotiation or discussion on that.  Again, this is very gray.  The policy is evolving for us.  They would be happy to start there.  If they were going to be paying more in taxes on these units and should they be getting back more credit. The discussion Mr. Edgerton had was that when it went to the Board the discussion was whether they were going to use 6 or 8 percent for the amount of credits one gets back for personal property taxes that went towards these things.  They ended up going against the committee’s recommendation of 8 percent and went with the lower credit producing the higher number.  There are still things being discussed that are not iron clad at this point.  Since Darby Road is external to this rezoning at this point and the residents are claiming it is an existing problem, then is that something that should get credit.  Therefore, they are asking to allow the request go forward to the Board and allow them to resolve it.

 

Mr. Zobrist said that the issue of credits is irrelevant.  He would have a hard time recommending the Board to approve this with the safety issue hanging out there and not being resolved.  He asked that the applicant work the proffers out with staff.

 

Mr. Edgerton disagreed that the things are very gray.  There are going to be some details to be worked out in the coming months.  But, it is fairly apparent that the Board meant for this to be applicable immediately.  He did not think the Board was gray about that at all in their statement. The Commission is bound to follow that direction.  He suggested that the applicant come up with some numbers on the credits and then the Commission could comment on it.  Ultimately, the Board can make that decision.  But, that does not change the big number. 

 

Mr. Franco noted the grayness was the amount of credits given.  They have been working with the citizens with respect to the traffic study.  When this was first brought to them by Mr. Joscelyne the issue was cut through traffic.  It was the volume and speed of traffic.  A traffic study has been done with different numbers and speeds quoted.  The overall study in Glenmore was done on the spine roads, which was mainly Piper Road.  There was a speed study that the Police Department did.  That is where the major speed issues were.  Mr. Joscelyne did his own study on the internal roads to Darby.  The speed that he had was right around 30 miles per hour, which was 5 miles per hour over the speed limits.  The focus on their discussions with the citizens over the last 6 months has been how to calm the traffic and direct it in different directions back onto the spine roads.  They reviewed that with the Glenmore
Community Association.  They have talked about proffering money for traffic calming in that neighborhood.  So far they have chosen to go a different route.  Their route was to educate their residents first.  If it is a cut through issue they say that it is better to first educate, deal with enforcement issues and then reengineer the roads in that area.  They have been in discussion with them for months as part of the traffic study and everything else. So this is not a new topic. 

 

Mr. Zobrist said that this was the first time that he had heard the pedestrian issue.  When a group of citizens ask for a sidewalk in a rural character community he felt that there was a serious problem.  He asked how many residents lived on the road.

 

Mr. Franco replied that there were 73 houses in that neighborhood.  He said that he would be happy to explore this issue with the Commission.  They have been talking about some of the other solutions that exist.  He asked to correct one thing that has been said.  This has always been designed as an interconnection between this neighborhood and this area.  It has never been designed, submitted or approved as a cul-de-sac neighborhood.  One of the things that exist right now is the horse trail.  They are going to take it around Livengood and continue the path.  There is a common area path they have looked at to put a path behind the houses to provide access to the park area.  There are some issues with the design the residents are looking at.  They continue to explore other possibilities with them.  But, so far they have not been able to come to any conclusion with that group.

 

Mr. Zobrist suggested that the Commission defer the request until they worked out those issues.  He had a problem with the effect on the neighbors.  They need to get an agreement with the community association on how to handle these issues.

 

Mr. Franco said that the association has not asked for this path.

 

Ms. Joseph said that the public hearing was closed and the matter before the Commission.

 

Mr. Morris said that the applicant did a wonderful job of what he brought before the Commission, but there were safety issues that need to be addressed.  The proffers have to meet the standards set by the Board and be worked out before the meeting.

 

Mr. Cannon noted that he could not support sending the request forward to the Board with a blank check on the proffers.  They did not do that with Biscuit Run.  Then there was a constructive session where they came back with specifics that the Commission could respond to and bring forward a recommendation to the Board that in the long run will help the community as well as the developer.  He would like to see that happen here.  He could not support it without a specific list that he could at least look at and make his best judgment on whether it is adequate or not against what he understands to be the Board’s policy.

 

Mr. Craddock asked to see an itemized listing of credits, etc. to offset the cost of the development based on the Board’s recommendations.  He liked their approach about educating the residents on the speed limits because they are the ones using the roads mostly.  If they are not driving 25 miles per hour on Darby Road, that is a neighborhood problem.  He felt that everybody ought to be driving 25 miles per hour on those roads.  He questioned whether 110 percent in traffic volume was significant or not.  He asked that the issue of a sidewalk on Darby Road ought to be looked at and whether it would be a credit.  Getting the request before the Board on July 11 was a little tight.

 

Mr. Edgerton said that he was not comfortable moving this on to the Board with no commitment from the applicant on the proffers.  With the additional traffic from this project and the two upcoming they need to resolve the sidewalk and pedestrian safety issues.  He was not prepared to recommend approval this evening with all of the outstanding issues.

 

Ms. Joseph pointed out if this was to connect to Rivanna Village that there was going to be a lot of traffic going through there.  She asked the applicant if they wanted to request a deferral due to the lack of support.

 

Mr. Franco asked for a deferral, but wanted some clarification on a couple of things so they can be clear when they come back.  In response to the three things that he had heard:

  1. He was happy to abide by the Board’s proffer policy given the appropriate credits for the improvements being requested.  They will deal with that aspect.  He heard the request for an itemized list with respect to that.
  2. He would come back better prepared to discuss the traffic situation.  They will meet again with the residents and find out how to address their concerns. 
  3. He needed some clearer guidance on what road section the Commission was going to be looking for.   What he heard is that the proffer does not have anything to do with the road section.  The off site concern does not have anything to do with the road section.  So he would ask for some clear guidance tonight so that they can make sure their plan reflects what their expectation will be for the road section.  What has been submitted and reviewed by staff and had their support coming into this tonight was a rural section road.  They are happy to provide a path on one side of the road connecting to the existing network of paths that go around the lake and then tie into the bigger part of the community.  If they are looking for an urban section of road, he needs to hear that.

 

Mr. Edgerton said that he was looking for an urban section of road.

 

Ms. Joseph said that she was not so sure.  She asked that the roads be able to deal with storm water in LID fashion instead of through pipes.  She suggested that they come up with something that they could use such as bio swales or something to get rid of the water or some other mechanism other than piping that was not expensive to put in the pathway.  She supported some kind of asphalt pathway or hard surface.  She felt that it should be on both sides.  If this is suppose to connect with Rivanna Village there will be a lot of traffic.  She was torn by the sidewalk issue, but felt they could do sidewalks and also do some LID stuff.

 

Mr. Zobrist said that he was convinced that the roads are adequate to carry the traffic, but it was the safety issue.  In terms of the section he suggested that he talk with the residents and the community association on how to deal with the traffic and safety issues.  It would be helpful to know what the residents in that area would like to have.

 

Mr. Franco asked if he was willing to live with majority or consensus. 

 

Mr. Zobrist felt that if the Glenmore Association came in with a strong recommendation to retain it the way it was that he would take strong notice of that.

 

Mr. Cannon agreed that it sounds like a process solution that could yield results.  He was not committed to concrete sidewalks and traditional curb and gutter.  He preferred asphalt.  He felt that they could approximate the community’s preferences through discussion, which would be helpful to the Commission to know the results of that.

 

Mr. Franco said that based on their comments he requested deferral.

 

Mr. Kamptner noted that it would be an indefinite deferral and would be readvertised.

 

Motion: Mr. Zobrist moved, Mr. Craddock seconded, for approval of the applicant’s request for indefinite deferral of ZMA-2006-00015, Livengood (Glenmore Section S5) to June 19.

 

The motion passed by a vote of 6:0.  (Mr. Strucko was absent.)

 

Ms. Joseph stated that ZMA-2006-00015, Livengood (Glenmore Section S5) was indefinitely deferred.

 

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