Albemarle County Planning Commission

December 5, 2006

 

The Albemarle County Planning Commission held a meeting and a public hearing on Tuesday, December 5, 2006, at 6:00 p.m., at the County Office Building, Second Floor, Auditorium, Second Floor, 401 McIntire Road, Charlottesville, Virginia. Members attending were Eric Strucko, Jon Cannon, Marcia Joseph, Chairman, Bill Edgerton (arrived at 6:12 p.m.), Duane Zobrist and Pete Craddock. Absent was Calvin Morris, Vice-Chairman.  Julia Monteith, Senior Land Use Planner for the University of Virginia, representative for David J. Neuman, FAIA, Architect for University of Virginia was absent. 

 

Other officials present were Wayne Cilimberg, Planning Director; Gerald Gatobu, Senior Planner, David Benish, Chief of Planning; Amelia McCulley, Zoning and Current Development Director/Zoning Administrator; Bill Fritz, Chief of Current Development; Claudette Grant, Senior Planner; Sean Dougherty, Senior Planner; Judith Wiegand, Senior Planner; David E. Pennock, Principal Planner and Greg Kamptner, Deputy County Attorney.

 

Call to Order and Establish Quorum:

 

Ms. Joseph called the regular meeting to order at 6:09 p.m. and established a quorum.

 

            Work Sessions:

 

CPA-2006-03/ ZMA-2006-19 Willow Glen (Signs #27, 29)

PROPOSAL:  Amend Comprehensive Plan from Industrial Service which allows warehousing, light industry, heavy industry, research, office uses, regional scale research, limited production and marketing activities, supporting commercial, lodging and conference facilities, and residential (6.01-34 units/acre) uses to Urban Density Residential which allows residential (6.01-34 units/acre) and supporting uses such as religious institutions, schools, commercial, office and service uses. Rezone 23.681 acres from Rural Areas which allows agricultural, forestal, and fishery uses; residential density (0.5 unit/acre) to Planned Residential District which allows residential (3 - 34 units/acre) with limited commercial uses for a maximum of 234 units

PROFFERS:  No 

EXISTING COMPREHENSIVE PLAN LAND USE/DENSITY: Industrial Service which allows for (see uses above) in the Hollymead Community.

ENTRANCE CORRIDOR: No

LOCATION: property is east of Dickerson Road (Rt. 606) across from Charlottesville-Albemarle Airport and approximately 1500 feet south of intersection with Airport Road (Rt. 649) in Hollymead Community.

TAX MAP: 32 PARCELS: 49F, 49G, 49I, 49J, 49K

MAGISTERIAL DISTRICT: Rio

STAFF:  Judy Wiegand

 

Ms. Wiegand presented a power point presentation and summarized the staff report.  (See Staff Report.)

 

·      This is a proposal to amend the Comprehensive Plan from Industrial Service to Urban Density Residential.  It has a companion Zoning Map Amendment, which is to change the zoning from Rural Areas to Planned Residential Development for tax map 32, parcels 49F, 49G, 49I, 49J and 49K.

·      Most of the comments tonight are on the Comprehensive Plan Amendment.  Staff will do the zoning map amendment analysis should that be necessary.

·      This is a proposal for a residential community of 234 units with amenities.  The purpose of tonight’s work session is to obtain direction from the Commission about the appropriate land use designation for the subject property in the context of the Comprehensive Plan and the Places29 Master Plan process.

·      Most of the area is designated Neighborhood Service.  The Urban Density Residential is a smaller area in the back that adjoins the area that was rezoned for the mobile home park in 1992.  Adjacent Deerwood Estates is Neighborhood Density Residential.  Staff described the surrounding area. 

·      The unnamed tributary of Powell Creek forms a boundary through the middle of the parcel.  It separates the Hollymead Town Center area from the rest of the parcel to the west, which includes Willow Glen and the mobile home park.  Deerwood Estates has access from and is oriented to the Airport Road area.  Then there is a large area of Industrial Service to the south of the mobile home park. 

·      The current recommendations being assembled for Places29 would have the mobile home park property remain a mobile home park as long as the owner wished to maintain it as such.  Staff is going to recommend that be returned to a Light Industrial designation if at any time the mobile home park is no longer what the owner wishes to do with it.   The details of the draft Places 29 Master Plan is still being worked out with the consultants.

·      Staff is not comfortable right now with the split designation that shows in this area primarily because it leaves both the Light Industrial and the Urban Density without a sufficient amount of property to really be developed, particularly as Light Industrial.  Staff is looking for larger areas so that users can be in the same area and have the same buffers and so on.  There are a lot of changes underway with this and they are still working on it.

·      One of the major changes being looked at as part of Places29 is that they are reviewing the land use designations that are in the current Comprehensive Plan.  One of the areas that seem to need a lot of research and a lot of consideration was what do they call Industrial Designations. Right now the current Comprehensive Plan has an Industrial Service.  The definition of that is in the staff report.  Places29 has been looking at the types of industrial users that they have out there now.   There is less Heavy Industry.  There is quite a bit of Light Industrial type users.  Then they have a fairly new category that is Office Research and Development and Flex Space.  These changes reflect basically the potential impacts of these users, which includes traffic and circulation, walkability, aesthetics, noise, vibration and fumes. 

·      In the comprehensive plan amendment process if the Commission feels that this warrants further study then staff would draft a resolution of intent for their adoption.  The Commission would study the proposal for 6 to 9 months, which is the amount of time it has taken in the past. 

·      As they consider comprehensive plan amendments there are 5 criteria listed as A through E in the staff report.  Basically what it is looking to in A is to provide a balance of uses and to show how the uses would relate to each other.  One of the really important things about a Master Plan and about a Comprehensive Plan is that they don’t just look at a small area and the parcels and uses around it.  Staff looks at the whole area including the whole development area in the whole County.  What they are concerned about with this amendment is that they feel they need Industrial and Light Industrial areas both now and in the future.  They are looking at uses that are not really compatible in many cases with locations in an Entrance Corridor.  Also, they are not walkable.  The County needs to have places for industrial businesses to relocate in the future such as mini storage units, auto repair, vehicle storage, car rental agencies that might serve the airport, etc. 

·      Criterion B supports the goals and objectives of various studies.  The main concern staff has here is the proposed use compatible with the Airport.  While noise complaints are not an issue right now they may be in the future if the Airport expands or automobile traffic expands.  The primary concern with Airport compatibility is if the Airport needs to expand or if they need to have more Airport related facilities expand or both they don’t necessarily want to have residential development right across the road where they have precluded some options that they might otherwise have had for Airport expansion. 

·      Criterion C – The primary purpose of the comprehensive Plan and Land Use Map is to facilitate the coordination of improvements to the transportation network and the expansion of public utilities in an economical, efficient and judicious manner. Comprehensive Plan amendments which direct growth away from designated growth areas shall be discouraged unless adequate justification is provided. Amendments to the boundaries of growth areas may be considered appropriate if the request is comprehensive, proposed to follow a logical topographic or man-made feature and is supported by adequate justification. No Comprehensive Plan amendment shall be considered in areas where roads are non-tolerable or utilities are inadequate unless the improvement of those facilities is included in the comprehensive plan amendment proposal.  They talked about Road D needing to be realigned.  There are a number of additional concerns raised by the County Engineer that can be addressed during the review of a ZMA.

·      Criterion D - Proposed Comprehensive Plan amendments shall be evaluated for general compliance with adopted County plans, policies, studies and ordinances and to determine if corresponding changes are necessary.  This proposal is nearly consistent with the Affordable Housing Policy.  It is not consistent with the Airport Master Plan.  The staff report indicates that the Airport Master Plan expressed some concern for expansion and preserving space. 

 

 

1.          Change in circumstance had occurred; or

County Staff recognizes that the nature of industrial uses is changing and the land requirements will be different. This change is being addressed in the Places29 Master Plan process by recommending revised land use designation definitions and changes to the Land Use Map (see page 6).

 

2.          Updated information is available; or

                          The County is updating the Comprehensive Plan through the Places29 Master Plan process. Recommendations to be included in the Master Plan will address changes in industrial land use and any necessary changes in land use designations on the Land Use Map. The evaluation of existing industrial uses, possible new uses, and  market demands, as well as research into improved land use categories and the appropriate distribution of those uses on the County’s Land Use Map are all part of the Places29 Master Plan process. The current status of the master plan process was given early in this report, along with some of the preliminary findings.

 

3.          Subsequent portions of the Comprehensive Plan have been adopted or developed; or

                          The three major changes to the Comprehensive Plan since the last update in 1996 have been adoption of the Neighborhood Model, approval of the Hollymead Town Center development, and adoption of an affordable housing policy. Conformity with the Neighborhood Model is an area to be addressed with a rezoning analysis, if the CPA is recommended to proceed. Impacts of approval of the Hollymead Town Center and the affordable housing policy are provided below.

 

The Hollymead Town Center CPA set up a major destination for the entire County.  Nearly 1.3 million square feet of nonresidential uses are expected, as well as 1680 dwellings. At present no single-family detached housing is anticipated with the Hollymead Town Center, making Deerwood the closest single family detached development to the Town Center.  Residential uses in the Willow Glen project area could provide additional single family detached housing for greater balance.

 

The applicant has stated that the primary benefit to the County from the Willow Glen CPA rests on its relationship to the County’s affordable housing policy and the provision of affordable and moderate-price housing. The affordable housing policy was adopted on February 4, 2004. The applicant proposes affordable housing and moderately priced units in the development in conjunction with market rate housing in a “planned” community that has amenities. A breakdown of housing by type is shown in the staff report.

 

It basically just reiterates that the total number of affordable and moderate price units in the proposed Willow Glen project is 74. Of these, 32 units—or 13.7 percent—would be affordable (price range: $185,000 - $195,000) and 42 units—or 17.9 percent—would be moderate price ($220,000 - $230,000). It is important to note that the affordable percentage is less than the 15 percent the County asks for with rezonings that involve residential units. Only if the County agrees that 50 percent of the moderate-price units may be credited towards the affordable requirement thereby adding 21 moderate-price units—or 8.9 percent—does the percentage of “affordable” units increase to 22.6 percent and exceed the 15 percent requirement.

 

The affordable units are proposed as small duplexes and small condominiums. The moderate-price units are proposed as slightly larger townhouses and condominiums. There are a number of other residential developments in Albemarle County that offer townhomes in the same price ranges ($195,000 - $230,000), including Sherwood Manor, Birnham Wood, Townwood, Four Seasons, and Minor Hill, among others. In the past year, there have been several duplex units in the older sections of Briarwood in the same price range. Similarly, condominiums are available in Hessian Hills and other condo developments. Winridge is a residential development with sections of single-family detached homes, duplexes, and townhomes (Minor Hill). There have even been a few single family homes offered in Winridge in this price range during the past year. While the sizes of the affordable and moderate-price units in Willow Glen are smaller than many available in these other developments, Willow Glen will have more open space and amenities.

 

While it appears that Willow Glen is providing an “affordable community,” the project would provide 32 affordable units and 42 moderate-price units that would not be provided if the area remained designated Industrial Service or Light Industrial (with Places29). While the 32 affordable units would be expected of any residential development, the decision to redesignate the property must be weighed against whether provision of approximately 42 “moderate-price” units as condos or townhouses justifies the loss of up to 23 acres of industrial land, and whether this site, adjacent to the airport, is an appropriate location for a residential development.

 

4.          A portion of the Plan is incorrect or not feasible; or

The Plan has guided development decisions for a decade. It is not incorrect and does not contain infeasible recommendations. The plan is being updated and changes in the industrial land inventory are being addressed throughout the area and not just in this particular spot.  There are two points raised by the applicant that need to be addressed. The first point is the applicant’s statement:

5.          The preparation of the Plan as required by Article 15.1-447 of the Code of Virginia was incomplete or incorrect information was employed.

The Plan was completed and adopted in 1996, and components of the Plan have been continually updated since its adoption. Some amendments have been made since that date to reflect changes in circumstances, but no incomplete or incorrect information has been identified. Further review of the Plan is taking place during the Places29 Master Plan process. The Places29 planning process includes a significant review of the relevant parts of the Comprehensive Plan. Any changes that are necessary will be identified, reviewed, and approved as part of the public planning process and will be incorporated in the resulting Master Plan.

 

Staff does not believe that a change in circumstance has occurred that would justify this amendment. In fact, updated information on the classification of industrial property strengthens the need for the Industrial Service designation to ensure that sufficient land is available to serve the County’s future needs.

 

Factors favorable to this request:

·            Locates residential uses near workplaces and retail areas.

·            Provides 13.7% (32 of 234 units) of affordable housing. It should be recognized that 15% would be expected with any residential rezoning.

·            Provides 17.9% (42 of 234 units) of moderate-price housing.

·            Includes a mix of unit types, along with a clubhouse and other amenities.

·            Is consistent with other residential uses along the southern and eastern edge of the site. It should be recognized that the mobile home park on the south side may convert to nonresidential use in the future.

 

Factors unfavorable to this request:

·            Decreases the amount of industrially designated land available now and in the future.

·            Locates a residential development in an area that will make use of surrounding industrially designated property more difficult since residential and industrial uses are generally incompatible.

·            Complicates the Places29 Master Planning process by changing the land use designation before all the land use and transportation network matters have been evaluated—and before the public and officials are able to comment on the plan.

·            Places a residential development across Dickerson Road from the Airport in an area that may have a long-range negative impact on airport expansion and/or expansion of airport-related uses.

·            This development does not create a significant amount of affordable and/or moderate-price housing beyond what would be expected in a typical residential rezoning.

 

Recommendation:

At this time, staff recommends denial of the Comprehensive Plan Amendment request.

 

Ms. Joseph asked if there were any questions for Ms. Wiegand.  There being none, she invited the applicant to address the Commission.

 

Valerie Long, attorney for Sugar Ray, LLC, said that others present include George Ray, the principal and land owner and an engineer and some land planners and thinking experts who have been helping with the affordable housing component and ideas.  There is number of persons present that can help answer questions. She presented a power point presentation.   

 

 

Ms. Joseph invited public comment.

 

Troy Johnson, President of the Homeowner’s Association in Deerwood Village, said that he was present on behalf of the Board of Directors for Deerwood Village regarding the Willow Glen Subdivision.  It is pretty unanimous with everybody that although they are not entirely enthused about anything really going on out there, they understand that is not really an option.   They understand that land will be used for something.  Given their options they unanimously feel that a residential community is much more beneficial for their subdivision and standard of living.  It is sandwiched in with other residential communities as well with the pink dot with Light Industrial in the middle.  In his conversations with other people in the community they feel the exact same way.  They are very concerned with the possibility with having Light Industrial there and the effect it will have on their property and its value in the future.  A comment was made of an industrial entrance and how it was not necessarily the most appropriate place for that.  The slide was not visually appealing.  To put that in their back yard is also not visually appealing. Another comment was made that the Deerwood Village Estates is far away from that area.  He disagreed with that because his lot directly abuts that property.  He could see very well into that area.  One of the appealing aspects of that was they have a nice nature wooded area.  In fact, directly along that little stream they have a nature walking trail.  He could not imagine walking along that nature trail with Light Industrial off into the area.  They could certainly see into that area because it is actually very close.  It is the Board’s strong opinion that our voice be heard that they are very interested in this going more towards a residential direction versus a light industrial.

 

Tim Hulbert, of the Charlottesville Regional Chamber of Commerce, said that he had been aware of this project for a short time.  He came tonight to get educated.  He was struck by the industrial piece.  This was the first time that he had seen a compilation like Ms. Long put together in Charlottesville/Albemarle where that inventory of industrial spaces has been discussed.  He has some anxiety about Places29 taking the industrial sites and rezoning it residential.  In this particular place they have a very small parcel surrounded by 3 residential areas, 1 mixed use in Hollymead and across the way with the Airport.  One of his anxieties is that one day when Northern Gunman figures out it has a very valuable piece of land for retail and sells it to someone, then where does Sperry Marine Division land in our community or does it go away.  He would hope that it might land out by the Airport on a site that is already zoned industrial.  Apparently Places29 feels that this land should be housing.   Generally speaking this project from what he has learned tonight without really delving into it meets the urban, suburban residential posture that they have been talking about for the last 8 to 10 years in this community.  It forces development in the growth area.  It seems to make a lot of sense.  Then they have this benefit of affordable housing.  He was persuaded that the range from $185,000 to $400,000 with a big chunk of it being in the affordable or moderately priced is a really good thing.  This property is a gem and something they ought to look at for other opportunities.

 

Ms. Joseph asked if there were any questions.

 

Mr. Strucko asked staff if they have heard of any planning being done by the Airport Authority for expansion.  What is their vision?

 

Mr. Benish said that the Airport owns a large amount of land that is undeveloped on the west side of the Airport.  Looking at the Airport Master Plan most of their facility expansion, with a new tower expansion as an example, is planned for that west side.  So that is what they see in the foreseeable future as Airport expansion related directly to Airport operations.  There are certain uses from time to time that are associated with the Airport that are in the private sector that may or may not be located in that, such as car rentals and things like that.  Those uses have had to find their spots elsewhere in the development area neighborhood.  The Airport itself plans their ultimate expansion to infill the areas that they have now where the hangars are both north and south of the terminal and to the west of the runway.

 

Mr. Strucko asked if the Airport is planning any runway lengthening or expansion.  Are they going to land bigger planes there?

 

Mr. Benish replied that they will be extending the runway to the north to accommodate larger planes in the future. 

 

Ms. Joseph said that the Commission would start going through staff’s questions and then look at comments from the Commission.

 

Ms. Long asked to add one thing in response to Mr. Strucko’s question.  She apologized because she meant to mention it in her presentation.  They have meet with Mr. Elliott with the Airport Authority.  They received a letter of support from him on behalf of the Airport Authority for project, which expressed no concerns from the Authority’s perspective.  His comments were essentially that his request was to make sure that if the project was approved and the units were built that in all of the marketing materials that are prepared for the community and in all of the deeds for the community that there be expressed statements or disclosures and disclaimer statements that the residents acknowledge that they are purchasing units near the airport and noise might be a factor and other types of airport uses will be going on nearby.  It was similarly done with the Walnut Hills Community to the north of the Airport.  She is told that is working fairly well.  The applicants are more than willing to do that.   He also indicated that as Mr. Benish clarified their Master Plan calls for their expansion on the west side where they already own property.  She asked him questions such as how likely is this land that they propose for residential likely to be attractive to an industry or business that is affiliated with the Airport or doing business with it.  His comment was interesting saying that the existence of the road in between the Airport and this land acts as a pretty significant barrier.  Those users if they were doing business with the Airport would really want to be on the same side of the road.  That is certainly his opinion and is a comment she received. They obviously want to work with the Airport.

 

Mr. Strucko asked if the applicant has considered construction techniques that could minimize the noise to residents inside their homes. 

 

Ms. Long replied that they have not gotten to that point yet, but certainly she could imagine it was something they would be looking into.  To the extent that they can make that work and still keep the price points of the units within the targeted ranges they would be more than willing to.  She left a packet of letters and statements that include statements of support and a summary of the groups they have met with.

 

Ms. Joseph said that she was looking at the questions from the staff report from the prior meeting.

 

Mr. Cilimberg said that the Commission went through questions in prior sessions.  Tonight was a wrap up of a conclusion reached by staff in a recommendation based on factors favorable and unfavorable.  Really tonight is where they would be looking for the Commission to decide whether to move forward with the Comp Plan Amendment or not based on what t is before you. If they do then there will need to be a resolution of intent that they pass.  He believed that the plan was if the Commission decides to move forward and pass a resolution of intent that the Comp Plan Amendment would be handled along with the rezoning rather than an element of the Places29 work.  Essentially Places29 will reflect this rather than Places29 guiding the rezoning to come.  It is before them as a question of whether or not they want to proceed with the Comp Plan Amendment.

 

Mr. Zobrist asked if they could literally dispose of this even though it is a work session.  If they pass a resolution saying that it is okay, then it moves on in the process.

 

Mr. Cilimberg said that they would proceed forward and probably would on a consent agenda at an upcoming meeting to just have a resolution of intent for the Commission to act on.  Essentially, the Commission would be giving staff that direction tonight on whether or not to do that.

 

Mr. Benish said that the noise attainment area for the Airport falls just outside this property.  The attainment area falls on property owned by the Airport.  It is located just on the west side of Dickerson Road.  So the applicant would not be required to meet any noise attainment standards that are provided in that section of the Overlay District.  The Airport Overlay District has a noise attainment area that requires the building construction to meet certain noise limits or standards.

 

Mr. Strucko asked if those noise limits are flexible if they move to larger jets landing there.

 

Mr. Benish replied that area is determined through the review of the Airport Master Plan every 5 years.  They will do an evaluation that is based on average noise from the typical planes that are utilizing the Airport.  Most likely what would happen is that they would assume the range of planes that are using the runway and then there is a method of averaging those types of planes and the number of times that they hit the runway and what their average noise rates are during the day and night.

 

Mr. Cilimberg noted that the reduction of the attainment area did not happen with the most recent Master Plan, but actually happened with the prior plan.  It represented some operations back in the ‘90’s.

 

Mr. Benish noted that each time it is updated based on the plan.

 

Mr. Cilimberg said that the attainment area narrowed based on some change in the kind of equipment that was being required of the new jets that at the time would be using the Airport back in the ‘90’s.  Therefore, he could not say that it was based on today’s operations.  It has actually reduced based on some of the prior operations as well.  The future is why they do the 5 year review.

 

Mr. Zobrist requested that they ask the Deerwood residents about the noise levels in the area.

 

Mr. Johnson said that there was no problem.

 

Ms. Joseph asked about the trailer park.  It was rezoned to industrial. 

 

Mr. Benish said that it was rezoned in early 1992 as part of a rezoning along 29 North that took a large chunk of land that was in Industrial Service to Regional Service where the town center is now.  The portion of the land containing the mobile home park is zoned for Urban Density Residential in the Comp Plan and was subsequently rezoned to R-15.

 

Ms. Joseph said that it was zoned R-15.  She remembered that there was a 15 year threshold.

 

Mr. Edgerton noted that it was in the staff report and it expires next year.

 

Mr. Benish said that there was a concern at the time of that Comprehensive Plan Amendment that the conversion of industrial to regional service was balanced by the provision of an affordable housing product.  The Board wanted to ensure that because mobile homes can be more transit in nature that use would be in place at least for a certain period of time.  The Board in their deliberations added that condition to ensure that it would be there for a certain period of time.  It has actually been rezoned in the Comprehensive Plan.  The designation has been changed.  It would take a legislative decision both to amend the Comprehensive Plan and to change that zoning.  At the time of that Comprehensive Plan that was what the Board at that time was trying to provide for future Boards that it should not be there but for a certain period of time.

 

Mr. Cilimberg noted that it was not considered a sunset, but it was considered a minimum.  Of course, zoning does not operate under a sunset.  The zoning is there.  It would have to be rezoned to change it to industrial.  Beyond 15 years what is possible is that it could change to industrial if the owner so choice under the Comp Plan.  But, it would have to go through a rezoning process.

 

Mr. Benish pointed out regarding the noise impacts as was mentioned earlier the Commission received a letter in the earlier meetings from the Executive Director of the Airport Authority that Ms. Long had mentioned.  Staff noted that in the staff report as well.  In staff’s conversations with Mr. Elliott what his impression were from the noise impacts and the complaints that they typically received is that while there are generally complaints that occur sporadically all around the airport the predominant noise issue actually is in the approach zones.  The approach areas actually run over Forest Lakes and loop over near Piney Mountain and back into the airport and west of Walnut Hills.  In the approach area the planes are lower to the ground and where the noise is.

 

Ms. Joseph said that they were looking for guidance tonight on whether or not they accept this request for a Comprehensive Plan Amendment now or that it stays within the process of Places29.

 

Mr. Benish said that if the Commission choice to pursue the Comp Plan Amendment staff would move through the rezoning process and look at the details of the proposal as it relates to the site as opposed to going through the Comp Plan Amendment process first.  That is the biggest distinction.

 

Mr. Cannon said that they would do those simultaneously basically, and Mr. Benish agreed.

 

Mr. Zobrist supported allowing the rezoning to go forward since it was such a small parcel.

 

Mr. Edgerton said that he was convinced by staff’s argument that this is a great project being proposed in the wrong place. He was very concerned about the long term implications.  If they encouraged this they would be encouraging a conflict with the Airport.  He felt that it was interesting that the Director of the Airport is in favor of this project and at the same time his comprehensive plan basically says just the operate.  It does not speak to this project, but it speaks to the concern of residential projects being too close to the Airport and then limiting significantly what options the airport will have in future years if the need for expansion occurs.  He has been on the Commission long enough to sit through the last update of the Airport Master Plan. He was quite impressed during that review that we really already have grown too close to our Airport already with development.  He felt that the economics of what Airports to our whole neighborhoods are real.  If they ignore that land use designation he felt that it was going to be problems.  He misunderstood in the staff report that if the trailer park activity was abandoned they lost that use.  In summary, he could not support the project.  It is a good project, but was in the location.

 

Mr. Cannon said that he was in between.  His instinct in this situation generally would be to have the Comprehensive Plan process as it is going with a resolution appropriate to that process.  But, what he was seeing here, if he was interpreting the evidence correctly, what he was seeing is a piece of land which is now surrounded on 3 sides by residential developments.  A representative of at least one of those residential developments is strongly in favor of his use as opposed to the Plan’s use.  A Chamber of commerce representative appearing that he would expect would speak for the interest of commerce and light industrial industry in general is saying that this piece of property is not consequential for the future of such development in the county.  The Airport was saying that this residential use is not something it is concerned about in terms of either its present operation or its future development.  Taking all of that into account he was wondering why he would not be in favor of something that provided additional affordable housing assuming that the representation that has been made by the applicant as opposed to earlier representation submitted and made by the applicant that was made tonight are carried out.  But, he has not decided yet.

 

Mr. Strucko said that he had convinced him.  He articulated all of the thoughts that he was having.  He was In favor of this process moving forward for the very reason stated.  The housing prices are very compelling.  The moderate priced housing appears to be a step ahead of the affordable housing process.

 

Mr. Craddock said that as part of Mr. Edgerton’s concerns, this project came before the Commission represented as an affordable housing community.  They talked about whether they would want to put all affordable housing right under the airport where airplanes would be landing and taking off.  They questioned whether this was the best place to put it.  After the conversations the other night and reading through the staff report he was greatly disappointed that what had been proposed as all 200 units meeting the County’s affordable criteria was all of a sudden now less than 15 percent.  They have been looking at 15 percent as a minimum.  But, now he heard that they were going to have at least the 15 percent and then the Board of Supervisors through their curb into it about moderately housing into it over the last year or so.  Now they get affordable housing at the 15 percent and the Board is saying moderately priced housing is okay, too.  Now it shoots up the percentage pretty high, but it is still not what was first thought of as this being strictly all affordable housing.  It does have some good points about it being in the back of Hollymead Town Center and being with other residential properties.  His concern is that this is a work session and they are not going to have a public hearing about this in case any one wanted to speak their mind on it.  The legality is that they don’t have to have a public hearing.

 

Mr. Cilimberg said that they are not changing the plan, but just making a decision to move forward on an amendment or not.  The amendment comes before the Commission as part of the rezoning.  That is where the public hearing will be held for rezoning.  This is just a first step to tell staff whether or not they should be processing the amendment and the rezoning that goes with it.  They will have drafted language for the Comp Plan and the rezoning before them.

 

Mr. Edgerton said that if the Commission directs staff to proceed with a resolution it would be fairly hypercritical and argue that it does not comply with the Comp Plan on what they were proposing.

 

Mr. Cilimberg said that resolutions of intent to amend plans do not guarantee that the amendment is going to be made.

 

Mr. Edgerton said that if the group says that it is a good idea, then they encourage the applicant to go ahead and proceed with that.  Then they turn around subsequently and say oh just kidding.

 

Mr. Cilimberg said that normally they don’t have a rezoning running along with the Comp Plan change that they are passing the resolution of intent on.  This is a little different. 

 

Mr. Edgerton asked why they are doing it this way to run parallel with the rezoning and a comp plan amendment.

 

Mr. Benish said that if there is a level of comfort that the land use designation is as appropriate residential as industrial then for a site this size and for this particular type of proposal, which one of the key features that is the basis for that rezoning is the affordable housing component, they could get right to the legislative act that puts that into place.  So by moving forward with the rezoning process they can look at the specific details and the proffers related to providing that housing component.  That is sort of one of the balancing acts that he presume they would saying that it is consistent with the overall Comprehensive Plan in providing that affordable housing.  But, it would be done to the detail that they are comfortable with that as per the Housing Policy.  It allows us to move to that detail before having to wait through the Master Planning process, which could be probably June before it is delivered to the Commission and a good amount of time before it is adopted after that.

 

Ms. Joseph said that she could not support this request because it was a superior area to have light industrial land. She supported staff’s report on this. 

 

Mr. Kamptner said that the Commission could make a motion asking staff to return with a resolution for adoption on the consent agenda at a future meeting.

 

Motion: Mr. Zobrist moved, Mr. Strucko seconded, to direct staff to return with a resolution of intent to consider amendment to the Comprehensive Plan for the Willow Glen property. 

 

The motion passed by a 4:2 vote.  (Commissioners Joseph and Edgerton voted no.)

 

Ms. Joseph said that the next step would be for staff to draft a resolution of intent for the Commission to act on within the next couple of weeks.

 

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