COUNTY OF ALBEMARLE

 

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

 

 

AGENDA TITLE:

Old Crozet School Reuse Study

 

SUBJECT/PROPOSAL/REQUEST:

To present to the Board of Supervisors the results of a community workshop study to receive input from the Crozet community identifying their preferred future use of the Old Crozet School

 

STAFF CONTACT(S):

Messrs. Tucker, Foley, Kamptner, Shadman and Ms. Catlin

 

LEGAL REVIEW:   Yes

 

AGENDA DATE:

September 3, 2008

 

ACTION:     X          INFORMATION: 

 

CONSENT AGENDA:

  ACTION:               INFORMATION: 

 

 

ATTACHMENTS:   Yes

 

 

REVIEWED BY:

 

 

 

BACKGROUND:

The Old Crozet School (the “School”) was built in 1924 and was used as a public school until 1990.  From 1991 through 2007 the Charlottesville Waldorf School leased the facility.  In 1997 an adaptive reuse study was conducted by UVA engineering graduate students.  A recent review of that study revealed that the information was outdated and lacked citizen input.  More recently, during the process of selecting a site for the new Crozet library, several sites were considered, including the School, and much discussion was generated between County staff and the Crozet community.  When the School was not selected for the new library, members of the community expressed their desire for staff to consider it for other potential uses.  Many members of the Crozet community feel that the School has a genuine connection to the history of the community and that the County has an obligation to examine the feasibility of other potential uses for the School as part of the overall Crozet revitalization effort.  A staff committee was formed with individuals from the County Executive Office, Community Development and General Services to plan a process to engage the citizens of the Crozet community to receive their input on how the School should be used.

 

STRATEGIC PLAN:

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

Master Planning Directional Statement: “Adapts and reuses sites rather than abandoning them.”

 

DISCUSSION:

The County hired PMA Architects and Planners, Inc. to conduct an open community workshop, to take the information gathered, and to summarize it into an unbiased, readable report to be presented to the Board. The Study was not meant to be an all inclusive, comprehensive study considering all potential uses, but the results of discussion between Crozet community members and County staff regarding their ideas for potential future uses of the School.  A two and one-half day work session was held at Western Albemarle High School with PMA and County staff facilitating lively and interactive discussions with community members.  Opportunities for public engagement were also set up through email and the County website, and the Committee staffed an off-site table at a local grocery.  Approximately 86 citizens attended the workshop and approximately 200 additional comments were received and included.  The attached report (Attachment A) sets forth the results of the workshop.  A cost estimate of the most highly favored use is included in the report.  Jeffery Stodghill of PMA and his staff will present an overview of the process and answer questions.

 

Following is a summary of the consultant’s recommendations arising from the community workshop:

 

BUDGET IMPACT:

A project definition study would be the next appropriate step if the Board wishes to pursue the possibility of converting the School to a community center.  This study would refine the program elements of the community center concept and provide a more in depth environmental investigation.  It is estimate that a study of this kind would cost approximately $150,000, depending on the specifics of the study.

 

RECOMMENDATIONS:

Staff recommends that the Board acknowledge the preferences of the Crozet community as reflected in the final consultant report and forward the study on for further staff analysis through the CIP process.  This analysis will include consideration of the community center concept in light of the needs identified in the Crozet Master Plan and the Community Facilities Section of the County’s Comprehensive Plan.  This additional analysis is part of the normal process for considering the establishment of new facilities and may provide further guidance on potential uses for a community center.

 

 

ATTACHMENTS

PMA Study Report  

Public Participation Summary

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