Albemarle County Planning Commission held two work sessions on
Other officials present were
City Commissioners present included: Kevin O’Halloran, Chairman; Eldon Wood, Karen Firehawk, Cheri Lewis, Jon Fink and Mary Hughes, Ex-Officio.
Call to Order and Establish Quorum:
Mr. Rieley called the regular meeting to order at He stated that a quorum was not present, but that the Commission would not take any formal action.
Mr. O’Halloran, Chairman of the Charlottesville Planning Commission, called their meeting to order at
Work Session- Room #235:
CPA-03-02 Fifth Street /Avon Street
Mixed Use City/County - Proposal to
change the Comprehensive Plan, Land Use Plan designation, from Industrial
Service to Regional Service, to allow development of a mixed-use complex
including community and regional level retail and service, multi-family
housing, industrial service, connector road, employment, and open space and
park land uses. The property, consisting of approximately 89.4 acres, is
described as Tax Map 76M(1), Parcels 2A, 2B, 4A, and 11E, and located in the
Scottsville Magisterial District between Rt. 631 (Fifth Street Extended) and
Rt. 742 (
Mr. Rieley welcomed the City Commissioners to the meeting. He stated that it was good to have the City involved in this process since he felt that the City’s perspective was essential to review this project. He stated that the Commission was looking to them for insight in what role this project should have in implementing the City’s Corridor.
Senior Planner, stated that she was working on this project and would provide
an overview of the proposed project. She stated that the City’s perspective was
really essential to a thorough review of this project. She stated that this joint session would help
them a lot as they move through reviewing this project. She pointed out that they were looking to the
City Commissioners for guidance in what role this site can and should have in
implementing the City’s Corridor Plan. She stated that this was a very
difficult site to understand from a topographic standpoint. Although the site has extensive public
exposure, it actually has three designated entrance corridors touching it,
which includes Avon Street Extended, I-64 and Fifth Street Extended. The undisturbed state of much of the surface
makes it really hard to see. In a July work session the Commission had
indicated that they would like to see a more detailed concept plan because the
applicant’s plan was very general. She
stated that was discussed in detail with the applicant on several occasions,
but at this point staff has not received a detailed plan. She stated that the
Commission also asked the applicant to consider preparing a cross-section of
the site so that they could see how the applicant’s grading plan would impact
the site. She pointed out that the applicants indicated that they plan to level
the entire site, and therefore did not see the point in going to the time and
expense of preparing the cross-section. In this review and the one they did
from 1997 to 1999, the Commission and staff have always been interested in
finding a way to work with what is already going on at the site in terms of
natural features. The specimen trees and
the rock outcropping are a very beautiful area that they have designated as a
preservation tract in the language they previously drafted as an amendment to
the Comprehensive Plan. Staff is still
interested in that. It is rare to have a
site in such an urban location that is still so relatively undisturbed. She pointed out that on the western part of
this site, which is on the
Mr. Rieley asked if his estimate included the City and the County.
Mr. Allshouse stated that his estimate was for the County only, but he did take into account that people do shop in the City as well. He pointed out that he was asked what would be the impact on the County.
asked the applicant to do a quick update on the status of the project because
there was some new information. She suggested that after the update that they
would go to the questions that
stated that he was with the Cox Company, which was a planning and engineering
firm located in
stated that there seems to be two key elements to this as Ms. Thomas pointed
out. The first key element is our
Engineering Department’s strong preference for utilizing the existing bridge.
The existing bridge leads to a light on
agreed that the protection of
City Commissioner, stated that she was familiar with the property. She stated that any project that would put a
Mr. Fenner stated that from their traffic study they believe that this road would capture in terms of 24 hours between 8,000 and 9,000 vehicle trips per day. He pointed out that translate into 700 to 800 vehicles during peak hours. He pointed out that study was done in the summer and that included a large volume of regional retailers, Dominion Power, 25 townhouses and a major food store. At that time the traffic generated by that was 12,000 to 13,000 vehicle trips per day. He pointed out that the traffic generated would depend on what the actual uses were, but this information would give them a ballpark figure.
Ms. Firehawk asked what the applicant was proposing to do with the stream particularly because it has suffered a lot of erosion from storm water. The Planning District is getting ready to restart and to take a look at the TMDL of the creek, which was the total maximum daily load that exceeds the State’s standards. She pointed out that a mitigation plan would have to be developed to restore it. She asked if the applicant has been talking with the Planning District about that. She asked if they have any thoughts on a buffer or if they would do actual restoration on the creek.
Mr. Fenner stated that they plan to provide a significant buffer on the stream, but they have not begun any specifics on the stream mitigation plans.
stated that they were curious about what was in the old landfill on the
site. She stated that
Mr. Fenner stated that he was not an expert on this subject, but he did know that the existing owner has some very good extensive records about the past studies on the site. He stated that part of the past negotiations with the owner was that the applicant has done some soil engineering studies on that. He stated that was not his area of expertise, but that there is a great deal of information available on that.
Ms. Firehawk asked if there have been any ground water wells dug, and Mr. Fenner stated that there have not.
Ms. Firehawk stated that in order to develop the site that they would probably have to do a lot more extensive studies on that part of the site.
Mr. Fenner stated that they see this as an urban project. He pointed out that there certainly needs to be a balance in terms of respecting the existing environmental factors and also recognizing the fact that it was only a few appropriate infill sites left in the urban ring that could house the type of development being proposed by the applicant. He stated that was going to be a challenge.
Ms. Thomas stated that she looked forward to working closely with the applicant in the future. She pointed out that they have gotten some good ideas from today’s session.
the Albemarle County Planning Commission held a joint work session with the
The first work session ended at
The next work session began at
Present from the City of
Mr. Craddock arrived at
Harrison Rue presented the draft plan of the United Jefferson Area Mobility (UnJAM) 2025 Plan and handed out some information. (See the attached information.) He focused on what was new and different in the plan as he went through the project list that indicated where the money would be allocated and spent. He stated that VDOT was now saying that they could use the roadway money towards stand-alone bike path projects. He pointed out that they also made a determination that instead of having to beg for a road to build a sidewalk and bike paths that all roads and streets will be built with them unless the locality requests do not include sidewalks. He pointed out that on a lot of the County roads that they would probably request not to have sidewalks because it would be a very expensive part on some of the rural roads. He asked for comments and suggestions tonight and through email noting that the MPO Policy Board will be making the final decision on Wednesday night. There will be an open house on Thursday, November 20th at their office from to A power point presentation will be given to present the plan and a summary of the plan will be provided. A work session will be held at the Senior Center on November 18th from 7:00 to 9:00 p.m. that will focus on what people think is the most important things to implement right away. He invited everyone to attend these meetings.
The meeting adjourned at to the regular meeting at in Room # 241.
The meeting convened at in meeting room # 241.
The Albemarle County Planning
Commission held a meeting and a public hearing on
Other officials present were
Call to Order and Establish Quorum:
Mr. Rieley called the regular meeting to order at
Other Matters Not Listed on the Agenda from the Public:
Mr. Rieley invited comment from the public on other matters not listed on the agenda. There being none, he stated that the meeting would move on to the next item. He stated that the Commission would hear the summary of the Board of Supervisors meeting under old business and move directly into the public hearing items for North Pointe.
Public Hearing Items:
North Pointe PD-MC (Sign #97, 98, 99)- Request to rezone 269.4 acres in
the Entrance Corridor (EC) zone from
RA Rural Areas to PD-MC with special use to allow a mixture of commercial and
residential uses with a maximum of 893 residential units, approximately 664,000
square feet of commercial and office space, a 250 room hotel, and approximately
177,000 square feet of public/semi-public uses.
The proposed residential density, allowed by this rezoning, would be
approximately 3.31 dwelling units per acre (gross). The property, described as
Tax Map 32, Parcels 20, 20a, 20a1, 20a2, 20a3, 22h 22k, 23, 23a, 23b, 23c, 23d,
23e, 23f, 23g, 23h, 23j and 29i is located in the Rivanna Magisterial District
north of Proffit Road, east of Route 29 North, west of Pritchett Lane and south
of the Rivanna River. The Comprehensive Plan designates this property as
Regional Service, Office Service, Urban Density (6 - 34 dwelling units per
acre) and Neighborhood Density (3 - 6 dwelling units per acre) in the Hollymead
North Pointe Residential Uses Request for special use permit to
allow residential uses in accordance with Section 25A.2.2.1 of the Zoning
Ordinance which allows for residential uses in a PD-MC Planned Development
Mixed Commercial zoning district. (
summarized the staff report. She stated
that the Commission has seen this project a number of times and they actually
held a public hearing last December on it and four work sessions. The Commission has provided guidance to the
applicant on things that they would like to see in this particular
development. She stated that the staff
report was very short because of all of the information that the Commission has
received previously on the project. She
noted that they would discuss what has changed since they saw this project
last. She asked to draw the Commission’s
attention to the depiction of the development located on the board behind Mr.
Rieley and staff’s site plan, which is colored slightly differently. The purpose
of the site plan located on the right is to show the critical slopes, and also
to have a record of the particular plan that was considered at this meeting.
The plan has had a few minor changes that have been made to it since you last
saw it. There has been a roundabout added that has been shown on the plan at
Mr. Rieley asked if there were any questions for Ms. Echols. There being none, he opened the public hearing and asked if the applicant would like to address the Commission.
Chuck Rotgin, Great Eastern Management, asked to be allowed to provide some closing remarks at the end of the public hearing.
Mr. Rieley pointed out that he would be allowed some time at the end of the meeting.
stated that he had accompanying him tonight, in addition to other Great Eastern
representatives, some of the consultants and professionals that have worked
with them over the last several years in putting this plan together. He stated that included Ron Keeney, from
Keeney and Company Architects; Joe Wallace, from Wilbur Smith and Associates
Traffic Engineers and Consultants; and Cecil Sears, formerly with Integral
Realty Associates, who is now an independent economic consultant who authored
the fiscal impact report that the Commission received a copy of in August. These individuals will be available to answer
questions during the Commission’s deliberations. He thanked staff for her gracious manner in
dealing with them over the last five months because he knew it had not been
easy. He stated that they knew that she
has made an attempt to be fair and believe that they have at least boiled the
issues down to now a matter of design and form. The remaining items can be
worked through in discussions with staff and the
thanked Mr. Rotgin. He stated that there
was a sign up sheet with several speakers signed up. He stated that the first speaker was
Mr. Rieley stated that the next speaker is Charlie Tractra.
Tractor stated that he was not here to ask them to or not to vote for this
project. He stated that he also was not here to talk about the issues of school
critical slopes, transportation, etc.
What he would like to ask is why won’t the County try to get the
communities and the developers to talk to each other. It seems that the County wants its
adversarial venue to continue. While
most of us understand that growth will happen, they need to try to make it
happen so that it makes sense. Over the
years concerning issues such as this, he has never seen anyone come in here and
leave unscarred. The community feels that the County has sold them out, while
the developers feel that their rights as landowners have been walked on. He stated that they both were right. Before the Planning Department brings any
recommendation to this Board or any other, the communities and developers must
have the opportunity to talk even if they don’t want to. He asked what if this community and the
developers here tonight were only a few issues away from agreeing, then wouldn’t
you like to know. He asked if they would rather have an application in front of
the Commission where there were only one or two sections or issues to be worked
out or do you want to have the whole packet that you have to fight
through. It is time to think outside of
the box or
Salitus stated that he lived in the City of
stated that she was speaking for the Southern Environment Law Center. She asked
that the Commission recommend denial of the rezoning and critical slopes waiver
for North Pointe on the grounds that the project does not adhere to the twelve
principles in the Neighborhood Model as incorporated into the Comprehensive
Plan. She noted that denial was
appropriate because the project would cause traffic snarls and unacceptable
levels of service for regional and through traffic on Route 29 and create a
surplus of space beyond the retail capacity and to degrade the
Ann Mallock stated that she
lived in Earlysville and was present representing the Earlysville Area
Resident’s League. She stated that based on studying more than 50 pages of
applications, proffers and staff recommendations, she urged the Commission to
deny the approval of this application for North Pointe. This is a rezoning for
a town center, but it does not live up to all of the standards of the town
center that they would like to see. The
County is just beginning to implement this model and it needs to keep these
standards high. The developers across
the street at the
Mr. Rieley asked if there was anyone else present to speak regarding this application. There being none, he closed the public hearing to bring the matter back to the Commission for discussion and possible action.
asked for time for rebuttal. He stated
that there was no way that he could accurately rebut all of the comments that
were made tonight, although they were prepared they could not do it in five
minutes. If during the deliberations of
the Commission, if the Commissioners feel that it would be appropriate to ask
us questions, then they would be happy to address those. There is not one morsel of what Kay Slaughter
said that is fact. The issue of too much
retain is too complication to go into in five minutes, but he could address
it with just five minute on that. The issue of the CDA is extraordinary
complication and they were responsible for that being complicated. He asked that the Commission asks him
questions asked about that and he would be happy to clear that issue up. The fact is that the proffers that they have
offered are far, far in excess of either
Mr. Rieley stated that they would now close the public hearing and bring the matter back to the Commission for discussion and possible action.
Mr. Thomas stated that he had one question about what the actual zoning was on the entire piece of property.
Ms. Echols stated that a large portion of the property was Rural Areas and the requested zoning was PD-MC with a special use permit for the residential uses.
Mr. Finley stated that there were some critical outstanding issues that included steep slopes, streams and pollution of the river. He asked if the runoff and sediment control measures required during construction would prevent the pollution of the river?
Ms. Echols stated
that the stream valley in this area was one of the important ones in this
area. She pointed out that this stream
rated the highest on the County’s stream assessment study. Therefore, staff has concerns about how the
amount of development going on through here is going to impact the stream
valley. There are mass measures proposed
in this area, but it was going to take out a good deal of what is already in
this particular area. She pointed out
the closeness of the units to the set of critical slopes. She stated that there was not enough space in
that area to get any kind of erosion and sediment control measures in before
these things start going down the hill.
She pointed out that in this particular area it was not very workable.
She stated that staff has some questions about this area. In one of the
rendition of the plan, this area was pulled up a little bit, which pulled the
units off of the critical slopes somewhat, and you can see that those are
protection. She noted that there was a
potential for the road and site grading that goes on in this area to get down
on to these particular slopes. The open
space plan suggests that these are significant features that relate to the
Mr. Finley asked if after construction the slopes would be restored.
Ms. Echols stated that after the slopes have been graded over that the slopes would be reconstructed to a different slope. She pointed out that there were several options that the developer has to redesign the site to more in keeping with the Comprehensive Plan. She stated that one of the positive aspects to this development was that there was a mixture of housing types, but it was sort of the organization of it that staff would like to see redone. She pointed out that having all of the uses concentrated together in one area does not promote the best pedestrian environment.
Mr. Craddock stated that one of the speakers was talking about the developers and the neighbors getting together. He asked if staff knew of any meetings that they have had with the neighborhoods.
Ms. Echols stated that there had been some neighborhood meetings about two years ago.
Mr. Don Wagner stated that they had three meetings with the neighbors. He pointed out that they had asked the neighbors if they wanted to meet again and they said no.
Mr. Craddock stated that another point that was brought up was about public transit. He asked how far out on Route 29 does the public transit go now.
Mr. Benish stated that they have been running the Big Blue Service, which was a morning and evening service that goes up to Paran Church. He noted that it has been kind of tentative as to its viability. He stated that as far as he knew that it was still operating.
Ms. Echols pointed out that the developer has tried to make accommodations for bus service for some point in the future when having eight bus stops throughout the development provided it. The bus stops are actually shown on the plan. Staff feels that it is premature to show the bus stops on the plan and would ask that they be worked out on any plan in the future. Staff would like to recognize the commitment to provide those bus stops through the development, which was something, that staff does not always see.
Mr. Craddock asked when this plan would be reviewed by the ARB?
Ms. Echols stated that as it was proposed now, the ARB would not look at the plan until they get a site plan for something in the development. She stated that the developer has declined to take the plans to the ARB as a rezoning, which was what staff normally sees. The developer would prefer to take the individual site plans as they come in to the ARB so that the ARB would see it at that time.
Mr. Craddock asked if staff had any comments on the use of the CDA to pay for basically the developer’s infrastructure?
Ms. Echols stated that the intent of CDA was to allow the developer to do more than he would normally do, but that was not the way that the Board has been looking at the need for a CDA. She stated that based on what the Board has done previously, they would infer that the Board would prefer that the participation in the CDA be for traffic improvements on Route 29.
Mr. Finley asked what was proffered for traffic improvements on Route 29?
stated that there were a lot of proffers for traffic improvements on Route
29. She stated that most of them would
be requirements, but the benefit of noting them down as proffers was so that
everybody was clear on what has to be done.
She pointed out that this was done with
Mr. Finley asked how does this compare with other projects?
stated that he might need some help from Mr. Graham since they have worked on
this together. He stated that for the
Ms. Echols stated that on page 38 of the staff report there is an attachment B that shows the proffers. The applicant proffers to apply to the Board of Supervisors for the creation of a CDA for the purpose of issuing tax exempt bonds to fund the construction of certain public improvements both internal and external to North Pointe. The proposed proffer would include but not be limited to improvements to existing public roadways, the installation of public utilities and storm water management facilities, construction of public streets and funds for the construction of other public improvements including but not limited to schools, libraries, police, fire and rescue facilities and encumbers.
Mr. Finley stated that the applicant stated that no other project had proffered affordable housing. He asked if that was correct.
Mr. Benish stated that in terms of proffers he could not say off the top of his head, but they certainly have approved affordable housing projects. Those are projects that were done under Section 8. But in terms of literally proffering a commitment to affordable housing, he could not recall any.
Mr. Finley stated that the Housing Committee was recommending 15 percent, but there has not been any formal action of that committee report yet.
Mr. Benish stated that was correct.
Mr. Thomas asked how much affordable housing has been proffered, and Ms. Echols stated that 3 percent had been proffered.
Ms. Echols pointed out that over the past number of years they have received rezonings where people did not proffer affordable housing and said that they were going to provide it. She noted that has not always panned out that affordable housing was provided. She stated that this was something favorable in this rezoning application that the applicant was proffering affordable housing.
Mr. Craddock asked if 3 percent was 25 units?
Ms. Echols stated that it was low.
Mr. Thomas asked if the applicant would proffer more affordable housing if Mr. White’s recommendation would be more than 5 percent. He asked if that was a possibility.
Ms. Echols stated that she did not know. She suggested that he ask the applicant.
Mr. Thomas asked the Chairman to be allowed to ask Mr. Rotgin a question, and Mr. Rieley agreed.
Mr. Thomas stated that the Commission was waiting for Mr. White to give them the amount that they would be recommending for the percentage of affordable housing. He asked Mr. Rotgin if he would consider increasing that percentage?
stated that he was not going to say no, but would point out that the affordable
housing issue was a complicated issue because the program needed to be worked
out. He stated that they had to find
some way for that housing to remain affordable. There is currently no vehicle
for doing that. He pointed out that he
was a great believer in affordable housing and has supported lots of things for
affordable housing. He felt that was
something that they need to work with the County about. He stated that negotiating proffers is not at
the top of his list, but it was probably a reality. He pointed out that reality would start
tomorrow afternoon in the
Mr. Thomas asked Mr. Rotgin to give some feedback on the CDA.
Mr. Rotgin stated that they had a problem with the CDA’s because they were the ones that created that vehicle in the first place in this community over a year ago. He stated that unfortunately they did not do enough homework on the issue. Several weeks ago they realized that for the County to benefit from the CDA the development needs to be fully developed. The revenue that comes in from the CDA only comes in as development occurs. He pointed out that development was not going to occur tomorrow or the day after tomorrow. The commercial end in North Pointe was probably ten or twenty years. He stated that Hollymead Towne Center would probably be about the same, but it might be a little quicker for Albemarle Place. He stated that if you took 600,000 square feet of commercial buildings that would be within the Community Development Authority, that would equate to about $130,000 to $140,000 a year of revenue for the County. But, that revenue is not going to come in for years, and it might be ten to twenty years before that total amount is recognized. He stated that their feeling was that $130,000 to $140,000 would only finance about a million and a half or two million dollars worth of infrastructure improvements by the County. He stated that the County would be much better served if the developer comes in and the private owner says that you know if they could have the tax exempt bonds for the entire infrastructure, then they would up the proffers. He stated that he was not just building a thousand feet of highway on either side of the entrance like Hollymead Towne Center has done, but he would go to Proffit Road and 3-lane Route 29 all the way to Lewis and Clarke Drive. The idea is that he did not think that the County is going to benefit from the CDA the way that they have led the County to believe and they thought that the County might benefit. He stated that it was left up to them to try to sell that presentation to staff and that the County might decide that they don’t care and just want to control the CDA’s. He stated that in that case they would have to take another look at it. He stated that their absolute intent in structuring the Community Development Authority the way they did was that they think that the County is far better off with the CDA structure the way they have proposed it than it would be the way that it has now been implemented. He stated that they felt that the County ought to go back to Hollymead and Albemarle Place and opt to change the way the CDA’s are administered there. He stated that it was a complicated issue, but he did know a lot about finances and felt that it was going to work.
Mr. Thomas asked Mr. Rotgin if he would be willing to participate in the CDA and the proffers.
Mr. Rotgin stated that he was not sure that they could superimpose the CDA’s that way. He stated that he had a conversation with Bonnie French, who was the McGuire & Woods attorney in Richmond who was the probably the foremost authority on CDA’s in the State. He pointed out that Ms. French was very concerned that the way that the CDA’s are being styled may not work in the market place. For instance, the County has to re-impose the 25 cents tax rate each year in the CDA. He noted that Ms. French says that she does not think that was something that can happen. He stated that it was a complicated issue. He stated that they were saying that instead of paying the County $130,000 or $140,000 that they would maybe give them $20,000 in 2005, $40,000 in 2006, $80,000 in 2007 and gradually going up to $130,000 or $140,000 that they would put in a million and a half or two million dollars worth of excess proffers right now. They would do it with roadwork, schools, libraries, Proffit Road and a number of other ways.
Mr. Thomas stated that under the projected time for the building of the highways and the traffic studies, he was saying that they would have a possible ten- to twenty-year build out. He asked if that money would do the infrastructure a lot of good ten years from now even though they were proffering other things.
Mr. Rotgin stated that he was suggesting that it was better for them to do it now. He stated that if they ended up spending two million dollars more on infrastructure improvements today, that he was saying that was worth a whole lot more to the County than $140,000 a year beginning seven or eight years from now.
Mr. Finley stated that under items of concern that item 12 was traffic impacts, which are significant, and the proffers to mitigate the impacts are not fully sufficient. He asked with what they were doing within the development if that in part would mitigate the expected traffic impacts.
Mr. Rotkins stated that there were two aspects of the traffic proffers. The first aspect is internal and the other one is external. From the internal standpoint, the main proffer that they were making was the spine road that starts at Proffit Road and goes all the way to the Lewis and Clarke entrance. He stated that Ms. Echols was correct that the topography in this area is the worst of any place on the site and was challenging. The School Board wanted this site for the Baker Butler Elementary School site first. Then the School Board wanted this other site. He pointed out that they said fine even though they felt that it was not a great location for a school. Then the School Board went to the Highway Department who told them that it would cost two and one-half million dollars to build that roadway to accommodate that school. Then the School Board said that they could not afford that. He stated that the point that he wanted to make was that if this area was developed by itself it would be developed with a private road that cul-de-sacs with no interconnection. He stated that their proffer was that they were going to make the interconnection that the Highway Department and the County wants which will provide the true interconnectivity with the parallel road east of Route 29. He stated that it would be just like Berkmar Drive in the city west of 29 that provides parallel access. He pointed out that staff and VDOT did a terrific job back in November of spreading the 29 North Corridor and coming up with a system of parallel roads, which would take the traffic congestion off of Route 29 as it relates to local people. He pointed out that on the East Side Hollymead Towne Center and UREF are doing the same thing. Ultimately, with this spine road there will be a system of parallel in this area of Route 29 similar to Berkmar Drive. He pointed out that Hillsdale Drive Extension is also being considered. The first proffer internally is for this spine road, which is a very expensive road. The second proffer deals with off-site improvements, which includes the Route 29 North improvements. Rather than as other large developers have done that have similar projects by coming in with an intersection and a stoplight and going 1,000 feet this way and 1,000 feet the other way, they have suggested that they be allowed to go to Proffit Road and finish that work all the way to Lewis and Clarke. He noted that was the external proffer. He stated that they could make a real argument that North Pointe is not going to put much traffic on this road. He stated that they have conducted a back test going back to 1986 in front of Seminole Square and they looked at the traffic on Route 29 at that point and what the projected traffic would be in the year 2001 with just background growth and assuming the uses within Seminole Square. He stated that there were 43,000 cars a day on Route 29 in front of Seminole Square in 1986. Assuming no Seminole Square the traffic count would have grown to 58,320. With Seminole Square it was projected to grow to about 83,000. He pointed out that in 2001 there were only 58,000 cars per day on that road, which was less than what was expected with just the background growth. He stated that VDOT grossly understates the amount of capture of people driving by that are already on the road and grossly understates the amount of internal capture where someone goes to the grocery store and other businesses in the same center. He stated that what they were doing was going to mitigate all of the issues that relate to North Pointe and they were going to solve the problems that are out there now including a serious safety problem with vertical curve.
Mr. Rieley asked if anyone else present would like to speak on North Pointe PD-MC. There being none, he closed the public hearing to bring the matter back before the Commission for discussion and possible action.
Mr. Thomas stated that the applicant has done a good job with the topography that they have had to work with. He stated that it might not be by the Neighborhood Model or conducive to all of the critical slopes, but they will be coming back with a less critical slope after they are flattened down. He stated that with that being said that he would still like to see a little more interconnectivity within the project.
Mr. Craddock stated that he agreed with Mr. Rotgin’s suggestion that they defer for two weeks so that some of these issues could be worked out. He asked if the applicant was willing to take a deferral.
Mr. Rieley stated that there were a lot of loose ends. Mr. Rieley stated that on his part it was not the loose ends that he was worried about. He asked first to complement staff on a spectacular job of sorting through a series of complex issues, which included both design issues and practical issues dealing with proffers to grading. He pointed out that staff very fairly listed the positive and negative aspects of this project. He stated that some of the positives ones that he noted as they went through this were the spine road as Mr. Rotgin described were indeed a very positive element for this plan. He stated that they should be designing all of their new projects with multiple connections and multiple ways of getting through it. He stated that this was a good start in that direction. He stated that the proffering of affordable housing he thought was laudable even though he agreed with the point that was explicit in Mr. Craddock’s question about three percent that it was not enough. He pointed out that Mr. Rotgin’s answer to Mr. Thomas’ question on whether it could be raised was not yes, but not no. The proffering of the school site is indeed a very positive move in the right direction and the fact that it was a graded site that changed from the initial submittal. He stated that he was glad that this is a planned project rather than than a piecemeal one. The applicant has made a number of refinements to the plan and many of them have been improvements. This is as Mr. Rotgin very honestly pointed out was essentially the same plan that was rejected by the Planning Commission by a 7 to 0 vote. He stated that his concerns about it have remained fairy consistent through the previous public hearing, four work sessions and now this second public hearing. He stated that it was not as Mr. Rotgin said that they were down to simply a matter of the design form. He pointed out that was not so because it was very much an issue of the quantity of the commercial development and its configuration as well of both the area and in the amount for this particular site. Furthermore, he felt that it was way too much relative to the amount of residential in the area. He noted that Mr. Craig made an excellent point and Mr. Rotgin in the past has made a very compelling case for additional residential opportunities in this area. He stated that he felt that they both were quite right about that because they need not only more housing in this area in general, but they also need more variety. Mr. Craddock was quite right that you don’t take much of the development out of the Rural Areas by building townhouses because most of the people that are looking at the Rural Areas as a place to live are not potential customers for townhouses. The form is still a major issue. This is a typical sprawl pattern with a gratuitous town center in the middle, but not adjacent to the housing where one would expect it. He stated that was the biggest disappointment. He pointed out that the positive thing that he said was that this was designed all as one piece. He stated that it does not matter if it is designed as one piece if you end up with a piece-mill design that does not achieve what you can achieve by designing it all as one piece. He stated that they have had four work sessions where some Commissioners have requested a fundamental reordering of this site much along the lines that staff has argued for and these have not been forthcoming in plan after plan. There are other issues relative to the grading and interface with the natural grades. He noted that he would not go into detail on that, but he did think it was hard to argue that you can’t make an interconnection between streets on one part of the site while you can literally flatten acre upon acre at the other end of site. He stated that it would not come as a surprise to anyone that as previous public hearing and work sessions that they have had that he did not think that this should be the basis of a rezoning as it was currently designed and he could not support it.
Mr. Finley pointed out that when Mr. Rieley mentioned the 7:0 vote, which he did not vote no because of the design, but because it had not been communicated and incorporated enough with staff. Regarding the issue of excessive footage, he pointed out that if the market was not going to make money, then the tenants are not going to come here.
Mr. Rieley stated that if that was the basis for zoning changes that they would never turn down a zoning request because everybody thinks that their project is going to make money. He pointed out that this project was many times more valuable as commercial property than it was as Rural Area property. He stated that all they had to do was take the rezoned property to the realtor to turn a profit. He stated that whether or not this area can support the level of commercial developments that they have already approved, on the boards and in the works looks to him that it was about three times what their Fiscal Impact Analysis person has told us.
Mr. Thomas questioned if this property was developed would it be beneficial to the County tax wise. He stated that if the project does not totally develop out then his proffers might be more valuable to the County that way if the back portion does not develop all the way out. He stated that way the County and the State Highway Department would get the third lane and it would not be necessary to have it. He stated that there were a lot of issues that need to be worked out that includes the affordable housing and the interconnectivity. He stated that he agreed with the spine road.
Mr. Finley stated that he agreed with Mr. Craddock that the applicant needed a deferral about two weeks to go down the list of concerns to try to work them out.
Mr. Thomas agreed.
Ms. Echols asked that as the Commission contemplates that with the applicant if they would also get a clarification on the time frame. She pointed out that he has a work session scheduled with the Board of Supervisors on November 5th. The timing for getting these things worked out in advance of that meeting or in advance of the meeting on November 12th was going to be too compressed for staff to be able to work anything out. Even with the two-week delay, that only gives staff one week to be able to sort through everything and that includes their time to resubmit. She pointed out that there was not a lot that staff could do within that time period and get something in writing for the Commission.
Mr. Rieley asked the applicant if they would expand their time frame to give staff an opportunity to work with the applicant to make some changes.
Mr. Craddock that the item be deferred for a month.
Mr. Benish stated that a month would give staff 2 to 3 weeks to do the work.
Mr. Rieley asked Mr. Rotgin if he would request a deferral for a month.
Mr. Rotgin stated that they had tried to secure a December date with the Board, which was not available to them. He pointed out that the only date available was in November. He asked that they stick with the two weeks. He asked that a Commissioner ask him about the retail sales since he could clarify the issue. He felt that it was the most critical question that was before the group.
He stated that it was the
commercial that pays for the proffers and not the residential. If the commercial uses are not there, then
there is no money to pay for all of the proffers that they have made. The residential lots cannot afford to build
that spine road and what is happening on Route 29 North. He stated that Steve Allshouse, the Fiscal
Impact Planner, prepared a report two years ago in connection with the Albemarle
Place project. At that time Mr.
Allshouse said there would be a need for about 2 million square feet of retail
space plus or minus. That included a
recapture of leakage that there was business in Charlottesville that was going
outside of Charlottesville to buy. He
stated that he was not sure how it originated. He stated that back in May, as a
result of North Pointe, staff asked
Mr. Rieley stated that so far he had only repeated what he had said in the work session. He asked that he provide them with new information.
Mr. Rotgin stated that he did have new information. He stated that he was at a fiscal impact committee meeting last Wednesday with Mr. Allshouse. He pointed out that Mr. Allshouse confirmed that he was not saying that there is not a need for additional retail as a result of leakage, but what he was saying was that he could not measure it. He pointed out that they had their consultants in the parking lot of the Short Pump Shopping Center last Saturday. There were 32 jurisdictions represented by car decals. Albemarle County had the fifth highest number of cars of any jurisdiction that was in that parking lot. There is an enormous amount of leakage out of this community because we don’t have the right stores. He noted that they were not going to put a spade in the ground unless they had a tenant, which was the same for Hollymead Town Center. He stated that there were hundreds of millions of dollars of retail sales that were going outside of this community now that would stay here if they had the stores. That is the reason why they feel there is a need for the commercial space. He pointed out that he had some more information that he could share.
Mr. Rieley stated that three Commissioners have suggested that the applicant take a deferral for a month to continue to work on this, but the applicant has declined that offer.
Mr. Rotgin stated that they would accept one or two weeks. He asked if they could have the next hearing on November 4th that was the day before the Board meeting, which would be a three-week extension.
Ms. Echols pointed out that if they do that then there is no opportunity to provide any information to the Board from the Planning Commission other than their action.
Mr. Rotgin stated that they would probably have two work sessions with the Board and he would accept the fifth as an introductory meeting with whatever information that staff puts together.
Mr. Benish stated that he needed to understand that two weeks is better than no week if they were trying to allow for some time for some improvements. But it just does not allow for a lot of time and it starts to bump up against the protocol to get people information. If that is more desirable than an action tonight, then staff would make the best of that time that is available, but they just want all of the parties to understand that is a limited amount of time to stay with protocol and get things done. He noted that was the main point here, but that they would do their best.
Mr. Rieley stated that they appreciate staff’s flexibility. He asked if they wanted to go back to two weeks?
Mr. Craddock stated that if the applicant wants to go back to two weeks and he can do some improvements, then he was in favor of that. But if they were going to get the same thing in two weeks that they got tonight, he would call for a vote and he would vote against it.
Mr. Finley asked if he was saying if the applicant does not produce the information, then staff can not get it to us.
Mr. Craddock stated that was correct. He stated that if the applicant can get the information to staff, but staff does not have adequate review time, then essentially they were looking at the same thing again. He pointed out that he had hoped that there would be enough time that all of the proffers and everything that has been talked about tonight could be looked at and reevaluated. If staff feels that they can’t get it done in two weeks, then they will come back with the same thing that they have tonight.
Mr. Finley stated that apparently the applicant feels that they can get it done, but the question is staff time.
Mr. Thomas agreed with Mr. Craddock that if it comes back to the Commission the same way that he would vote against it. He stated that his concern was what happens if it does not get completed and the applicant does not have the opportunity to get all of these changes made. He asked where they would go then.
Mr. Kamptner stated that they could delay it further or send it on to the Board with the risk that the Board is going to look at the application and decide that it is not complete and send it back to the Commission yet again. He pointed out that those were the options.
Mr. Finley asked how the system worked for setting the request for a November Board of Supervisors date. He asked if that was fixed in concrete and can’t be changed.
Mr. Benish stated that was the date that the applicant has asked for. This is the applicant’s public hearing and this application has been in for a pretty significant amount of time. If he wants his day before the Board, then he felt that was his prerogative to call the questions essentially and have this move forward to the Board of Supervisors. The applicant is offering the two-week delay and it depends on what their expectations are coming out of that two-week delay. He pointed out that his opinion was that if they were expecting any significant change in the plan that it would take much more time to review and to go back and look at the detailed plan changes. If they were looking to come back with perhaps some minor changes, but primarily focusing in on the proffers and getting the proffers in orders and addressing some of the deficiencies that were defined there, then there was a possibility to work that out. He stated that he could guarantee them that they would not be able to give the Commission any information in advance. Staff will come to the meeting with what the status of the plan is at that time. There is really no guarantee that the language will have been completed at that point in time. There is also this timing issue as a function of what your expectations are. If the Commission really hopes that there is going to be more substantive changes, then those substantive changes will really take a lot of work time. Staff normally gives the other agencies with expertise, such as the Engineering Department to look at the drainage issues, a couple weeks to get the plan back with their comments. He noted that they might not be able to resolve those, but they would come back to them with the progress that might be incomplete.
Mr. Finley stated that he was not looking for a redesign.
Mr. Thomas agreed and noted that the interconnectivity was his main concern along with getting the proffers nailed down. He stated that he would like to call the applicant back up for a question. He stated that he was not treating himself fair if he tried to do it in a two-week period. He asked Mr. Rotgin if he would consider extending the time frame for more than two weeks and maybe move the date with the Board to accommodate the changes that they would like him to make as well as what he wants done also.
stated that they filed this application in August of 2000 and they need to go
to the Board this year. He pointed out
that they would have liked to have a December date, but it was not
available. Conceivably it could come up
available. He stated that they could fix the proffers and would start on it
tomorrow. As Mr. Benish said, they might not agree on everything, but the
proffers will be fixed and you will know what those are. He pointed out that
they could address whatever questions the Commission might have. He stated that
everybody has their own ideas on what they would like to see things look
like. He stated that they have talked to
a lot of people and have done a lot of traveling. As far as the basic plan is concerned, it is
not going to change much. As far as the
slopes and the things that
Mr. Finley made a motion to grant a two-week deferral for North Pointe Development, as requested by the applicant, to allow time for the applicant to work on the outstanding issues.
Mr. Craddock seconded the motion.
Mr. Kamptner clarified that the motion was to defer the special use permit, the rezoning and the critical slope waiver to the October 28th meeting.
Mr. Finley and Mr. Craddock agreed with Mr. Kamptner.
Mr. Thomas asked if it was necessary for them to discuss any of the things that they had discussed prior so that the plan could be improved.
Mr. Rieley stated that it was appropriate for him to make clear what it was that he hopes comes back in two weeks.
Mr. Thomas stated that he would like to see the space in the CDA is possible and not a redesign, but some additional interconnectivity.
Mr. Craddock asked when the ARB would look at the project.
Ms. Echols stated that the only time the ARB would be looking at this is when site plans come in, which was the way that by right development works.
Mr. Finley stated that they should look at the grading.
Mr. Craddock asked that they look at increasing the amount of affordable housing.
Mr. Rieley asked if the Commissioners were concerned about the number 4, the quantity and quality of parks and open spaces unknown.
Mr. Craddock stated that he would like to see that quantified, also on anything that they could do on that issue.
Mr. Rieley stated that the opportunities for interconnected streets were missed in several places due to the applicant’s desired form of conventional development. He asked if that concerned anybody.
Mr. Thomas stated that was part of his concerns with interconnectivity. He asked staff if there was more interconnectivity what would it do to the applicant’s part of the design. He asked if they would have to get into more critical slopes.
Ms. Echols stated not necessarily. She stated that it was real hard to speak from this particular design about how to provide more interconnectivity because there are more options. The one that they see that was pretty obvious is this one here. There are some trees in this area that the applicant wants to retain. The standard grading practices that are used around here don’t result in trees being saved. The applicant has told us that he has worked that out with his builders, but staff sees that all of the time. Staff sees proffered plans that says there will be no disturbance of areas and the next thing is everything is cut down. They have a lot of difficulty. The only way that they could assure that is if the applicant were to provide the conservation plan, but from staff’s perspective they think that this interconnectivity is just not going to work, but to help make more connections in through this area. Staff feels that one side of the site’s interconnectivity works well except for pulling it more off of the slopes. Staff is all right with leaving this area alone providing that they could get the minimal disturbance of the wet lands.
Mr. Thomas suggested knocking one of those mixed use building out.
Mr. Rieley stated that # 12 traffic impacts are significant and proffers to mitigate the impacts are not yet fully sufficient. He presumed that was implicit in your motion.
Mr. Finley stated that he was in agreement with what he was talking about because that in itself would mitigate the traffic impact.
Mr. Rieley pointed out that they were talking about the proffers.
Mr. Finley stated that if what they were doing to mitigate could be included in a proffer, then that would be fine.
Mr. Thomas felt that it could be included in a proffer.
Mr. Craddock stated that was all hand in hand with #13. He suggested that the applicant get #12 and #13 straight.
Mr. Rieley asked if there was further discussion on the motion and the second.
Ms. Echols stated that she had heard the Commissioners talking about the housing mix. She asked if they were looking for a different type of housing mix than was currently in this land use table.
Mr. Rieley pointed out that was an important point since Mr. Rotgin had indicated that was an area in which he saw some potential flexibility.
Mr. Finley stated that according to what Mr. Rotgin said that he went to townhouses to get more density and had presumed that was what staff had called for.
Ms. Echols stated that she did not recall that staff had asked him to do that.
Mr. Rieley asked if there was a feeling that this should be a part of this.
Mr. Craddock stated that he would like to know if there was a possibility of getting more single-family homes in there. If the whole idea is to save the rural areas and single-family houses are what go into the rural areas, then that is what you would want to look at.
Mr. Thomas noted that it would lower the density. He asked if they wanted more density.
Mr. Craddock stated that there might be some places in there that single-family houses would be more appropriate than multi-family. He stated that he did not know, but felt it was just something else to take a look at.
Mr. Finley suggested that the applicant take a look at that issue during the two-week deferral.
Mr. Thomas stated that he had one clarification on page 6, in the fourth bullet down, the school proffer is good for approximately five years. If the County does not accept the dedication for a school site, it could alternatively accept it for a park. He asked if that was appropriate to put approximately in there or was that just giving the option of going less or more just in case.
Ms. Echols stated that there was some issues with the proffer itself that they wanted to get clarified as to what the intent is. That is our big issue. Staff would like to have a proffer that would allow them to take it within a certain period of time even though they may not have decided that it was time to build a school. That would be staff’s preference. She stated that staff did not know if that was what the applicant intended because it has not been written that way up to this point. Staff would want to make sure that they understand what his intend is and have it written correctly. If it were a requirement of the proffer to be written so that it was within a short time period that they would have to commit to build a school, then they would not be very happy with that proffer. Staff does not anticipate the need for that school to be there except for a longer period of time. The school personnel told us that they thought twenty years. She stated that if they had to commit to build a school, then they ought to have a longer sunset of twenty years. She stated that the idea was that within five years they would have to commit to build a school or take $500,000. But, what the school personnel have also told us was that they don’t think that is a reasonable amount of money. She noted that by the time they needed to build the school that is not going to be what it costs to purchase the land.
Mr. Finley asked if staff has talked with the applicant about moving the sunset ahead.
Ms. Echols stated that staff has said that in the last three staff reports. She pointed out that the applicant might be happy with the way it was written now and staff was all right with that, too. The time frame during which they have been able to talk to the applicant about the kinds of changes that he is requesting has been too short. Up until this point, the best that they could do is to respond to what is in front of us because they don’t have the time to negotiate in order to get something finished and put in a written form to get out to somebody. She stated that staff needed to get the proffer clarified.
Mr. Thomas agreed that proffer needs to be worked out.
Mr. Craddock agreed with Mr. Thomas.
Mr. Rieley stated that he was going to vote in favor of this motion in support of his colleagues desire to see these issues crystallized. He stated that he did not believe that this plan would come back in a form that he would be able to vote in favor of it. In fact, Mr. Rotgin has as much as said that they are not going to make substantive changes in the plans. Therefore, he did not expect to vote in favor of it.
Mr. Finley made a motion to grant a two-week deferral for North Pointe Development, as requested by the applicant, to allow time for the applicant to work on the outstanding issues.
Mr. Craddock seconded the motion.
Mr. Kamptner clarified that the motion was to defer the special use permit, the rezoning and the critical slope waiver to the October 28th meeting.
Mr. Finley and Mr. Craddock agreed with Mr. Kamptner.
The role was called.
The motion carried unanimously (4:0). (Loewenstein, Edgerton – Absent)
Mr. Rieley stated that the rezoning, the special use permit and the critical slope waiver have all been deferred until October 28th.
Mr. Rieley stated that he had no idea what one of the speakers, Mr. Tracta, was talking about regarding having neighbors involved in projects. He applauded the applicant for North Pointe for getting in touch with their neighbors early and being available to them. He pointed out that neighborhood descent has never been an issue on this project. Furthermore, he recalled this Commission on at least one-half a dozen occasions deferring projects and sending it back to the developers and telling them to go talk with their neighbors. He asked if there was any other old business. There being none, the meeting proceeded.
Mr. Rieley asked if there was any new business. He stated that the Board of Supervisors Meeting Report was next.
Board of Supervisors Meeting Report – October 1:
Mr. Benish summarized the Board of Supervisors actions on the October 1 meeting.
There being no further new business, the meeting proceeded.
no further items, the meeting adjourned at to the