Albemarle County Planning Commission
April 3, 2007
The Albemarle County Planning Commission held a meeting and public hearing on Tuesday, April 3, 2007, at 6:00 p.m., at the County Office Building, Auditorium, Second Floor, 401 McIntire Road, Charlottesville, Virginia. Members attending were Bill Edgerton, Jon Cannon, Eric Strucko, Pete Craddock, Calvin Morris, Vice-Chairman and Marcia Joseph, Chairman. Duane Zobrist was absent. Julia Monteith, AICP, Senior Land Use Planner for the University of Virginia was absent.
Other officials present were Wayne Cilimberg, Planning Director; David Benish, Chief of Planning; David E. Pennock, Principal Planner; Amelia McCulley, Zoning Administrator/Chief of Zoning and Current Development; Allan Shuck, County Engineer; Jack Kelsey, County Transportation Planner; Pat Lawrence, Planner; Summer Frederick, Planner; Sean Dougherty, Senior Planner; Rebecca Ragsdale, Senior Planner and Greg Kamptner, Deputy County Attorney.
Call to Order and Establish Quorum:
Ms. Joseph called the meeting order at 6:06 p.m. and established a quorum.
SUB-2007-059, Meadows Estates - Vacating Coopers Lane (AKA Terrior Road) – Final:
In accordance with Section 14-212.2D of the Subdivision Ordinance, the applicant is requesting approval to vacate a previously recorded public street right-of-way. Concurrent with this vacation is a request for authorization by the Planning Commission to allow creation of a private street in the Rural Areas, in accordance with Section 14-232A(3). The property, described as public street right-of-way and known as Cooper Lane, is approximately 5.26 acres. Meadows Estates subdivision is zoned Rural Areas (RA). This site is located in the Scottsville Magisterial District on the southeast side of Carters Mountain Road [State Route #627]. The Comprehensive Plan designates this property as Rural Areas in Rural Area 4. (Summer Frederick)
Ms. Frederick summarized the staff report.
Ms. Joseph asked if there were any questions for Ms. Frederick.
Mr. Morris asked if this street currently meets all of the standards for a public street.
Mr. Frederick replied that it is currently not a finished public street. The county still holds bonds for it. So it is not completed. But, the plans for it were accepted as a public street.
There being no further questions, Ms. Joseph opened the public hearing and invited the applicant to address the Commission.
Kurt Hughes, representative for Vineyard Estates for the subdivision, said that they were correct that the road has been built to the standards. The bonds are in place for any deficiencies that may occur after it has been built until it has been taken into the state system. The points or issues have been corrected for what has been inspected. Before a road can be taken into a system there has to be occupancies on that road. There are no occupancies on this road and the applicant has put off putting on the final coat of pavement and the final touches on the E&S until such time. In the mean time they wanted a greater density of landscaping that would not be allowed by the Department of Highways and Transportation. That included putting up a wall in the front and approximately a million dollars worth of plantings and growing materials along the right-of-way. A great deal of this landscaping would infringe within the right-of-way. So this is one of the reasons they want to turn this into a private street. The plat has been drafted in such a way that it will show all of the lands that have now been dedicated that could be deeded back to the adjoining owner. It is a little over 5 acres of this property that would go back into tax map and parcels, which would be a greater impact on taxes. Right now it is deeded to the county so there is no tax base. The road meets all of the standards whether it is private or public
Ms. Joseph asked if there were any questions for Mr. Hughes. There being none, she invited other public comment. There being no public comment, the public hearing was closed and the matter before the Planning Commission. She questioned the comment about the need for occupancies on the road in order to accept the road.
Ms. Frederick noted that in order for the state to accept the road into their system there needs to be three occupancies on the road. There are no occupancies on the road. That is also a reason why the applicant has not finished the road.
Mr. Morris noted that all of the work has been done to make the road public, which was what preferred.
Mr. Edgerton said that was what the ordinance calls for. His recollection is that this request was pushed through as a by right development on land that was in an agricultural/forestall district and he saw no benefits to reduce the standards of this road. There were no benefits to the community to make exceptions on this road.
Mr. Strucko agreed.
Mr. Craddock asked if this road is adequate for all of these additional development rights later on down the road. There are 5 more that can be added to this road.
Ms. Frederick replied that is correct if it is a public road. If the road goes private there will be additional restrictions if those development rights are utilized down the road.
Mr. Craddock asked if the property goes all the way over to the road behind it.
Ms. Frederick replied no, that the road cul-de-sacs at the end. One of the lots is at the end of that road. Then there is an abutting lot behind that between it and the road.
Ms. Joseph said that there is some challenging topography. What was interesting is that if the road is changed from public to private the property line then goes to the middle of the road. She wondered if that would increase any development potential because there would be more acreage.
Ms. Frederick said that the total acreage within the existing right-of-way is 5.267 acres, which would be spread out over 8 lots. Therefore, a minimal amount of acreage would be going back into the lots.
Motion: Mr. Edgerton moved, Mr. Morris seconded, for denial of SUB-2007-059, Meadows Estates – Private Street Authorization Request for waivers of Section 14-232(a) and 14-234(c) to allow private streets in the rural areas, for the reasons stated in the staff report.
The motion passed by a vote of 6:0. (Mr. Zobrist was absent.)
Ms. Joseph stated that SUB-2007-059, Meadows Estates Private Street Authorization Request has been denied. The decision can be appealed to the Board of Supervisors within ten days.
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