Piedmont Place Reduces Scale

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Piedmont Place Updated South Elevation November 2015
Piedmont Place Updated South Elevation November 2015

Piedmont Place, a new mixed commercial and residential building planned to go opposite Crozet Library in downtown Crozet, has dropped its plan for a fourth floor, project developer Drew Holzwarth told the Crozet Community Association at its November 12 meeting.

The sky bar restaurant originally shown on the fourth floor remains in the plan, but now on the third floor where two apartments were scratched to make room for it. Six 1,200-square-foot, two-bedroom apartments remain on the second and third floors. “The feedback we’ve been getting is that Crozet needs elevator-served apartments,” said Holzwarth.

“At the Advisory Committee meeting we thought we had a final plan,” he said. “We ran into a couple of stumbling blocks. County staff determined that if from any point on the grade of the building it measured more than 40 feet tall, it had to step back 15 feet [from the lower floors]. To keep it by-right, I pulled down the sky bar. I think we’ve ended up with a better product.

“We have all the commercial space. Since the story about the project appeared in the Gazette, my phone has not stopped ringing. We feel strongly that our town will support these new businesses.”

The building was also lowered slightly deeper into the site as well. “The height of the building is roughly the same as Crozet Library. When you turn onto Library Avenue you’ll see a nice bookend,” Holzwarth said.

The entrance to Piedmont Market, an assortment of commercial spaces on the first floor with an open seating area in the middle, will be at street level on the east side and only four steps up from Library Avenue on the south side.

Prospective tenants for those spaces include a pie bakery, an ice cream shop, an organic butcher that will also offer wine and cheese, and a local food truck that is going for a fixed location. “The whole west end of the market level is glass, so you’ll see the view of the mountain,” he added. The terrace level will also contain a restaurant with an outdoor seating area. Holzwarth said he has tenants for both the sky bar and terrace level restaurants.

The project will go before the county’s Architecture Review Board Dec. 15. “We’ve shown it to them and they’ve been supportive,” Holzwarth said. “We lost some good weather, but you’ll see it soon.” He said he expects the building to open next summer.

Revision of the plans also produced four additional parking spaces, bringing the total to 28.

“I’ve never put as much attention into a project as this, but this is Crozet. It matters if downtown gets off to the right start,” said Holzwarth, a Crozet resident, who is a vice president with Stanley Martin Homes.

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