Adelaide, a proposed housing project of 80 units on Rt. 250 next to Cory Farm, saw its chances of approval fading at the Board of Supervisor’s Sept. 7 meeting and as the vote drew near developer Kyle Redinger went to the microphone and asked for a deferral.
Sixteen speakers, many from Cory Farm, opposed the plan as too dense. Redinger is seeking a density of 5.5 units per acre in a location where the Crozet Master Plan calls for a density of 3 to 6. He had originally proposed 93 units but reduced it after the Planning Commission said it thought the mix should be 50/50 single family and townhouses or “villas.” The Crozet Community Advisory Committee had passed a resolution against the proposed density, but seemed prepared to accept a density closer to three units. County planning staff had recommended the plan.
Tom Loach said the high density poses traffic safety issues on a stretch of Rt. 250 that in recent years has seen two pedestrians killed. He reported that police data shows that there is an accident at least once a month on the 1.3 mile stretch between Harris Teeter and Western Albemarle High School.
“I grew up in California in the ’40s and ’50s, “ said Steve Wadsworth. I understand about growth. Cities did not follow their master plans and now they have problems. We have a master plan. We know its intent. Follow the plan.”
Michael Salerno said, “It adds 8.9 percent of new traffic to Rt. 250. Affordable? Twelve [affordable] units is the minimum he could have.”
Morgan Butler, an attorney with the Southern Environmental Law Center, argued for a deeper landscape buffer along the highway.
Allowed to make a rebuttal of comments, Redinger said, “I haven’t heard anything new. Twelve of the speakers are Cory Farm neighbors. We have made adjustments. I understand change is hard… You need to do this to provide affordable housing to the people of Albemarle County.” He said projections showed that the subdivision would add 30 children to local schools.
“The density is supposed to be in downtown,” said White Hall District Supervisor Ann Mallek. “Somebody mentioned pyramidal density. It’s supposed to taper off to the ‘fringe’ at the Growth Area boundary. Traffic backs up to Foxchase now. Current citizens are already invested. They need some standing in the question. I can’t support 5.5 units.”
“My planning commissioner said she followed the Crozet Master Plan and she thought that higher density should not be in that location, said Samuel Miller Distric Supervisor Liz Palmer.
“Where are we going?” said Rick Randolph, Scottsville supervisor. “The location of this project is just plain wrong. It will add to traffic and there’s no sidewalks [to Harris Teeter]. How would we feel in Rivanna if this density proposal came up east of Glenmore? They would string me up if I approved it. They’d run me out of town. This is a case where undevelopable acreage should be reduced from the buildable. …We should adhere to the CCAC resolution.”
Supervisor Norman Dill said that, “It’s not the responsibility of developers to deal with capacity of schools or roads. We can’t let people not move in because 250 is too crowded. I’d rather have the houses in one place and the green area left open.”
“I’m worried about traffic. There shouldn’t be shopping centers on 250. I can’t agree with this density,” said Palmer.
At this point, seeing a tie vote was likely, Redinger stood to request the deferral.
“Come back with a lower density,” said Palmer.
At this point the project restarts the whole approval process, pointed out Mallek, who voted no on the deferral motion.