Crozet residents of neighborhoods east of Crozet Park are about to get some long-needed traffic relief. Construction of the Eastern Avenue connector road linking Westlake Hills to Foothill Crossing is well underway and is scheduled to open this summer. “The earthwork for the crossover is 95 percent done,” Nick Hahn, Riverbend property/project Manager, reported in a February email interview. “Weather has caused a few delays. It is expected to be finalized and stabilized with seed and straw in the next couple of weeks. The pavement portion of the road should occur sometime in May.” The bulk of the work, by Contour Construction, was completed within six weeks.
Riverbend Management, which has been headquartered in downtown Charlottesville for over a decade, is building this connector as part of a proffer agreement with Albemarle County. Zoning Map Amendment (ZMA) 2016-05 increased the density permitted in the Glenbrook subdivision, currently under construction southwest of Foothill Crossing, from 35 by-right to a maximum of 180 residential units, to include a mix of single family houses, townhomes, duplex villas, and apartments. In addition to Glenbrook, Riverbend is also developing Foothill Crossing (behind Western Ridge) and Westlake Hills (east of Westhall).
The 550-foot connector road spans a tributary of Lickinghole Creek, which now runs through a 130-foot culvert under the new road. At the request of the Crozet Trails Crew, Riverbend also installed an 80-foot underpass to allow users of the Crozet Connector Trail to stay level with the creek and pass under the road, rather than having to climb up and over it.
The new connector road will allow residents of Brookwood, Westhall, and Westlake Hills to travel through Western Ridge to Three Notch’d Rd (Rt. 240), and residents of Foothill Crossing and Glenbrook to more easily travel to Crozet Park. The proffer also includes the construction of a portion of Main Street, which will eventually connect Park Ridge Drive in Foothill Crossing to Hill Top St. in Parkside Village—but this project is still a few years in the future. The long-planned southern extension of Eastern Ave. to 250 has no current start date or funding, according to Joel DeNunzio, VDOT Charlottes-ville representative.