The Albemarle County Planning Commission has told the developer of a proposed community in Crozet that it wants to see single-family detached homes in the next version of the plan.
However, commissioners did not reach consensus on the number of total units they think should be built in the Adelaide development on U.S. 250 next to Cory Farms.
“I’m not really prepared to state the perfect density at this point, but I’m not opposed to density,” Commissioner Karen Firehock said at a work session earlier this week. “I’d rather see the developer do some creative design and come back to us.”
Developer Kyle Redinger wants the Board of Supervisors to rezone the property from one housing unit per acre to six units per acre. That would allow up to 93 units in the development.
The project has twice been presented to the Crozet Community Advisory Committee. That group has recommended against allowing the density Redinger has requested.
“The CCAC is concerned about traffic safety along this specific part of 250,” said John Savage, a member of the group. “The proposed density is inconsistent with other developments on this part of 250.”
The property is located within the boundaries of the Crozet Master Plan, which was adopted in 2003 to guide planning decisions in one of Albemarle’s designated growth areas.
The commission was asked to consider several questions such as what density should be allowed, whether the Crozet Master Plan calls for low density at the site and whether the development should consist mainly of single-family detached homes.
“The Crozet Master Plan designates these parcels as neighborhood density residential, which recommends a range of three to six units per acre,” said county planner Megan Yaniglos. “There have been concerns and suggestions by community members that the low end of the density range should be used because the parcels are located near the edge of the development area.”
“Adelaide is a mixed-income community that implements the master plan and creates affordable housing types for hard-working families in Albemarle County.”
Redinger said Albemarle is a desirable place to live, but recent developments have concentrated on higher price points.
“Adelaide is a mixed-income community that implements the master plan and creates affordable housing types for hard-working families in Albemarle County,” Redinger said.
Redinger said 14 units would be designated as affordable under the county’s housing guidelines and those units would be developed by Habitat for Humanity of Greater Charlottesville. He also said more than 200 acres in the Crozet area have been developed without rezonings.
“Westlake Hills and Foothills Crossing ended up being by-right developments, so you lost 213 acres of what could have been a rezoning opportunity based on the master plan,” Redinger said. “By denying or not supporting rezoning at the higher end of density, this puts more pressure on to properties outside of the master plan boundaries.”
Former Planning Commissioner Tom Loach said the county should deny the rezoning for higher density uses in order to protect U.S. 250 as a scenic byway.
“For the last five years, the area from Clover Lawn down to Western Albemarle High School has averaged one accident a month with two pedestrian deaths,” Loach said.
Much of the opposition from the CCAC centered on the types of homes that would be built in Adelaide.
The Crozet Master Plan calls for “primarily single-family detached with some single-family attached” in areas designated as neighborhood density.
However, the current plans only show attached units in the form of townhouses and villas.
Commissioner Jennie More said she defined “primarily” as meaning at least half the units should be single-family detached. She also said she would prefer to see the development come in with lower density.
Other commissioners weren’t prepared to set a specific amount.
“I do believe that we need a diversity of housing types because people have different needs at different times in their lives and they need more options than single-family housing,” Firehock said.
However, Firehock suggested Redinger try to place some single-family attached units in his next application.