By Bridgett Lynn
Thursday, July 29, 2010
A proposal to increase the size of the
University of Virginia
Fontaine Research Park
by 310,000 square feet has moved one step closer to reality.
Albemarle County Planning Commission
on Tuesday recommended approval for a rezoning, despite concerns from city residents that an expanded research park would mean more traffic through their neighborhoods.
to be accommodated on the site,” county planner Claudette Grant said. “Outside of showing this area on the application plan, the applicant has made no commitment elsewhere to address this [project].”
City, county and university planners agreed on the concept for the road as part of a 2004 planning study. The road would reduce traffic congestion on
Old Lynchburg Road
and would link to the county’s designated growth areas south of
University of Virginia Foundation
originally proposed in 2007 to expand Fontaine Research Park by 725,000 square feet but has scaled that back to 310,000 square feet.
“The major issue was the need for a traffic study,” Grant said. “The traffic study revealed that the research park could propose an additional 310,000 square feet instead of 725,000 square feet in order to mitigate traffic impacts.”
, director of design and development of the UVa Foundation, said at the
Fry’s Spring Neighborhood Association
’s meeting held earlier this month that the
county has not yet decided
what the exact route of the connector should be. However, the county is suggesting at least one alternative.
“Staff believes an alternative location would be to utilize parts of Natural Resources Drive which accesses the Department of Forestry building,” Grant said. “This would necessitate relocation of a part of this road which the applicant has indicated they are not supportive of because this would generate too much traffic going through the park.”
Staff also recommended the applicant participate in a Sunset-Fontaine connector study that the
Thomas Jefferson Planning District Commission
will be undertaking.
Board of Supervisors
will hold a public hearing for the UVa Foundation’s plans at their meeting