Laura Ingles

Laura Ingles
Laura Ingles grew up in Charlotte, North Carolina, but came to Virginia at age 18 and never left. After graduating from Virginia Tech in 2010 she dedicated a year and most of her sanity to a private wilderness boarding school for at-risk teenage girls, and Charlottesville became home in January 2012. Laura spent two years reporting the news for C-VILLE Weekly before taking on the role as Living Section Editor.

Last week the City Planning Commission approved a special use permit allowing the developers of the Plaza on Main Street to increase the building’s size, but residents of nearby Fifeville are not pleased. Photo: Riverbend Management

Planning Commission approves permit for an even bigger Plaza on Main Street

The Plaza on Main Street, an eight-story, 595-bedroom apartment building proposed for the property between the Hampton Inn and Amtrak station, is seen as the final piece of the West Main development puzzle. But while developers, city officials, and the media have been discussing the project’s potential transformation of the stretch between Downtown and UVA, […]

Trader Joe's, the California-based grocery chain, is coming to Charlottesville November 14. Photo: Laura Ingles

The shopping mall battle: Stonefield vs. Barracks

After a decade of planning, the largest development project in Albemarle County’s history is finally almost open for business. Last Friday Pier One Imports made its debut as the first retailer to open at The Shops at Stonefield, the new upscale shopping center on the corner of Hydraulic Road and Route 29. I was one […]

Everybody wants quality care for their kids, but low-income families who don’t qualify for federal assistance are often stuck in the middle and forced to make sacrifices. File photo.

Childcare crunch: What happens if you’re not poor enough for federal aid?

This is the third installment of a four-part series on childcare in Charlottesville. The first story looked at choices parents make in regards to their careers, with input from working parents and stay-at-home moms. Part two focused on the most expensive options in the area and families’ financial sacrifices for quality.  Parents and providers agree that every […]

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Green happenings: Charlottesville environmental news and events

Each week, C-VILLE’s Green Scene page takes a look at local environmental news. The section’s bulletin board has information on local green events and keeps you up to date on statewide happenings. Got an event or a tip you’d like to see here and in the paper? Write us at news@c-ville.com. Ag school: The Local Food Hub’s […]

Children at Our Neighborhood Child Development Center spend hours outdoors each day, which owner Jennifer McDonald said is essential to their growth. Photo: Elli Williams

Top quality childcare doesn’t come cheap

Charlottesville is home to a broad spectrum of childcare providers, from nanny-shares and under-the- table babysitters to corporate-owned centers that cost as much as college tuition. Parents are faced with tough decisions before even giving birth, and families everywhere have the same question: Why is childcare so expensive? Tuition for top-notch centers in Charlottesville can […]

Chris Dumler. Photo: John Robinson

Dumler plans to fight forcible sodomy charge

A week after his arrest hit local media, Albemarle County Supervisor Chris Dumler said he intends to plead not guilty to the forcible sodomy charge against him and remain active on the Board of Supervisors. Dumler’s press statement, released Thursday morning by Payne, Ross and Associates, said he will “offer a vigorous defense, and will […]

Farms that qualify for the Farm Service Agency's emergency loans can apply for funds to rebuild after this summer's derecho.

Green happenings: Charlottesville environmental news and events

Each week, C-VILLE’s Green Scene page takes a look at local environmental news. The section’s bulletin board has information on local green events and keeps you up to date on statewide happenings. Got an event or a tip you’d like to see here and in the paper? Write us at news@c-ville.com. Funds for farms: In the wake […]

The radiating branches of a white pine in the Ivy Creek natural area offer clues to the tree’s age. Photo: Laura Ingles

Ivy Creek Foundation hosts last plant walk of the year

“Plants are a lot like people—they have their redeeming qualities even when they’re hard to tolerate,” Tony Russell said as he gestured at an invasive vine winding its way up a willow oak tree. Russell is a member of the Virginia Master Naturalists, and has been an active volunteer with the Ivy Creek Foundation and […]

A team of archaeologists spent three years digging up the mysteries of James Madison and his slaves at Montpelier. Photo: Montpelier

Archaeologists dig up James Madison’s threshing machine, find human story

Archaeologists at James Madison’s Montpelier have spent the last three years excavating bits and pieces of the president’s world, searching for clues about his life on the plantation. A team led by archaeologist Dr. Matt Reeves—working with a grant from the National Endowment for Humanities for a study of slave communities—spent years digging up layers […]

The property at the corner of West Main Street and McIntire Road has been on the market for years, and owner Bob Mooney said the current development plans are still up in the air. Photo: Eric Kelley

Marriott project delayed, Random Row tenants breathe sigh of relief

In May, business owners at the corner of McIntire Road and West Main Street thought they would have to vacate their buildings this fall to make way for a seven-story, 133-room Marriott hotel with an interior courtyard, indoor swimming pool, and underground parking garage. Five months later, owners and employees of the businesses that remain […]

Camping equipment business owner Gen Shimizu spent 88 days this summer riding his mountain unicycle—which he learned to ride in Japan at age 10—through the Rocky Mountains to raise money for charity. Photo: Elli Williams

Local outdoor enthusiast rides unicycle 2,000 miles for charity

Charlottesville resident Gen Shimizu spent three months of his life braving the elements and wildlife of the Rocky Mountains—on a unicycle. After hiking the Appalachian Trail and Pacific Crest Trail on his own, he decided to tackle more than 2,000 miles this summer on one wheel. In the name of doing something unheard of for […]

Christina Feggans has two kids and two part-time jobs, and, like many other Char-
lottesville area residents, couldn’t afford quality childcare without a scholarship from United Way. Her oldest son is special needs, and she has struggled to find an affordable center qualified to work with him. “With childcare, you get what you pay for,” she said. Photo: Elli Williams

Childcare crunch: Finding the balance between kids and careers

Laketa Kelley couldn’t afford to send her daughter to the daycare center where she worked as a teacher for six years. Kelley loved her teaching job at Westminster Child Care Center, but when she found out she was pregnant in 2010, she knew her salary wouldn’t cover the center’s $800 per month infant care. She […]

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Is another fight over agricultural land use brewing in Keswick?

The Albemarle County Planning Commission voted 5-1 last night to approve an annual cider festival and new regulations at Castle Hill Cider, a 600-acre property in Keswick—a place where businesses and residents have clashed over agricultural land use in the past. Like other “farm wineries,” Castle Hill can host an unlimited number of events throughout the […]

Local middle school teacher Brandon Lee attended last week’s career conference at the John Paul Jones Arena. Photo: Elli Williams

At local career conference, job struggle still evident

“I’ve never had a hard time looking for a job,” Susan Anthony said. “At first I think I didn’t realize what was hitting me, but it’s frightening.” Anthony, who attended a recruiting event at the John Paul Jones Arena last Wednesday, lost her job more than a year ago. She worked as an administrative assistant […]

Andy Jones-Wilkins runs for hours every day to push himself physically, quiet his racing mind, and enjoy the outdoors. Photo by Ron Dressel

Break on through: Ultra runners push the limits of human endurance

“Runners to the starting line!” Excitement ripples through the Wintergreen parking lot as dozens of Spandex-clad men and women, all of them solid muscle, take final swigs of Gatorade, kiss loved ones, and make their way toward a giant inflatable archway. “On your mark; get set—” A few runners stoop as if about to sprint, […]

UVA's new indoor practice facility caught fire around 12:30pm today. Photo: Graelyn Brashear

UPDATE: New UVA football practice building damaged by fire

UPDATE, 5pm — An errant torch flame was the likely cause of the fire that burned approximately 15 percent of an under-construction UVA football practice facility roof, according to Charlottesville Fire Chief Charles Werner. Werner said the fire is still under investigation, but preliminary reports indicate a construction worker’s torch probably ignited the rubber membrane […]

Charlottesville ultra runners go the distance

Charlottesville ultra runners go the distance

Before last week, I had no idea there were people out there who run distances longer than traditional marathons. Turns out, as running shorter distances has become more and more popular, the sport of ultra running has also taken off. Ultra runners compete in 50K, 50 mile, 100K, and 100 mile races all over the […]

Clouds roll in behind the gardens at Monticello. Photo: Ashley Twiggs

Green happenings: Charlottesville environmental news and events

Each week, C-VILLE’s Green Scene page takes a look at local environmental news. The section’s bulletin board has information on local green events and keeps you up to date on statewide happenings. Got an event or a tip you’d like to see here and in the paper? Write us at news@c-ville.com. Garden games: On Saturday, October 6, […]

HMC Holdings purchased this 17-acre parcel in Northern Albemarle in 2008 for roughly $2.7 million, but forged Certificates of Partial Satisfaction to bring more investors in the property. Photo: Jack Looney

Local businessman Michael Harding indicted on seven counts

Nearly a year after his company was charged with forgery, local real estate developer Michael Harding was indicted last week on seven counts, including mortgage fraud, money laundering, and bankruptcy fraud. This is not the local real estate developer’s first run-in with the law involving money, and Harding could face up to 55 years in […]

Charlottesville’s free clinic celebrates 20 years

Charlottesville’s free clinic celebrates 20 years

With the presidential election on the horizon and the Affordable Care Act still up for debate, health care is on the minds of voters across the country. But regardless of who takes office and what reforms stick, the Charlottesville Free Clinic, which turned 20 this year, plans to be around for a while. Nobody expected […]

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Charlottesville’s childcare crunch

Childcare costs are higher than ever and rising nationwide. Families of all backgrounds and income levels are grappling with the conundrum of how to balance care and costs, from couples with college degrees forced to choose between careers and stay-at-home parenthood to low-income families who want more options than public care. Child Care Aware, a national organization that helps families and […]

Matteus Frankovich, owner of Black Market Moto Saloon. Photo by John Robinson.

Moto Saloon wins initial approval for live music

Matteus Frankovich said all he wants to do is give back to the city he lives in, but intricate zoning laws and unhappy neighbors have made it difficult for him to do so. Woolen Mills residents have complained that his restaurant, the Black Market Moto Saloon, is detrimental to the neighborhood, and the city temporarily […]

Legal Aid Justice Center’s Doug Ford led a presentation on Deferred Action and answered questions from concerned local immigrants. Photo: John Robinson

Obama’s Deferred Action plan attracts Latinos’ attention

Undocumented residents across the country are flocking to legal offices to discuss and apply for Deferred Action status, a recently approved administrative program that temporarily protects young immigrants from deportation. Congress has repeatedly rejected the DREAM Act, which would have provided a path to citizenship for immigrants who came to the United States illegally before […]