Funding cut loose
Long-on-the-books redevelopment plans for Friendship Court, Southwood Mobile Home Park, and Crozet’s town center got millions in funding last week. Southwood and Crozet Plaza each got a $3.2-million go-ahead from Albemarle’s Board of Supervisors June 19, contingent upon rezoning approval in August. And Friendship Court can start phase one of its redevelopment next spring.
Southwood: Habitat for Humanity bought the mobile home park off Old Lynchburg Road in 2007, and wants to remake it as a mixed-use development with 700 to 800 mixed income units—without displacing any of the residents. Habitat plans to build 450 units in phase one, with 75 that will be affordable for 40 years. But before any checks are cut, the county wants detailed plans.
Crozet Plaza: The former Barnes Lumber will be redeveloped by Crozet New Town Associates—Frank Stoner and L.J. Lopez, the same guys who rehabilitated the Jefferson School. The plaza will have retail and commercial spaces, a hotel, and approximately 52 residential units in its first phase, as well as street extensions into the congested, growth-area neighborhoods currently accessed only by Hilltop Street. Bonus for the county: Ultimately it will own the plaza.
Friendship Court: On June 21, Piedmont Housing Alliance, which bought Friendship Court in 2015, announced it received more than $15.8 million in tax credits as part of the U.S. Treasury Department’s Low-Income Housing Tax Credit program. The credits can be sold to an investor, bringing nearly $15 million in funding, which allows phase one of the Friendship Court redevelopment plan to begin. Piedmont Housing has stressed that current residents will not be displaced, and it hopes to open the first 150 affordable units by 2021.
Quote of the week
“The essential property of mercy is that it applies to the undeserving.”—James Fields’ attorneys in a memo seeking to avoid life in prison for the convicted killer
Charlottesville Tomorrow is ending its 10-year partnership with The Daily Progress, one of the first in the country between a daily and a nonprofit. The digital news source, known for covering government meetings and providing free content to the Progress, plans to change its mission to in-depth reporting that “improves local decision making” and expands civic engagement, while working towards “a sustainable subscriber-supported revenue model,” says executive director (and former C-VILLE editor) Giles Morris.
Another statue petition
Antiwar activist David Swanson is collecting signatures to remove the statue of “Conqueror of the Northwest” George Rogers Clark that sits on UVA property at West Main and JPA. Albemarle native Clark is depicted on a horse confronting a Native American family with several of his men, one of whom is wielding a gun. The statue is the fourth donated by Paul Goodloe McIntire that some people want to disappear from the center of town.
Cavs get the call
Three players from UVA’s national championship-winning men’s basketball team had their names read at the 2019 NBA Draft last week. De’Andre Hunter went fourth overall to the Atlanta Hawks, Ty Jerome earned the 24th selection by the Phoenix Suns, and Kyle Guy was taken with the 55th pick by the Sacramento Kings. Virginia Tech’s Nickeil Alexander-Walker was picked 17th by the New Orleans Pelicans.
Robert Tracci announced he’s seeking a second term as Albemarle commonwealth’s attorney June 25, and says he wants to work with the General Assembly to set THC levels to determine stoned-driver impairment and help former convicts to re-enter society. He faces Democratic nominee Jim Hingeley, a former public defender, in November.
DMV for three
Lawyers for Virginia’s AG were in federal court for the third time seeking to dismiss a lawsuit against the DMV for the automatic suspension of driver’s licenses with no notice nor consideration of ability to pay. The AG rep argued that Governor Ralph Northam has ordered current suspended licenses be reinstated July 1 and that the General Assembly could repeal the law, an argument that plaintiffs’ attorney, Legal Aid Justice Center director Angela Ciolfi, scoffed at.
Fun and games
Being music phenoms isn’t enough for Dave Matthews and custom guitar maker Brian Calhoun. They’ve launched a new board game called 25 Outlaws, with Matthews-drawn illustrations, and a kids’ version of Chickapig called Chickapiglets, both of which will be available at a Target near you.
Clarification: Albemarle Commonwealth’s Attorney wants to work with the General Assembly to set statutory levels to determine marijuana impairment and he will not specifically be targeting stoned drivers.