A brief update on Dairy Market Phase 3, Development Code

While work continues on the new Development Code for the City of Charlottesville, behind-the-scenes planning continues for one project that recently prompted the creation of a new addition to the future zoning. 

The Stony Point Development Group announced plans earlier this year to create a third phase of the Dairy Market development, plans that prompted an outcry from neighbors concerned about the five-to-seven story buildings being requested through an amendment of an existing special use permit. 

In August, City Manager Sam Sanders said he had spoken with Chris Henry of Stony Point Development Group to encourage the creation of a community benefits package that might be created. 

Planning Commission Chair Hosea Mitchell had an update on Tuesday night and said he’s met with Henry along with Sanders, Planning Commissioner Lyle Solla-Yates, Vice Mayor Juandiego Wade, and Neighborhood Development Services Director James Freas. 

“That conversation was about something they’re doing in Richmond,” Mitchell said. “It’s called the affordable housing grant. At the end of the day, it’s nothing more than rebates and tax credits to incentivize the development of affordable housing.” 

Mitchell said Freas will be putting together some ideas for potential applications. Meanwhile, Dairy Market is in the area covered by the new Core Neighborhood Corridor Overlay District in the draft Development Code. That means the by-right heights of new buildings would be capped at three stories unless a special exception was granted. 

I recently published my summary of the City Council’s November 1, 2023 work session which featured discussion of the overlay district as well as another late-minute change to the draft zoning code. I hope to get to the November 8 and November 13, 2023 work sessions before the next one. 

“Our next work session is November 29 and that’s going to be a discussion on the zoning map itself and the public hearing for Council is scheduled for December 5 starting at 4 p.m.,” said Missy Creasy, the deputy director of Neighborhood Development Services. 

Creasy said Council has reserved December 13 as another meeting if they decide to hold off on a vote immediately after the public hearing. December 18 is also reserved. 

Before you go: The time to write and research of this article is covered by paid subscribers to Charlottesville Community Engagement. In fact, this particular installment comes from the November 16, 2023 edition.

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