Category Archives: Housing

Albemarle Supervisors approve nearly $3.3M in additional funding for projects at Southwood

There’s a lot of demand for funding for housing projects across the community, and Albemarle County set aside some of its share of the American Rescue Plan Act to provide support to nonprofit agencies. The county asked those entities to apply for funding for affordable housing projects last gal

“During the [Agency Budget Review Team] and [American Rescue Plan Act] processes we received requests for more than $20 million in funding support,” said Stacy Pethia, Albemarle’s Housing Policy Manager.

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Council briefed on potential usage of ARPA funds 

Charlottesville has now received all of the $19.6 million in funding it will receive from the federal government as part of the American Rescue Plan Act fund. Interim City Manager Michael C. Rogers gave Council an update at their meeting on July 18.

“It’s been a big help for local government in terms of recovery from the impact of the pandemic,” Rogers said.

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Regional Housing Partnership endorses Piedmont Housing Alliance’s application to build affordable housing at two UVA sites

The Central Virginia Regional Housing Partnership is a function of the Thomas Jefferson Planning District Commission and consists of elected officials, representatives from nonprofits, and developers. Last year they developed the Planning for Affordability report intended to suggest strategies for each of the six localities to create more below-market housing opportunities. (read that plan)

On Wednesday, the group convened for one purpose. For background, the University of Virginia and its real estate foundation are offering land through a ground lease at three sites in the community for a partner to construct affordable housing. They issued a request for qualifications in June to develop sites on Fontaine Avenue and Wertland Street. (agenda packet)

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Albemarle and LAJC have teamed up to prevent evictions

Albemarle County and the Legal Aid Justice Center helped prevent 158 evictions in a pilot program that ran from December to this May. Albemarle County sent out a press release this morning announcing the results. 

“Many rent-relief programs are phasing out, yet there remain many Albemarle families still deeply affected by the COVID-19 pandemic,” Supervisor Chair Donna Price is quoted in the release. “Low-income households have not recovered as quickly, and programs such as this provide additional stability for households continuing to face financial hardships, using federal relief dollars to fund legal services and to provide wrap-around support.”

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Virginia Housing does not recommend funding for two CRHA projects

The Charlottesville Redevelopment and Housing Authority has appeared to have fallen short in its attempt to get financing for two planned redevelopment projects in a current funding cycle. 

Virginia Housing, the entity that authorizes low-income housing tax credits in Virginia, has issued its final rankings for this year pending approval by their Board of Commissioners later this month.  

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Council action on seven-story building on Jefferson Park Avenue delayed

Charlottesville City Council had been expected to consider a special use permit for a seven-story building on Jefferson Park Avenue  at their meeting last night, but the item was delayed until a further meeting. The Planning Commission voted 4-3 on May 10 to recommend approval, with some members expressing concerns about the massing and scale of the project. Mayor Lloyd Snook addressed the delay. 

“There were a number of issues raised at the Planning Commission and the approval that the Planning Commission gave was in some ways was conditioned upon ‘you all go figure ways to moderate this, to mitigate some of the harmful effects of the way it was appearing to be so massive and so on,” Snook said. 

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Council approves action plan for federal HOME and CDBG funds

City Council has approved an action plan for federal funding from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development for the next fiscal year. Staff had suggested making some changes to the process in order to meet HUD’s guidelines, but some groups pushed back on some of those proposals. (read the staff report)

“Staff will no longer request that the task force be changed to staff advisory,” said Deputy City Manager Sam Sanders. “Instead we’re going to focus on identifying income eligible participants to ensure that the diverse voice is always available.” 

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Albemarle Supervisors discuss incentives for housing plan

The Albemarle County Board of Supervisors continued a conversation earlier this month about how to incentivize developers to build units to be sold below market value. The six-member Board last discussed the matter in February and pushed back on the idea of creating an overlay district in the county’s zoning ordinance. (previous coverage)

“The main question today that we would like some feedback on after listening to the information that’s provided is [whether] an affordable dwelling unit program something the Board would be interested in and staff reviewing?” asked Stacy Pethia, the county’s Housing Policy Manager. (view her presentation)

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Divided Planning Commission approves seven-story building on Jefferson Park Avenue 

A divided Charlottesville Planning Commission voted 4-3 on May 10 to recommend that City Council approve a special use permit for additional height and density for a seven-story U-shaped building at 2005 Jefferson Park Avenue.  They’ve also recommended reducing parking requirements by 22 percent over what would otherwise be required.

“The [special use permit] is required to accommodate a development being proposed for 119-units of multifamily dwellings within one building with underground parking,” said city planner Matt Alfele. 

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Charlottesville zoning info slightly delayed 

Work on the next phase of the rewriting of Charlottesville’s zoning ordinance continues, but it’s slightly delayed. Neighborhood Development Services Director James Freas told the Planning Commission Tuesday that a “diagnostic and approach” report was not ready in time for their May meeting, but he hopes it will be out by the end of this month. (previous coverage)

“As this point we are anticipating that the joint meeting between the Council and the Planning Commission to eventually make a decision on moving forward with that report, we’re projecting that happening in September at this point in time,” Freas said. 

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