Category Archives: Property transactions

November 2022 property transactions: Many questions remain one year after Charlottesville’s new Comprehensive Plan is adopted

Welcome to another anecdotal look at what is happening in the real estate market in Charlottesville. I’m coming up on two years of producing this transaction by transaction account as a way of keeping a close eye on what’s happening within city limits. Up until this point I’ve not automated this process and the goal is not to identify trends or make any claims. 

But I am here to ask questions to inform future stories as I continue to try to understand a community that has been changing as long as I’ve lived in it. I have this sense there has been an acceleration in the past few years as some players in the market know the rules much, much better than those of who don’t even know we’re in the game. 

I’ve written about land use in Charlottesville for a while and I am humbled by all I do not know. I have a lot to learn and try to be careful to not overstep my knowledge. I do this work to make my living, but I am not and never will be a developer. 

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UVA Foundation acquires another Ivy Road property and 45 other October 2022 transactions

Welcome to another summary list of property transactions in Charlottesville. I have been doing these monthly lists for almost two years as a way of better understanding the city I’ve been documenting for a long while now. I still have a lot to learn.

I started this after I wrote a series of article about a rezoning request on Booker Street in the city’s Rose Hill neighborhood that required research into land use records. I kept it up, and thought this was work people might be interested in. 

Since resuming writing about land use applications and policy in 2020, one of the main stories has been the adoption of a Comprehensive Plan update which resulted in a new document adopted in November 2021. The central theme of the update is to increase the amount of residential units across the entire city, especially in single-family neighborhoods. You can find all of my stories on this in the Land Use – Charlottesville section of Information Charlottesville.

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Jefferson Scholars buys property slated for 64 apartments near UVA

An entity associated with the Jefferson Scholars Foundation has spent $4.3 million to buy six properties near Scott Stadium that had been planned for construction of a 64 unit apartment complex on 1.59 acres. 

Maury Holdings LLC paid 253.8 percent over the 2022 assessment to buy the properties, five of which are undeveloped. A historic structure built in 1911 is on the fifth. 

The Jefferson Scholars Foundation is located across the street about a tenth of the mile from the site. Directly across Maury Avenue from this site is the Cavalier Court Apartment complex that was built in 1963. 

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September 2022 property transactions: Several commercial buildings change hands

This is definitely a much slower month, anecdotally speaking. At some point, I am hoping something will click and I’ll be able to present the data in ways that can more clearly show trends. But that’s not the point of this monthly newsletter on property transactions in the city of Charlottesville.

The point is for me as a person who lives here and a longtime journalist to go through and know who is purchasing what properties. I only identify purchasers or sellers if they are corporate entities. I am not trying to point out patterns. I just find this to be a useful exercise that helps me better understand the city where I live and a beat for which people pay me to cover. 

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August 2022 Charlottesville Property Transactions: CRHA misses out on one pair of duplexes, but acquires another on Coleman Street; Vacant building on West Main Street sells for $1.3 million

The rewrite of the zoning ordinance is underway with sometimes heated conversations happening all over Charlottesville. This monthly summary of property transactions in the city is my way of checking out what’s happening as the rules of development change. There have been many claims that speak with certainty about what might happen, but I am a professional skeptic and I will continue this anecdotal look as long as I am able to do so. 

This time around I am including the total acreage for each parcel as well as the current Future Land Use Map designation. It’s possible the specifics for each parcel will change but the map is an adopted part of a Comprehensive Plan that assumes every parcel will have more development rights. The way those new development rights may be realized will depend on the size and shape of the plot. That’s where the zoning rewrite comes in. 

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Key parcel on Cherry Avenue sells for $3.5 million

There’s a new owner for a property in Fifeville that contains a former grocery store. Woodard Properties has paid $3.5 million for five properties including 501 Cherry Avenue across from Tonsler Park. 

The combined properties total 1.361 acres and have a combined 2022 assessment of $1.568 million. They are within the jurisdiction of the city’s Cherry Avenue Small Area Plan, which notes the lack of a grocery store where residents can buy fresh produce. For many years, the Estes IGA store was an anchor for the community.

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July 2022 property transactions in Charlottesville: Part of Seminole Square Shopping Center changes hands; Linden Avenue condo building has new owner; High price record set on Prospect Avenue

This is the 19th month that I’ve written up a summary of property transactions in Charlottesville and shared it with the public as part of my work covering land use issues in the greater community. I hope you’ll find this bit of my research informative and useful.

I started this newsletter over two years ago as a way to get information out about the details of what’s happening in an area that continues to grow. There are a lot of moving parts in this community, and I’ve spent a lot of my career trying to keep track of as much as I can.

This September marks the 20th anniversary of my arrival in the Charlottesville area, as well as the 30th anniversary of my introduction to journalism. Somehow while a student at Virginia Tech, I decided to try my hand at making a career out of reporting and to this day I’m trying my best to make a go of it. 

I am grateful to the hundreds of people who have opted to help support my work with a paid subscription to this newsletter or through Patreon support. In exchange, I do my best to stay up to date on as much as I can so that readers and listeners can also be informed. 

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June 2022 property transactions: Over a hundred summaries of real estate activity in a market that continues to rise in value

For the transactions, go straight to the middle. Let’s start with some backstory about the land use policy changes that are currently underway.

This summer, Charlottesville community members are encouraged to participate in the third act of the Cville Plans Together initiative. The city and the consultants have published the Zoning Diagnostic and Approach Report which describes how the ordinance will be changed to make it easier for developers to develop more units. 

“This plan acknowledges the negative legacies planning and zoning have had and how they have been used to divide, exclude, and diminish communities of color and historically marginalized communities,” Neighborhood Development Services Director James Freas writes in an introduction to the report. “Frequently, the tools of planning and zoning were used to either advance-large scale change or prevent it entirely.” 

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Charlottesville Board of Equalization declined all but one assessment appeals

It has now been seven weeks and two day since the Charlottesville Board of Equalization met on May 17 to hear appeals from property owners of their 2022 real estate tax assessments. Eleven were scheduled but one withdrew. The Board affirmed the property assessments in all ten of the cases that were heard. (read the minutes)

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May 2022 Real Estate Transactions in Charlottesville

Another month, another summary of property transactions in Charlottesville. I’ve written about land use issues in the city and Albemarle County for many years, and this is an exercise I began doing toward the end of my time at Charlottesville Tomorrow. I wanted to better understand the finances involved with the business of land development as the Comprehensive Plan review got underway in early 2017.

Real estate is complicated, and now that I ‘m an independent journalist, I want to broaden my knowledge. The way I’ve done that for the past 17 months has been to go transaction by transaction. Each of these is an anecdote, but I’m finding it very interesting to learn what I can and share it with you.

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