The Martha Jefferson neighborhood finally has an idea as to how it will be redeveloped. That they have selected so many local firms qualifies as a significant “good thing” for the Charlottesville community.
Let’s hope that their “120-day negotiation period” is fruitful and successful.
I’m thinking that this will be a tremendous boon to the Charlottesville community – particularly if they are able to install a grocery store (Trader Joe‘s anyone)?
Part of the trick is finding a compatible development partner. â€œA lot of it comes back to characterâ€”people who will understand our unique community,â€ Bowers says. â€œObviously it would be fantastic if local groups came up and got in the mix when we’re ready to consider proposals, but I think we’ll also get some attention from outside the city as well. Charlottesville’s on the map, it’s kind of undeniable at this point.â€
And it looks like Martha Jefferson have found the partners they have been looking for:
Crosland LLC has won exclusive negotiating rights to lead the redevelopment of Martha Jefferson Hospital‘s 14 acres of property in downtown Charlottesville, which includes the current hospital campus.
A nationwide search drew interest from 25 groups and formal responses from 11 development teams, followed by a head-to-head competition involving four finalists. Crosland was then selected by the hospital board as its partner of choice to preserve the hospital’s legacy and create a significant master-planned development.
“This is a once-in-a-generation opportunity for downtown Charlottesville,” said hospital spokesman Steve Bowers. “We’ve taken a very patient approach to finding the right partner who understood our vision, as well as the desires of the city and the surrounding neighborhood. Crosland listened to the needs of all those groups and has previewed concepts that are innovative yet sensitive to the historic environment.”
The team led by Crosland includes the firm’s long-time development partner, Celebration Associates, and Insite Properties as the core development group. Key consultants include Urban Design Associates, with offices in Pittsburgh and Charlottesville, and Cooper, Robertson & Partners of New York (urban planning and architecture); Charlottesville-based Nelson Byrd Woltz (landscape architecture); Patton Harris Rust & Associates of Chantilly, Va. (engineering) and Staunton, Va.-based Frazier Associates (historic preservation).
What do you think? With the economy where it is, this may be the perfect time to move forward with this plan. Slow, steady, methodical … and hopefully perfect.