With the proposed pedestrian mall in downtown Crozet, the question is – Can Crozet support Three business/residential/mixed use centers?
Crozet has become much more self-sufficient over the past five years – adding two gyms, another grocery store, two coffee shops, a bookstore … but it’s lacking substantial employers. For the right price, this could provide the last leg of the three-legged stool, the first two being retail and housing. How many small businesses would (re)locate to Crozet if this mall comes to fruition?
Downtown Crozet needs to do something to combat the challenges put forth by:
– The 250 West Corridor – Anytime Fitness, Harris Teeter, medical and dental offices, restaurants, office space … residential housing …
– Old Trail Village – ACAC Fitness, Trailside Coffee, restaurants, Augusta Medical facility, Advanced Center for Physical Therapy (awesome place – they helped me rehab my ankle after a soccer injury) … residential housing in Old Trail Village.
Is the answer a pedestrian mall Ã¡ la Charlottesville’s Downtown Mall?
– Housing would probably increase in value – houses that are close to stuff are more valuable. (Disclosure: I live within walking distance of the proposed site).
– Traffic would increase.
– What kinds of businesses, realistically, would want to locate here? R & D? Really?
This could be a big win for downtown Crozet and Albemarle County.
A group that oversees planning in Crozet has endorsed a new concept to redevelop a lumber yard on the Square into a walkable and livable community similar to Charlottesville’s Downtown Mall.
â€¨â€¨â€œWe need a pedestrian mall in Crozet,â€ said Mike Marshall, chairman of the Crozet Community Advisory Council. â€œThis comes into Crozet’s life at a very fortunate time for us.â€
â€¨â€¨The CCAC voted Thursday to recommend rezoning the 14.74-acre J. Bruce Barnes Lumber Yard and CSX railroad property to allow for future development as part of the Crozet Master Plan.
â€œIf you imagine Charlottesville’s Downtown Mall, it’s a complete mixture of uses,â€ said Katurah Roell, president of R.E. Lee Construction and a representative of the lumber yard. â€œThis is a very small scale, a version of that, but what it does create is the ability to have a gathering space and some place where people love to go [in] Crozet.â€
â€¨â€¨Under this concept, the lumber yard would be redeveloped into a space that would be open to a mixture of uses. The concept provides 100,000 square feet of light industrial building space and would account for almost one-fifth of development for light industrial use in the Master Plan, according to Roell.
â€¨â€¨â€œFrom [research and development] business to office space, restaurants, retail [and] some housing,â€ Roell said, â€œit will provide a variety of opportunities for people to locate their businesses, live, work, play and entertain each other.â€
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As an aside – what would the community do without Charlottesville Tomorrow? The comprehensive transparency they provide is unparalleled. I just donated a little bit of money to them; if you find what they do valuable, consider giving them a little bit as well.