Home City of Charlottesville, Albemarle County agree on use of Ragged Mountain Natural Area trails
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City of Charlottesville, Albemarle County agree on use of Ragged Mountain Natural Area trails

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(© Татьяна Макарова – Generated with AI –stock.adobe.com)

A lawsuit between Albemarle County and the City of Charlottesville has come to a close after the two jurisdictions resolved an issue related to the recreational use of Ragged Mountain Natural Area.

The Ragged Mountain Natural Area is the land surrounding the Ragged Mountain Reservoir which is owned by the City of Charlottesville but physically located in Albemarle County.

Albemarle County had an ordinance in place prohibiting biking or horseback riding adjacent to county drinking water reservoirs. However, Charlottesville City Council approved an ordinance in 2016 allowing biking and limited horseback riding at the RMNA.

A lawsuit sought to resolve the jurisdictional authority between the two localities. An appeal was pending in the Albemarle County v. City of Charlottesville lawsuit.

The county and city have agreed to limit the RMNA trails to pedestrian use only.

The county will post signage to raise awareness of the change. The county will also be responsible for any enforcement actions at the RMNA.

“We are pleased to have settled the appeal with the City of Charlottesville on the matter of jurisdictional authority at the Ragged Mountain Natural Area,” said Jim Andrews, Albemarle County Board of Supervisors chair. “This has been the central issue in the case for the county.”

While bikes and horses will no longer be allowed on the RMNA trails, the City of Charlottesville has acquired additional land where biking and other recreation will be allowed. The Heyward Community Forest land is adjacent to the RMNA and includes four miles of trails located off Reservoir Road.

“We are happy to bring this matter to a close, and it’s our collective desire to provide safe, attractive recreation to our community,” said Juandiego Wade, Charlottesville Mayor.

Crystal Graham

Crystal Graham

Crystal Abbe Graham is the regional editor of Augusta Free Press. A 1999 graduate of Virginia Tech, she has worked for nearly 25 years as a reporter and editor for several Virginia publications, written a book, and garnered more than a dozen Virginia Press Association awards for writing and graphic design. She was the co-host of "Viewpoints," a weekly TV news show, and co-host of Virginia Tonight, a nightly TV news show. Her work on "Virginia Tonight" earned her a national Telly award for excellence in television.

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