Home Update: Stonewall Drive rezoning application withdrawn in Waynesboro
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Update: Stonewall Drive rezoning application withdrawn in Waynesboro

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Update: Friday, 9:01 a.m. The public hearing for a rezoning of 0 Stonewall Drive will be removed from the agenda for the Monday, May 9 meeting of Waynesboro City Council. The applicant has withdrawn the request for a rezoning of the site.

 

First report: Thursday, 5:44 p.m. A residential rezoning request that met with disapproval from the Waynesboro Planning Commission last month is still getting a push from city leaders.

The request, for an 18-acre property on Stonewall Drive, would rezone 0 Stonewall Drive from RS-12 (single-family residential, large lot) to RS-7 (single-family residential, small lot). Both are classified as low-density residential districts, but RS-7 permits a smaller minimum lot size of 7,000 square feet, while RS-12 requires 12,000 square feet per lot.

The applicant, Wells Enterprises Construction, agent for Valley Covenant Church of God, has indicated the intention to subdivide the property into approximately 61 lots for single-family residences.

A subdivision application has not yet been submitted by the applicant, according to a staff report presented to Waynesboro City Council on Thursday.

If the property is ultimately rezoned, Wells Enterprises Construction could proceed with development plans as it sees fit so long as it would meet the standards in city code for by-right development.

The Waynesboro Planning Commission voted 4-1 last month to recommend the rezoning request be denied, but the city staff is recommending that the rezoning be approved.

City Council will hold a public hearing on the rezoning request at its meeting on Monday, May 9, which begins at 7 p.m.

The meeting agenda does not list a separate item for the introduction of an ordinance to codify the rezoning request. A draft of a proposed ordinance was included in the meeting agenda packet for City Council members to review ahead of the Monday meeting.

The plot of land in question is located near Pratt’s Run, adjacent to the Silver Creek subdivision, and is surrounded by a number of unfinished older subdivisions. Several streets dead end at the property, including Summercrest Avenue, Carman Avenue, Robert E. Lee Avenue, and Stonewall Jackson Road.

The property is located behind homes on Belvue Road from Summercrest Avenue to Vedette Avenue, and behind homes on Sumter Road from Robert E. Lee Avenue to Davis Road and then from Davis Road to its dead end near Stonewall Jackson Road.

The property is in a low-lying area, and the applicant would be required to follow state guidelines for stormwater management, including handling all excess quantity and nutrient load generated by developing the site.

Neighboring residents spoke out at the Planning Commission meeting in April to say that they are already dealing with flooding and stormwater issues in the area, and worry that the possibility of additional dense development nearby could exacerbate those problems.

It is worth noting here that because the applicant has not begun designing a subdivision for construction, there is no detailed information on the size of the stormwater infrastructure needed to comply with state regulations.

The concept plan shows areas reserved for stormwater management based on generic calculations for a subdivision of this size.

The applicant submitted a traffic analysis as part of the application package for a denser development than what the applicant is now asking for. The analysis was submitted to VDOT’s Local Assistance division for review and input. VDOT and staff determined that the traffic generated by this development would have minimal impact on the surrounding neighborhood.

Neighbors also raised issue with the impact of a 61-lot subdivision in the area on existing traffic flows.

Story by Chris Graham

Chris Graham

Chris Graham

Chris Graham is the founder and editor of Augusta Free Press. A 1994 alum of the University of Virginia, Chris is the author and co-author of seven books, including Poverty of Imagination, a memoir published in 2019, and Team of Destiny: Inside Virginia Basketball’s Run to the 2019 National Championship, and The Worst Wrestling Pay-Per-View Ever, published in 2018. For his commentaries on news, sports and politics, go to his YouTube page, or subscribe to his Street Knowledge podcast. Email Chris at [email protected].

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