Crutchfield proposes slimmer Parkway interchange

news-warnerCrutchfield, with U.S. Senator Mark Warner.

The entrepreneur who blasted the controversial Nature Conservancy-touted reservoir/uphill pipeline water plan as Charlottesville's own "bridge to nowhere" is now employing that same terminology on the Meadowcreek Parkway interchange. Bill Crutchfield, who founded the chain of electronics stores bearing his name, has penned an essay in the Daily Progress to suggest that all sides would benefit from paring down the Parkway's planned $30 million interchange with the U.S. 250 Bypass and dividing the savings among the feds and the localities.

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Joe Smith--

My understanding is that the county's portion of the road is closed because the whole project isn't completed (the whole project including the city's portion of the interchange). It is also my understanding that the county's portion will remain closed until the city finishes their portion.

For more information on the interchange itself, check out this website:

It has the plans for the new interchange, as well as news and updates. Hope that helps!

Loise, This road will increase congestion and lengthen travel times in most of the areas it's intended to relieve. More lanes equals more drivers trying to zoom in from further away, trying to run more and longer errands. And the number of actual working commuters has fallen and should continue to fall.

I think the sun is geting to this guys dome. What does he know about uban planing ? Is he an engineer , a constuction manager ?Nope just another rich guy from charlottesville forcing his will on the average Joe in this town.JUST KEEP SELLING CHEEP ELECTRONIC AND LET THE PEOPLE WHO ARE IN THE KNOW DO THE PLANNING.

HEY! "idontknowanythingjustaskmywife- Is he an engineer , a constuction manager ?"


What do they know?

He offers the products, customers buy them- if they are "CHEEP", it is not his fault.............

I like Stew's ideas.

the parkway should cut across the top of the park towards the high school, cross the tracks, run beside the tracks (behind the little league and softball outfields - yes, there's room) and connect to the mostly already build cloverleaf at rugby ave/mcintire park. the y should go to the triangle of land created off melbourne by the HS, and the cloverleaf should be completed by adding a single north bound exit off the west bound bypass lane. this would help increase the viability of the commercial zoned areas along rose hill and preston, as well as create more retail nodes so we truly can become a viable pedestrian city. the city of charlottesville should not be encouraging cutting through the city to reach 29n shopping. it will be detrimental to the city. also, they should build a parking garage next to catec and a free shuttle to the downtown mall (loop via rose hill and mcintire rd.)from catec parking garage. you can even make it a grass roofed affair with athletic fields on top if there's money/need. because of the terrain it could be built into the bank and not loom over catec or even interfere much with sightlines/views. the current location and design is a waste. this is the way to "do it right" and build it so it will be useful and helpful going forward.

Stew has some great ideas. I would love to know the full story behind why the county rushed to build the Catec-melbourne connector. Remonds me of the week they tried to connect BestBuy to the bypass off ramp.

Build the thing ONE TIME and maintain it. Population growth and use of this new road will not decrease over the next 20 years.

If some rich guy proposes something, it MUST be a good idea!

Actually, Crutchfield's analysis -- that Rio Road/Park Street carries mostly local traffic, so there won't be many more cars entering the McIntire/250 intersection so we don't need an overpass -- makes a point that I am confident that Crutchfield doesn't intend to make. That is that the Meadowcreek Parkway should not have been built in the first place.

The fact is that Crutchfield's analysis ignores all of the traffic counts and traffic studies that have been done over the past 30+ years. Traffic studies are not arcane science -- we have known how to do them for many years, and there is not a "liberal" or a "conservative" way to count cars. And all of the studies say that the traffic on the Meadowcreek Parkway will be great enough on the first day that it opens that the intersection will grade out as an "F." And it will only get worse. If the overpass is built, it will grade out at a "C."

I am not a great fan of the Meadowcreek Parkway, particularly when it is the only road built (it was first proposed in 1974 as a part of a network that would have included a Western Bypass). But now that it is built such that it will end at Melbourne Road, I think that the City has no choice but to go ahead and finish it and do it right and build it in a way that it will work and not fail.

can someone tell us what the Actual plan is.

And the start date or compleation date

Also why was the road opened and then closed.



Although the parkway is a much needed addition to the areas transportation needs it will just become another 2 lane road that we have far too many of now to handle current and future traffic needs. As I said during the comment stage of this 50 year debate the parkway needs to be big enough to handle todays traffic which it will not effectively do and it should be 4 lanes with McIntire Rd and the 2 lane section of Ridge widened to 4 lanes so that these bottlenecks are gone and traffic can move steadily in and out of the city from 64 to 29 north at Rio Rd.
The city says it doesn't want to be a conduit for county traffic and that is the wrong attitude as traffic coming into the city via the parkway or any other entrance corridor is traffic bringing people into work, to visit and shop which is good for the city and evidently they can't see that. Less is not always better, we need more in terms of transportation upgrades and this community , the city and the county need to see things in a manner that helps all of our citizens and work together to solve these issues and realize that we all are affected by what happens and its just not a city or county problem but a community problem.
And why is it that it seems those with the most money and the biggeest mouth always seem to get their way and throw a wrench into every issue that arises?

Who gives a fark what Georgie Crutchfield thinks?

Go back to hawking overpriced electronics, curly.


"The city says it doesn’t want to be a conduit for county traffic and that is the wrong attitude as traffic coming into the city via the parkway or any other entrance corridor is traffic bringing people into work, to visit and shop which is good for the city and evidently they can’t see that."

I agree with the City. There needs to be a bypass. Why should a City resident be held hostage to the County sprawl strip mall development on 29 if they need to get out of the North of town, yet pay for roads that are at the convenience of the City. Folks who work in the City can live in the City. I moved to the Country for a reason.


all the cities (or neighborhoods in cities) with the best quality of life (and which are most attractive to visitors) have grid street systems which create inviting street life and vibrant communities. cities like miami and LA which are bisected by freeways have deserted streets and require a car for a functional life. bisecting the city with a four lane road would be a mistake for charlottesville, certainly as long as the city/county division remains, and I think even if that were removed, would negatively effect the quality of life in the city and negatively impact the city's attempts to move out of the past and into a less auto-centric future. fewer people on the sidewalks means less business in the city and more for places on the big highway surrounded by asphalt aprons with easy parking. less inviting urban neighborhoods means less attraction for families and professionals who will end up in the county contributing to sprawl, which means less density and fewer taxes. which means fewer, seedier, public amenities. and on and on. to sum up: big four lane road bisecting charlottesville = bad idea.

It amazes me that such a successful businessman thinks the primary use of Rio Road is for access to Dunlora subdidvison. Surely that must have been tongue-in-cheek. How does he think customers from the south and east of downtown get to/from his store on Route 29 North? His thinking on this issue is as misguided as his initial thinking on the water supply plan(he seems to have hushed on that).
Why did the Daily Progress give his opinion such high regard as to publish it as an op/ed rather than just a letter to the ed?