Planning commish laments map creek miss

news-meadecreekEver heard of Meade Creek? Charlottesville Planning Commisioner and longtime Woolen Mills neighborhood resident Bill Emory writes on his blog that he's walked over it for 22 years, so he was a little stunned recently when examining a USGS map that didn't show the thing.


I talked to Mr. Fenwick about this and he gets it. We need to elect him and get these ordinances enforced, and have someone advocating for the neighborhoods, otherwise with all the development planned, the steep slope waivers will be granted routinely.

I'd also like to point out that the story above illustrates an all-too-common occurrence in the city: errors and editorial judgments are presented as facts. The city's own recent commissioned study, as well as a long established map, shows the creek behind the proposed Fontaine fire station to be a creek. A site visit proves that it's a creek. However, the city wants people to think it's a drainage channel, so that's what they push as fact, ignoring their own study.

How long are Council and the PC going to allow themselves to be snookered?

Right on hmmm, and willingness by our Council to give up city land and assets;
McIntire, Ragged Mt., and the reservoirs, to the County.

Until both the Planning Commission and Counil get a clear vision for what they want the city to be, this will keep happening. We can easily position ourselves to be a TRULY green city, one that values trees over asphalt. You can have lots of street trees and urban canopy, open streams, and keep critical slopes safe-- but that will probably involve making some developments a bit smaller, or siting them differently.

Unfortunately the PC and Council are under so much pressure from the developers and their puppets at NDS, it makes it harder for them to keep this as a priority. There's too much rubber-stamping of new developments going on, and too little hard analysis of what makes for a livable city.

"Little improvement for area streams" the headline in today's DP. What do you expect if the City wouldn't even enforce the steep slope ordinance that is on the books. Until we elect someone to City Council willing to enforce this regulation, sediment from these developments, leveling the hills of Charlottesville, will continue to flow into our streams and rivers. Guess Charlottesville also gets a failing grade when it comes to the environment.

Listen to this meeting and you will see that the only Planning Commissioner truly fighting to protect our streams and rivers and enforce the steep slope ordinance is Bill Emory. We need to support him and let Council know that granting waivers is unacceptable !

It is not enough to lament that planning commissioners have ties to developers. If they are the only ones who care enough to seek the office, then that's what you'll get. Now, if the city is choosing those folks over other qualified folks who have no conflict of interest, then there's something to complain about.

The same issue just came up with the stream behind the old China Seafood Hut on Fontaine. The lesson to be learned is that if the City or County want a developer to build next to it, it's no longer a stream, it's a "drainage channel." And a slope is no longer critical if you want to build something expensive on it.

Green city? Puh-leeze! NDS pays green lip service. Why are we always closing the barn door after the horses have escaped? Why are the citizens always having to run behind Tolbert & Co, trying to clean up and set the record straight?

We need to look at who is on the City Planning Commission and the parties they are beholden to--agree NDS is just that a development service.

Agree with Streamflow. There are too many Cville commissioners who are directly affiliated with developers, or who are flogging development projects themselves. Planning commissions across the country are getting clogged with developers and real estate agents, which is a serious conflict of interest.

Then there are the well-meaning but gullible commissioners who swallow the biased tripe being fed to them by the pro-development staff.

We are destroying streams in the City and County at an alarming rate. Listen to the Monday Planning Commission Meeting, and listen to Mr. Emory fight to preserve and save streams in our community. Not mapping these streams is a tool developers use to destroy them without any repercussions. I applaud the efforts Mr. Emory is making to bring these streams into the light of day, let's join him, and insist that the city enforce it's steep slope ordinance in every neighborhood and save the streams.