Study traffic and safety impacts of Greenleaf Center at 1147 Rose Hill Drive
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Residents of the Kellytown, Rugby Hills, and Rose Hill neighborhoods are concerned about the traffic and safety issues associated with the three-story, 34,000-square-foot Greenleaf Center scheduled to be built at 1147 Rose Hill Drive. The Center is proposed to include 53 parking spots and an entrance/exit onto residential Amherst Street.
The area where Greenleaf Center is to be built is located within a B-1 business district. Per the Code of the City of Charlottesville, the “B-1 business district is established to provide for service-type businesses and office uses of a limited size, which are open primarily during daytime hours. The intent of the B-1 regulations is to provide a transitional district between residential areas and other commercial areas of the city. The uses permitted within this district are those which will have only minimal traffic impacts, and only minimal noise, odors, smoke, fumes, fire or explosion hazards, lighting glare, heat or vibration.”1
We feel strongly that the Greenleaf Center—and specifically the entrance/exit onto Amherst Street—will have more than “minimal traffic impacts” and are petitioning the Charlottesville City Council to request a traffic study prior to construction. We ask that the city review existing traffic patterns and consider how they will be affected by the additional traffic the Center will generate. The study should be conducted during the city school year at morning and evening peak hours.
Our concerns include:
Safety implications of a second business entrance/exit onto residential Amherst Street. Neighborhood residents already regularly negotiate the congestion caused by vehicles belonging to employees and customers of the Real Property building across Amherst from where Greenleaf Center is to be built. These vehicles take up most of the parking at the Amherst entry block, impede visibility entering and exiting Amherst, and regularly drive through and do U turns in our neighborhood streets. Adding a new set of business drivers to our residential street will increase these problems, and make it even harder to enter from and exit onto the highly congested Rose Hill Drive, particularly during peak traffic hours. Drivers exiting Greenleaf Center onto Amherst will find their visibility compromised by parked cars and will encounter traffic quickly turning toward them from both directions of Rose Hill. Of additional concern are the impacts of higher business traffic volume on the school and city bus stops in close proximity to this proposed entrance/exit, which are currently unprotected by lights, crossing guards, or crosswalks.
Impact of additional traffic generated by employees and customers of Greenleaf Center on our established, quiet, residential neighborhood. Residents wish to retain the right to fully and safely enjoy their community--where families walk to and from schools and city parks, children play on scooters and bikes, teenagers learn to drive, and elderly neighbors walk and drive their neighborhood streets.
In addition to signing this petition, we are asking neighborhood residents to voice concerns directly to City Council by letter/email and in person at the July 17th City Council meeting. Contact information for City Council members and information about how to request to speak at the meeting can be found here.
For more background information about Greenleaf Center, please read the following articles:
1. Code of the City of Charlottesville, Ch. 34, Zoning, Art. 4, Commercial Districts, Div. 1, Generally, Sec 34.440, Purpose https://library.municode.com/va/charlottesville/codes/code_of_ordinances?nodeId=CO_CH34ZO_ARTIVCODI_DIV1GE_S34-440PU
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