Planning Commission Annual Report August 9, 2009

Press Enter to show all options, press Tab go to next option







To: Planning Commissioners, City Councilors

From: Jim Tolbert, Secretary of the Charlottesville Planning Commission

Date: August 10, 2009

Re: City of Charlottesville Planning Commission Annual Report


The following report outlines and highlights the activities of the City of Charlottesville’s Planning Commission between July 2008 and June 2009. The Planning Commission (PC) was established pursuant to the provisions of Chapter 22, Title 15.2 of the Code of Virginia and is also addressed in Chapter 34 of the City Code. This board, which consists of seven full time members that each serve a staggered four year term and one ex officio member, has the primary function of promoting the orderly development of the City in an advisory capacity to the governing body. Each member is appointed by City Council and must be a resident of the City of Charlottesville. The University of Virginia Architect serves as the ex officio member.

The PC holds one regular meeting on the second Tuesday of each month and one regular work session on the fourth Tuesday of each month. The Commission also holds a pre-meeting prior to each regular meeting to streamline discussion in an attempt to shorten the regular meetings by clarifying questions in advance.

Over the past year the PC held forty-six public hearings, reviewed seven site plans, two off street parking waivers, and one slope waiver application. In addition, the PC in its role as Entrance Corridor Review Board, reviewed six requests for certificates of appropriateness. Attached is a brief summary of the cases and their outcome.

The majority of work sessions held during this time period focused on the Proffer Policy and Commission Priorities. In addition, the PC reviewed affordable housing issues, Single Room Occupancies and Land Use study areas outlined in the Comprehensive Plan.

Commission Members:

Jason Pearson, Chair

Michael Farruggio, Vice Chair

William Emory (beginning September 2008)

Genevieve Keller

Cheri Lewis

Hosea Mitchell (through August 2008)

Michael Osteen

Dan Rosensweig

David Neuman - Ex officio, Non voting

Secretary: James Tolbert

On September 1, 2008 William Emory was appointed to replace the open position left by Hosea Mitchell. Cheri Lewis and Michael Farruggio will be rotating off the Commission in August 2009. All Commissioners, including Mr. Emory, have completed or are currently working on the Planning Commissioner State Certification program.

Planning Commission Application Summary

(July 08- June 09)

The attached charts provide an overview of the actions taken between July 2008 and June 2009.

Application Type

# of different applications reviewed

Planned Unit Developments (PUD)


Slope Waiver


Off Street Parking Waiver


Entrance Corridor


Site Plans




Ordinance Amendments


Special Use Permits


Rezoning (excluding PUD)


Zoning Initiation


Planning Commission Committee Assignments

Commissioners serve on a number of boards and commissions as a representative of the Planning Commission. Members are assigned to these groups and provide reports to the full commission at regular meetings. The assignments for this time period are attached. It is anticipated that assignments will change with the new membership in September 2009.

Planning Commission Work Sessions

The Commission is tasked with many topics that can not be addressed in the context of formal meetings. Work sessions are held on a variety of topics to discuss the details prior to formal proposals consideration for recommendation. Work sessions are scheduled for the 4th Tuesday of each month. Special work sessions are held from time to time. Here is information on work sessions held between July 2008 and June 2009.

Work Session Date

General topics for discussion

August 26, 2008

Proffer Policy, Commission Priorities

September 23, 2008

Proffer Policy, Commission Priorities

October 28, 2008

Development Review Process Changes and Joint City County Discussion – Affordable Housing

November 25, 2008

Capital Improvement Program and Proffer Policy

January 27, 2009

Planning Commission Priority Project Identification

February 24, 2009

Priority Project Discussion

March 24, 2009

Land Use Discussion

April 28, 2009

Presentation on Single Room Occupancy Units

May 26, 2009

Update on Priority projects and Discussion on Parking Exempt Zone

June 23, 2009

Capital Improvement Program

The Commission participated in a facilitated exercise to establish which priorities they wanted to focus on in the short term. They chose to focus on increasing tree canopy, residential density and ongoing work of alignment of the code with the Comprehensive Plan. They also asked that staff continue research on the Rivanna River Corridor in preparation for a future Comprehensive Plan review. Staff established committees for the tree canopy and density initiatives to organize these issues and bring forward various initiatives. The density committee has spend most of their time working on the regulations for accessory dwelling units with action from Council scheduled to occur in August 2009. The tree canopy committee work is underway in tandem with Parks and Recreation on a study to analyze the amount of canopy and to look at initiatives to increase and preserve urban tree canopy.