NO to the Matoaca MegaSite
Bermuda Advocates for Responsible Development (BARD)
Chesterfield Citizens United has formed!
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2018 Comprehensive Plan Information
From the Planning Department: Visit www.chesterfield.gov/compplanupdate to view the revised Plan, along with instructions on how to email us your thoughts. This input opportunity is open through November 12. We will also be placing paper copies of the draft plan in each of the county’s libraries this week.
Review the Comprehensive Plan Updates
From the county's own website:
This document includes a summary of all changes to the 2012 Comprehensive Plan as well as public comments to date per chapter.
Please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org to share your thoughts and comments regarding the draft Comprehensive Plan
We also welcome the opportunity to speak to your organization or community group. If you would like us to present to your group, contact Steve Haasch at email@example.com or 804-796-7192.
BARD POSITION STATEMENT ON CHESTERFIELD COUNTY LAND AND ROAD DEVELOPMENT
The Chesterfield Economic Development Authority (CEDA) has withdrawn its application to rezone the Shoosmith/Hotz properties, aka the Matoaca Megasite. Many citizens of the Bermuda District made it clear that they do not want an industrial site in this residential area. The high level of citizen engagement revealed during the megasite community awareness process demonstrates clearly that the County must involve citizens in economic development discussions.
1. The County should NOT purchase these properties as a speculative venture. If what county officials say is true that the megasite land has “significant development pressure on it,” then the free market should be allowed to do its work.
2. Industrial development should be pursued by the County in the existing zones, where, according to the Chesterfield Economic Development Department’s (EDD) website, there are over 7,600 acres of property available for Industrial use, complete with incentives from the County for development. A portion of the economic benefit realized from attracting such development should be dedicated to revitalization in areas where such funding has long been lacking.
3. The County should not modify the existing I-2 or I-3 zoning ordinances or the Comprehensive Plan chapter related to land use without additional community input and agreement relating to any proposed changes. To re-state: Many citizens are opposed to industrial zoning adjacent to residential areas.
4. If construction of the East-West Freeway is still under consideration, it should not be pursued without meaningful citizen input, as to feasibility and route.
a. Additional community meetings are necessary.
b. Relocation of Harrowgate Elementary School should be put on hold until the E-W Freeway issue is resolved.
c. The Harrowgate Road community would also require resolution of its lost park if the road goes through where planned.
5. The Chesterfield EDA should be reviewed by an independent body to explore CEDA’s lack of transparency and accountability. Any internal or Board of Supervisors investigation would be meaningless without citizen involvement. BARD is not convinced that the BOS serves as an effective check on CEDA.
6. To elevate CEDA’s transparency, we propose the following as well:
a. CEDA’s monthly meeting minutes should provide more comprehensive detail and be published online in a timely manner.
b. CEDA should publish a public strategic plan that demonstrates, in part, that it is committed to operations that are effective and efficient. Its commitment to transparent business and risk analyses for future projects should also be highlighted.
c. CEDA should publish a public marketing plan that clearly identifies potential industries that are a good fit for the County.
d. Citizens deserve a detailed accounting for each of CEDA’s large projects such as Meadowville, Stonebridge, and other industrial sites in build-out phase.
7. The County must involve citizens in broad-based and meaningful discussions about placement of industrial zoning across the county. It is essential that citizens and county officials arrive at a consensus about future county development.
NOTE: According to an economic development specialist, “… experience indicates that businesses are much more willing to invest for the long term and grow in a community that demonstrates it can work collaboratively, is financially stable, and has strong community leadership. With a strong collaboration score evidenced by these practices and priorities, along with great communication and total transparency, all involved can have peace of mind that the project will result in success” (Wagner, 2017).
JLARC. (2016). Management and Accountability of the Virginia Economic Development Partnership. Retrieved on May 5, 2018 at http://jlarc.virginia.gov/pdfs/reports/Rpt488.pdf
Wagner, L. (2017). The Collaboration Score: The missing link in site selection. Retrieved on May 28, 2018 at http://www.areadevelopment.com/business-climate/Q4-2017/collaboration-score-missing-link-in-site-selection.shtml
Thanks to Kirk Cox and Amanda Chase for publicly speaking out against the county's Megasite project. Read their letters here.
"Economic Development Authorities are unelected and are not directly elected and held accountable by the people they represent. I stand with the thousands of homeowners who bought their properties under the current residential zoning under the current Comprehensive Plan and oppose this Matoaca Megasite which should for transparency’s sake be called the Bermuda Megasite." State Senator Amanda Chase, April 26, 2018
Hot off the video presses! This is a very short video clip highlighting some of the areas which would be affected by any development of the Shoosmith/Hotz properties & the East West Freeway. Please notice how many rooftops you can see next to the wooded area of the land.
Question: Why doesn't Dorothy Jaeckle listen to her constituents? Why does Dorothy make public statements that do not align with her constituents' vocal & factual opposition?
Question: Through her public statements, why has Dorothy apparently already made up her mind and is not factoring in all the new evidence that BARD is bringing to her attention?
Question: Why would the County hold four (4) public hearings and not be prepared with adequate answers? Why did the County not have any better answers in Community Meeting 4, than they had in Community Meeting 1?
Question: If the BOS knew there would be significant opposition at these hearings, why were they not better prepared?
Question: Why did the County feel that holding such hearings without more and better answers (and subjected themselves to the ire of the audience like human dartboards) was acceptable?
Over 150 protesters assemble at Brad Wall's house - photo by Chesterfield Observer
ALERT: This is generic legal advice for property owners who may be approached by county for land purchases for road right-of-way. The county may present you with 1 or 2 appraisals and make you an offer. Get your own appraisal and never take their first offer.
Please bookmark this site for ongoing updates as this project and the communication from the County evolves. You should also check out our Facebook page! Like us and get updates on Facebook or search on FB for Matoaca Mega Site.
Please share this website link (shortened, easy version is www.bit.ly/nomegasite and our Facebook presence with EVERY COUNTY RESIDENT, no matter where they live.
Here is a picture of Brad & Sheila Wall's historic home that is in the direct path of destruction of Chesterfield's proposed E-W Freeway to the "Mega Site." We had an awesome public meeting in their yard on Saturday, October 28 to talk about the Roads and the Megasite.
15400 Harrowgate Road, Chester, across from Harrowgate Elementary School.