After months of workshops and public input, Charlottesville is moving forward with master plans for the east side of McIntire Park. The Charlottesville Parks and Recreation Advisory Board will review the concepts and talk with staff about what should be on that land.
The advisory board already held a public hearing on the concepts, followed by a 30-day comment period.
Before plans were presented to the board, the community pitched dozens of ideas and mapped out what neighbors might like to see in that space. Among the more popular ideas were a golf course, a botanical garden, and a skate park.
There has been some heated debate over whether or not certain elements can co-exist in the area, but the parks and recreation department aims to meet some sort of consensus.
Charlottesville Park And Trail Planner Chris Gensic said, "Because McIntire is a regional park, it's very visible to everyone who comes through Charlottesville, everyone has stronger opinions, and there are more people with those opinions."
Once the advisory board has its recommendation, that suggestion will be passed on to the city's planning commission, and then to Charlottesville councilors for final approval. The advisory board members can vote to push forward any - or as many - potential plans they want to.
Charlottesville Parks Division Manager Doug Ehman said, "they [parks and rec advisory board members] could take several meetings more, they could take one or two meetings more. At this point, it's their process and they have to come up with something they're comfortable with."
Gensic says he hopes to see city council approve the master plan by the fall. The parks and rec department has gone through this process with Rives Park and Azalea Park, but this is the largest piece of land that has gone through this process so far.
The parks and recreation advisory board meets Wednesday at 5 p.m. at the Water Street Center (the TJPDC headquarters, one block from CitySpace).
Click here for a summary of the public comment received up to this point and information about future meetings.
Dannika Lewis joined the NBC29 news team as a general assignment reporter in June 2010. She started her ventures in broadcast news at Elon University where she graduated with a bachelor's degree in Broadcast Journalism. Email/Follow on Twitter/ Full Story