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Charlottesville Planning Commission Gives First Green Light on Funding Improvement Projects

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site on Downtown Mall where touch up projects are in discussion site on Downtown Mall where touch up projects are in discussion
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WVIR) -

Charlottesville's Planning Commission has given the first green light to the proposed “Capital Improvement Program."

The program will provide more than $114 million dollars to different projects in the city.

A lot of that money is going to a variety of projects like affordable housing, school improvements and transportation, but this is not the end of the process just yet.

The majority of the money in the CIP is going to things like community facilities and transportation and access projects.

The Charlottesville school system would get about $2.9 million.

 “Recently we used CIP funds to help do the CHS STEM lab,” a city official said when presenting the plans to the CPC.

The money for schools could cover things like restroom renovations at Clark Elementary, auditorium improvements at Walker Elementary and other school modernization projects.

About $3.2 million would go toward Parks and Rec projects. These include items like trails and greenway development, Downtown Mall tree preservation and urban tree planting

“Charlottesville's overall tree canopy has decreased by 6.2 percent since 2005 … we do need a minimum of $50,000 and that allows us to plant about 200 trees a year. Our first goal is to target these funds to low canopy neighborhoods,” Roxanne White of the Tree Commission said.

The Affordable Housing Fund would get about $3.4 million, which a city official says is the highest they’ve had going into any particular year.

One recommended change that the CPC made would add $50,000 to help review and update city meeting spaces like City Council Chambers.

"Since we're not people who run for office and could be criticized for saying you just want fancy things, or build temple for yourselves, I’d like us put $50,000 in there to kick this off,” Genevieve Keller of the CPC said.

The next step will take the presentation with its recommendations to City Council in March. Money in the capital improvement fund comes from the CIP and the rest is from a bond.

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