WC Partnership meeting recap

January 29, 2008

The second meeting of the reinvigorated Wards Corner Partnership was held tonight at the Workforce Development Center. Across the front of the meeting room sat 10 current civic league presidents who together proposed an action plan to put more pressure on our elected officials to ebb the downfall of Wards Corner.

The action plan included:

  • Moving forward with the Comprehensive plan, especially redevelopment in Denby Park
  • Purchase of the Alexis Apartments
  • Wards Corner infrastructure improvements

The conversation tonight highlighted, once again, the lack of a champion for the Wards Corner Partnership area on City Council. A plan to let our concerns known was debated and letters to the editor, letters to the councilpersons, and this website were determined to be excellent tools to let the councilpersons and our fellow citizens know that we are fed up with the lack of attention to the blight in Wards Corner.

The Partnership members at tonights meeting are energized and intend to work until Wards Corner is no longer placed “on the back-burner”. Wards Corner Now.

To have your letters and articles posted on this website, email them to wardscornernow@wardscornernow.com


Old Trolley Route

January 29, 2008

The following is an editorial written by Tim Smith and printed in the Virginian-Pilot this past weekend titled “Old trolley route”:

Now that everything is a go with light rail in Norfolk and The Tide is moving forward, Norfolk must begin to move on the Wards Corner Comprehensive Plan. Looking at aerial images of Norfolk, extending light rail from the Saint Paul’s area of the city to the beaches of Ocean View via Fenchurch, Church and Granby streets seems to makes perfect sense.

This route uses old trolley rights-of-way laid down decades ago but, for the most part, still maintained as public land. It cuts through the center of Norfolk and would serve more residents than a Hampton Boulevard route.

This route ties together five retail areas (Ocean View, Wards Corner, Riverview, 21st Street and Downtown). It also ties together the Virginia Zoo, Lafayette Park and Ocean View Beach Park. And it would provide access to DePaul Medical Center.

In addition, this route links Naval Station Norfolk to a large number of condo units. Tying light rail to the Peninsula would also be easy from the Wards Corner area.

For this extension of light rail to work efficiently and cost effectively, the revitalization of Wards Corner must begin now. That way, the infrastructure will be in place to just continue on with the light rail system when the downtown line is completed.

For light rail to truly work in Norfolk, The Tide must benefit those in the core neighborhoods as well as downtown.

Timothy P. Smith


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