Thanks to Karen Mayne for the following notes:
The Greater Wards Corner Task Force Meeting
September 10, 2015
Council Members Barclay Winn and Terry Whibley were present.
Department of Development
Kotarides Development expects to close in mid-late September on the purchase of the 10+ acre property where Kroger/Workforce Development Center is located. No plans for future redevelopment have been announced. Both Kroger and the City have leases that Kotarides plans to honor.
Sam’s Club has a tentative opening date of November 5.
The parcel behind Wendy’s is available for redevelopment.
The City has two new business loan programs of up to $50,000 for small to medium businesses. The Citywide Partnership Fund will provide loans to new and expanding businesses to stimulate economic development and private investment that will create permanent employment opportunities for low to moderate income residents. The Global Initiatives Fund is a first of its kind program to support local exporters. For more information, contact Leslie Osborn, Chief Credit Officer, at 757-664-4333 firstname.lastname@example.org.
Denby Park – James Rogers, Director of Neighborhood Development, reported that the latest group of apartments has been torn down and the City will maintain the area in grass. Mr. Rogers said that the City will host a charrette with citizen groups to discuss the future of the area. A tentative date was set on October 19, 5:00 – 7:30 pm, location to be determined. It was suggested that the City invite all civic league presidents and include a link to the 2004 development study of the Wards Corner area commissioned by the City.
Parking on the grass along West Little Creek Road is still occurring and expanding. The proposed ordinance change that was discussed by the task force in May was approved by the Planning Commission but has not been placed on the City Council agenda.
The medians along Granby Street where Virginia Natural Gas conducted gas line replacement have still not been repaired – the irrigation system and plantings have not been replaced. Public Works will look into this.
A concern was raised that the medians along Thole Street and throughout the City have not been maintained due to lack of staffing in the Department of Recreation, Parks and Open Space. Council reps said the City is considering contracting out the landscaping maintenance of public spaces. Councilwoman Whibley requested that Darrell Crittendon, director of that department, be asked to speak to the task force at the next meeting.
School Board rep Brad Robinson said that a new superintendent of schools will be selected by November 1.
Alyce Kalfus, Wards Corner Business Association, announced that there will be a large family-friendly event at Ward’s Corner called “Ward’s Corner Salutes Our Military” on Saturday, September 19, 10AM – 7PM. Food, entertainment, prizes and giveaways, military discounts, and more will be part of the fun.
Next meeting will be November 12, 2015, 8:30 am at the Norfolk Fitness and Wellness Center.