“Norfolk poised to buy parcels of land” – Virginian-Pilot headline

January 16, 2013

Jill Nolin at the Virginian-Pilot wrote an article that was published today, January 16, 2013, indicating that the City of Norfolk is preparing to purchase blighted properties in Wards Corner and Ocean View.

The city is poised to spend millions in the coming weeks as it buys the former Travelers Inn in Ocean View and more property in the Denby Park area of Wards Corner as part of plans to revitalize struggling neighborhoods.

City officials were tight-lipped about the proposed Wards Corner deals, but Martin Thomas Jr., vice president of the Wards Corner Civic League and a member of the city’s planning commission, said residents have been pushing the city to focus on the 300 block of East Little Creek Road and the so-called “Texas streets” behind it.

. . .

In the current budget, city officials allocated $2 million for acquisitions in the Wards Corner area.

. . .

In Wards Corner, the city is looking to clean up the Denby Park area. The city has finished its negotiations, but a deal has not been completed, said Councilman Andy Protogyrou. He declined to comment further because of the “sensitivity of the process.”

Winn said city officials want to further reduce housing density in the area by targeting sites with apartment buildings. Last year, seven buildings in the 300 block of San Antonio Blvd. were torn down on property the city acquired for $2.7 million.

 


Pilot prints article on Wards Corner Now

May 23, 2010

The Compass section of the Virginian Pilot (May 23, 2010 edition) has an article on about Wards Corner Now and our group was created.  I cannot find the article posted online to link to.  Here are some notable portions of the article:

A new group, called Wards Corner now, formed in March with plans to supplant the partnership. Leaders of the new group said partnership leaders were too caustic in their criticism of the city.

The friction boiled over during a fractious meeting of Wards Corner leaders and city officials months ago that attorney Martin Thomas Jr., a Wards Corner resident, said was simply too toxic.

So Thomas joined civic league presidents Jim English and Jim McDonnell, realtor Louis Eisenberg, chiropractor Brad Robinson and others in leaving the partnership and forming Wards Corner Now.

“We don’t want to fight, we don’t want to bicker,” English said in explaining why he split from the partnership. “You don’t get anywhere that way and that’s where we were headed.”

Added Thomas: “There’s been a lot of negativity going on for about a year. City councilmen weren’t taking them seriously.”

Thomas and others established a website, held monthly meetings and injected themselves into City Council politics in a big way.

The group endorsed Andy Protogyrou in the Ward 1 council race. Protogyrou, a lawyer, defeated three opponents largely because of lopsided victories at Wards Corner area precincts.

“Wards Corner needs an advocate,” Eisenberg said, much like W. Randy Wright has been an advocate for Ocean View.

Wards Corner Now held its initial meeting in March and includes representatives of most Wards Corner civic leagues. Council members Theresa Whibley and Barclay C. Winn attended. Winn called the new group “a positive step for Wards Corner.”

Wards Corner Now: Positive Change for Wards Corner.


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