The Greene County Planning Commission deferred a vote on Aug. 21 for a special use permit (SUP) that would have allowed an apartment complex on U.S. Route 29 south, near the Holly Hill subdivision.

The planning commission approved 3-1 a rezoning for the nearly eight-acre plot from R-1 residential to R-2 residential, the highest density allowed prior to the deferral. Commissioner Bill Saunders was not present at the meeting last week.

Meteoric Ventures LLC requested the rezoning of the land, which is about a quarter mile north from the Greene County/Albemarle County boarder. The applicant also submitted an application for an SUP to allow 120 age-restricted apartments on the property.

By-right zoning would allow 28 single-family residences, or four per acre and at R-2 with six per acre, that number becomes 46 on that land.

Planner Stephanie Golon said government agencies used that number to submit their comments on the project.

It’s estimated the apartments would bring 866 new daily vehicle trips with 57 new morning peak hour trips and 69 new afternoon peak hour trips on U.S. 29.

Golon said using parallel road systems could help alleviate that, and recommended a 24-foot access road, with easements, to the adjacent southern parcel.

“What we’ve seen in the past applications, and this one, is it’s a different type of dwelling unit than the sprawling detached single-family dwellings that we see in other locations in Ruckersville,” she said.

Applicant Jonathan Feldmann noted the building would be four stories tall with 240 parking spaces. He said according to the market analysis “55-plus independent living is the ideal concept. There is no real competition in the market for that but significant demand.”

There were only two speakers during the rezoning public hearing, but both were against the development.

“I live in the Holly Hill development and I can tell you that traffic is a mess in the mornings,” said Jeff Marthinuss. “If you leave at the wrong time you’re sitting in [Washington], D.C.-type traffic.”

Commissioner Steven Kruskamp Jr., who voted against the rezoning, said he travels through that area every day on his way to work.

“I can’t help but foresee a lot of issues compounded if we were to raise the density of that plot,” he said.

Commissioner John McCloskey said he supports the rezoning but would like to keep it at six dwellings per acre.

“I understand the traffic considerations and those are real and need to be addressed,” said Commissioner Ron Williams.

With many questions about the SUP, the applicant asked to have it deferred until at least the Oct. 16 planning commission meeting.

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