The future of a proposed multi-use development outside Ashland is up in the air after it was voted down by the Hanover Board of Supervisors earlier this month.
The team behind the nixed proposal to build Hickory Grove, which would have featured 100 age-restricted townhomes as well as 90,000 square feet of commercial space on 51 acres at the intersection of East Patrick Henry and Providence Church roads, is still weighing its options after the supervisors rejected the proposal.
“We thought the plan we put forth was within the county guidelines for their comprehensive plan and that we went through the appropriate steps to do that,” said Todd Rogers, a principal with project developer Rogers-Chenault Inc. “We’re at a little bit of a loss of what we will do next with the property.”
Rogers said the developers and county officials met Monday to discuss a future use for the property but declined to comment on what was discussed. Rogers said there is still interest in redeveloping the property.
The Board of Supervisors voted to deny Rogers-Chenault’s rezoning request after the application spent a year in the county approval process and underwent revisions in a bid to make it more appealing to county officials amid opposition from local residents. The land owned is by Hickory Hill II LLC, an entity tied to developer J.B. Campbell Ltd.
The application sought to rezone the land from A-1 agricultural to MX(c) mixed-use district with conditions and B-2(c) community business district with conditions. Staff and the Planning Commission recommend approval of the proposal, according to a staff report.
Traffic concerns and a desire for the development to be entirely residential were among concerns expressed during community meetings held in late January and early February. Most speakers at the public hearing that preceded the board’s vote voiced opposition to the project, citing concerns such as traffic impacts and a desire to maintain the area’s rural character.
“When something like this happens and the politics get involved, it makes decisions harder for everyone,” Rogers said Monday. “I think part of what happened here is not misinformation but just not being informed (about the comprehensive plan).”
The bid to create the mixed-use development came amid the years-long development of the 277-home Hickory Hill subdivision, a nearby Rogers-Chenault project that’s named for a local historic home.