Chesterfield kicks off search for Southside Speedway developer
Chesterfield announced last week a request for qualifications as it seeks a developer to take on the reinvention of the county-owned Southside Speedway site.
The 57-acre project area includes the shuttered racetrack at 12800 Genito Road as well as adjacent properties and land opposite the raceway on Genito Road. The county is seeking developers that could redevelop the site to align with its objective of driving more sports tourism at the nearby River City Sportsplex with uses such as restaurants, retail, entertainment venues and a hotel.
30-lot subdivision approved in Chesterfield
Chesterfield supervisors last week approved a zoning request tied to development of 30 single-family lots in the southwestern part of the county. The vote rezoned the 62-acre site at 12500 Coalboro Road to residential (R-40) to agricultural (A).
Hanover shares Rappahannock Electric co-op letter about broadband project
Hanover County posted the text of a letter it received last week from Rappahannock Electric Cooperative regarding initial steps toward construction of new broadband infrastructure in the county.
The cooperative and All Points Broadband are working on the Connect Hanover effort to expand broadband internet service to co-op members in areas of Hanover, according to the letter dated Jan. 27. The letter, which can be read here, stated that Timmons Group had been contracted to handle engineering and design work needed for fiber installation and was underway on those efforts last week.
Henrico names new parks and rec director
Henrico appointed John Zannino as director of the county’s Division of Recreation & Parks. He replaces Patrick Nalley, who resigned last July after three months on the job. Nalley succeeded Neil Luther, who took the director’s job in Chesterfield after 10 years leading Henrico’s division.
Zannino has served as an assistant director since the division’s leadership was restructured last spring. He joined the division in 2007 as a recreation coordinator and later served as an assistant director of recreation services.
Zannino oversees a division with an approved staff of about 185, excluding seasonal and hourly employees, as well as a budget of $23.3 million for fiscal year 2022-23. He has a bachelor’s degree in sports management from JMU.
Henrico supervisors approve 800-home Arcadia development in Varina
At their meeting last week, Henrico supervisors unanimously approved East West Communities’ Arcadia development, which the Midlothian-based developer reduced from 1,000 proposed homes to just under 800. The project would fill roughly 250 acres of farmland just east of Pocahontas Parkway where it crosses Route 5.
Other changes to the proposal include a phased development schedule, in which the eastern half of the project would not be developed before 2030, meaning only 500 homes could be built in the next seven years; removal of all vehicular access from Route 5; and commitments for some homes to be priced more affordably and for plantings of native species beyond county requirements.
Solar panels to be installed at closed Henrico landfill
County supervisors approved a proposal from Dominion Energy subsidiary BrightSuite to install and maintain a solar panels system on about 2 acres at the closed Springfield Road Landfill in western Henrico. The county described the project as the first of its kind in the region and one of the first in Virginia.
The 349-kilowatt solar photovoltaic system is expected to generate reduced-cost, renewable energy to power the nearby Allen’s Branch Sewage Pump Station. Henrico will lease the site for $1 per year and purchase the electricity generated to provide up to 100 percent of the power needed to operate the pump station.
The arrangement is expected to save taxpayers $600,000 to $700,000 on electricity costs over the 30-year lease term. The system could become operational by spring 2025.
The 191-acre Springfield Road Landfill operated from the late 1960s to 2014. It remains one of two public use areas for receiving household and yard waste and recyclables for transport offsite. Since 2010, a 4-megawatt generator has captured methane gas produced by the landfill and converted it into electricity that is exported to the utility grid for sale.
Henrico and BrightSuite have also installed solar photovoltaic systems at the county’s Public Safety Building, Libbie Mill Library, Mental Health East Center, and at Highland Springs High, Holladay Elementary and J.R. Tucker High schools. Similar systems are planned at the rec and parks administration building, Fairfield Area Library, James River Juvenile Detention Center campus and five additional schools.
Henrico Fire Station 20 opens near Western Government Center
Henrico’s newest firehouse was completed Jan. 12 with current and former members of the county’s fire division christening the station with a ceremonial “engine push.” A grand opening was held Saturday for Fire Station 20 at 8521 Willis Road, off Staples Mill Road and near the Western Government Center on Parham Road.
The $11.5 million project was funded through Henrico’s 2016 bond referendum and consists of a one-story, 13,850 square-foot firehouse with four drive-through bays and a mezzanine. The project was designed to LEED Silver Certification standards.