STRASBURG — The Strasburg Town Council approved changes to the town’s unified development ordinance that will bring the proposed Cedar Valley development at 33227 Old Valley Pike closer to fruition.
During its meeting Tuesday, Town Council members agreed in a 6-1 vote to changes to the town’s ordinance that will allow developers to build eight townhouses in a single building in planned developments while maintaining the current limit of four townhouses per building elsewhere in town.
The vote came after Town Council members debated about how many townhouses developers should be able to build in a single building outside of planned developments. Several members, like Councilwoman Kim Bishop, expressed concern that increasing the number of townhouses in a single building outside of planned developments could result in townhouses that are crammed too close to one another.
“When you’re coming downtown into some of the neighborhoods around here that have small lots, well you can fit five to six townhomes as opposed to four,” Bishop said. “You’ll have somebody come in and put six townhomes in a very small area because they can do it.”
But other Town Council members argued that limiting the number of townhouses allowed per building to four was too restrictive.
Councilwoman Emily Reynolds, for instance, said that she researched best practices for townhouses.
“It started to support my suspicion that maybe we were a little restrictive,” Reynolds said.
Still, other members pointed toward restricting the number of townhouses allowed per building inside planned developments to six.
Councilman Ken Cherrix voted against the final measure after saying that he was comfortable raising the limit to six in planned developments and maintaining the limit at four elsewhere, but that he opposed raising the limit to eight in planned developments. And Councilman John Massoud voted in favor of the final measure, which raised the limit to eight in planned developments but limited it to four elsewhere, only after requesting an amendment to make the limit six townhouses per building in planned developments.
Town Council initially voted on a measure that would have increased the number of townhouses allowed in a single building to eight in planned developments and to six elsewhere in town. That measure failed in a 3-4 vote. One member, Councilwoman Jocelyn Vena, was absent.
After that vote, Councilwoman Barbara Plitt, who voted in favor of the failed measure, motioned to keep the limit of four townhouses per building outside of planned developments while raising the limit to eight in planned developments.
That measure passed on a 6-1 vote, with Cherrix opposing the move.
Tuesday’s vote brings the proposed Cedar Valley development one step closer to fruition. Although the changes to the town’s ordinance will apply to all future developments, the Cedar Valley developers had applied for the change.
Town Manager Wyatt Pearson said that the Cedar Valley developers next have to submit a preliminary development plan application. That application will go to Planning Commission, before heading to Town Council.
After the preliminary development plan, the developers have a final development plan application they would have to submit. That application would also head to Planning Commission and then to the council.