|The Road to Woodbrook. This 8-foot wide path is big enough to carry a full size automobile from the Carmike theater to the Woodbrook Lagoon. County officials conceded Thursday that it was built in error.|
After several days of denial, Albemarle County officials conceded Thursday that the path to Woodbrook was paved in error. In a telephone interview with this blog, Rio District Supervisor Rodney Thomas said, “It was paved by mistake.” The original plan, as directed by the Board of Supervisors on April 14, 2010, was clear – no paved path to Woodbrook. A document obtained from the County Web site confirmed that on April 22, 2010 the County properly instructed Arden Place developers to not construct the path.
The County’s concession came after several days of email in which they maintained that the path was built as directed by the Board. “There has absolutely been a misunderstanding by the Woodbrook Residents of the original plans or what they have been told or have interpreted on their own,” said Thomas in an email message to this blog on Wednesday. “The plan is being executed as presented in April 2010,” he said. But when presented with a transcript of the April 2010 Board meeting the next day, Thomas agreed that the path should not have been paved.
|The same area in April 2010, before the path was built.|
Perhaps the strongest denials came from County planner Bill Fritz. In a Wednesday email message to Thomas and intended for distribution to Woodbrook residents, Fritz said, “All decisions the Board made are incorporated into the approved site plan.” In response to numerous emails from angry Woodbrook residents Fritz said, “[Staff] will permit [the path] to remain asphalt.” Woodbrook residents may recall that it was Fritz who first proposed a trail running from Rio Road to the Woodbrook Lagoon.
The majority of Woodbrook residents have been opposed to the path since it was first introduced in the fall of 2009 and were relieved when the Board of Supervisors directed developers not to build it in April 2010. They are not happy. “Arden Place needs to remove the road and plant trees,” said one resident. In a sample polling of 15 Woodbrook residents selected at random Thursday, their position was unanimous – remove the Woodbrook leg of the path and replace the trees.
Many Woodbrook residents are also angry over the failure of the County to monitor a Board of Supervisors approved action. “They should honor their agreement they made with us back in April 2010, and rectify their mistake,” said one resident.
Woodbrook residents will now have to decide how they want to handle this. What do you think should be done? We welcome your comments below.