Willoughby Corridor Study Lays Out Future Vision

For More Information: 

Ed Ware

For Immediate Release
Release Date: 
Wed, 09/27/2006

Norfolk, VA (September 25, 2006) – Following an intensive series of citizen input sessions conducted during the first half of 2006, consultants for the Norfolk Redevelopment and Housing Authority (NRHA) have released the “Willoughby Strategic Development Plan”. The plan lays out a future vision for this area, including residential, commercial and civic uses.

The Willoughby Corridor is a peninsula of land between the convergence of the Chesapeake Bay/Little Bay and the Elizabeth River from 1st View St. westward to the tip of Willoughby. The area covers about 138 acres.

Central issues in the revitalization of Willoughby are identified by the consultants, Urban Design Associates (UDA), as follows:

  • Traffic problems caused by tunnel back-ups, but with great concern for impact of new development on traffic;
  • Streetscape character and general appearance of area;
  • High percentage of rental properties, many of which are over occupied and create parking and social problems;
  • Difficulty in redeveloping problem properties due to constraints of current zoning; and
  • Lack of public open space and amenities.

The following initiatives emerged as recommendations to be brought forward for community consideration:

  • Create Little Bay Ave. streetscapes with roll curb, sidewalk and new lighting;
  • Improve Ocean View Ave. landscape to include cross walks and planting areas along outer edges of present roadbed, configured to provide a clear 20-foot dimension curb to curb. This would accommodate a 12-foot bike lane as well as large pull off areas;
  • Link, through a series of open space and new streets, Ocean View Ave. with Little Bay Ave. at Captain's Quarter and 12th View St;
  • Change zoning to permit higher structures in middle of Spit with multi-family buildings, with prescribed open space, set-backs and parking.
  • Demonstration projects to illustrate potential of zoning changes as incentive to property owners.

The UDA report is only the beginning of Willoughby's ongoing revitalization. In the upcoming months, several public meetings will be conducted with all interested stakeholders by a third party facilitator. The purpose of these sessions will be to discuss the community decision making process and to prioritize short and long term initiatives which will guide the development of Willoughby for the next decade.

Click here to download a copy of the “Willoughby Strategic Development Plan”.

About NRHA: 

Founded in 1940, NRHA is a national leader in community revitalization and fostering sustainable mixed-income communities. As the largest redevelopment and housing authority in Virginia, NRHA plays a key role in making Norfolk the city of choice to build, work, live and play.

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