Planning & Variances

Planning & Variances

Contact: planning@vahi.org

Committee Co-Chairs: Barry Loudis and Jack White

Committee Members: Chip Bullock, George Van Horne, Joshua Zane, Ian Stedman, Cherry Frederick, Elizabeth Ward

Responsibilities:Oversight and review of all variance requests, special exceptions, rezoning applications and land-use proposals. Review of impact to the neighborhood from the City’s Comprehensive Development Plan and related documents.  Promote adherence to the Va-Hi Master Plan.

Goals: 

  1. Review all new applications for variances, special exceptions, and liquor licenses and make recommendations to the Board.  
  2. Represent the Association at NPU-F meetings, with special attention to NPU activities that impact Virginia-Highland.  Provide updates and feedback to the VHCA Board.  
  3. Attend relevant BZA meetings to advocate for VHCA and/or NPU decisions.  Monitor trends and developments within the BZA.
  4. Monitor the development of public policies in the city that might impact the neighborhood and the Association, with a particular emphasis on land use, zoning, transportation and the environment.   
  5. Monitor the ongoing development of the commercial nodes to ensure that development does not adversely affect residents and traffic patterns in the surrounding streets.  The redevelopment of the Atkins Park node – specifically the expansion of sidewalks and pedestrian capacity – is an area of special emphasis.
  6. Compile and maintain a record of all existing businesses in each NC node.  Share with the City and business owners a list of each node’s eating and drinking establishments.
  7. Expand our database of existing and historic traffic volume, flows, and impacts.
  8. Review public education policies and help educate residents so they can respond to their Planning impacts.
  9. Respond to citizen complaints and concerns about potential building code violations.
  10. Monitor Beltline-related developments, CDP updates and other citywide transportation and development initiatives.
  11. Continue to make clear that in building and zoning (as in all areas), we acknowledge the rule of law and follow it, even as we sometimes advocate for changes in it.
  12. Educate the citizenry about the challenges that result from decades of inadequate onsite stormwater management and the difficulties that even legal practices can pose for us and our neighbors.  Be unafraid to advocate for the Golden Rule.