If you can believe it, City Council put the final stamp of approval on the Downtown Master Plan this week. That's the plan that took shape over the summer of 2007, and moved from the hands of the people and urban planners into the hands of the bureaucrats and politicians in November of 2007. It takes time to squeeze the imagination out of a planning document.
Richmond BizSense reports today that the Ghost of the Downtown Master Plan might resurface this fall when the developers of Echo Harbor, a development proposed at the foot of Church Hill, may be the first, best test of the plan as a guiding document.
[Attorney James] Theobald said he expects the proposal to go before council in the fall.
He said the development would generate $3 million in annual tax revenue and create 500 full-time equivalent jobs. He also said they have committed to dedicate and construct a portion of the Virginia Capital Trail along the entire length of the property at no cost to the city.
“That represents the merits that the council will ultimately need to consider,” Theobald said.
For those opposed to the development, the approved downtown plan is another arrow in their quiver.
The Times-Dispatch has details on the final changes to the Downtown Master Plan, as well as council's approval of $2 million to purchase the 1.6 acre Lehigh Cement property near the Echo Harbor site.