Town Crier Articles

An Update on Eastern State Hospital Surplus Property Development
Posted on May 1, 2023 7:15 AM by Jack Espinal, Board President
Categories: NTRA Business
The Developers for Parcel C of the Eastern State Hospital property have modified their plan for this development and recently presented this information to the NTRA Board of Directors.  They appear to have addressed almost all of the past concerns that were raised by New Town residents. Their new plan, yet to go before James City County (JCC) for approval, significantly lessens the impact on the Charlotte Park neighborhood.  Here’s what we know now:
  1. The new development will propose to have its own homeowner’s association.
  2. It will not use the New Town name and will not be associated with the New Town Residential Association (NTRA) in any way.
  3. The development will consist of 86 single-family, luxury homes on lots larger than those in Charlotte Park. They will be priced in the $800,000 to $1 million dollar price range. These homes will all be located directly north of the Charlotte Park neighborhood.
  4. Discovery Park Boulevard will be extended into the development area, turn west and arc around for the 86 single-family homes. This is the only planed access for the Eastern State Hospital development property.
  5. An additional 150 multifamily units (townhouses and apartments) along with some commercial buildings will be constructed near the start of the Discovery Park Boulevard extension.
  6. An additional 100-foot buffer will be added to the existing 50-foot buffer. This will separate the new development from Charlotte Park by a combined 150-foot buffer between backyard property boundaries.
  7. The idea of extending Olive Drive into the Eastern State Hospital property has been abandoned by the developer.
  8. The new development will have numerous walking trails throughout the site.
  9. The planned Eastern State Hospital trail system will only connect to the New Town trails in the vicinity of Discovery Park Boulevard.
  10. The Eastern State Hospital development will have its own swimming pool and clubhouse which will be located in the multifamily area of the development near the start of the Discovery Park Boulevard extension.
  11. The wetlands in the area will be protected.
  12. The State of Virginia owns the Eastern State property and it is currently zoned for public use. The process for rezoning the property will begin in the next few weeks.
It is not currently known when the Eastern State Hospital Parcel C property rezoning plan will be presented to James City County for review and approval or when actual construction might commence.
Comment By: Tom Dawkins
Posted on May 5, 2023 10:41 PM
Jack, thanks for the update, and did the developer ever officially deed the Olive Drive cut-thru parcel over to the NTRA as their counsel said would occur at the meeting in 2021 (?) in the JCC auditorium?

No, the lot at 5214 Rollison Drive is still owned by ABVA and has never been transferred.

Last Edited: 05/06/2023 at 04:29 PM
Comment By: Sue Ducibella
Posted on May 11, 2023 8:09 AM
I assume the “lot” on Rollison (Olive Dr extension) is being held for ransom in case NT residents don’t accept what the developers and builders want. Discovery Blvd will become quite a challenge given the over 200 families moving into the new development (86 single homes, 150 townhouses and apartments). It will be harder less safe to come out of the office parking lots on Discovery since cars parked on the street block the oncoming traffic views. The new development needs it own entrance.

REPLY: Thank you for sharing your perspective.
ABVA has told us that they have abandoned the idea of connecting Olive Drive to their new development. Furthermore, New Town Associates has made an offer to transfer 40+ acres of land to the NTRA. This transfer would include all of the trail system behind Charlotte Park. If the NTRA were to accept this land transfer, our association would control a 25-foot-wide strip of land perpendicular to Olive Drive which could make it more difficult to extend the road into the Eastern State Hospital property. Of course, there remains a public right of way and JCC or VDOT could exercise it and condemn the land to extend Olive Drive, but we would be involved in that process. New Town Associates advised us that they had retained ownership of the trail in order to be able to have some control over the access to the Eastern State Hospital property.

Certainly the traffic on Discovery Park Boulevard would be increased, but that is a much better option than running part of that traffic directly through the Charlotte Park neighborhood.

Last Edited: 05/12/2023 at 05:02 PM
Comment By: Bobbie Falquet
Posted on May 16, 2023 1:13 PM
Thank you for the update. It sounds as if positive progress is being made to protect New Town residences.

Last Edited: 05/17/2023 at 09:44 AM