JAMES CITY-The James City County Board of Supervisors approved on Tuesday, September 13, to amend its Master Plan with regards to a parcel on News Road, paving the way for a potential new senior living community on the property.
The developer, Frye Properties based out of Norfolk, wants to build a continuing care retirement facility affiliated with Ford’s Colony called Ford’s Village on land that is currently undeveloped located at 3889 News Rd.
The project is a partnership between Frye Properties and Retirement Unlimited, Inc. The new, age-restricted community is designed for those 55 and up and includes 470 units. Fully 270 of the dwellings would be single-family homes in a variety of styles while 200 units in a separate facility would be age-restricted assisted living/memory care rooms/skilled nursing beds. The development will also include apartments.
Ford’s Village will also feature various amenities that will be shared by residents of the homes as well as residents of the assisted living facility. Those amenities include a spa, dining area, activity rooms, a fitness center, a pool, pickleball courts, walking trails, and more.
The development is of “superior design” and “superior architecture” and “helps meet a growing demand for quality senior living and services in the community,” said Vernon Geddy, III, attorney for the developer, prior to the vote.
The developers made several changes to the project throughout the past year since it was first approved by the James City County Planning Commission in November 2021. The amendments were made to address traffic and stormwater drainage concerns.
The project was actually first approved in the James City County Master Plan back in 2008. The original proposal of the new development included more than 700 units.
The James City Board of Supervisors approved the Master Plan amendment in a vote of 3-2. Jim Icenhour, who represents the Jamestown District, as well as Roberts District Supervisor John McGlennon voted against the project. It was a second vote against the development for both supervisors, who also disapproved of the development when it was brought to the board for consideration 14 years ago.
Icenhour cited several reasons why he was still not in favor of the project, among them the land use density, the impacts of the environment, impacts of neighboring communities, and the traffic strain on News Road.
The amendments to the project are “going from horrible to less horrible,” he said. “The drawbacks outweigh the advantages.”