Friday, June 2, 2023

Williamsburg Architectural Review Board To Consider Spotswood Design Plan

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WILLIAMSBURG -Normally, meetings of the city’s Architectural Review Board are quietly procedural, involving detailed discussions about the merits of single-pane vs. double-pane windows, appropriate color palettes, or the city’s aversion to all things vinyl.

But on Tuesday, May 23, the ARB is expecting a crowd, urged on by a group that calls itself Citizens for Responsible Spotswood Development. The group packed the library auditorium in April for an informational meeting. They are organized and they are determined. The leader, Fraser Hudgins, last week drafyed a 13-page Freedom of Information Act request, seeking all correspondence by, from, and to city officials involving Spotswood.  A similar request from another resident produced 57 pages of letters, memos, and e-mails. The city charged him $239 to produce the documents.

“Keep banging your drum,” Hudgins wrote in an email blast to the hundreds of people who have signed up for CRSD updates. “If you haven’t yet, let’s get those emails sent out to City Council, Planning Commission, and other key administrators with the City. Our voices are being heard.”

On the ARB’s agenda is approval (or rejection) of something that has come to be called the Spotswood Pattern Book. It is a 67-page document outlining in minute detail the kind of homes that might be built on the former Spotswood Golf Course, which Colonial Williamsburg has agreed to sell to Frye Properties, a Norfolk developer of luxury homes. There are pages and pages devoted to cornices, finishes, fences, setbacks, siding, and, yes, single-pane windows.

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