Scott and Julie Winslow own over 140 acres on Beazley Road with a tremendous mountain views in Greene County. In addition to their farm operation, they also hold a Special Use Permit (SUP) for part of their property to host weddings and other events. At the March 16th meeting of the Planning Commission they requested a second SUP for a Bed and Breakfast in an existing duplex near the “Barn at Edgewood Farm”.
Bart Svoboda, Greene County’s Planning Administrator outlined the request of SUP #16-001. The request must not change the character of the area and he further explained that, per the Comprehensive Plan, the project must preserve the scenic, historical, cultural and natural resources that are crucial to tourism.
Svoboda believes that this project supports the Comprehensive Plan and recommends approval of the SUP with the following conditions:
1) No guest shall reside more than 30 days in a 365 day period
2) Lighting fixtures shall be aimed not to produce disability glare and shall have cutoff fixtures
3) A sketch plan is required prior to the operation of the facility
Owner Scott Winslow then addressed the Planning Commission and outlined the two parcels – the larger one being the farm with barn and two apartments. The smaller lot (2.64 acres) is the one that the SUP is being requested.
Two adjoining neighbors spoke in the public hearing. Ed Yensho thanked Winslow for being a good neighbor and stated he is a strong proponent of property rights. He and his family moved to this part of Greene County to enjoy the beautiful countryside of Greene. Yensho’s property looks at the back yard of Winslow’s property and he supports the SUP with the following restrictions:
1) Events limited to not more than 150 people
2) Events limited to 2 weekends per month
3) Outdoor sound to stop at 10 p.m.
4) Cars to leave by midnight
5) Lights off by midnight
6) Install parking area with a brim to control runoff
The second neighbor to speak was Sandra West who has lived there 16 years. She expressed many of the same concerns as Yensho and also moved there for the peace and tranquility.
The hearing then shifted to the commissioners with Chairman Jay Willer asking Svoboda what is allowed by right in Ag Tourism zoned land. Svoboda indicated that 200 vehicle trips/day, a maximum of attendees and a maximum of a 4,000 sf. area. Music requires a zoning certificate. If either more than 400 people or 4,000 sf. are requested then a SUP is required.
Commissioner Vic Schaff asked if weddings are allowed by right in an Ag Tourism area and Svoboda responded that are. Willer asked Winslow if would be willing to plant screening landscaping to limit the visibility of his property from his neighbors. Winslow felt that he could.
Winslow then addressed the Planning Commission and committed to the stopping of amplified outdoor noise by 10 pm and he will try to be a good neighbor as he believes he has been in the past. With that comment, the Planning Commission recommended approval of the Special Use Permit unanimously with the following conditions:
1) The unit will be in the existing accessory building
2) The unit will consist of a duplex –two family dwelling
3) No guest will stay more than 30 days in a 365 day period
4) Outdoor lighting will be aimed so as to not produce glare and shall be cutoff lights
5) A sketch plan is required prior to the operation of the facility
As with all Special Use Permits heard by the Planning Commission, this will be passed on to the Board of Supervisors who will have the final approval.
Brent Wilson is the Greene County Field Officer for the Free Enterprise Forum a privately funded public policy organization. The Free Enterprise Forum Field Officer program is funded by a generous grant from the Charlottesville Area Association of REALTORS® (CAAR) and by readers like you. To support this important work please donate online at www.freeenterpriseforum.org
Photo Credits: Barn at Edgewood Farm