RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - More development is slated for Richmond’s north side.
Developers are hoping to get permission from the city to build a two-building, 224-unit apartment complex on Brook Road, about a mile and a half from Union Presbyterian Seminary’s hard-fought 300-unit apartment project that’s now under construction.
The new four-story apartment complex would be across the road from Virginia Union University’s campus. VUU wrote a letter of support for the development.
A representative for developer Kidd Properties says the apartments are geared for people who would work in the area, potentially at VUU. The apartments would be priced competitively, in line with affordable housing. There will also be a 268-space parking lot and a small park.
Supporters of the project say having homes available for everyone is critical due to Richmond’s rebounding population, especially to avoid displacing or pricing out people who already live in the neighborhood.
“Gentrification is not something we want, and the best way to avoid that is to build places for (new) people to live that aren’t tearing down places where people currently live,” said resident Nicholas Smith, who lives on the north side. ”The more residents we have in the city, the better it is for everyone, the more services that can be provided economically."
But some residents and the district’s city council member Chris Hilbert oppose more development, raising concerns over congestion and the overall future vision for the area.
Hilbert wrote that 224 apartments is too many for the site, and pointed to other recent developments in the area, like the seminary’s 300-apartment complex, potentially doubling the population for the corridor, in a span of months. The seminary’s development is set to open in the summer.
“The traffic has picked up tremendously, and with the bike lanes coming, it’ll put a squeeze on traffic," said resident John Dorman, who fears more congestion.