City Planners Hope to Revitalize Community through a Rezoning

By: Elizabeth Lamb Email
By: Elizabeth Lamb Email

STAUNTON -- Amy Arnold, a city planner, is working on a plan to revitalize communities in the city.

“We're really looking at what we have, identifying what the strengths are, and then making changes to strengthen them even further,” said Arnold.

The idea is to use houses and buildings for what they were originally built to do.

Some houses in the city are zoned as businesses and that makes it difficult for owners to renovate or upgrade the building. That's what Arnold wants changed.

“We have them as existing resources already in the city, which obviously are the good bones of a neighborhood.”

The city is made of several communities that already have an infrastructure in place.

Historic Staunton Foundation Director Frank Strassler said each neighborhood has its own culture and identity.

“The city has already built itself. The city is already there: the sewer, the water, electrical lines, the road structure. Everything's already there to support a community, so you're not building a new community,” said Strassler.

Rezoning neighborhoods could preserve historic Staunton and it could also help people re-invest in downtown.

“Now it's coming back to let's plan with those items and make that a special part of the community again as it was built, and I think we'll have a better community.”

City employees will hold a public meeting to talk about rezoning. That will happen Monday at 6 p.m. at the Salvation Army gymnasium on 1700 West Beverley St.

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