Baliles to introduce plan for City to buy Shockoe properties

Yet another development in the ongoing drama that is the Mayor’s Shockoe Redevelopment Plan.

Councilman Jon Baliles (District 1) plans to introduce a resolution to City Council tonight that will encourage the city to acquire roughly 12 acres of land in Shockoe Bottom to “incentivize development,” according to the Richmond Times-Dispatch.

From the Times-Dispatch:

The resolution is aimed at gaining city control of about 20 parcels on both sides of East Broad Street that are owned by Loving’s Produce LLC or Harry & Betty Loving LLC, but not as part of the Shockoe economic development project advocated by Richmond Mayor Dwight C. Jones, who also relies on the Loving properties.

“The purpose of the resolution is to acquire land in a way that is clear, easy and transparent,” Baliles said Sunday. “The (mayor’s) baseball plan is very convoluted.”

The proposed resolution comes a day after the unveiling of a private developer’s plan to build a minor league stadium next to The Diamond on North Boulevard as part of a mixed-use development that eventually could encompass all of the 60 acres owned by the city there.

The District 1 councilman argues their is local precedent for acquiring land to inspire development.

Baliles compared the proposed purchase to Chesterfield County’s acquisition of the former Cloverleaf Mall property in 2004, Henrico County’s purchase of the former Best Plaza in late 2011, and Richmond’s acquisition of the Lehigh Cement Co. property to clear the way for the Virginia Capital Trail along the riverfront.

photo by Taber Andrew Bain

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Nathan Cushing

Nathan Cushing is a writer, journalist, and RVANews Editor.

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