Tuesday, August 29, 2006
NORFOLK –– The face of eclectic Willoughby is changing, as evidenced Wednesday morning by the backhoe that began clearing 15 acres for an upscale housing development. A little more than a year after it was announced, work started on the Spectrum at Willoughby Point, a $200 million condominium complex that will aim to remake the Norfolk side of the Hampton Roads Bridge-Tunnel. An old hotel, restaurant and other buildings are coming down. They will be replaced by three towers containing 294 condominiums, 30 townhomes and three loft apartments. Units will sell for as much as $1 million. There will also be 22,000 square feet of retail space and a restaurant.
Although the hot housing market in Hampton Roads appears to be cooling down, the demand for housing along the seven miles of Chesapeake Bay beach front in Ocean View remains robust, officials say. A.R. “Rick” Gregor Jr., of the Futura Group of Virginia Beach, which is developing the Spectrum project, said he has nonbinding deposits for half of the housing units 60 days before contracts can legally be written and nearly a year before the first condo will open. “We haven’t even begun marketing yet,” he said. Real estate assessor Wayne N. Trout said while real estate assessments citywide will go up about 23 percent in July, assessments from central Ocean View to Willoughby will rise an average of 60 percent.
Willoughby is an older neighborhood of about 4,000 residents on a peninsula of sand churned up by a hurricane in 1749. In places, poorly maintained apartments and duplexes are sandwiched between stately older homes and newer condominiums. The spit is divided by a crowded, four-lane road. At 4th View Avenue, traffic headed onto Interstate 64 sometimes backs up for miles. The area suffers from flooding problems, and there are pockets of poverty.
Now developers want to buy rundown properties and replace them with upscale housing. Meanwhile city officials are trying to get a grip on how to redevelop Willoughby’s 128 acres . They are looking for ways to accommodate the high-density growth the market seems to demand without disrupting life for locals. Raymond L. Gindroz, who heads Urban Design Associates of Pittsburgh, floated ideas for revamping the area at two public hearings last week. Gindroz is a planner who helped the city revamp downtown and much of Ocean View. Among his proposals: turning West Ocean View Avenue into a two-lane road from 9th View Avenue north, reworking the 4th View interchange and changing the area’s restrictive zoning. Most land in Willoughby is zoned for single-family housing, so if a developer buys an apartment building, all he can build in its place is a house. “There are certain areas in Willoughby where we need to look at doing more than just single-family houses,” Councilman Don Williams said. “You can’t redevelop those apartment buildings in Willoughby with single-family houses. It’s not financially feasible.” Gindroz said his plan would not increase the number of residents. Rather, it would create more density on certain properties and create more open space on others. “In fact, the density probably would be a little lower,” Gindroz said. It would allow for onestory buildings on the beach and Willoughby Bay, and buildings would be progressively higher toward Ocean View Avenue, which conceivably would leave everyone with water views. Many of Gindroz’s suggestions, including the zoning changes, were greeted warmly. Others, such as reducing East Ocean View Avenue to two lanes, drew a mixed reaction. “The problem is not the volume of traffic, it’s the speed,” Gindroz said. “It really rips out the heart of the neighborhood. But it’s up to the people here to decide.” Gindroz said he will take comments from more than 100 residents who attended the forums and present a final report to the city in June. By then, Spectrum construction will be under way. An iconic statue of King Neptune atop the restaurant, which has been visible to interstate motorists for decades, will be part of the new project . It will be placed in a retention pond at the entrance of the new development. “Willoughby has a great history,” Gregor said. “We wanted to preserve a bit of that history in our development
For further info contact: John Womeldorf Mr Hampton Roads
www.MrHamptonRoads.com 757 254 8136 JohnWomeldorf@LizMoore.com
East Beach, Norfolk, VA
East Beach brings traditional neighborhood design to the Chesapeake Bay waterfront in Norfolk, Virginia. The first 17 homes in this new 100-acre planned community were built for the annual Homearama in October of 2004.
The community has strict architectural guidelines which dictate front porches and traditional styles. Within the guidlelines, architects still have plenty of leeway to form a stylish neighborhood.
A big clubhouse sits on the Bay, with sandy beaches beyond. The calm waters are ideal for families with small children. Lights on the nearby Chesapeake Bay Bridge-Tunnel are an attractive sight at night.
Many homes are three stories tall, and all have porches or decks on the upper floors. "Carriage houses" with apartments over the garage are common. What a great idea -- the apartments are separate from the main house and can be rented or used by the family teenager or grandmother. Garages and driveways are in the rear, not out front.
Yards are tiny and the homes are large, which is what you expect on such valuable land. Shopping and restaurants already exist nearby, and more will probably be built as the entire Ocean View area continues to redevelop.
For further information contact: Mr Hampton Roads John Womeldorf
757 254 8136
Monday, August 28, 2006
Ford’s Colony Williamsburg Breaks Ground on Eaglescliffe Condos Williamsburg, VA
August 9, 2006 With more than 60 units reserved, Ford's Colony has broken ground on its first luxury condominium project - Eaglescliffe - which will bring maintenance-free living to the heart of Ford's Colony Williamsburg.
"We saved the best for last," said Brian Ford, general manager of Ford's Colony Williamsburg. "After many years of value building we feel that Ford's Colony Williamsburg is ready for condominiums that offer a lavish atmosphere combined with convenience."
Presales on the condominiums opened this summer and will culminate in a sales weekend this fall. The property where the condos will be located is in the process of being cleared and graded with construction scheduled to start this fall. Completion of the first two buildings is expected to take a year.
The 84-unit condominium project will feature units ranging from 1,700 to 2,200 square feet with prices starting in the mid $500,000s.
With a standard interior package that includes stone countertops in the kitchen and bathrooms, hardwood cabinetry, a jetted garden tub and his-and-her closets, owners will start with an upscale environment that they can tailor to their individual taste and needs. Each unit offers an open kitchen, flexible guest suite that is easily converted to a bedroom or home office, luxury master bath, balcony and a view of the community from every room.
Eaglescliffe Condominiums will fill a demand for care-free master-planned residential living. Centrally located only a short walk from the Ford's Colony Country Club and the site of a new spa that is in the planning stages, Eaglescliffe Condominiums will include the same rich design traditions and luxury living features found throughout the community, including all-brick exteriors.
Condo owners will enjoy membership privileges in the Ford's Colony Country Club and the new Ford's Colony spa when it opens.
The four-story residential project includes the same 24-hour security blanket that covers the entire community. As an added layer of protection, a new security feature for Eaglescliffe Condominiums requires card access between the parking deck and building entrance.
The Eaglescliffe Condominiums are the first of several projects at Ford's Colony, designed to target specific lifestyle interests. In addition to a spa, a variety of new home sites and plans are in the works.
For additional info contact: John Womeldorf Realtor JohnWomeldorf@LizMoore.com
www.MrWilliamsburg.com 757 254 8136
Saturday, August 26, 2006
New High Rise Condos in Williamsburg Va " New Town"
Foundation Square offers 54 luxury residences with convenience beyond compare. Enjoy One Level Living, Secure Private Underground Parking, and an Elegant Lobby/ Lounge with a Modern Fitness Room. Foundation Square overlooks picturesque Sullivan Square Park and is nestled in the center of vibrant and pedestrian friendly New Town.
Hardwood Floors in Entry, Living Areas & Kitchen
Elegant Plumbing and Lighting Fixtures
Upgraded GE Appliances in Stainless, Black or White
Large Soaking Tub with Ceramic Tile Surround in Master Bath
Tile Shower with Glass Doors in Master Bath
Ceramic Tile Floors in All Baths
Luxurious Carpet in Bedrooms
Large Windows and Private Balcony in Every Unit
Decorative Crown Molding in Living and Dining Area
Pre-Wired for High-Speed Internet, Cable & Telephone
Washer & Dryer in Every Unit
-High Efficiency Central Air & Heat
As a resident of Foundation Square, you will be in the heart of a vibrant community, composed of lovely residences, great restaurants, unique shopping, and entertainment. But that's just in New Town. Find Williamsburg all over again. You will be centrally located to some of the things that make this area great- The College of William & Mary, Colonial Williamsburg, and Jamestown.
Living in Foundation Square is like living in a boutique hotel. Here you will find three floors of residential condominiums over one floor of neighborhood businesses and restaurants. Each open floor plan maximizes a manageable size space, complimented by fine finishes. In the morning, sip a glass of orange juice and glance at the paper while sitting on your balcony. Ride the elevator to the lounge and get in a quick workout in the private Fitness Room. Get ready for work, and on your way out, grab a coffee and a muffin from the neighborhood coffee shop. Enjoy convenience and leisure beyond compare.
For further information contact JohnWomeldorf@LizMoore.com
www.MrWilliamsburg.com search all Williamsburg homes for sale
757 254 8136