RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — Mayor Levar Stoney announced a new proposal Monday to build a water tank and pumping station on a portion of Larus Park to allow the Department of Public Works to sell more water to Chesterfield County.
This comes after a previous ordinance was submitted back in April which some residents believed would have taken away from the appeal of the park.
While the city is still giving up 1.2 acres of park land for the new pumping station and water tank, Mayor Levar Stoney and the DPU have entered into a contract to buy 18.2 acres of adjacent land to compensate for the loss.
If the proposal moves forward, this will increase the size of the park by 25 percent, and the mayor says it will make up for the trees lost in order to build the new water facilities.
Mayor Stoney said in a release that he believes this is the best possible resolution after complaints about losing park land in the water deal.
“This is a better outcome and a win-win for our residents,” Stoney said. “Residents will get acres of additional, undisturbed, undeveloped park land which can be used for hiking trails and other passive uses.”
He said that while this resolution betters the park, it also allows the city the chance to improve its own infrastructure while making additional income.
“Our successful water utility will upgrade its infrastructure and return an additional $4.1 million in additional revenue over the next five years to help offset operations and maintenance costs to Richmond ratepayers. And we will be doing the right thing by helping our neighbor in Chesterfield.”
The previous proposal has since been withdrawn to be replaced with a new proposal to be introduced at Monday night’s City Council Meeting.
City Councilwoman Kristen Larson who represents the 4th District where Larus Park is located said she is holding a meeting Monday at 6 p.m. at the Huguenot Community Center to discuss the new proposal with people living in the district.
In addition, the proposal will be discussed at the next Land Use, Housing, and Transportation Committee meeting on Nov. 21 at 1 p.m. in Council Chambers in City Hall. There will be an opportunity at the meeting for public comment.
If the committee takes a vote on the ordinance, it will be considered at the City Council meeting on Dec. 11 at 6 p.m. where there will be an opportunity for another public hearing.
Larson said she is open to hearing what her constituents have to say about the proposal.
“Since the beginning, I have promised to hold a public meeting in the 4th District before I vote on an ordinance. I hope you will join me for this meeting on Nov. 20th at 6 p.m. at the Huguenot Community Center to learn more and provide feedback,” she said in a release.