Charlottesville City Council and Staff:

We recognize that the intersection of 10th, Preston, and Grady is unsafe and needs improvements.  It is our belief that the entire Preston corridor needs to be improved.

The City widened Preston Avenue in the 1960s with little community engagement.  That widening split historically Black neighborhoods in half and created a dangerous vehicular barrier between them.  The only reason the widening did not continue all the way to Emmet Street is because wealthier predominantly white neighborhoods were able to prevent it.  

Plans for intersection improvements have been put forward today, again with little community engagement.  A short virtual meeting on June 30th will be the first opportunity that many residents will have to comment on the design after becoming aware of it.  This proposed design, although communicated to be only a placeholder, will define the scope of the Smart Scale project.  The boundaries of that project, proposed features, and its budget will be locked in place if the grant is awarded.  

We find the proposed design inherently flawed for the following reasons:

- Traffic is directed onto Grady, a residential street.  
- Pedestrian safety is not improved, and in some cases worsened as some crosswalks must cross more lanes of traffic.
- The primary flow of traffic from Emmet to downtown must make two turning movements.
- Businesses along Preston are cut off from east-bound traffic.
- Leftover city right of way will be useless and wasted.
- Other than flashing lights, the plan does little if anything to reconnect 10th and Page with Washington Park or the Rose Hill neighborhood.
- The installation of this intersection will set the parameters for any further revisions to the Preston Corridor - before a full corridor study and community engagement can occur.

The Preston Corridor has been on the city’s list to be studied under a small area plan for years now.  Such a study could present opportunities to stitch neighborhoods back together, direct or redirect development, and improve the safety and utility of this street for all users.  Completing this intersection project now could preclude comprehensive ideas that achieve all those goals.  

We, the undersigned, request that the City engage the community properly while establishing a small area plan for the Preston Corridor before engaging in a complete rework of the Preston/Grady/10th intersection. 

Click this link to see the proposed design

Question Title

* 1. If you agree with this petition, please provide your name and address to indicate support.