David Ehrenwerth, Mid-Atlantic Regional Administrator, General Services Administration, traveled from Philadelphia to discuss the merits of the $51 million renovation of the Richard F. Poff Federal Building project. His presentation took place during the 2:00 p.m. session of Roanoke City Council. During his presentation he said that construction of a new building, as suggested by many, would cost twice as much. Congressman Bob Goodlatte (D-6) has vehemently opposed what he believes is a waste of Recovery Act (stimulus) money. Pete Larkin, Goodlatte’s aide listened as Ehrenwerth spoke. All council members were supportive of the renovation expressing their desire to keep federal employees working downtown where they would patronize city restaurants and retail businesses.
Sales Contract – Buena Vista Center
Scott and Ascension Horchler purchased Buena Vista Center in Southeast Roanoke for $75,000 in September 22, 2010. The contract with the city was subject to the sale of their home in Midlothian, Virginia. They were granted an extension on the closing date to April 1, 2011.
The Horchlers have not been able to sell their home in the current real estate market. They still want to purchase the property and have lowered the asking price on their home in an effort to sell their property quickly. The renovation was supported by the neighborhood.
Huff Lane Elementary School:
The Roanoke City School Board officially handed the Huff Lane Elementary School property to the city. The property was accepted and council unanimously agreed to instruct the city manager to issue a request for proposal to sell the property. The proceeds from the sale will go back to RCPS specifically to expand Round Hill kindergarten through 5th grade. Huff Lane students have been attending classes at Round Hill since the beginning of this school year. Amy Cosner, President of the Dorchester Neighborhood, spoke at the 7:00 p.m. council meeting opposing the sale. She asked that it be retained as park space for the neighborhood.
Riverland Road / Bennington Street / Mount Pleasant Blvd. Roundabout VDOT project
The Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) is ready to proceed with improvements to the Riverland Road, Bennington Street and Mount Pleasant Boulevard intersection. Council approved temporary right of way access on a portion of the Greenway. To avoid disruption of the use of the Greenway, work will be performed at night as much as possible. The project will begin sometime in the summer of 2012.