Waterfront luxury apartments and restaurant would replace part of Virginia Beach marina built in 1980s – Virginian


Plans to raze part of a marina near the Chesapeake Bay to build waterfront apartments are moving forward, but a new proposal includes a restaurant.

Last year, developer Brad Waitzer pitched an idea to redevelop the Marina Shores Marina property off North Great Neck Road with 261 apartments. The marina sits on Long Creek, across from Bay Island.

Density and traffic were among neighbors’ concerns, and the developers went back to the drawing board. The new proposal includes fewer apartments – 200 luxury dwellings on a smaller footprint – leaving enough space to add a restaurant.

The Planning Commission recommended approval of zoning changes and use permits Wednesday. The City Council will vote on the requests soon.

Under the plan, the dry storage and boat-repair buildings, fuel pumps, retail sales area, and the marina’s main building would be razed to make room for two, four-story apartment buildings, a new swimming pool, open space and the restaurant.

Apartments would rent for $1,500 to $3,000 a month, with some “reaching far above,” Waitzer said.

The marina’s existing wet slips, outdoor swimming pool and restaurant space, occupied by Surf Rider Grill, would remain.

Several residents of Long Creek Cove Condominiums expressed concern about safety with an increase of traffic through their neighborhood’s main street, which is used to access the marina.

Attorney Lisa Murphy, who represented Gale Higgs, owner of the 18-acre property, told commissioners they’re working on an agreement with the neighborhood to build sidewalks.

Planning Department Director Barry Frankenfield offered to look into adding a crosswalk at the intersection of Great Neck Road and Lynnhaven Drive for residents to walk safely to a shopping center across the street.

That would require reducing the speed limit on Great Neck Road north of the Long Creek Bridge, according to a city planner.

Higgs also wants to preserve part of the marina property and would dedicate an easement to residents of Cape Story by the Sea and the Cape Henry subdivision for water access with unpowered boats such as kayaks and canoes.

“Having that preserved … to protect it forever, is really important to me,” Cape Henry Shores resident Chris Wood told commissioners.

The parcel would be conveyed to a nonprofit organization within 18 months, according to the rezoning application.

A city-owned easement on the property, used by the city and the Army Corps of Engineers for dredge operations, would remain.

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