Botetourt County is pleased to announce that our Community Development Department has received two prestigious awards from the American Planning Association (APA).
During the APA luncheon, Botetourt County received the 2023 Holzheimer Economic Development Award. This statewide recognition was given to the county for its recently adopted Gateway Crossing Overlay, which is a zoning tool intended to transform an underutilized and underperforming area of the county into a vibrant, mixed-use community that benefits residents, businesses, and visitors alike. The Gateway Crossing Overlay was born out of the Gateway Crossing Area Plan, a small area plan adopted into the county’s Comprehensive Plan in 2017. The plan highlights and prioritizes connectivity, mixed-use structures, multi-family residences, and enhanced pedestrian and bicycle connections. The plan builds off existing amenities such as the Appalachian Trail and the location along three major roadways, Interstate 81, US Route 220, and US Route 11.
While developing the overlay zoning tool, county staff forged relationships with stakeholders and the broader Botetourt community through multiple meetings and workshops, online engagement tools, and direct conversations with citizens, planning commissioners, and elected officials.
This project stood out to the Awards Committee for many reasons, including:
- The county’s initiative to capitalize on a once-in-a-generation redesign of a major road interchange
- The innovative approach to encouraging development in a pre-defined growth area
- The county’s use of online engagement tools and outreach methods to encourage input
Botetourt County Planner Jonathan McCoy was the winner of the Foxhound Award for Distinguished New Professionals. McCoy serves the community with a wide portfolio of responsibilities. He handles long-range planning projects, integrating community engagement and outreach into these projects. In addition, he serves as a staff contact on land use cases that go before the county’s Planning Commission and Board of Supervisors. He is also a member of the Roanoke Valley-Alleghany Regional Commission’s Transportation Technical Committee, manages contracts, pursues grant funding opportunities, and serves on the county’s Budget Task Force. McCoy was also recognized for completing the American Institute of Certified Planners (AICP).
Julie Chop, AICP, CZA, Vice President of External Affairs for APA Virginia, noted that “Jonathan’s contributions to his colleagues are considerable and outsized when compared to most planners at this stage of their careers. His accomplishments demonstrate that he has the full confidence of his department’s leadership, demonstrating dedication, poise, and excellence in his service to the community’s planning needs.”
Community Development Director Nicole Pendleton and McCoy also presented information about Expanding the Housing Landscape in Botetourt to planners attending the conference from all over the Commonwealth of Virginia.
~ Botetourt County Communications