The News Desk is a collection of news, notes and breaking items affecting the Fredericksburg community.
BUSINESS BRIEFS: Oktoberfest not drawing controversy
Capital Ale House’s fifth-annual Oktoberfest, which is set for Saturday in downtown Fredericksburg, has not generated the same public controversy as has occurred in previous years.
Many downtown merchants publicly objected to previous Oktoberfest events, saying the closure of the 800 and 900 blocks of Caroline Street to vehicular traffic made it hard for their usual customers to come shop.
Last year, some changes were made to the setup that allowed people to cross over Caroline Street within the event area.
Some merchants said that satisfied their concerns about Oktoberfest, which typically brings thousands of people downtown.
Capital Ale President Matt Simmons said he hasn’t heard anything negative about this year’s local Oktoberfest. Proceeds from the $2 cover charge will go to the Fredericksburg Main Street Initiative, which is now forming a board and hiring an executive director.
Fredericksburg Economic Development Director Karen Hedelt attributes the lessening controversy to the improved pedestrian flow in the event area, as well as merchants adapting to the event and seeing the secondary benefits as visitors shop and eat downtown.
In addition to ample beer and food, Oktoberfest features live music and dancing, and activities for kids such as inflatables and face-painting. The gates open at 11:30 a.m., and Mayor Mary Katherine Greenlaw will tap the ceremonial keg at noon. The outdoor festival wraps up at 10 p.m.
Silver proposing apartments at Cosner
The Silver Cos. is proposing 274 new apartments near the Spotsylvania Regional Medical Center, an area where many apartments have been proposed and built of late.
Silver affiliate Cosner East LLC recently asked the county to rezone about 20 acres for the project, which would be near Silver’s Poet’s Walk memory-care facility.
Silver principal Jud Honaker said his company would develop the proposed apartments itself if the rezoning is approved. He said they would be high-end apartments with many amenities.
Station Square at Cosner’s Corner, a complex formerly called the Haven, includes 260 apartments at the Cosner East development off U.S. 17. MAA, a real estate investment trust that owns the complex, has the right to build another 220 apartments on adjacent land.
Community Housing Partners of Christiansburg, a nonprofit that builds affordable housing, recently bought an 8.2-acre plot at Cosner East and plans a 72-unit apartment complex called Overlook Terrace.
The Spotsylvania Board of Supervisors also recently approved plans for 610 apartments at Crossroads Station, a development just down U.S. 17 from Cosner East that will be the site of the new Virginia Railway Express station.
Also, according to Spotsylvania planning documents, a proposal was recently submitted for a rezoning on about 12 acres on nearby Cosner Drive for 166 new apartments, of which 78 would be age-restricted. The applicants for that project are listed as Schaumber Development and RCH Land Sales LLC.
Restaurants planned at Harrison Crossing
Two new fast-food restaurants are planned in the area of Spotsylvania County’s Harrison Crossing shopping center.
Site plans were submitted last month to Spotsylvania’s planning department for Wendy’s and McDonald’s restaurants off State Route 3.
A 3,844-square-foot Wendy’s is planned on a 1-acre site at 5801 Plank Road, on the north side of State Route 3 where a Ruby Tuesday restaurant had once been planned. The applicant is Danville-based Catie Food Systems Inc.
A 4,393-square-foot McDonald’s is planned on 2 acres at 5642 Plank Road, on the south side of State Route 3 next to a Walgreens store. The applicant is McDonald’s USA LLC.