Chesapeake wants to turn farmland into ‘mega-site’

CHESAPEAKE, Va. – The city wants to prepare farmland in southern Chesapeake near the North Carolina border for commercial and manufacturing development.

The City Council plans to ask the Virginia Economic Development Partnership to designate the Frank T. Williams Farms properties as a “mega-site” that will make it shovel-ready for developers, according to a resolution request from the city attorney. The owners would have to agree to sell the land, which is near the North Landing River close to the state line.

Mega-sites are developed to promote business clusters. The land change wouldn’t happen overnight. This farm would need proper zoning, it is currently zoned for agriculture purposes, and it lacks utility lines. The resolution states it would fit into the city’s 2035 comprehensive plan as a unique economic development opportunity and would open new full-time jobs.

The city manager is instructed to apply for the Major Employment and Investment Site Planning grant, which could bring in state funding for the industrial development.