“Save McIntire” Group Running Misleading Radio Ads

The McIntire Park Preservation Committee is running ads that contain inaccurate claims, Henry Graff reports for NBC-29. (Here’s a transcript of the ad.)

The narrator claims that “McIntire Park is about to be destroyed,” and that there will be “no more Dogwood Festival or Fourth of July fireworks.” Though it’s true that McIntire Park will be significantly reduced in area—and carved up—by the Meadowcreek Parkway, “destroyed” means that it will cease to exist, which is not true. There were erroneous reports that the Dogwood Festival would need to find a new home, which were immediately corrected by Mayor Dave Norris, who explained that the only problem was what to do with the festival for a single year, during construction. If the changes planned for McIntire would affect the Independence Day fireworks, that’s news to me, but if they can happen for the Dogwood Festival, presumably they can still happen on July 4th.

It seems to me that the reality of what’s slated for McIntire Park is bad enough that there’s no need to go making stuff up.

22 Responses to ““Save McIntire” Group Running Misleading Radio Ads”


  • It’s all in the eye of the beholder–destroyed works for me !

  • When you’re on the wrong side with transpophobia, there’s not much else to do but spread signs and lie your ass off.

  • Norris, Brown and Lynch voted to ruin McIntire Park. A council election is coming up and that is the time to have your voice heard in this matter by not voting for Norris.

  • Nice Waldo, I wish other media was as even handed on this issue-especially when it goes against your stated interest. I really can’t ask for more than that. I was looking on google maps and they show very little “park” land is going to be affected. Is that right or just a screw up on their part?

    The Meadowcreek parkway once completed will provide more park space and open up the park to commuter biking and that a big plus for me. The Save the Park signs should really have a subtitled “no more traffic for McIntire”. It’s enlightened self interest for many who have rarely step foot in the park.

    Thanks Jogger for pointing out who needs my support, does anyone know where I can send a check for Norris?

  • Getonthegoodfoot, I have to agree. I think there’s some serious hidden agendas by some members of the Save McIntire club. So far, it doesn’t seem to be some much about “Saving McIntire” so much as making sure current uses of the park remain the same. Essentially, people that have exclusive access to the park now want to keep that exclusive access, and so are opposed to any new ideas for the park. In many ways, that lack of positive ideas about how the largest park space in Charlottesville can be used is responsible for why we’ll end up with a road and a private athletic facility there. Both nature and planners abhor a vacuum…

    If they were really for “Saving McIntire” then they’d be more involved in the design and planning process. So far they seem more interested in disrupting the process and spreading misinformation than contributing to it.

    I’m saying this as someone who is against the Meadowcreek Parkway and the YMCA. I think both are horrible ideas, but if they are going to happen (and it appears that they are) then I feel they should happen in the very best way possible, and the park used in a way that benefits the whole community.

  • I visited McIntire Park about a month ago on a trip home. I had hoped it’d bring back some nostalgic memories, but in reality there wasn’t a thing there I recognized. The McIntire Park I remember is gone. Kind of a shock, really.

  • The park as everyone knows it now will be gone if the YMCA builds their building on park land, the shelters will be destroyed, and an even bigger parking lot will be built to name just two significant changes to the park. Dirt Worshipper, if you are opposed to something why would anyone waste their time in the planning and design process? Seems to me your time would be better served by trying to stop the processes. Sort of like the stop the MCP crowd is doing. Don’t you agree.

  • No, I don’t. If they were closer to winning then maybe I could see your point, but the odds of them defeating the road at this point are pretty slim. (I’d be delighted though to be proved wrong!)

    Because the road is likely to be built, I think focusing all the energy of groups like the Sierra Club on derailing the process only results in a worse outcome. For example, there was a meeting with the Army Corp of Engineers a while back where they had the opportunity to make productive suggestions on the best way to mitigate damage to wetlands. Instead, the “Save McIntire” folks just took up the meeting with protests over the road’s existance.

    They could have doen the field work to say, point out the occurance of yellow pond lily, and then suggest that similar habitat be recreated for that species. They could have requested that stormwater features do a better job at imitating natural piedmont virginia wetlands, and include a diversity of wetland types. Because the “Save McIntire” folks didn’t voice opinions like these, the road might end up doing far more damage than it needs to, and that’s a shame.

  • I can’t help but see this as two separate problems.
    The reason that I say this is because there are two separate pieces of land separated by a railroad. You cannot walk from the golfcourse (yes, golfcourse) to McIntyre Park. I feel strongly that McIntyre Park should be preserved, but could really care less for the golfcourse.
    The “Save the Park” folks seem to focus on the Meadowcreek Parkway, which doesn’t really impact the “real” McIntrye Park at all (just the golfcourse). Some people have questioned the real agenda of these folks, and I must admit that “Save the Parkway” does not seem nearly as interested in the YMCA damage as the Meadowcreek Parkway project.

  • I’ve walked between the two parts, carefully crossing the railroad tracks at grade level, back of the last parking lot. The trains go very fast and quietly down that track, which has welded rail (no clickety-clack). Anyway, you walk right onto a truck-wide path though the wilderness. If you look at Google maps, you see the perimeter of the golf course is heavily wooded, and isolated from major roads. So it is a bit wilder than the YMCA area, the other big expanse of woods in McIntire, which is alongside the Bypass and towards the fire station.

    It’s really a shame the road is taking the course of the big creek through the low wilderness of the park. Very pretty down there. Cutting a third corridor through that area seems so unnecessary. One of the two existing corridors could have been expanded:

    1. Park Street. The neighborhood, which used to be very powerful on City Council, did not allow it.

    2. The rail corridor. Why did no one think of putting the parkway alongside the tracks? That Bypass bridge over the CSX tracks is the lowest rated bridge in the city, much lower than the Belmont Bridge, whose replacement is soon to send the city a big bill. I searched the federal inspection list, which covers every little bridge & culvert, and that Bypass/CSX bridge was the worst I saw, very low. So if it’s about to fall down and will need replacement anyway, that would have been a good place to construct the parkway and interchange.

    Cutting extra corridors through wilderness is about the worst thing you can do to it. Isolates plant/animal populations into pods, etc. Not to mention the enormity of building roads over creeks, which may be undeveloped and available only because they are flood zones.

    Or donated to the city in perpetuity as a park.

  • And just in case anybody’s forgotten, this whole parkway boondoggle is the remnant of a 1960s plan to shoot four-lane roads through low income neighborhoods, and keep the major corridors through wealthy neighborhoods tree-lined lanes.

    The course was from I-64 at Fifth Street to US-29 North. The four-laning as far as McIntire was almost complete when the historic district on Ridge Street stopped it, since by then African Americans had some say in city politics.

    The other main example is the wide expanse of Preston, destroying its neighborhood, to become the quaint lane of Rugby Road.

  • @Colfer above: Thank god, a voice of reason. You’re absolutely correct in both your posts. Boondoggle is the correct term for it. People keep forgetting why this idiotic road hasn’t been built up to this point (40 years!). And they’re also forgetting who the players are that want it built so badly, and why.

    Lots of people oppose the MCP. Out of that number, some oppose the Y as well. Sorting it all out has become something of a tangled mess. Anyone running misleading ads should cease and apologize. Hopefully all of the MCP opponents won’t be judged by the actions of a few.

  • colfer: On a certain level, I agree with you, though I am not sure I would point my fingers specifically at the wealthy neighborhoods wanting to keep their tree ridden lanes. The same can be said for less wealthy neighborhoods not appreciating their backyards being turned into a commercial playground for a few small businesses. This is exactly what just happened in Belmont over that silly restuarant rezoning, the second of two in a row —

    the MCP is a classic example of a someone witha vision forcing it down others’ throats while a bunch of selfish people support it for their own petty purposes. The losing side are the ones who pay the price for the benefit of other selfish interests.

    The MCP is stupid becuase it doesn’t really solve a problem over more efficient transportation, or badly planned growth.

    That aside, its riduclous that city residents should give up their park and property so a bunch of county residents can more conveniently commute into CHarlottesville for the downtown businesses. All those people on Forest Lakes should have thought about the inconvenience when they moved out there. They didn’t want to be apart of the city system.

    Now, those same residents have mucked up 29 for Charlottesville residents attempting to go North, as well as anyone else. Why anyone’s neighborhood should become the commuter corridor for people who don’t want to be a part of the community is beyond me.

  • Build the MCP.

  • 6 lanes NOW before it’s impossible.

  • Colfer, yours is a voice of reason indeed, and the kind of thinking that we need more of. Absolutely, it should follow the rail grade and stay away from the streams.

    So why isn’t Save McIntire or the Sierra Club advocating that? Why wan’t that viewpoint voiced at the meeting with the Army Corp of Engineers?

    Caesonia, I agree with you as well. It is a stupid road that doesn’t solve a real problem. In fact, it makes an the existing problem of bad planning on 29 even worse.

    At the very least, the City should require everyone to get on board with places 29, and redevelopment of that corridor before the MCP is built. Just building it is throwing away any kind of negotiating power we might have with developers in that region.

  • Point of information. You can walk from one side of McIntire Park to the other without crossing the railroad tracks(illegal). Walk past the wading pool parking lot and across the bridge(which has a sidewalk) over the tracks and you are right across the road from the softball fields.
    I have hiked from UVa down Rugby Road to Rugby Avenue to the park ,down the 250 bypass(adequate room on either side), crossed at the light by the rescue squad station and thence to Downtown, either up Park St., or via McIntire Road. I’m thinking that will be harder to do or impossible with all those interchanges and the road.
    Like to comment on the point made by colfer about the Ridge St. neighborhood. Whats going to stop people from using it as a cut-through from the MCP? Another Rt 29, this one running smackdab thru the middle of the city?

  • The idea of the MCP affecting development is no longer a valid agrument. What the MCP will do is to relieve some of the traffic on Park Street, the 250 By-Pass (Veterans Memorial Way), be a lot safer for the motoring public than Rio Road East is now, and make it much easier to access the 250 By-Pass from Dairy Road, Rugby Ave., Park Street and Locust Ave. But then again the safety of the motoring public has never really been a concern of the opponents of the MCP. Just oppose the MCP under any circumstances, isn’t that the oppositions point of view. Build the MCP and be done with it.

  • @jogger; Just oppose it for any reason was never my point of view, as I stated above. The MCP will not resolve a lot of the traffic problems between 29 North and Downtown. What we needed was a true eastern bypass to bring the traffic in from the North on 250.

    Park street will STILL get slammed in either case. Do you really think McIntyre is going to carry is all now?

    IN a pigs eye.

    Path of least resistance my friend.

  • The only way to really know if all the hypothetical scenario’s opponents to the MCP are spouting off about are true or not, is to go ahead and build the MCP. Then after it is built one side or the other will have the privilege of saying “I told you so.” Now don’t you opponents of the MCP think that is fair.

  • The only way to really know if all the hypothetical scenario’s proponents to the MCP are spouting off about are true or not, is to just relax and not build the MCP. Then after a few years one side or the other will have the privilege of saying “I told you so.” Now don’t you proponents of the MCP think that is fair.

  • Will’m has the right idea but his mirror is inside out.

    We should build the first two lanes of the Target Turnpike and see who comes forward to appreciate the vast amount of new parkland being added to over-compensate for the small amount morphing from one public use to another.

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