As I look ahead to the busy summer and the next two Board meetings, I thought I’d cover a couple of topics that will relate to key agenda items at the June and July Board sessions.
Blue Ridge Properties One of the special things about our neighborhood is that we all, as members of the Blue Ridge Club HOA, own several properties and amenities on those properties that can be enjoyed by all residents. There are the high profile properties such as the Club House which is often used for community events and can be rented for private ones. We have Woodbine Park that has open space, a relatively new play structure, and a court that will soon be repaved and striped for both basketball and pickle ball in June. Pickle Ball will be a new option for us and concerns have been expressed about potential noise and use by non-Blue Ridge residents. Use guidelines (hours etc.) will be established and the concerns monitored. There will also be a review on the feasibility of fencing Woodbine as well.
As mentioned last month, now is the time when the Beach Park gets real use with cabana rentals and impromptu picnics. With June and July you get the extreme low tides and it seems on the weekends that everyone is out there walking the beach, paddle boarding and for some brave folks swimming in the Sound. We own three tide flats just on the other side of the rail road tracks. Our special right of way access to the beach is provided by a “lease” with BSNF Rail Road. In the coming months the pathway down to the beach will be repaired and resealed for safety and maintenance. We also will coordinate with BSNF to put a concrete pad on the tracks to provide a safer path to the beach that will put us in compliance with crossing standards.
Some may not know that Blue Ridge also owns 3 tracts of “open” land. Two tracts go through the woods from Mary Ave., under the Woodbine Bridge to Carkeek Park. These tracts involve an easement with the city for the trail and abut 28 private properties. At the June 10 Board meeting, the Board will review an arborist report on the overall health of the trees as it looks like there are a few that may be in danger of coming down. The third tract is the hillside above the rail road and below Blue Ridge Drive and Culpepper.
These properties are assets for all of us. We benefit from them in many ways and there is significant effort that goes in to maintaining them for us to use. It is why we have dues to support our ownership. You’ll note that I did not mention the Pool and Tennis facilities above. It is another asset that provides immense benefits to our neighborhood. And this leads in to the major topic for the JULY Board meeting………
Long Range Planning Committee (LRPC) Dues Structure Recommendation
At the July 8 Board Meeting the LRPC will make their final recommendation for a Board vote on the dues structure question that they have been working on for the last year. After reviewing Blue Ridge business operations/costs and gathering feedback through a survey and “town hall” discussions, the overall recommendation from the committee is to move to a single dues payment that would allow access to the pool and tennis facilities for all residents in 2021.
The full recommendation will be included in a community eblast and available on the website for all residents the week of June 10 and will include the committee’s reasons for the overall proposal and a set of implementation recommendations that attempt to address concerns brought up during the feedback process. The recommendation will also be published in the July Bulletin. With due consideration and recognition of different views and cost concerns from some residents, the committee concluded that it is still in the long run best interests of our Blue Ridge community to make this move. In a nutshell, the committee believes that the recommendation provides equity in shared costs/benefits of all of our assets, stability and predictability in management and budgeting, and fosters community unity.
All residents are encouraged to read the full recommendation and to attend the July 8 Board meeting where another community question/comment period will be provided.