Crime news

Recently, Ghent has experienced two significant crime events.  While all crime is concerning, these two issues were brought to the GNL’s attention by several members.  Here is a brief update from our Community Resource Officer, Jacob Medley.

11/21/2015 at 8:21pm.  Car jacking, 1200 block Matoaka St.  From Officer Medley, “the car jacking over on Matoaka the suspect approached with a handgun.  When the victim refused to give the purse he struck her with a gun and took the vehicle as well.  That vehicle was recovered the next day on Brambleton Ave by Youngsters Park Elementsry.  The bike the suspect rode was taken for further investigation.”

11/22/2015.  Shooting and car chase incident on 800 block of Graydon.  Officer Medley is waiting for more information from the detective division and will forward it as soon as it is available.  As of 2:24pm today, no one had been caught involving this incident.

More information will be posted as it is available.

November 19th, DRAFT agenda


Thursday, November 19, 2015

Chrysler Museum of Art

Call to order and introductions at 6:30pm

Approval of minutes – October, 2015

Safety report – Officer Medley

Reports of officers and standing committees

Treasurer – Karen Reynes

Community Improvement – Paige Rose

Residential Project Review – Karen Reynes

Commercial Project Review – Paige Rose

Membership – Ben Crumpler


Reports of special committees

Holiday Party – Debra Wilborn / Kim Montalvo

Flooding – John Ryan

Ghent Kayak Launch – Matt Haggerty

Ghent Homeless Task Force – Ed Joyce and Karen Bailey


New business, other



November 22nd – Harbor Lights Half Marathon

December 3rd – Residential Review Committee, 6:30pm, The Williams School

December 6th – GNL Holiday Party, 2:00pm – 4:00pm, Page House Inn

December 15th – Final report on Flooding Study by the Coastal Community

Design Collaborative, 7:00pm, The Williams School

January 21st – next GNL membership meeting

Date TBD – Special meeting with Mr. George Homewood, Director of Planning

Harbor Lights half marathon

The Harbor Lights half marathon is Sunday, November 22, 2015.  Traffic notices have been posted, and a post card reminder has been mailed to residents and businesses in the impacted areas.

J&R Racing is coordinating the events and provided the following information about road closures and re-routing of traffic during the race.

  1. Hague residents will be able to exit directly west to Colley Ave. (if they are near Dundaff St.) or to Brambleton to Colley Ave. while the race is in progress as those egress routes will be clear.  Police officers will be at all other major intersections and will allow traffic to cross whenever there is a break in runner flow.
  2. Mowbray Arch area residents can travel east on Fairfax Ave. to Mowbray Arch, then turn right on W. Olney to exit.  They can then turn left on Llewellyn, or continue straight on Va. Beach Blvd.  Runners will be turning off of W. Olney at Botetourt Gardens.
  3. Residents who live along Mowbray Arch will be allowed to move their vehicles (slowly & carefully!) while the race is in progress, but only heading west.  They will be directed to turn right on Drummond, Colonial, Mill, Pembroke, or Fairfax to get back to Mowbray Arch, and then right on W. Olney to exit the area (same as 2 above).

Additional road closure information for the entire course can be found at http://harborlightshalf.com/race-info/street-closuresparking.aspx.


September, 2015 – minutes

Ghent Neighborhood League Minutes

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Chrysler Museum of Art

Board members present: Emily Birknes, Ben Crumpler, Joan McEnery, Susanne Ott, Karen Reynes, Paige Rose

-Minutes from July approved

-Officer Medley reported 4 robberies, Mowbray Arch robbery was online setup, another robbery on Manteo and Princess Anne stolen phone, question from member concerning what is considered loitering and concerns about transient community using going to the bathroom in neighborhood/in front of New Life church, suspicious package located in front of Blair bomb squad cleared it

-President’s report: August 11th flooding presentation had approx. 50 attendees reports will be provided, Ghent Task Force meeting big topic was transient community, introduction of Christine Morris, Chief Resilience officer, city of Norfolk

-Ms. Morris discussed neighborhood specific grants applied for two other areas of the City for regarding long term goal of resilience to flooding, decisions expected January 2016 from the National disaster resilience competition

-Mr. Howard Gordon presented plans for new development on the River at 151 Riverview avenue “Tarrants Bay development” (near Harbors Edge on Colley) it will be a minimum of a year before construction after rezoning occurs. Several members expressed need for public access to development and waterfront use

-Treasurer report Karen Reynes budget submitted and approved by Board as a planning document at pre meeting, Treasurers report attached submitted and approved, will shop for better rate for CD, Ghent Masquerade $100 approved.

-Membership Ben Crumpler, there has been discussion of a mock up for a postcard for membership drive as well as suggestion of a directory.

-Community Improvement Paige Rose focus on Street light repair and the Committee’s discovery that under the VAPGRO contract, City gets receives credit/refund from Dominion if repairs are not completed within a specific timeframe , advise residents to call Norfolk Cares so calls can be logged, member asked status of Colonial avenue traffic calming measures as that project per John Stephenson at Ghent task force meeting, project has been first on the list (after lengthy traffic study confirmed 80% speeding on Colonial) for several years, deaths, and serious incidents and injured individials keep occurring at 600/700 block prior to Olney, noted storm drains are being repaired on Colonial avenue, several questions concerning extended outage of street lights and safety, member suggested GNL be given funds for non repaired lights, President to follow up on that possibility.

-Residential project review Karen Reynes there were 26 in 2013 and 41 in 2014 significant increase, ARB reviewed 2 projects in August there is 1 GNL property being reviewed for a fence in September and on Monday 2 more reviews, members asked about process, report attached

-Commercial project review Ben Crumpler craft brewery application in progress will be presenting, member suggested a general member vote vs. board only vote, member suggested most consideration be given to members/neighbors in immediate zones of impact, Board members suggested and it was agreed that in addition to sending to Board members , ARB and planning commission application will be posted on website when the GNL receives the application. 2 benches to be located per business owner request in front of Bonbonierre on 21st street, board member requested application be sent to board members. There was a bench removed in front of 711 on Colley avenue

-Ghent Kayak launch Matt Haggerty is setting up meeting to be posted on website.

-GBA Improvements being made on 21st street, trash cans, gateway signage considered, heart of Ghent 10K September 26 possible expansion of pedestrian corridor overlay, member addressed rezoning impacting residents because business under 2000 square feet will not be required to provide designated parking further negatively impacting residential parking and already heavy congestion

-Ghent Homeless task force Ed Joyce and Karen Bailey presentation statement attached and member discussion concerning the fair share model and requested NEST report. Ghent Homeless task force Ed Joyce and Karen Bailey presentation statement attached. Member discussion on Task Force’s proposed solutions to lessen impact on Ghent. Office to End Homelessness focus is permanent housing, not services during period of homelessness Task Force asking for City to fund study for day center. Task Force is putting together updated information as to the locations of homeless services in Norfolk and Task Force want to promote information sharing within the service provider community. Another Task Force proposal is to have “navigators” in Ghent – like the ambassadors DNC has. Members asked about bus service provided by Downtown to the Union Mission. President will contact DNC. Member requested NEST data that was promised over a year ago including list of locations and numbers. Ed Royce said NEST is using HMIS. Member said we need to have a “fair share” model. Member proposed adopting a “Five Ward Solution”, starting with having NEST sites evenly divided this year and shared among the City’s Five Wards; a proposal which Ed Joyce will present to the Task Force as an action item and report back at the next GNL meeting. Member suggested that the Task Force make contact with “The Healing Place”. Task Force co-chair said task force is not proposing increasing services in Ghent.

Meeting Adjourned

submitted by Susanne Ott

Mark your calendars! Our annual Holiday Party is a month away. Please join us for edibles and beverages at the Page House Inn:

Sunday, December 6th from 2:00pm – 4:00pm.

You must be a paid, current member to attend. All members were e-mailed an eVite. Please RSVP to that invitation or e-mail info@ghentva.org.

See you there!