Roanoke leaders seek input on 150 acre land across from Valley View Mall

ROANOKE, Va. – Roanoke City leaders want residents’ input on what to do with a large vacant property near Interstate 581.

The goal is to create a master plan for Evans Spring.

Roanoke leaders want to make sure all voices are brought to the table if something should be developed in this area — the Melrose-Rugby, Fairland, and Villa Heights neighborhoods.

We caught up with some people who live here who agree the area needs to be cleaned up.

“It does need some cleaning and fixing up around here,” Kathy Robinson said.

Robinson has lived on Lakeview Drive near Evans Spring for nearly 40 years, and wants to see more green space for her grandchild to play.

“It’s a beautiful place to live, especially where I’m at it needs to be fixed up,” Robinson said.

However, 10 News learned different opinions about what should happen for Evans Spring.

“They could have more residents down there, apartment buildings, anything. They need to do something about it,” Michael Poindexter, who lives nearby, said.

Roanoke Assistant City Manager Chris Chittum said the city hired a consultant to gather input for its master plan for Evans Spring.

“We’re embarking on a process for people who live in those neighborhoods,” Chittum said.

Chittum said the idea behind the master plan is to have a gameplan for 150 acres of land if something were developed on the vacant property.

Leaders said the goal is to consider the people most impacted, and as of now, there is no developer.

One idea that still needs to be finalized is to have a mixed-use facility in the area.

“We’ll probably see more intensive uses along the interstate and as we get close to the interface with surrounding neighborhoods probably step down in the intensity and the size of the buildings as well,” Chittum said.

Leaders said while there have been attempts to develop the land in the past, they’re optimistic this time.

They said the city hopes to be successful by gathering input from the community.

“I think easing into the development and not going full speed, this is something that has been in the works since the early 2010′s,” Chittum said.

To voice your opinion, visit the Evans Spring website.

About the Author:

Duke Carter returned to 10 News in January 2022.