What do "urban suburbs" mean for RVA?

I had a doctor's appointment this morning and they scheduled me out at their new Short Pump location. On my way out after my appointment, I noticed some construction across the street for a new development with an advertisement that said "walk the walk, don't drive the drive." I paused for a second look because.... what? I am in Short Pump. Where am I not driving in SHORT PUMP? 

Basic summary, there is a development being built that is being advertised as "West End's New Urban District." I want to start a dialogue with everyone about this because I am curious about everyone's reactions. I have a few thoughts on it that I will post below. Then if you scroll down, you will see some links, pictures, and screen shots of things I found online. 

Musings & Links

We have a lot of people (especially millennials) moving into the city right now; however, there are challenges that city-living brings that cause some people to eventually leave the city or withdraw portions of their life from the city (read: send their kids to non-public school options). This development creates an alternative that they are billing as all of the positives of city life (e.g. walking community, cool architecture, etc) and there is an implication of the absence of the downsides of living in the city.  While this is an expensive development, as we start to see home values in the city continue to rise (cite: Northside), it becomes more realistic for people to take that equity out of the city. Does this have an impact on Richmond? Does it provide yet another exit for the revolving door of city residents? 


The development is in Henrico County school district and is served by Nuckols Farm Elementary School, Short Pump Middle School, and Deep Run High School. All three of these schools are fully accredited. If you want to dig into the school districts a little more, here are the VDOE "School Quality Profiles" for Henrico and Richmond schools. 


Crime is a fact of live regardless of where you live. It happens. But when people are looking for houses, they are looking up crime rates. Here are Glenn Allen and Richmond's Neighborhood Scout profiles. 

Articles and Websites

GreenGate Community

GreenGate Community Plans

GreenGate Community Brochure

Another restaurant planned for GreenGate development in Short Pump

GreenGate mixed-use development in Henrico bets on urban appeal

Evidently the developers don't realize the "best of Richmond" is the people who live here.

Evidently the developers don't realize the "best of Richmond" is the people who live here.