Business Improvement District

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A business improvement district is a specific geographic area within a community where property owners are levied an additional tax that goes for a specific purpose. The idea has been raised in Charlottesville on at least two occasions but one has not yet materialized.


Mayor Maurice Cox raised the idea at a budget work session on March 12, 2003. He said money raised could go to pay for mall improvements. [1]

2012 - 2015

In the fall of 2014, the Downtown Business Association of Charlottesville began investigating the creation of a Business Improvement District|business improvement district]] to help raise revenue to pay for additional services in and around the Downtown Mall. [2] Bob Stroh read a letter to Council on February 17, 2015. That night the idea was championed by Jim Neale, Ludwig Kuttner, Wes Bellamy and Louis Schultz. [3] However, the DBAC withdrew the idea in March 2015. [4]


The idea was to levy a 13-cent property tax on land and buildings around the mall. However, the concept drew the opposition of many landowners. [5]

City's community improvement district

The City of Charlottesville had previously discussed the idea in December 2012. Economic development director Chris Engel documented city history on the issue in a memo. [6]


  1. Web. Charlottesville City Council meeting minutes, .pdf, Council Chambers, City of Charlottesville, March 12, 2003.
  2. Web. City Council supports formation of special downtown tax district, Sean Tubbs, Charlottesville Tomorrow, August 19, 2014, retrieved September 2, 2014.
  3. Web. Charlottesville City Council meeting minutes, .pdf, Council Chambers, City of Charlottesville, February 17, 2015.
  4. Web. Downtown business association withdraws tax district request, Sean Tubbs, Charlottesville Tomorrow, March 2, 2015, retrieved April 27, 2016.
  5. Web., Sean Tubbs, Charlottesville Tomorrow, February 22, 2015, retrieved April 27, 2016.
  6. Web. Business Improvement Districts, Chris Engel, Memo to City Manager Maurice Jones, City of Charlottesville, December 20, 2012, retrieved April 27, 2016.