Why is the Frank T Williams Farm Tract in Chesapeake, VA not a viable option as an unique economic development opportunity UEDO for Virginia?

This particular location is located within the 5 mile perimeter that the NSA Northwest Annex Navy Base has deemed as having the potential to create electro-magnetic interference with the Military ROTHR Relocatable Over The Horizon Radar. Locating a business within this 5 mile perimeter can create interference issues for both the military’s radar and has the strong potential of creating intermittent technology issues for a business.  (See page 69 of report link below).


There are very questionable soil issues for sustainable building as the marshland had been back filled years ago and the area is prone to flooding. It is located directly between two wildlife conservation areas which impedes egress into the site and prevents the opportunity for further development to surround and thrive from future potential business. “Representatives of the Great Dismal Swamp Wildlife Refuge, the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries, the Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation, and The Nature Conservancy Southern Rivers Program all submitted comments expressing concerns about the proposed development .”   (page 90 of report link below)
There are no utilities in that area and would cost an extensive amount of money to reach that rural area of Chesapeake. There are other more viable options and areas of Cheseapeake, VA in need of revitalization. Thousands of citizens who live in that area are opposed to the development and formed a citizen activist group called “Stop Development Southern Chesapeake” to protect their rural heritage and advocate for smart growth within the city.
Why is this site being so strongly pushed? My guess is that Frank T Williams has contributed over $41,000 over the years to many state and local politicians both personally and through his business including Mayor West, Virginia State Delegate Barry Knight & Virginia State Delegate Cliff Hayes.
To put it “frankly” there are better sites for economic development within Chesapeake. Unfortunately several Chesapeake city council members appeared “tired” of hearing citizen input and literally fell asleep during the meeting.

Dwight Parker is up for re-election in May 2020. We are not sure if he meant to vote FOR the mega-site… or if he thought he was hitting snooze. Luckily Mayor West allows citizens to clap and that woke Steve Best up in time. Ike (who was struggling with a few “touch and gos”) and Ritter (fully awake and listening) are both up for re-election in May 2020.

Mayor West will also be up for re-election then. He physically got up and walked around to whisper in someone’s ear during one public speaker’s comments and left the chambers in mid sentence during another speaker. Mostly awake… but clearly disinterested.

This information was requested by a citizen who was unfamiliar with who is who on city council. Perhaps we need poll workers to hand out sample ballots. Republican, Democrat or AWAKE!

How did Chesapeake City Council vote?
Steve Best (R), Robert Ike (R), Mayor West (R), Dwight Parker (D), Susan Vitale (R) & Dr. Ella Ward (D) voted in favor of the mega site.  Matt Hamel (R), Vice Mayor De Triquet (R) & Debbie Ritter (R) listened to citizens concerns and opposed the mega site.


Jo Anne Gallant
Licensed Real Estate Agent in Virginia & North Carolina
Licensed Appraiser in Virginia
Multi Year Circle of Excellence Realtor
Concerned citizen of Chesapeake