Residents provide feedback on latest design for St. Paul’s area housing


NORFOLK, Va. (WAVY) — For the first time, we are getting a look and feel for what the new St. Paul’s area transformation will be like in Norfolk.

The Norfolk Architectural Review Board has released its latest feedback on the preliminary design for the new housing in the St. Paul’s area in Norfolk based on residents’ suggestions.

The initial design for the neighborhood began in July of 2018, and resident feedback has continued since then.

The city released a 3D video that shows the plan for the neighborhood including retail space as well as, for the first time, what the homes will look like. There are townhomes, cottages, and what the city calls mansion-style apartments. Those are duplexes designed to look like large single-family homes.

“I think we’re on the right track, we’ve got good feedback so far,” said Dr. Susan Perry, director of the Office for St. Paul’s Transformation.

A flythrough for the latest design can be viewed below:

The old public housing units in Tidewater Gardens are already coming down to make way for the new housing development that will be located east of church street.

The city promised all the residents who are forced will be guaranteed a home if they want to return in September 2025.

The design team engaged with over 150 Tidewater Gardens residents at the “People First Block Party” event back in July.  Community members gave their input about what they wanted to see in their neighborhood.

The design is still a work in progress and will be refined based on what residents want.

“That’s the goal, for us to design a neighborhood in which everybody wants to sort of live, work and play,” she said.

She added that the parents were excited about the opportunity to buy fresh foods in what has been a food desert. As well as the bright colorful buildings, with porches and balconies, big sidewalks, bike trails and parks.

“We were giggling because some of the children put a big red circle on the picture of the fruits and vegetables because they don’t want to eat vegetables,” Perry said of feedback they received from the block party.

Residents gave their feedback below:

  • Housing:
    • Residents want bright, colorful buildings that are a mix of modern and traditional and “don’t look like office buildings”
    • “Lots of porches and balconies”
    • “Brick buildings that feel permanent and secure”
    • “Would like to see future home ownership options”
  • Community Amenities:
    • Computer labs, music classes, yoga, and gardening
    • Park spaces and playgrounds
    • Walking/bike trails

Residents looking to give further feedback are advised to take the Tidewater Gardens Vision survey, HERE.

Two more surveys open Wednesday. One is about what you’d like to see in the large resilience park the other is about roadways.

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