Housing Crisis After WWI: Norfolk's Changing Laws & Neighborhoods In 1896, the Supreme Court affirmed the "separate by equal" doctrine could be added to the Constitution, introducing segregation into local laws across the nation. At this time, Norfolk had...
What the heck is an ADU? Can They Help Norfolk’s Housing?
In-Law Suite? Guest House? Granny Flat? Carriage House? All of these names describe the same thing: the Accessory Dwelling Unit, or ADU. As its name suggests, an ADU is a secondary dwelling located on the same property as a "regular" house. Typically, they are...
Your Guide to a Great OV St. Patrick’s Day Parade
Note: Jump to the bottom of this post for all the deets on the NFK Currents + Mudita Cafe post-parade event: Shamrocks & Shenanigans, and every other post-parade event. After two long years of pandemic postponements, the Ocean View St. Patrick’s Day Parade...
Temporary Casino Considered for Harbor Park: “The Pamunkey Club”
Today at City Council's retreat, City Manager Chip Filer confirmed that the City is working with Headwaters Casino on a potential "temporary casino". Documents shared at the retreat called this "The Pamunkey Club." Hits at the Park, a restaurant at Harbor Park, and...
Rest, Relaxation & Race Part 3:“Draining Our Pool: The Allure of City Park”
Don't miss part 1 and part 2 of this series. You can guess what followed the extreme government divestment of the late 50s and 60s: Worsening schools. Low-paying jobs. Few healthy places to live. Almost no places to recreate. The traumatic conditions spiraled people...
Telling Untold Stories: Laura Titus and the YWCA
To understand Laura E. Titus' legacy, you must first understand the context within which she lived. Born around the start of the Civil War in Norfolk County, she would waste no time making progressive moves for Black women and the greater Black community for centuries...
Getting Those Gains with Adroit Collective
For those working hard to stick to their 2022 goal of being healthier but may be getting a bit stagnant in the run-of-the-mill gym scene, shake things up and try the Adroit Collective. Located in the Railroad District, The Adroit Collective might look low-key on the...
Rest, Relaxation & Race: Reinvigorating Solidarity And Historical Leisure Spaces In Norfolk -Part 2
Part II: Divesting From Human Happiness At a national level, the story of how Norfolk divested from its public assets tracks a uniquely American journey–the confounding results of a civil rights movement that achieved the goal of integration in 1964. Having to, by...
Streateries Set to Make Granby Street Especially Vibrant This Spring
A lot has happened in the last few years. Big changes. Upheaval. The status quo was shaken. The rules changed, bringing about new developments to Norfolk’s Zoning Ordinance. COVID-19 brought swift and dramatic changes to our lives, whether we wanted them or...
Rest, Relaxation, & Race: Reinvigorating Citizen Solidarity and Historical Leisure Spaces in Norfolk: Part I
Hurriedly running errands to prepare for our first big snow a few weeks ago, I sat in the car with my two young sons at a stoplight. My six-year-old described a man he saw waiting near a lone bus stop pole in front of a popular Norfolk shopping plaza from the back...
How Norfolk Wants to Use ARPA Funding
First things first: Norfolk’s ARPA public comment period is closing on February 16th, 2022. Get your comments in and tell the city how you think this $154 million should be spent! The American Rescue Plan Act was signed into law last March, providing $350...
A Blank Canvas in the Heart of Downtown Norfolk
The MacArthur Center Green space, located beside MacArthur Center at the corner of Monticello Avenue and E. Freemason Street, has been home to many outdoor activations events over the years. Beer and wine festivals, a farm market, roller skating and ice rinks,...
Kick Your New Year’s Resolutions Up a Notch with Martial Arts
The new year brings a fresh start for putting healthy habits in place and setting goals for the year ahead. If moving more to get healthier is a goal you’ve set for yourself, it’s essential to do something you enjoy to ensure you’ll stick with it. One unique option...
Missed Opportunities: Norfolk to Take on Opportunity Zones
"First as tragedy, then as farce." It's a familiar phrase for a story that, at this point, is all too familiar. Affordable housing is once again under attack, this time by a federal scheme that threatens to turn poor neighborhoods into mini-tax havens for the wealthy....
Expanding East on the Elizabeth River Trail
Photo by @ana.matopoeia On a brisk and windy day in early December, the Elizabeth River Trail Master Planning Committee set out on their bicycles from Harbor Park, heading east. Their mission: explore potential pathways for the eastward extension of the Elizabeth...
Greyhound Station Dreams Part 2
To recap, the old Greyhound station on Granby Street is on the docket for significant redevelopment, and the City of Norfolk wants proposals. We decided to crowdsource some ideas to see what the community was dreaming up for such a suitable location. Over...
A Hockey Night Out Done Right
Christmas is behind us, and the champagne corks have popped. Now here you are, stuck in a cold, wet month of January. There aren't even any major celebratory holidays on the horizon. So what's a local supposed to do? Well, one of the best night outs in these...
Flooding Puts Norfolk’s Affordable Housing at Risk
January 3rd was the most recent spring tide here in Norfolk. Unrelated to the season, spring tides occur twice a month and are the higher high tides during which the waters “spring” up onto usually dry land. Last November was Norfolk’s latest king tide, or highest...
Dark Money is Flooding Norfolk Apartments
On November 18, 2021, Blackfin/ GMF, a partnership between investment firm Blackfin and a private equity fund, GMF Capital, sold Coastline Apartments in Virginia Beach to an "undisclosed buyer" for $98 million. With 600 units, the Coastline Apartments represents one...
Race for the 89th! Rapid Fire Developments in Snap Election
Delegate Jay Jones dropped a big piece of news on Thursday of last week. He told his constituents that he would be resigning his seat effective December 31st. Jones stated a desire to spend time with his family and recently announced that he and his wife are expecting...
Greyhound Station Dreams
Submit your dreams here The City of Norfolk’s Economic Development Office has put out an official RFP - a request for proposal - for transforming the former Greyhound station at the corner of Granby and Brambleton. This structure sits prominently at the gateway...
Norfolk, Heat Islands, and the Urban Canopy
State Senate Bill 1393 is up for renewal during the 2022 General Assembly. It expands localities' authority to exceed the minimum requirements in their tree replacement and conservation ordinances -- a rule that state law currently limits. Under specific...
ODU Men’s Basketball Kicks Off a Season Worth Watching
ODU Basketball Season Preview Old Dominion basketball was one of the best teams in Conference USA last season. The team finished with a 15-8 record overall and went 11-5 in conference play. The 2020-2021 campaign ended abruptly for the Monarchs in the...
NEON Fest 2021 Brings Big Energy Back to Norfolk
-**Be sure to read the full article for a link to pre-sale NEON tees** NEON Fest returns this week after a year of pandemic pause. For the uninitiated, NEON Fest is one of the premier annual festivals in Norfolk. If there were a Norfolk event bucket list, NEON...
ODU Football takes on Marshall’s Herd on the road
The Old Dominion University Monarchs (1-4, 0-0) begin conference play this Saturday against The Marshall Thundering Herd (2-3, 0-0). ODU’s record doesn’t tell the more nuanced story of their season so far. They’ll be eager to get back in the win column, coming off two...
When Replacing MacArthur Center, Double Down on Downtown’s Wins
MacArthur Center was first conceived well before 1994 upon the announcement of its building plans. It was born out of a development strategy that transformed the city's downtown from a sea of parking lots and old warehouses to a modern downtown. Key anchors like...
A Fall Picnic Guide to Norfolk Parks
Photo by @elefants.in.the.room Fall is in the air, and it’s time to get outside! What better way to enjoy the fall season than to have a picnic complete with some of the best fare Norfolk has to offer. The city is not lacking in the “great parks to have a picnic in”...
Will Granby Street See Major Bike Lane Improvements?
Project Update!!! We covered the Granby Street bike lane project back in 2021, and it’s finally slated to get a vote from City Council. Tuesday, January 25th at 7:00 pm, City Council will meet at City Hall and currently has this project on its agenda. ...
Back To School Local Shopping Guide
Norfolk Public Schools starts back next week as summer vacation comes to a close for adolescents throughout the city. Most of the 'back to school' shopping gets done on the upcoming tax-free weekend in August, but we all know it isn't quite that simple. Those kiddos...
Doctors’ Orders: Get Walking on the ERT with EVMS
There's a lot to love about the Elizabeth River Trail. It's a great place to bike, run, and catch a sunset, among other activities. Walking, which is remarkably accessible, is one of the easiest ways to boost your physical and mental health. The benefits of walking...
132 Miles for 132 Lives, Norfolk Resident Goes the Distance
In the early morning on September 9th, Colin Lowther will depart his Norfolk residence and put sneakers to pavement. The 21-year-old ODU student will be undertaking a 132-mile run through Norfolk and Virginia Beach. For those who aren’t familiar with the misery of...
Proof of Vaccine Now Required for Live Music
When the NorVa welcomes back concertgoers later this month, the venue will require proof of COVID-19 vaccination or a recent negative COVID-19 test. AEG Presents, which operates the venue, announced a vaccine mandate on Thursday for all of its concert halls...
An Update on Short-Term Rentals in Norfolk
Original memo from the City Manager The City Manager's office released a report on the enforcement of short-term rentals in Norfolk last week. The information gave us a glimpse into the quickly evolving economy of short-term rentals in Norfolk. About 240...
How Parking Requirements Hurt Our City
Did you know that, on average, one parking space costs more than $20,000 to construct? A reasonable follow-up question would be, “if they’re so expensive to build, why is so much land dedicated to parking?” Well, friends, as much as I would love to blame the big bad...
TGOV: Ocean View’s Weekly Summer Festivals
If you aren't in the know yet, we are here to enlighten you about "Thank Goodness it's Oceanview." You'll find all you need to know to have a good time at this popular Norfolk beach location and about the two series' that are running strong through August. ...
First Fridays Are Back. Bigger, Better, and Boozier!
First Fridays took a bit of hiatus in 2020 (you know, pandemic things), but they're finally back in action. However, the festival will bear little resemblance to 2019 First Fridays, however, fear not as these changes are decidedly for the better. First up, the...
Celebrate Us, The City That Never Sinks – The First Annual Norfolk Day Festival
Hey Folkers, It's been a helluva year in our little midsize city on the coast. We’ve lost a lot, we’ve persevered through some tough times, and to be honest, we're all still reeling a bit. This summer, our community is finally restarting all those connections...
Badass Babes: LeZandra of LeZandra Photography
"I'm happy," LeZandra, who chooses to keep her surname separate from her business, says emphatically. However, this happiness isn't just happenstance; it's the result of years of dedication, years of learning to trust her gut, and years of building a community...
The Sky’s the Limit, and They Might Just Hit It. Yoga Company on the Rise.
Breathe. Stretch. Repeat. This slogan precisely summarizes what Sky's the Limit Yoga Co. is doing in post-pandemic life. Founded in 2017 by Danielle Collingworth, Sky's the Limit Yoga Co. began with pop-up style classes throughout Hampton Roads....
Badass Babes: Beth Dryer – Meet the force behind the Creative Reuse Center
In the summer of 2018, Beth Dryer saw a need for artistic access in her community. So, Dryer says, "I evaluated if I could be that somebody that did that thing, and it was pretty clear that I could be," and from there, Norfolk's Creative Reuse Center was born. ...
Doing More for the World with Less Than Zero Waste and Refill Station
A global pandemic couldn't stop Chris Simmonds from turning his passion for sustainability into a living by opening not one but three brick and mortar locations in Hampton Roads. Less Than are a small chain of zero waste refill shops offering sustainable alternatives....
Locals Reflect: Norfolk’s Changing
I grew up in Norfolk. More specifically, I grew up in Ghent. I was born and raised in Ghent, went to school in Ghent, and lived in Ghent my whole life (minus a little two-year stint in Western Massachusetts for family reasons). When I tell people this, I often find...
The Curious Case of the Missing Middle Housing and What Norfolk’s Doing About It
Do you ever stroll through the historic areas in Norfolk and think, "Wow, these walkable neighborhoods with a mix of commercial and residential development are just great"? If you don't, that's okay. Unless you're an urban planner, it's unlikely that mixed-use...
Celebrate Freedom and Culture at Juneteenth Solstice Festival at Smartmouth
On June 19th, 1865, some 2,000 Union troops arrived in Galveston Bay, Texas, to announce and enforce the freedom of more than 250,000 enslaved Black individuals. The Emancipation Proclamation and Thirteenth Amendment had previously gone into effect, but freedom...
Later Skater: Skateboard Community Displeased at the Loss of Unsanctioned Skate Park
On Friday, the City of Norfolk announced that it would be starting construction to transform a former industrial site on Water Street into a public green space filled with native plants. The location is a key connector between downtown and the Harbor Park area along...
Work In Progress at the Hermitage Documents the Work We Still Have To Do
If you’ve been in the daze of post-quarantine jubilation and enjoying the rose-tinted shades of the return to normalcy, you might need to stop by the Hermitage this month. On Friday, the Hermitage Museum and Gardens unveils their 13 installation exhibit titled...
This Week in NFK: Pharrell starts a school, Pride Month kicks off, Concerts schedules are growing, Nato Festival, historic beer artifacts, and more!
Get Currents delivered directly to your inbox and never miss a local happening again! Sign up here. Community. Pharrell William's Nonprofit YELLOW is bringing a micro-school to Norfolk called YELLOWHAB. Rip it. The Biden Administration included $83.7 million in...
How to Have A Monumental Memorial Day in Norfolk
Saturday: 9:00 am: Kick that Saturday into gear with caffeine and donuts. Head out to Cova Brewing for a cup of cold brew to get the blood pumping. Don’t forget to grab your yoga mat on the way out the door for later. 9:30 am: Meander across the Shore Drive to the...
This Week in NFK: Lava Presents is Back, The Naro Returns, Aretha Franklin Tribute, and Memorial Day festivities!
Get Currents delivered directly to your inbox and never miss a local happening again! Sign up here. Community. Catch up on the results of Tuesday's City Council meeting here. Rip it. Virginia reports fewer than 100 new COVID-19 cases for the first time in more than a...
Holy Crape! What’s With All These Trees? The Story of Norfolk’s Crape Myrtles
No matter the neighborhood, the beautiful purple, pink, and red blooms of Crape Myrtle trees adorn nearly every block of Norfolk. Whether you find them attractive or made the mistake of parking your car underneath one in the spring (hello, sticky, sappy mess), their...
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