Letter – Sound off on the Grange

Published 4:09 pm Tuesday, August 29, 2023

Editor, The Smithfield Times:

I moved 2,000 miles to retire here in 2016. After having lived in Sydney, London, Dubai, Buenos Aires, San Francisco, Los Angeles, etc., one of the main reasons I decided to retire here can be summed up in 3 words – SMALL TOWN CHARM.  I’ve had enough of traffic, lines, crime and dense urban environments. I’m extremely happy with my decision – so far.

There is a project (Grange at 10Main) being proposed by the Luter family that will jeopardize my retirement decision by adding several hundred dwelling units as well as over 800 parking spots for the new residents at Main and Route 10 that will forever change this town. 

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I told my grandchildren that if you don’t like what’s going on and remain silent, you deserve what you’re handed. Just a few years ago, I watched what appeared to be an endless line of citizens speak up against the Mallory Scott development only to have the gavel come down – APPROVED!

The Town Council is in a bad place; the best I can tell, the vast majority of voting citizens in the town are against this project.  If we don’t speak up, we deserve what we are handed down. 

The Town Council members voting on this project are as follows:

Steve Bowman – Mayor

Jeff Brooks

Valerie Butler

Michael Hall

Renee Rountree

Michael Smith

It appears the project will be approved regardless of the opinions of the registered voters.  The phone number for the council is 757-365-4200. If you support the project, do nothing.  If you are comfortable with today’s status quo, do nothing. If you don’t want to see our town be forever changed, please give them a call or write to them at P.O. Box 246, Smithfield, VA 23431.

May I also encourage citizens to do this by the end of August as the project will probably be approved the first week in September. Should that happen, it should be easy to track which council members voted for and against; and when the next election arises, I hope you vote accordingly.


Lanford Pritchett