Demographics in Fluvanna County changing
FLUVANNA COUNTY, Va. (CBS19 NEWS) -- Over the past decade, Fluvanna County has been developing, and the community at Lake Monticello has been playing a key factor.
“Lake Monticello was founded in 1969 and was meant to be a retirement community,” said Marike Henry, the Director of Communications for Lake Monticello.
It was supposed to be a quiet area, perfect for people who are ready to settle into a peaceful lifestyle.
“It started off primarily as a retirement community, marketed heavily to people from Pennsylvania, New York, and New Jersey, and that was part of the attractiveness,” said Fluvanna County Supervisor Tony O’Brien.
In the early 2000s, there was a shift. More younger families saw the lake as an investment opportunity.
“We saw a lot more people that were saying ‘I’m going to retire in 10 years, 15 years, I would like to have a house near the lake and so you’re seeing that happen,” O’Brien said.
That shift led to growth. In 1990, the community had about 12,000 people. Now, there are closer to 27,000.
It was during these three decades that families started realizing how affordable it was to move to the lake full-time.
“Wanted to live in the Charlottesville area, and just found that the housing was very expensive, and it was affordable here and that’s why we came here,” Henry said.
“Myself, I came from Charlottesville and moved out there because it was a place that I could afford, and was on the water,” added O’Brien.
So that means there are fewer retirees and more younger people.
“We know from the census that 21 percent of our residents are older than 65 and 24 percent are younger than 18. That’s just a really good indication that our residents are much younger than they used to be,” said Henry.
That means the county needs a bigger school.
“We first opened the new high school, this was back in maybe 2010 or 11, I think something like that. There was a lot of angst about the cost of that high school and whether or not we were growing too fast,” said O’Brien.
He adds there are no current plans to expand the school because it is not yet at capacity and there is room to adjust as the population continues to change.
These days, houses range greatly in price, but those prices have been on the rise.
“We just had a record-breaking sale. The house sold for $1.25 million. It was on the water, that’s the most expensive house ever sold at the lake. So you’ve got $1.25 million and then maybe you’ll be able to buy a rancher you know for well now 220, 230 maybe,” O’Brien said.
Lake Monticello community members say they are making some big changes for the younger generation.
“Right now, we’re kind of trying to assess what the needs are of our community now that it is changing,” Henry said.
For example, Lake Monticello will be opening an all-inclusive playground in Central Virginia this summer.
“In the past, the playgrounds were mainly for visiting grand-kids and now it’s for a community that’s here all the time,” said Henry.