Archive: Development, Growth

Transformation of Tysons; Plans and Proposals Coming Soon

According to this article from today's front page, the details of several proposals to transform the largest business district in Fairfax (and one of the largest in the entire country for that matter) from a sprawling haphazard maze, into a livable, walkable urban center, will be unveiled in the coming weeks as planners and government officials begin to make the decisions that will shape Tysons Corner for the future. Some say it can't be done unless shifts occur in the way certain fundamental aspects, particularly roads and transportation, are envisioned....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | May 29, 2008; 08:40 AM ET | Email a Comment

150-Room Hotel Planned For GMU Campus

George Mason University officials have plans to construct a seven-story hotel on Chain Bridge Road, the need for which, they contend, is further indication that the University has outgrown its commuter-school reputation. Some of the Fairfax campus's neighbors aren't convinced this is a positive development though. Read the news in today's Metro section....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | April 3, 2008; 09:51 AM ET | Email a Comment

UPDATE 3/27: Ruling Against Regional Tranportation Fund Spells Trouble For Belvoir Road Plan

Updated 3/27 According to an article in today's Fairfax Extra, the ruling by Virginia Supreme Court against a regional tax plan to fund transportation improvements, one of the big losers will be the plan to improve roads and ease congestion around the fort. The decision eliminates $12.1 million the state planned to spend on the project. Updated 5/18/07 Responding to an amendment proposed by Rep. Jim Moran (D-Va.), the House of Representatives passed a bill that would require transportation improvements be made before the U.S. Army would be allowed to move 22,000 jobs to Fort Belvoir. The story is here. Originally posted 2/8 Amid concerns about what an influx of 21,00 new personnel at Fort Belvoir could do to complicate traffic and other problems around the Army base, local congressional leaders are asking federal officials delay the base realignment process. They say that the additional time will allow needed preparation...

 

By Focus on Fairfax | March 27, 2008; 10:15 AM ET | Email a Comment

UPDATE 2/29: Army Narrows BRAC Alternatives

Updated 2/29 Two Alexandria locations and the General Services location in Springfield are still in the running to get the jobs moving from Fort Belvoir. Read the latest in this article from this week's Fairfax Extra. Updated 12/17 An article on with more details and analysis of what local and regional changes can be expected be of BRAC shuffles was in yesterday's Metro section. Updated 11/30 The latest on the increasingly stiff competition to lure the jobs originally planned for Fort Belvoir is in this story from today's Metro section. Updated 10/11 The plan to shift some BRAC jobs from Fort Belvoir jobs to Springfield is facing a challenge from a private property owner of 16 acres along Eisenhower Avenue in Alexandria. Lee District Supervisor T. Dana Kauffman (D) calls the Alexandria proposal a "rigged deal." Read about it in this article from today's front page. Updated 8/27 The neighborhoods...

 

By Focus on Fairfax | February 29, 2008; 09:35 AM ET | Email a Comment

What's Going Where

Here is the key to this month's growth map. Be sure to check the print edition of the Fairfax Extra inside the Home section of your Fairfax-zoned edition of the Washington Post to see exactly where, 'what' is going....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | February 8, 2008; 12:55 PM ET | Email a Comment

Falls Church City Center Project in Works

If the Falls Church City Council gives final approval later this month, which they appear ready to do according to this article in this week's Fairfax Extra, construction of a $317 million residential, retail and office complex could begin as early as this summer. Mayor Robin Gardner is one of the proposed project's champions but some in the city say the plan could be a boondoggle. Read the article and share your thoughts....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | February 8, 2008; 12:03 PM ET | Email a Comment

Bill Could Ax Development Proffers, Force Growth Curbs

A bill before the Virginia General Assembly could end the system by which builders offer proffers of cash and land to offset the impact of new developments. Fairfax officials largely have decried the bill, which would replace the proffers with impact fees that would yield much lower value to localities, saying that it could force them to curb rezoning authorizations and greatly slow growth. The news is in this morning's Metro section....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | February 4, 2008; 10:06 AM ET | Email a Comment

'Midtown Springfield' Plan a Downturn Casualty

The grand plans to remake Springfield are among those regional development visions that have been relegated to the scrap heap because of the downturn in the real estate market, according to this story in yesterday's Washington Post. For news about another project, Kingstowne Towers, that looks like it will be built check out this article from today's Metro section....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | January 29, 2008; 10:55 AM ET | Email a Comment

Tysons May Get Trolley or Monorail to Connect Metro Stops

Reinventing Tysons Corner will require more than just a Metrorail line say planners. It will require a "circulator," a dedicated, fareless method of moving people from the furthest reaches of Tysons to the rail stations while remaining out of the general traffic patterns. Read more about the idea in today's Fairfax Extra....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | December 20, 2007; 11:18 AM ET | Email a Comment

Fairfax's Monthly Development Map

Here's a new look at, 'What's Going Where.'...

 

By Focus on Fairfax | December 6, 2007; 12:11 PM ET | Email a Comment

Kingstowne Developer Contributed $35,000 To Lee District Candidate

According to this article from Saturday's Metro section, Jeff C. McKay, the Democratic candidate for Lee District supervisor, has received $35,000 in contributions from a developer who is seeking changes in his agreement with the county which would allow the construction of four office buildings in Kingstowne. McKay said the contributions have not influenced on his decision to support the developers proposal which is supported by the Lee District's Land Use Advisory Committee. McKay said had the ommittee not supported the proposal he also would have opposed it....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | November 5, 2007; 10:15 AM ET | Email a Comment

What's Going Where?

What's developing in your neighborhood? The Fairfax Extra, presents the October "What's Going Where" map....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | October 4, 2007; 02:14 PM ET | Email a Comment

New Affordable Housing Requirements Draw Fire

Newly approved requirements that 12% of units in new high-rise housing must be designated for affordable housing if the developer wants to increase density over the current zoning allowances are drawing fire from critics who say the measure goes too far, or alternately not far enough. The Board of Supervisors also increased the amount of money a family could make and still qualify for affordable housing. Read the news in today's Fairfax Extra....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | October 4, 2007; 01:46 PM ET | Email a Comment

Broad Support for Merrifield Town Center

A proposal to build a walkable town center for Merrifield, complete with shopping, condominiums and entertainment is enjoying broad support from local residents as well as local leaders, a noteworthy accomplishment in a county where opposition to development has become the expected norm. Read about what makes this project one that most people seem like they can get behind in today's Fairfax Extra....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | September 20, 2007; 11:13 AM ET | Email a Comment

Developer and Preservationists Square Off Over Park

The story is set in West Virginia's Harper's Ferry National Historical Park, but Fairfax readers -- who always seem keen on development news and how it relates to our own crowded existence here -- might be interested in this item from today's Fairfax Extra....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | September 13, 2007; 01:57 PM ET | Email a Comment

UPDATE 9/11: Supervisors Vote For Commercial Tax Increase

Updated 9/11 The Board of Supervisors yesterday voted unanimously for the tax increase, the first step to securing the new funding. The news is in today's Metro section. Originally published 8/8 The Fairfax County Board of Supervisors will vote next month on whether to make the county the first Northern Virginia County to take advantage of a provision in the transportation agreement passed in the General Assembly in April and raise taxes on commercial property to fund transportation projects. Today's Metro section has the details....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | September 11, 2007; 09:17 AM ET | Email a Comment

What's Going Where?

The county's newest monthly growth map is here, courtesy of the Fairfax Extra....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | September 6, 2007; 11:14 AM ET | Email a Comment

Supervisor Wants Action on Springfield Eyesore

A dilapidated restaurant building in Springfield is being held up by some county officials as an example of the commercial blight that existing ordinances leave them ill-equipped to deal with. The story is in today's Fairfax Extra....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | August 16, 2007; 11:49 AM ET | Email a Comment

Questions About Revitalization in Seven Corners

Critics are questioning the commitment of county officials who say they want to revitalize commercial districts like Seven Corners, pointing to the piecemeal approach in that neighborhood and the lack of planning as examples of that the efforts are half-hearted. The story is here....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | August 6, 2007; 10:04 AM ET | Email a Comment

Residents Question Plan For Affordable Apartments

Skepticism from Springfield District residents greeted officials presiding over a meeting held last week about plans to build an affordable apartment complex adjacent to the county Government Center. The planned development is intended to house primarily county workers, but residents expressed concerns that the complex could shelter homeless people or be used for federally subsidized housing. Today's Fairfax Extra has the story....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | July 26, 2007; 10:48 AM ET | Email a Comment

UPDATE 7/24/07: Builders Find Loophole On Home Height Restrictions

Updated 7/24/07 According to this article from today's Metro section. The Fairfax County Board of Supervisors will try to close a loophole that has allowed some builders to construct homes in excess of the county's 35-foot limitation by artificially elevating lots with extra fill dirt. Supervisor Gerald W. Hyland (D-Mount Vernon) said that he has been receiving complaints about the practice from neighborhoods in his district. Updated 8/21/06 This article from this Saturday's Metro section describes how some builders and home buyers are trying to resolve problems with the height of their homes before they can move in. Updated 8/14 An article published in yesterday's Metro section explains how thousands of too tall homes cane to be built in the county. Updated 8/1 This Metro section story reports that the Board of Supervisors decided yesterday that buyers of new homes that are in violation of the height restrictions will have...

 

By | July 24, 2007; 10:23 AM ET | Email a Comment

Tysons Traffic "War Room" Under Consideration

If you think Tysons Corner traffic is bad now, you might not have seen anything yet. In response to an anticipated worsening of traffic as construction on Metrorail and other major projects begin in the area, the county is exploring the idea of a "war room" to coordinate solutions to the problems that will inevitably arise. The story is in today's Fairfax Extra....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | June 28, 2007; 12:48 PM ET | Email a Comment

Rail Plan May Quash Potential to Remake Tysons

Critics of the overhead rail plan in Tysons Corner have long said that building the Metrorail extension on elevated tracks may ruin any chance to create a walkable, bikeable downtown for the area. According to this story from today's Metro Section, that's entirely likely since the plan will eliminate any chance of remaking the cloverleaf interchange where routes 7 and 123 come together, effectively dividing Tysons Corner....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | June 27, 2007; 10:21 AM ET | Email a Comment

What's Going Where

Want to know what the heck it is that they are getting set to build down the street? Check out the Fairfax Extra's monthly look at the coming attractions of construction projects....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | June 7, 2007; 11:49 AM ET | Email a Comment

Springfield GOP Candidates on the Issues

The Republican candidates for the Springfield seat on the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors, Pat S. Herrity and Stan L. Reid, have similar positions on issues of development but differ on the continued existence of the Fairfax County Development Authority; Herrity likes it, Reid doesn't. Read more on the candidates platforms in this article from yesterday's Metro section....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | June 4, 2007; 10:24 AM ET | Email a Comment

Supervisors Seek End to Loopholes on Home Additions

For years say county officials, builders have been exploiting a loophole in the county code that allows them to build what are essentially new homes on existing foundations and call the projects additions, thus avoiding meeting more stringent health and safety requirements. Now the Board of Supervisors is looking to close the loophole. Read about it here....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | May 25, 2007; 10:53 AM ET | Email a Comment

Immigration and Overcrowded Houses

This front page article in yesterday's paper on neighborhood disputes over overcrowded houses in Fairfax County has spawned a spirited discussion with people from Fairfax, the Washington region and elsewhere in the country, joining in by posting comments about the problem. Focus on Fairfax invites readers to continue the discussion here....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | May 14, 2007; 10:53 AM ET | Email a Comment

School Bond Referendum Set for Nov. 6

A $365.2 million bond measure will be put before voters in the Nov.6 election. The Fairfax County School Board would use the money to build two new schools and renovate and expand others and to expand the county's full-day kindergarten program. The news is in today's Fairfax Extra....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | May 10, 2007; 12:11 PM ET | Email a Comment

What's Going Where

It's the first Thursday of the month and that means it's once again time for our regular look at what new building projects are in store for your neighborhood. Check it out here....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | May 3, 2007; 10:56 AM ET | Email a Comment

Study Projects Fairfax Worker Shortage

An analysis of Fairfax County's projected job-growth over the next 25 years forecasts that by 2030 the number of jobs will have grown by 89 percent, while the population will have grown by 44 percent. The news that a large portion of the local work force will likely need to be imported from other jurisdictions is adding to the concern about our crowded roads and expensive housing. A news article was published in this morning's Business section....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | April 30, 2007; 10:28 AM ET | Email a Comment

Two-Wheeling in Tysons: Is There a Future for It?

One of the things local officials want to know as they prepare to remake Tysons Corner is, how can they make it easier for bicyclists to get around? To that end a group of cyclists took to the streets in Tysons on Saturday to find out just how bad it is and how much will have to be done to make the corridor bike-friendly. The story was in yesterday's Metro section....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | April 23, 2007; 10:43 AM ET | Email a Comment

Growth is Top Issue in Vienna Council Race

Five candidates will vie for three seats on the Vienna Town Council in a town election set for May 1. Growth issues and how Vienna's leaders hope to maintain the town's sense of identity amidst development pressures have emerged as the central issues of the campaign. Today's Fairfax Extra has the story....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | April 19, 2007; 11:47 AM ET | Email a Comment

Tysons Traffic Unfunded for Upcoming Construction

According to this article from today's Metro section, despite two major construction projects set to begin within a year, state transportation officials have yet to set aside any cash for the management of traffic through Tysons Corner during that time....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | April 10, 2007; 08:42 AM ET | Email a Comment

What's Going Where

Want to know what that new development is going in down the street? You need to read What's Going Where in today's Fairfax Extra....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | April 5, 2007; 05:13 PM ET | Email a Comment

Richmond Vote on Builder Fees Set for Wednesday

Gov. Timothy M. Kaine's (D) proposal to give local governments greater powers to impose fees on developers to help offset the traffic congestion their projects create, is set to come to a vote before the General Assembly on Wednesday. Supporters of the proposal say that such a measure will be helpful, but critics in the building industry say that they will be forced to pass additional costs along to their customers. The details are in this article from yesterday's Metro section....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | April 2, 2007; 10:40 AM ET | Email a Comment

UPDATE 3/23: Details of Any Dulles Rail Deal Likely To Remain Secret

Updated 3/23 A state law governing road and rail projects likely will afford the players in a Dulles rail project a large degree of secrecy with regard to the details of any plan they work out to move thee project forward, according to the latest in today's Metro section. Updated 3/9 According to this article from today's Metro section, Gov. Kaine's opposition to the tunnel is likely to be fortified by the results of a new state study. Other officials say that they are preparing to move ahead without the tunnel and that, "the planning phase of this project is closed." Updated 2/15 Congressman Tom Davis (R) has come out in favor of the tunnel. The news story is in today's Metro section. Updated 2/12 Even as the local cry against overhead tracks becomes stronger, Gov. Timothy M. Kaine (D), has not changed his mind to favor the tunnel option....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | March 23, 2007; 09:40 AM ET | Email a Comment

Supervisors Define, Endorse Transit-Oriented Development

The Fairfax County Board of Supervisors yesterday formally approved a policy which will encourage high-density, pedestrian-friendly development within a half mile of transit stations. The news is here....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | March 13, 2007; 08:46 AM ET | Email a Comment

Tysons Tunnel Pits Chamber Against Chamber

The Greater Reston Chamber of Commerce last week sent a letter to Gov. Kaine expressing concern about the support it's sister chamber in McLean is throwing behind the effort to get the Metrorail through Tysons Corner going underground instead of over head. At the the root of the Reston business community's concerns is the danger of higher tolls for those using the Dulles Toll Road should the pursuit of the tunnel option destroy hopes of federal funding assistance for the project. The news story is in this morning's Metro section....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | March 12, 2007; 09:41 AM ET | Email a Comment

Belvoir Environmental Statement Open For Public Review

The public review and comment period for the draft environmental impact statement for Fort Belvoir's realignment plan is now open. Details are in the Fairfax Extra of March 8....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | March 8, 2007; 01:14 PM ET | Email a Comment

What's Going Where

It's time once again for that popular monthly feature on development projects that we here at Focus on Fairfax like to call the growth map. You know it as "What's Going Where." Check it out....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | March 1, 2007; 11:24 AM ET | Email a Comment

Fairfax Blvd. Redevelopment Planned

City planners and business owners would like to see the 50 year old strip malls, motels and car dealerships along Fairfax Boulevard in the city's center transformed into a walkable business district with shops offices and restaurants. Read about the new master plan in the works for the area in today's Fairfax Extra....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | March 1, 2007; 11:06 AM ET | Email a Comment

For Tysons Corner, A Zip Code of Its Own?

Tysons Corner is neither a part of McLean nor Vienna, though addresses in the area are listed as one or the other. Alan Fogg, the communications director for the Fairfax County Economic Development Authority, writes in this column from yesterday's editions of The Post that, with redevelopment beginning, the time has come to give Tysons its own zip code....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | February 26, 2007; 10:18 AM ET | Email a Comment

Blogging The Tunnel

The ongoing saga of the proposed Tysons Metro tunnel is of interest to other bloggers too. Check out today's Fairfax Politics column for that story, as well as a news on recent decisions that effect gun laws and a look at another GOP hopeful for the Springfield supervisor's seat....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | February 22, 2007; 11:24 AM ET | Email a Comment

North Hill Compromise to Offer Housing, Trails?

Supervisor Gerald W. Hyland (D-Mount Vernon) said the compromise proposal to redevelop land in the North Hill section of the Route 1 corridor, as a mix of walking trails and affordable housing, would leave no one "completely happy" but would at last solve the dilemma of what to do with the 33 acre parcel which has been vacant since 1981. Read about the history of the land and the feud about what to do with it here, in today's Fairfax Extra....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | February 22, 2007; 10:28 AM ET | Email a Comment

Tysons Planners Cite Ballston As A Model

Planners who would like to see Tysons Corner become a walkable, mixed-use transit-oriented community have a one-word response to those that say remaking the county's most crowded, traffic jammed employment and retail center is unlikely: Ballston. Check out this article from yesterday's Metro to read how officials think that the Ballston model is proof of the success that their vision will bring to Tysons....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | February 20, 2007; 10:46 AM ET | Email a Comment

No Easy Fixes to Problems from Rapid Growth

This front page article from today's Washington Post looks at the complexities of finding solutions to the problems caused by the explosive growth the area has seen. In areas where a "just say no" policy has been implemented, other problems have been created. What's your take?...

 

By Focus on Fairfax | February 8, 2007; 09:59 AM ET | Email a Comment

Neighbors Fight Gas Pipeline Changes

A news story in this week's Fairfax Extra highlights a problem that is occurring with increasing frequency in built-out Fairfax. What happens when neighbors of an underground gas pipeline discover that the utility company that owns it wants to add major above ground components just feet from their property lines? Read here to find out....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | February 1, 2007; 03:18 PM ET | Email a Comment

UPDATE 12/1: Plan To Transform Tysons Mall Approved

Updated 1/23 The overhaul of Tysons Corner Center was approved by the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors yesterday. The story is here. Updated 12/1 From today's Metro section: Mall Owner Delays Push for Approval of Part of Expansion The owner of Tysons Corner Center has agreed to postpone seeking Fairfax County's approval for part of a major overhaul of the 38-year-old mall in response to criticism of the proposal's timing. The Macerich Co., based in California, is proposing to expand the mall by wrapping it with apartments, offices and a hotel in towers as tall as 30 stories, adding 3.5 million square feet to the 78-acre property. Under the initial plan, the work would proceed in four phases, with the first expected to open by 2010 and the final two after the planned extension of Metrorail to Tysons, which is scheduled for 2012. But critics said it made no sense...

 

By Focus on Fairfax | January 23, 2007; 10:02 AM ET | Email a Comment

UPDATE: 1/16 More Information on Causes of Huntington Flood

Updated 1/16 This article from yesterday's Metro section provides some more information on what led to the flooding. Originally posted 1/12 Sediment produced by construction projects and deposited in Cameron Run by decades of storm runoff was the primary culprit in the flooding that caused an estimated $10 million dollars in damage to homes in the Huntington neighborhood last June. Today's Metro section has the news on a study of the disaster by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | January 12, 2007; 10:28 AM ET | Email a Comment

State Lawmakers Aware of Voters' Ire Over Traffic

Virginia's state Delegates and Senators say they are acutely aware of how transportation and growth problems are fueling voter dissatisfaction in the Commonwealth and the potential political consequences they face if they fail to address the issues. The story was in yesterday's Metro section....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | January 8, 2007; 10:49 AM ET | Email a Comment

No Development Freeze for Fairfax

This article from Saturday's Metro section looks at Fairfax County's resistance to the building moratoriums adopted by Prince William and Loudoun counties, moves seen by some Fairfax officials as election-year grandstanding....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | January 8, 2007; 10:33 AM ET | Email a Comment

What's Going Where in Today's Fairfax Extra

Beginning today, the Extra's popular " What's Going Where" feature which offers a look at what new project's developers have in store, moves from publishing the last Thursday of each month, to the first Thursday. Check it out....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | January 4, 2007; 11:30 AM ET | Email a Comment

Draft Guidelines for "Transit-Oriented Development"

It's long been a sticking point for Fairfax County leaders who say they want to encourage "transit-oriented development;" no one has been able to agree on exactly what the term means. Now a set of draft guidelines from the county Planning Commission is being offered for public comment at a hearing scheduled for 8:15 p.m. on Jan. 17 at the Fairfax County Government Center, 12000 Government Center Pkwy. The Fairfax Extra has a news article here. So check out the guidelines Focus on Fairfax readers, and tell us, has the Planning Commission got it right?...

 

By Focus on Fairfax | January 4, 2007; 11:02 AM ET | Email a Comment

Pacts to Limit Traffic Around Developments Go Unmet

This article looks at how, despite extracting agreements to provide incentives to reduce traffic around new developments, Fairfax ofiicials have been largely unsuccessful in holding developers and employers to their word....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | December 29, 2006; 10:42 AM ET | Email a Comment

Area Development Leads To Flooding of McLean House

At Carolyn Arafat's house on Meadowbrook Ave. in McLean, intensive "infill" development in the neighborhood is being blamed as the primary culprit for the regular flooding the family has experienced inside their house recently. Today's Fairfax Extra tells the tale....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | December 14, 2006; 10:23 AM ET | Email a Comment

Fear of Growth Stifles Great Falls Discussion of Future

According to this article from today's Metro section some residents of Great Falls are struggling with articulating what the community will look like in the future for fear that any discussion of the issue will open the door to uncontrolled development....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | December 13, 2006; 09:57 AM ET | Email a Comment

More Foreign Firms Moving to Fairfax

More and more, foreign companies are creating headquarters for their U.S. operations in Fairfax County. This Fairfax Extra article has the latest on the work of the Fairfax County Economic Development Authority and its work to encourage economic growth through foreign investment....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | December 7, 2006; 11:06 AM ET | Email a Comment

Restricted Development in the Area? Your Thoughts?

Officials in neighboring Prince William, Loudoun and Montgomery counties all moved yesterday to put strict controls on new growth in their jurisdictions. The Post's front page story is here. Focus on Fairfax readers usually have something to say when it comes to growth and development issues, so tell us, how do you think this will affect Fairfax? Are the measures our neighbors have adopted something we could or should consider?...

 

By Focus on Fairfax | December 6, 2006; 10:26 AM ET | Email a Comment

Dunn Loring Station to get Apartments, Commercial

Up to 720 apartments and stores are expected to rise on a 15-acre parking lot adjacent to the Dunn Loring Metro station under a plan unanimously approved by the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors yesterday. Read about it here....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | December 5, 2006; 10:53 AM ET | Email a Comment

UPDATE 12/5: Supervisors Approve End to Irregularly-Shaped Lots For Homes?

Updated 12/5 From today's Metro section: Supervisors Approve Rules on Lot Shapes The Fairfax County Board of Supervisors yesterday unanimously approved rules to keep property owners and developers from using highly contorted lot lines to carve out as many homes as possible in infill subdivisions. As builders seek to squeeze more homes into already developed areas of the county, officials say they are hearing complaints that highly creative lot shapes designed to meet county rules for septic systems and road frontage are causing confusion among residents and making it difficult for them to maximize use of their property. In some neighborhoods, an area that one might assume to be the back yard of one house is actually the septic area of another house, or what looks like the front yard of one house is actually a strip running from another home to provide required road frontage. Under the new rules,...

 

By Focus on Fairfax | December 5, 2006; 10:04 AM ET | Email a Comment

UPDATE 12/1: Army Moves Planned Museum Site

Updated 12/1 According to this article from this morning's Metro section, the Army will bow to pressure from elected officials who were concerned about the museum's traffic impact and move the site from the Engineer Proving Ground to Fort Belvoir itself. Updated 11/9 Army officials are quoted in this article as saying that the National Museum of the Army near Ft. Belvoir is very much part of their future plans. strong>Updated 8/9 Now the Army is characterizing the theme park proposal as DOA, but a museum is till on the table. The latest is here. Originally posted 8/8 U.S. Army officials are considering a developer's proposal to create a military theme park, hotel and entertainment district near Fort Belvoir. The plan is billed as possibly drawing a million tourists a year. The Post's story is here. There are 22,000 new jobs coming to the fort and triggering new traffic concerns....

 

By | December 1, 2006; 09:30 AM ET | Email a Comment

Fort Belvoir Commander on BRAC challenges

Col. Brian W. Lauritzen, the installation commander at Fort Belvoir takes charge of this week's Voices of Fairfax guest column and, using another challenge, offers his thoughts on the ones presented by the 2005 Base Realignment and Closure Commission's recommendations for the post....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | November 30, 2006; 01:22 PM ET | Email a Comment

UPDATE 11/9: VDOT: Dulles Area Development A No Go

Updated 11/9 The Loudoun County Board of Supervisors yesterday rejected the proposal to build the development. The story is here. Updated 8/30 According to this article from today's Metro section, the plan to develop the new homes is gathering momentum. Updated 7/21 According to this story strong criticism is being levelled at both the development plan and the VDOT traffic study. Originally posted 7/14 A planned development of 28,000 new houses in Loudoun County will lead to massive traffic tie-ups on local roads from Herndon to Haymarket according to what officials from the Virginia Department of Transportation have to say in this article in today's Metro section....

 

By | November 9, 2006; 09:10 AM ET | Email a Comment

A Military Main Street

This article from yesterday's Metro section about Fort Belvoir's new town center, shows us just how ubiquitous the urban planning concept has become....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | October 23, 2006; 09:11 AM ET | Email a Comment

Metrorail to Dulles Pushed Back a Year

A story in today's Metro section reports that officials with the Virginia Department of Rail and Public Transportation have decided to delay the start of construction of the rail line through Tysons corner until late next year or possibly early in 2008. The project manager cited a five month study of the tunnel option for the rail line as one reason for the delay....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | October 19, 2006; 10:51 AM ET | Email a Comment

Report: Fairfax Lost 26% of Forested Land Between 1986-1999

A report on the state of the forests in the Chesapeake Bay watershed was issued last month and contains some starling numbers. More than a fourth of Fairfax County's forested land was lost to development in the final years of the 20th century. The report also says that 100 acres of forest are lost every day in the watershed and that more than a third of the natural pollution filter that is forested land could be gone by 2030. The details are in this week's Fairfax Extra....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | October 6, 2006; 03:09 PM ET | Email a Comment

720 Apartments for Dunn Loring Metro Area?

About 720 new apartment units would be built on what is currently a 15 acre parking lot according to this article. The proposal comes before the county planning commission this fall....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | September 11, 2006; 10:55 AM ET | Email a Comment

Require More Parking for New Townhouses?

That is the question that is facing county officials. While some argue that we should be trying to reduce traffic by restricting vehicles, others say that current requirements are far too low. Read the story in this week's Fairfax Extra....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | September 8, 2006; 01:13 PM ET | Email a Comment

8/29 UPDATE: New Wrinkle for Tyson's Metro Tunnel?

Updated 8/29 According to this article some Tysons Corner neighborhood groups like the idea of the tunnel but are expressing serious concerns about the potential costs and the effects a tunnel might have. Updated 8/18 From today's Metro section: More Toll Road Money Coveted Fairfax County Board of Supervisors Chairman Gerald E. Connolly (D) said that one possible source of additional funding for a rail tunnel at Tysons Corner would be the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority and the revenue it will collect from the Dulles Toll Road. Virginia officials are deciding whether the Metrorail extension to Dulles International Airport should run above or below ground through Tysons. Most agree that a tunnel would be better, but it is unclear how to cover its extra costs, at least $200 million. Connolly's remarks in an interview Wednesday on Washington Post Radio represented one of the first public suggestions that extra money could...

 

By | August 29, 2006; 10:10 AM ET | Email a Comment

Bigger Questions on Tysons Redevelopment/Rail

With all of the the discussion about the specifics of extending Metrorail through Tysons Corner and redeveloping the area into a walkable downtown for Fairfax County, are some bigger questions getting overlooked? Is the plan to remake Tysons feasible? Is it even desirable? This article from yesterday's Metro section takes a closer look at the big questions local officials face as decision time on what to do draws near....

 

By | August 21, 2006; 10:13 AM ET | Email a Comment

Debate On Open Space in Fairfax City

A disagreement on what two do with the rare open space in the city of Fairfax is focused on two parcels along Fairfax Boulevard. Read about it in today's Metro section...

 

By | August 14, 2006; 11:15 AM ET | Email a Comment

GMU Growth Worries Some Neighbors

According to this article, George Mason University's plans for $400 million in construction and renovation over the next five years worries some of the school's neighbors about the impact on the area....

 

By | August 9, 2006; 09:25 AM ET | Email a Comment

TRAFFIC ALERT: Fairfax City Goes Two-Way

Here is what to expect courtesy of yesterday's Fairfax Extra. The change was subject of the July 20 Fairfax Extra cover story....

 

By | August 4, 2006; 09:21 AM ET | Email a Comment

New Vienna Buildings Sometimes Dwarf Ramblers

Many people agree that the scores of new houses being built in the southern part of Vienna are more attractive than many of brick behemoths derisively labeled as McMansions that constitute much of the newer and larger houses being built in Northern Virginia. But some people are wondering if the new homes are driving up neighborhood property values and forcing out established residents with higher taxes. The story is in this week's Fairfax Extra....

 

By | August 4, 2006; 09:01 AM ET | Email a Comment

8/3 UPDATE: Army Ft. Belvoir Plan Draws Critics

Updated 8/3 From today's Metro section: Rep. Thomas M. Davis III (R-Va.) will hold a hearing this month to question the Army about its plans for transferring 22,000 employees to Fort Belvoir, a member of his staff told Army leaders yesterday. "He has a lot of concerns," Davis aide Bill Womack said. "There are too many moving parts to not take a closer look at this." Womack's comments came at a meeting at the post of an advisory board formed by the post commander to gather comments on the Army's plans. The Army announced last week that it is planning to cluster most of the relocated employees at the Engineer Proving Ground, a mostly vacant site a couple of miles northwest of the main post. The plans have come under criticism from state and local officials who were hoping the Army would disperse the new workers more, on the main...

 

By | July 28, 2006; 10:10 AM ET | Email a Comment

Hollin Hall Getting More Crowded. Next: ?

In the Hollin Hall neighborhood in the southeastern part of the county, developers are buying homes, razing them and building two where once only one stood. The developers are taking advantage of the fact that post-World War II buyers built their homes straddling a line between two lots, each of which can be built on without zoning changes. The same thing may soon happen in neighborhoods in Falls Church and Annandale. Read about it here. Is this a good idea?...

 

By | July 24, 2006; 11:12 AM ET | Email a Comment

Traffic Changes for Downtown Fairfax

Will converting two busy one way streets in the city's core to two way traffic.turn out well or contribute to congestion and confusion? City leaders and business owners disagree. While city planners say the change is an integral part of the ongoing downtown revitalization project, some merchants say they fear that changes will discourage customers who will be facing new traffic patterns and changing parking locations. Like it or not, changes are coming on or about Aug. 5. Read about what the two sides are saying and what the changes entail in today's Fairfax Extra....

 

By | July 20, 2006; 11:29 AM ET | Email a Comment

Fairfax to Hire Planning Consultant for Tysons Corner

From today's Metro section: Fairfax County will pay $1.2 million for a consultant to help a task force studying the future of Tysons Corner. The consultant will provide expertise in planning and modeling that county planners don't have, according to a request approved by the county Board of Supervisors. Supervisor Joan M. Dubois (R-Dranesville) said she was concerned about the cost of the consultant and asked whether private companies in Tysons Corner could provide the service. County staff told her that the companies could not. The task force is studying redevelopment of the Tysons area, site of four planned Metrorail stations that would link the commercial center with Washington as well as Dulles International Airport. -- Lisa Rein...

 

By | July 13, 2006; 09:52 AM ET | Email a Comment

Fairfax To Reconsider Rules for Variances

Frustrated by rules for variances to allow additions? Take a look at Sunday's Metro section and the report that the county is reluctant to grant variances because in 2004, the Virginia Supreme Court determined that they were being handed out too freely. This month the Board will look into a proposal that would grant homeowners a special permit or special exception instead of a variance....

 

By | July 3, 2006; 11:40 AM ET | Email a Comment

Equestrian Center for Laurel Hill Park

A public riding facility, a 60-stall barn, indoor and outdoor arenas and riding trails are planned for Laurel Hill Park, former site of the Lorton prison. Today's Fairfax Extra reports an agreement between Fairfax4Horses and the Park Authority was signed June 14....

 

By | June 29, 2006; 10:29 AM ET | Email a Comment

Unfinished Amenities: A Developing Story

As a follow up to Sunday's story about developers in Fairfax leaving more than 120 projects unfinished, yesterday the Fairfax County Board called for closer oversight of development projects. Today's Metro section reports that the county has spent $1.1 million over the past five years to complete work developers have left incomplete. Projects have included unfinished roads, inadequate storm-water retention ponds, missing walking and biking trails and incomplete landscaping at condos, residential neighborhoods and office projects....

 

By | June 26, 2006; 12:20 PM ET | Email a Comment

Fairfax Ranks High in Hispanic-Owned Businesses

The county is prime or hispanic-owned big business. A story in today's Fairfax Extra, Hispanic Business Magazine's 2006 rankings show Fairfax ahead of 42 states in the magazine's ranking of top Hispanic-owned businesses, ranked by 2005 revenue. They include MVM Inc.; Geologics Corp.; Tessada & Assoc.; Kfoury Construction Group Inc.; Priority One Services Inc.; BRTRC Inc.; Computing Technologies Inc.; Preferred Systems Solutins Inc.; Kemron Environmental Services Inc.; Engineering, Management & Integration Inc.; Cairo Corp.; and MAC Aerospace Corp. The companies represent everything from cleaning and construction to technology, defense, engineering and accounting....

 

By | June 22, 2006; 11:48 AM ET | Email a Comment

Officials Unlikely to Use Growth Control Measures

Some Northern Virginia officials say that they are unlikely to make us of a few new tools state legislators have provided for slowing development. Read what they have to say in this Fairfax Extra article....

 

By | June 8, 2006; 11:25 AM ET | Email a Comment

Planners Envision a New Springfield

Check out this front page story from the weekend to find out how developers plan to remake Springfield, transforming it from suburban crossroads into a miniature city with new retail and residential components....

 

By | May 30, 2006; 10:33 AM ET | Email a Comment

Coming to Vienna, an Old-Fashioned Town Green

The project upends traditional ideas about how communities develop, according to this Fairfax Extra article. Instead of the town growing up around a central gathering place for its citizens, this green will be carved from reclaimed commercial property....

 

By | May 25, 2006; 11:17 AM ET | Email a Comment

Appalachian Outfitters Site to Chevy Chase Bank

Appalachian Outfitters, which has been at the corner of Hunter Mill and Chain Bridge Roads for 30 years, is the latest Fairfax landmark to face the wrecking ball to make way for a bank. Read about the trend and the fate of the long time camping supplier in today's Business section....

 

By | May 22, 2006; 11:35 AM ET | Email a Comment

MetroWest Offers Hard Lessons On Land Use

In today's Voices of Fairfax guest opinion column in the Fairfax Extra, William S. Elliott, a spokesman for Fairfax Citizens for Responsible Growth, writes about the lessons that developers and government and community leaders should take from contentious process leading to the approval of the MetroWest development....

 

By | May 11, 2006; 12:46 PM ET | Email a Comment

Incumbents Prevail in Vienna and Fairfax City As Growth Issues Dominate Regional Election Results

Read about the results in this article from this morning's Metro section. A look at the results in Fairfax City is here....

 

By | May 3, 2006; 10:11 AM ET | Email a Comment

School Land Goes to County in Deal

According to a Metro section article from this morning's paper the Fairfax County School Board has voted to accept a 150 million increase in bond funding from the county for construction and maintenance projects in return for a dozen unneeded school properties. The properties will include administrative buildings and land currently being used as parks....

 

By | April 28, 2006; 10:27 AM ET | Email a Comment

Fairfax: The 2006 Guide

An Introduction To The Guide Trying to make sense of Fairfax? Join our club. To help newcomers learn and old-timers discover new possibilities, here's The Guide for 2006. We know how easy it is to get confused here, because there are about a million people -- more people than seven states have -- and trying to make sense of the governing machinery can be tricky. The local governments include those of the county and two cities, the City of Fairfax and the City of Falls Church, each with its own idiosyncrasies and treasures. What you'll find in these pages is our attempt to lead you to old favorites you had not thought of for a while or to what might become favorites. There's golfing and fishing and biking and walking, just to name a few leisure pursuits. If you have students in the family, there's a place within the county...

 

By | April 28, 2006; 09:51 AM ET | Email a Comment

FairGrowth To Continue Land Use Voice

In this update from reporter Lisa Rein, leaders with FairGrowth, the watchdog group that came together to try to force changes to plans for the MetroWest development soon to begin construction near the Vienna Metro station, say that they will continue to advocate responsible land use decisions in Fairfax....

 

By | April 24, 2006; 10:38 AM ET | Email a Comment

Reston Approves Revised Charter

Officials with the Reston Association announced yesterday that its members have voted to approve the first revisions to the community's charter in 22 years. The changes include an increase to the cap on the assessment that Reston residents pay annually and a on-time $250 fee for people buy property or move within Reston. Washington Post coverage of the results of the referendum is here....

 

By | April 17, 2006; 01:05 PM ET | Email a Comment

The Sidewalk and the National Security Adviser

Some Fairfax officials want a sidewalk along a stretch of Spring Hill Road near Old Dominion Drive in McLean. But it needs an easement from former Carter heavyweight Zbigniew Brzezinski who, ever the negotiator, wants to know exactly what is in it for him. Read about it here....

 

By | April 10, 2006; 11:02 AM ET | Email a Comment

Reality Check on County Trends?

A look at recent historical trends with regard to the county's growth and diversity yields some surprises. Read about them here in this week's Fairfax Extra cover story....

 

By | April 6, 2006; 04:20 PM ET | Email a Comment

Reston Referendum May Miss Quorum

The outlook for Reston Association's four-year effort to revise the community's governing documents for the first time in 22 years is increasingly dim, say association officials. The 60-day voting period on the revisions was scheduled to end today and the number of ballots turned in is still short of the 40% of Reston homeowners required to make it valid....

 

By | March 31, 2006; 11:01 AM ET | Email a Comment

MetroWest Is a Go

Updated 3/29According to an article from this morning's Metro section, construction on MetroWest will begin next spring with transportation improvements. Under Pulte's planned timeline, the first homes would go on sale in 2009 and the project is scheduled to be finally completed sometime between 2012 and 2014. Originally posted 3/28The Fairfax County Board of Supervisors yesterday approved the high density development at the Vienna Metro station, ending three years of debate. The article was on the front page of this morning's Washington Post....

 

By | March 28, 2006; 02:14 PM ET | Email a Comment

Plan Calls For Affordable Residences at Former Lorton Correction Complex

Remember "The Prisoner," the 1960s BBC TV series about a secret agent who is kidnapped and forced to live in what appears to be a seaside resort but is, in fact, a prison? Lorton may soon offer something that seems the flipside of that, for unsecret agents. As reported in this week's Fairfax Extra cover story, a citizens panel has a proposal it hopes will attract developers to take what still looks like a prison and turn it into a residential village....

 

By | March 24, 2006; 01:32 PM ET | Email a Comment

Is There Room In a Transit-Friendly Tysons For Car Dealers?

Car dealerships occupy 80 acres of land in the stretch of Leesburg Pike in Tysons Corner where an elevated rail line is expected to be built in five years. Now some Fairfax County planners are saying that the dealerships have got to go if the area is going to be remade as a transit-friendly community. Read about it in this morning's Metro section....

 

By | March 20, 2006; 10:41 AM ET | Email a Comment

Metro West Gets Planning Commission Vote

In what could be the penultimate step to the approval of the controversial Vienna project, the commission voted unanimously with two abstentions to send it to the Board of Supervisors for a March 27 decision. Today's Metro section has the story....

 

By | March 16, 2006; 10:39 AM ET | Email a Comment

In Praise of Density

Post editorial writer Lee Hockstader wrote this op-ed Monday: Say the word "density" to a local homeowners association and brace yourself for brickbats. Say it to a group of Washington area business, development and political leaders, as economist Richard Florida did at a conference the other day, and you get a spontaneous burst of applause....

 

By Steve Fehr | March 7, 2006; 04:46 PM ET | Email a Comment

A Tale of Two Properties

   Fairfax County officials have been inconsistent in their approach to development around the Vienna Metro station, as the people of the Poplar Terrace neighborhood will tell you....

 

By Steve Fehr | March 5, 2006; 02:57 PM ET | Email a Comment

Texas Chili Gives Way To Virginia Development Pressures

A Fairfax Extra news story today shows how development pressures are forcing the closure of a Falls Church blue-collar landmark, the P&P Restaurant, recalled as "a community center with beer."...

 

By | February 23, 2006; 02:05 PM ET | Email a Comment

Firms Named to Plan Fort Belvoir Growth

The Army has announced that it has selected two firms to oversee the complex task of preparing Fort Belvoir for the arrival of 21,000 military and civilian personnel and contractors under the Base Realignment and Closure recommendations made last year....

 

By | February 21, 2006; 11:05 AM ET | Email a Comment

Kaine's Slow-Growth Proposals, Now You See 'Em, Now You Don't

Michael D. Shear's Virginia Notebook column in this week's Fairfax Extra explains the mystery of the living dead bill....

 

By | February 17, 2006; 01:48 PM ET | Email a Comment

Please Read: Rules Issued for Commenting on Fairfax Focus Blog

Some readers of this blog have recently raised questions about the role of The Washington Post in policing Fairfax Focus. I have deleted a few blog posts because they did not meet The Post's standards for fairness. For more clarity about how to play by the rules, Jim Brady, the executive editor of washingtonpost.com has posted a message explaining the rules for readers participating in the site's Live Online discussions, discussion forums and for posting comments on the company's blogs. The complete list of rules is here. --Steve Fehr, Fairfax Extra Editor...

 

By | February 17, 2006; 01:06 PM ET | Email a Comment

County Selects Development Plan For Wiehle Avenue Metro Stop

The Fairfax Extra reports that  Reston-based Comstock Partners' proposal for a mixed-use development at the planned Wiehle Avenue Metro stop has been approved by a selection committee....

 

By | February 16, 2006; 01:14 PM ET | Email a Comment

Some Residents Dissatisfied With Tysons Development Process

Some Tysons Corner area residents interested in the development plans for the area were dismayed at last week's informational forum to find that communication with government officials was being filtered through layers of paid consultants and task force representatives. An article that details some of the citizen's misgivings is in today's Metro section....

 

By | February 13, 2006; 11:12 AM ET | Email a Comment

Speakers Express Concern About MetroWest at Hearing

Post coverage of last night's hearing, where the majority of speakers were critical of the project's potential impact, is in today's Metro section....

 

By | February 9, 2006; 09:50 AM ET | Email a Comment

Kaine's Growth Control Plan Suffers Setback in Richmond

Kaine's proposal to give local governments more authority to slow growth if the roads are inadequate was rejected by a vote of 9-2 in a subcommittee of the Counties, Cities and Towns Committee today. The story is here....

 

By | February 8, 2006; 04:37 PM ET | Email a Comment

Hearings Today and Thursday on Dominion Virginia Line

From today's Metro section: The State Corporation Commission will hold three public hearings today and tomorrow in Loudoun County on Dominion Virginia Power's proposal to build a transmission line from its Pleasant View substation east of Leesburg to a new substation northwest of Hamilton. The utility says the line would serve development in the western part of the county. After residents and county supervisors opposed a proposal to build the line along the Washington & Old Dominion Trail, Dominion agreed to propose an option that would install the line mostly along Route 7. The first hearing is at 1:30 p.m. today, the second at 7 p.m. and the third at 9:30 a.m. tomorrow. All will be in the boardroom of the Loudoun County Government Center, 1 Harrison St. SE in Leesburg. For more information, visit http://www.loudoun.gov/issues/power.htm ....

 

By | February 8, 2006; 11:54 AM ET | Email a Comment

A Blow to Plan for Urban Center at Tysons

Lerner Enterprises has decided to scale back its plan to build 540 condominium units at the busy job center and instead to build a few as 300 larger, and more expensive, ones. County officials say there is little they can do since Lerner had agreed only to build a certain amount of residential space, not a certain number of units....

 

By | February 7, 2006; 10:58 AM ET | Email a Comment

County To Buy Reston Apartments To Preserve Affordable Rents

The county will pay $49.5 million for the 180 unit Crescent Apartments to prevent their conversion to luxury condominiums. Today's Metro section has the story....

 

By | February 7, 2006; 09:52 AM ET | Email a Comment

Historic Clifton Home Could Be Torn Down

From today's Fairfax Extra: The Clifton Town Council is scheduled Tuesday to consider a request to tear down a historic home that was built shortly after the end of the Civil War. Preservation and history enthusiasts are encouraging the council to require the developer, Marcus and Colette Silva to incorporate as many of the interior and exterior elements of the house as possible in the new building. The Hetzel House, at 7151 Pendelton St. in the town's historic district, was built in1870. It is a gabled-front-and-wing structure with a metal seamed roof. No one has lived there for 15 years, and the Silvas want to build a new home on the site. The 7 p.m. council meeting is at the Town Meeting Hall, 12641 Chapel. Rd....

 

By | February 2, 2006; 02:15 PM ET | Email a Comment

Former Planning Commissioner On County's Future Land Use

John M. Palatiello, a former member of the county Planning Commission writes in today's Voices of Fairfax column that the recent Hunter Mill study could be a reflection for land use for the entire county....

 

By | February 2, 2006; 01:59 PM ET | Email a Comment

Group Encourages Citizens To Attend MetroWest Hearing

The text of a letter to the Fairfax Extra: Fairfax County's strong electoral support for Gov. Timothy M. Kaine (D) reflected its desire to place checks and balances on runaway development. The rezoning decision on the proposed MetroWest project near the Vienna Metro station is the county government's first opportunity since the election to act on this message from the voters. We encourage concerned citizens to speak at or attend the rezoning hearing before the Planning Commission at 8:15 p.m. Wednesday. For details, see http://www.fairgrowth.org . Your perspectives will help the commission adjust the final shape of the project to reflect broad community interests....

 

By | February 2, 2006; 01:35 PM ET | Email a Comment

Connolly Wants Easier Way To Find Land-Use Records

According to a Fairfax Extra report, the county Board of Supervisors Chairman has proposed expanding and simplifying online access to documents....

 

By | February 2, 2006; 01:15 PM ET | Email a Comment

Builders and Contractors Largest Contributors To Key Lawmakers

A Washington Post analysis of contributions to members of two key committees in the Virginia General Assembly revealed that developers, builders and real estate agents contributed about $1.4 million in campaign money over the last ten years. The committees, the Senate Local Government Committee and the House Counties, Cities and Towns Committee, both have track records of dismissing controlled-growth bills that have come before them....

 

By | January 30, 2006; 11:12 AM ET | Email a Comment

Local Development Controls Gain Momentum in Richmond

An article in Saturday's Metro section reported that Gov. Kaine's proposal to give more powers to local governments to control growth is gaining bi-partisan support....

 

By | January 30, 2006; 10:59 AM ET | Email a Comment

Northern Virginia Has Grown by 293,000 Over Last Five Years

According to a Metro section article in this morning's paper, Virginia is seventh in the nation with regard to growth rate over the last five years and 60% of the growth occurred in the northern part of the state. Read the article here....

 

By | January 26, 2006; 10:44 AM ET | Email a Comment

Connolly: Fairfax Is At Build-Out

Board Chairman Gerald E. Connolly (D) told his colleagues today, "We're hardly doing any land use in Fairfax County." Connolly noted that there were only two public hearings scheduled today, the lowest he could remember in years. There was a time when there were 40 public hearings at a board meeting related to rezonings and other land use cases, he said. "We are at build out," Connolly said. Connolly generally was referring to the relative lack of land remaining for development. There are huge development projects underway or planned on existing land, especially the planned extension of rail to Dulles International Airport, one of the largest development projects in the county's history....

 

By Steve Fehr | January 23, 2006; 05:12 PM ET | Email a Comment

MetroWest Meeting Set for Feb. 1

The Providence District Council will hold a meeting on the MetroWest project, south of the Vienna Metro station, from 7 p.m to 9:30 p.m. Wednesday Feb. 1 at Mosby Woods Elementary School. The meeting, which is open to the public, comes in advance of the rezoning hearing before the county Planning Commission on Feb. 8. Both the project in general and the large county staff report will be discussed. The school is at 9816 Five Oaks Road, Fairfax....

 

By Steve Fehr | January 21, 2006; 07:26 AM ET | Email a Comment

Community Dialogues Set on Future of Tysons Corner

From the Fairfax County Office of Public Affairs: Tysons Corner Community Invited to Dialogue Sessions Residents, businesses and nonprofit organizations are invited to participate in a series of initial community dialogues in January and February to identify important issues regarding the future of Tysons Corner and how the introduction of rail stations will affect growth. The schedule of dialogue sessions, hosted by the Tysons Land Use Task Force, and more information on the Tysons planning study can be found at www.fairfaxcounty.gov/dpz/tysonscorner/.    To reserve a space in one of the dialogues, call the Tysons Community Dialogue Hotline at 703-324-1344, TTY 711, or e-mail tysonscornerspecialstudy@fairfaxcounty.gov. Since dialogue locations have different capacities, please sign up in advance so accommodations can be made for as many people as possible. Community members unable to attend a dialogue may provide comments online at www.fairfaxcounty.gov/dpz/tysonscorner/surveyform.htm. The results of the dialogues and comments submitted online will be...

 

By | January 19, 2006; 03:39 PM ET | Email a Comment

Meeting Scheduled On Vienna Metro Capacity Study

From the Office of Supervisor Linda Q. Smyth (D-Providence): Vienna Metro Transit Station Capacity Study Community Outreach Meeting Jan. 31 at 7:30 p.m. Oakton High School Cafeteria 2900 Sutton Road, Vienna The Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority, Fairfax County Department of Transportation and Providence District Supervisor Linda Smyth are sponsoring a follow-up public information session for users of the Vienna/Fairfax-GMU Metrorail station and residents adjacent to the station to discuss the existing and future capacity needs of the station. The community outreach meeting scheduled for Jan. 31, 2006, at 7:30 p.m. is a follow-up meeting to the initial public outreach meeting held on July 12, 2005, at Oakton High School. This upcoming community outreach meeting is intended to serve as an opportunity to both solicit additional community input and to share interim results of the initial outreach and analysis of the station's capacity needs. Since users and residents adjacent to...

 

By | January 19, 2006; 03:30 PM ET | Email a Comment

Kaine Sticks To Slow Growth Message

Update 1/18:And developers respond: Kaine Plan On Traffic Unleashes Swift Blitz Originally Posted 1/17:Virginia's new governor gave a speech to the General Assembly yesterday that reiterated his belief that controlling development is a necessary ingredient to remedy traffic problems. Read about it in today's Metro section....

 

By | January 17, 2006; 11:12 AM ET | Email a Comment

Hearing Rescheduled on Lawyers Road Park

A hearing on proposed changes at Lawyers Road Park in Vienna has been rescheduled for Jan. 26 after being postponed Dec. 15 because of snow. The 7 p.m. hearing, conducted by the county Park Authority, will be at Flint Hill Elementary School. Park officials will talk about plans for the 13.7-acre park, which is on the west side of Lawyers Road and about a mile south of Hunter Mill Road....

 

By | January 12, 2006; 01:54 PM ET | Email a Comment

Board Agrees on $6 Million For Huntington Garage

From today's Fairfax Extra: The county Board of Supervisors has approved spending up to $6 million to keep construction going on the expansion of the 1,400-space parking garage at the Huntington Metro station. Metro agreed with a developer to build a mixed-use project on the surface lot on the south side of the station. The developer, Stout and Teague, agreed to replace the 924 spaces with a parking garage. Metro later said it would add about 500 spaces to handle future growth at Huntington. The cost of the addition was $25.2 million but has grown to $31.2 million. The supervisors were asked to plug the $6 million gap. The money will come from parking fees collected at county Metro stations and from the transit agency's infrastructure fund....

 

By | January 12, 2006; 12:44 PM ET | Email a Comment

Share Your Movie Theater Memories

Two score and six new movie theatre screens have opened in the county in the last 14 months. A recent Fairfax Extra cover story examines what that says about (and means for) the county. The Extra also invites it's readers to share their movie theater memories by emailing them to us....

 

By | January 12, 2006; 12:26 PM ET | Email a Comment

Pulte Faces Possible Fines If It Can't Cut Car Use at MetroWest

Under the proposed plan, Pulte Homes the project developer would have to prove a reduction of  47 percent of residential car trips and 25 percent of business car trips or face the penalties. Today's Metro section has the story. ...

 

By | January 11, 2006; 10:44 AM ET | Email a Comment

Community Dialogue Jan. 17 on the Future of Tysons Corner

The following was released by the Providence District Council today: Providence District Council invites all interested area communities to participate in a Community Dialogue on the Future of Tysons Corner on Tuesday, Jan. 17, 7:30-9:00pm at the Dunn Loring Center, located at the northwest corner of Gallows and Idylwood Rds....

 

By | January 9, 2006; 02:36 PM ET | Email a Comment

Reader Responds To Gerry Connolly's Call For Density

A reader's letter to the Fairfax Extra: The flippant defense by Fairfax County Board of Supervisors Chairman Gerald E. Connolly (D) of high-density growth as the solution for getting his latte at the Vienna Metro ["Connolly Promotes Dense Development Near Transit Hubs," Fairfax Extra, Dec. 22] is a smoke screen for the board-developer alliance's relentless commitment to transforming Fairfax County into another congested, overbuilt Los Angeles....

 

By | January 5, 2006; 12:13 PM ET | Email a Comment

Growth in Students Slowing, Signaling More Boundary Changes

Given the keen interest by blog readers in boundary changes, take a look at Post schools reporter Maria Glod's latest piece. www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2005/12/25/AR2005122500723.html...

 

By Steve Fehr | December 26, 2005; 10:53 AM ET | Email a Comment

Connolly Says Density Near Transit Key To Easing Congestion

The Chairman's remarks to local business leaders are reported here....

 

By | December 22, 2005; 03:28 PM ET | Email a Comment

Lessons Learned in Hunter Mill

So what is the lesson that county residents can learn from the death of the planned development in the Hunter Mill Road area? Did Hunter Mill residents 'fight city hall' and win? Did the developer blow it by publishing that full page ad? Should the supervisors be praised for listening to the people? What are the implications of this on the future development along the Dulles Toll Road corridor? Let's start a discussion on this important subject....

 

By Steve Fehr | December 15, 2005; 12:36 PM ET | Email a Comment

Proposed Hunter Mill Development Could Be Dead

According to Board of Supervisors Chairman Gerald E. Connolly (D) the proposed revisions to the county's master plan to allow high density development near Hunter Mill Road in Vienna are so unpopular that the county board will almost certainly reject the changes....

 

By | December 15, 2005; 10:29 AM ET | Email a Comment

Kaine Advances Plan to Empower Local Governments To Curb Growth

The Gov.-elect's statement that he would seek legislation to allow local governments more power to control development has angered the state's home-building lobby. The story is in today's Metro section....

 

By | December 14, 2005; 12:00 PM ET | Email a Comment

Note From the Editor

Board of Supervisors Chairman Gerald E. Connolly (D) did NOT post a blog item today about the planned changes on Route 7 (Leesburg Pike). The post has been deleted. If you happened to read it, the post was a failed attempt at humor. Please respect the integrity of the blog and refrain from posting bogus items. Thank you. Steve Fehr The Washington Post...

 

By Steve Fehr | December 8, 2005; 05:51 PM ET | Email a Comment

Why Lorton Residents Oppose Prison's Historic Status

Update 12/8: Steven P. Adragna, president of the Crosspointe homeowners association added his explanation in this week's Voices of Fairfax column Originally posted 10/27:The president of the Laurel Hill Civic Association explained in a guest opinion column in this week's Fairfax Extra why  his group opposed the nomination of the former Lorton prison property to the National Register of Historic Places....

 

By | December 8, 2005; 01:10 PM ET | Email a Comment

Plans For Route 7 Makeover To Be Revealed Tonight

A new vision for Route 7 through Tysons Corner will be revealed tonight when project managers hold a public hearing on extending Metro through the area. An article with details of the plans was in today's Metro section....

 

By | December 8, 2005; 10:02 AM ET | Email a Comment

Developers Form Their Own Coalitions To Counter Citizen Groups

A front page story in this morning's Washington Post looks at the nonprofit organizations builders have taken to creating in response to citizens groups that advocate checks to development....

 

By | December 7, 2005; 10:25 AM ET | Email a Comment

Economic Development Authority Sells Fairfax in Mexico

The Fairfax County Economic Development Authority has sent officials to Mexico for the first time ever this week to try to entice Mexican companies to consider Fairfax County as the best site for expansion into the U.S. The authority officials are taking part in U.S.-Mexico Chamber of Commerce meetings in Mexico City....

 

By | December 6, 2005; 03:56 PM ET | Email a Comment

Your Feedback Needed: What is 'Transit Oriented Development'?

At today's Board of Supervisors meeting, Supervisors T. Dana Kauffman (D-Lee) and Linda Smyth (D-Providence) asked the county staff to give the board a definition of transit oriented development....

 

By Steve Fehr | December 5, 2005; 06:41 PM ET | Email a Comment

Developers Eye Fort Belvoir Area For Office Construction

The area of southeast Fairfax County near Fort Belvoir is under scrutiny by developers and county officials who consider the land underused in the booming growth climate. This morning's Business section has details....

 

By | December 5, 2005; 11:23 AM ET | Email a Comment

Hunter Mill Task Force Meetings Scheduled For Next Two Wednesdays

The following news brief was in today's Fairfax Extra: The Hunter Mill Road task force is scheduled to meet at 7 p.m. Wednesday and Dec. 14 in Reston to discuss the planning process and present tabulations of current development potential in the surrounding area....

 

By | December 1, 2005; 03:37 PM ET | Email a Comment

Supervisor Kauffman Sends Letter To Davis On Vienna Metro Land Sale

Metro Board Chairman and Fairfax Supervisor T. Dana Kauffman's (D-Lee) letter to Rep. Thomas M. Davis (R-Va.) on Metro's decision to sell land near the Vienna Metro station to Pulte homes was published in the Fairfax Extra's "Voices of Fairfax" guest column this week....

 

By | November 25, 2005; 11:10 AM ET | Email a Comment

County Announces Next Hunter Mill Task Force Meetings

The Fairfax County Office Of Public Affairs has released a statement with the schedule for the next round of meetings for the Hunter Mill Road Area Special Study Task Force. A 7 p.m., Nov. 30 meeting will be held at Lake Anne Elementary School, 11510 North Shore Drive, Reston.     Another meeting will be held at 7 p.m. Dec. 7 at Lake Anne Elementary and a third at 7 p.m. Dec. 14 at  South Lakes High School, 11400 South Lakes Drive, Reston....

 

By | November 25, 2005; 09:56 AM ET | Email a Comment

Metro Approves MetroWest Land Sale To Pulte

Metro's board of directors has approved a sale of a parcel of land near the Vienna Metro station to Pulte Homes. The land lies between the station and land Pulte owns for its planned MetroWest mini-city development. Pulte officials described the land as an essential additional parcel if MetroWest is to be a true transit-oriented development. The full story was in this morning's Metro section....

 

By | November 18, 2005; 09:36 AM ET | Email a Comment

In Reston, Everything New Is New Again

The Fairfax Extra's Business Notebook today looks at future plans for the county's now 40-year-old new-town experiment....

 

By | November 18, 2005; 12:20 AM ET | Email a Comment

Mourning the Loss of an Indian Restaurant in Fairfax City

A reader writes in today's Fairfax Extra about the demise of downtown Fairfax's Connaught Place Indian restaurant. The building which houses the eatery is being razed to make room, first for parking during the downtown redevelopment project, and eventually for an expansion of the Kitty Pozer Garden....

 

By | November 17, 2005; 12:29 PM ET | Email a Comment

Help Wanted

Do you know anyone who used to take a few days off during Thanksgiving but who is now taking the whole week off because of the hassles of traveling during the holiday period? If so, email me at fehrs@washpost.com. It's for a story in The Post. Thanks....

 

By Steve Fehr | November 16, 2005; 06:19 PM ET | Email a Comment

Growth Could Be Campaign Issue In Montgomery

Fairfax Focus readers have been expressing interest in how our neighbors across the river in Montgomery County are handling familiar tensions with regard to issues of growth and development. Here is the latest from Maryland's wealthiest county....

 

By | November 16, 2005; 11:47 AM ET | Email a Comment

The Clarksburg Cabal

Some of the themes expressed in this Sunday Close to Home column about the development war in Clarksburg in Montgomery County could sound familiar to Fairfax readers. Take a look. www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2005/11/11/AR2005111101468.html...

 

By Steve Fehr | November 14, 2005; 05:10 PM ET | Email a Comment

Meeting Tonight on Dunn Loring/Merrifield Development

Providence District Council Members and Area Associations: There will be a meeting at 7:30 p.m. tonight about development of the entire Dunn Loring/Merrifield Metro Site. The meeting is at the Merrifield Marriott Courtyard Meeting room, across from the Dunn Loring/Merrifield Metro Station (SW corner of Gallows and Prosperity) This is a change of day and location....

 

By Steve Fehr | November 14, 2005; 04:04 PM ET | Email a Comment

If You Build It...Will They Come?

Today's Business section reports on the construction of new office space in Northern Virginia. Developers are hoping that new federal government security requirements will have soon lead to occupation of the space. www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2005/11/13/AR2005111300680.html...

 

By | November 14, 2005; 09:30 AM ET | Email a Comment

Seminar on 'Benefits and Opportunities of Transit Oriented Development' Tomorrow

The meeting will be be held from 8 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. at National Rural Utilities CFC, 2201 Cooperative Way, Herndon.A press release about the seminar was issued today from the Dulles Area Transportation Association in association with the Dulles Corridor Rail Association....

 

By | November 9, 2005; 01:51 PM ET | Email a Comment

Continue the Discussion From Tuesday Night

   Please consider keeping the discussion going from the Metro hearing on the proposed sale of land near the Vienna Metro station. Here's a link to The Post's story on the meeting in today's paper: Residents Split Feelings On Metro Land Sale....

 

By Steve Fehr | November 1, 2005; 03:13 PM ET | Email a Comment

Taming Tysons Corner

Must reading for those of you interested in the future of Tysons Corner: A group of architects recently proposed a radical redesign of Tysons Corner that calls for more density through increased housing. Check out Roger Lewis' column from Oct. 29....

 

By Steve Fehr | October 31, 2005; 10:53 AM ET | Email a Comment

New Format for Metro Land Sale Meeting Tuesday Night

   Metro Board Chairman T. Dana Kauffman announced a new format for the meeting Nov. 1 on the proposed sale of Metro property near the Vienna Metro Station that would be part of the so-called MetroWest development:...

 

By Steve Fehr | October 28, 2005; 07:52 PM ET | Email a Comment

Transportation Plan Meetings Run Throughout November

The county Department of Transportation will hold seven public meetings in November about proposed revisions to Fairfax's transportation plan. The changes would affect objectives and policies as well as the most recent travel forecasts. The transportation plan is part of the county's comprehensive plan. 100 or visit http://www.fairfaxcounty.gov/fcdot ....

 

By | October 28, 2005; 11:59 AM ET | Email a Comment

Watershed Protection Meeting Tonight

Fairfax County will hold a workshop from 6:30 to 9:15 p.m. tonight at Longfellow Middle School in McLean for residents and businesses in the Middle Potomac watershed. Officials want the public to review and provide feedback on proposals to protect and restore the watershed. The Middle Potomac area includes Pimmit Run, Scotts Run, Turkey Run, Dead Run and Bull Neck Run. A watershed is the land area that drains into a particular body of water....

 

By | October 28, 2005; 11:55 AM ET | Email a Comment

Editorial: Growth and its Discontents

The news and editorial departments of The Post are separate operations. That said, take a look at today's editorial on growth and the election. www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2005/10/25/AR2005102501591.html...

 

By Steve Fehr | October 26, 2005; 02:36 PM ET | Email a Comment

A Provocative Look Inside a Big Home Builder

Because of the interest among Fairfax Focus readers in development and growth issues, I want to commend a piece from the Oct. 16 New York Times Sunday magazine. Sorry, but copyright issues prevent me from giving you a link other than The Times' website www.nytimes.com/. Do a search on "Chasing Ground" by Jon Gertner. You will get the abstract but will have to pay for the rest of the article. I would encourage you to search for it another way on the web such as Nexis so you don't have to pay. Sorry for the trouble but you will be rewarded with a richly done article....

 

By Steve Fehr | October 25, 2005; 06:23 PM ET | Email a Comment

Fisher On Hunter Mill Hearing

Metro columnist Marc Fisher wrote yesterday about the county's use of hired consultants to report citizen concerns at the recent meeting on the proposed Hunter Mill density changes....

 

By | October 24, 2005; 10:46 AM ET | Email a Comment

Bus Rapid Transit Meeting Monday

The McLean Citizens Assn. is sponsoring a forum on bus rapid transit at 7:30 p.m. Monday in the new lecture hall at McLean High School, 1633 Davidson Rd....

 

By Steve Fehr | October 22, 2005; 06:22 AM ET | Email a Comment

Supervisors Blast Developer Over Ad

Supervisors Cathy Hudgins (D-Hunter Mill) and Joan DuBois (R-Dranesville) have released the following statement today:...

 

By Steve Fehr | October 21, 2005; 12:51 PM ET | Email a Comment

Hearing Nov. 1 on Metro Land Sale Near Vienna Metro

OK, let's start this morning with the story about the Metro Board delaying a vote on the sale of land near the Vienna Metro station. Connolly and Davis both are claiming victory. www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2005/10/20/AR2005102002106.html Now, here are the details for the Nov. 1 meeting. It's from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. at Oakton High School, www.fcps.edu/OaktonHS/ One more thing. Metro General Manager Richard White is hosting an online chat at noon today. http://new.forums-wmata.com/...

 

By Steve Fehr | October 21, 2005; 11:14 AM ET | Email a Comment

Board OKs Historic Status for Former Lorton Prison

The county Board of Supervisors on Monday endorsed a plan to nominate the former Lorton prison site as a historic district on the National Register of Historic Places and Virginia Landmarks Register. The nomination applies to a 552-acre area of the former D.C. Correctional Complex that the federal government transferred to the county and is being redeveloped. Some of the buildings would be preserved for historical reasons....

 

By Steve Fehr | October 20, 2005; 06:27 PM ET | Email a Comment

Activists Fight Developers in Maryland

Check out the story about the grassroots activists challenging growth in the Clarksburg area of northern Montgomery County. The story was in today's Post. www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2005/10/17/AR2005101701895.html...

 

By Steve Fehr | October 18, 2005; 11:12 AM ET | Email a Comment

What Happened at the Hunter Mill Meeting?

I went out to Kansas City for a long weekend to see the Redskins game Sunday. Wow, you think we have rabid fans. Chiefs fans are insane. We sat in front of the press box complex and at one point I saw Redskins owner Dan Snyder peering out at the Redskins coaches through binoculars. I knew it was him because he was wearing cuff links. Who wears cuff links to a football game? I took a photo of him! While I was gone, the Hunter Mill folks had a meeting Monday night. Talk about what happened....

 

By Steve Fehr | October 18, 2005; 10:57 AM ET | Email a Comment

Organized Opposition To Development In Fairfax

A front page article from this morning's Washington Post gives prominent play to the recent efforts of citizens to organize themselves to oppose what they view as unfair development practices in Fairfax County. See it here....

 

By | October 14, 2005; 09:54 AM ET | Email a Comment

Hunter Mill Rd. Traffic Report Out Friday

From a news release today: The Hunter Mill Road Traffic Calming Committee will hold a press conference at 1 p.m. Fri. Oct. 14 at the W&OD Trail where it crosses Hunter Mill Road. The adjacent cross street is Hunter Station Rd. The purpose of the press conference is to announce the release of a summary report completed by the committee and to announce the commencement of the engineering next steps in the Hunter Mill Road Traffic Calming project....

 

By Steve Fehr | October 13, 2005; 01:31 PM ET | Email a Comment

Building Backyard Nature Preserves

The cover story in today's Fairfax Extra takes a look at how, in the face of increasing development, some residents and businesses are using environmentally friendly landscaping in an effort to preserve native plants and animals....

 

By | October 13, 2005; 12:56 PM ET | Email a Comment

Falls Church Adding Parkland

The city of Falls Church announced today that it has entered into an agreement to purchase the three-acre forested "Hamlett Tract" located at 601 W. Broad St. According to the news release, the purchase price is $1,040,000. The city currently owns more than an acre of land adjacent to this parcel, enabling the creation of a four and half acre contiguous park with the addition of the Hamlett Tract. This will be the third largest park in the city, behind Cherry Hill Park and Crossman Park/Four Mile Run....

 

By Steve Fehr | October 12, 2005; 03:02 PM ET | Email a Comment

We're Not Alone

I wanted to share with you this piece from the Mon. Oct. 10 New York Times. It shows how issues of density, slow growth and maturing neighborhoods also are playing out in the New York metropolitan area. Here's the link. Registration may be required at The Times' site. www.nytimes.com/2005/10/10/nyregion/10density.html...

 

By Steve Fehr | October 12, 2005; 05:15 AM ET | Email a Comment

Fairfax: Home of the Town Center

I came across an Associated Press dispatch that might be of interest....

 

By Steve Fehr | October 11, 2005; 03:54 PM ET | Email a Comment

Kaine Would Give Counties Like Fairfax the Right to Curb Growth

The Democratic candidate for Virginia governor, Tim Kaine, said Monday that he would give local governments the authority to reject rezoning requests by developers if the proposals overwhelm the transportation system. www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2005/10/10/AR2005101001497.html In other words, if a developer proposed a rezoning, the local elected officials could reject it if they believed the development would overwhelm the local road system. The thing is, Kaine as governor still would have to get such a proposal through the General Assembly....

 

By Steve Fehr | October 11, 2005; 12:46 PM ET | Email a Comment

Developer Buys Full Page Newspaper Ad Touting 'Wonderful New Community Taking Shape' at Hunter Mill Road

Careful readers of The Reston Times may have noticed the full page color ad in Wednesday's paper taken out by K. Hovnanian Companies and WCI/Renaissance Communities. The ad, on page A13, promotes the Parkview community, the proposed 226-acre development near Hunter Mill and the Dulles Toll Road. This is the project that is the target of criticism by many residents of the area who object to as many as 1,800 homes in their low density community. What's striking about the ad is that it presents the Parkview project as if it has already been approved. It shows a photo of four townhouses as if they have been built. It describes Parkview as a community "taking shape" and "whose time has arrived." But the project is a long way from approval. The county Board of Supervisors would have to change the comprehensive plan and approve the developer's rezoning request before...

 

By Steve Fehr | October 7, 2005; 04:00 PM ET | Email a Comment

What's Wrong With Density Near a Transit Station?

I am glad we have triggered a lively discussion about development and the future of Fairfax County. Please remember that I am only trying to convene a discussion, not take sides. Here's a question for today, stemming from the post by Charlie of Hunter Mill who said, "I believe that [Fairfax Supervisor Catherine] Hudgins is out to support the Wiehle Metro station by creating density." If I read this right, Charlie believes that density is a bad thing near a transit station. My question is, what is wrong with density near a transit station? A case could be made that we want as many fare-paying subway riders as we can get so we don't have to spend as much of our tax dollars subsidizing Metro....

 

By Steve Fehr | October 3, 2005; 10:57 AM ET | Email a Comment

There's a Story in The Post Today About Saturday's Hunter Mill Road Workshop

Here it is: Traffic was sparse yesterday on winding, tree-shrouded Hunter Mill Road near the Dulles Toll Road. A man stood outside a clapboard house selling labrador puppies. A church advertised a rummage sale. Cyclists stopped to rest at the Washington & Old Dominion Trail bike path crossing and soak up the autumn sun....

 

By Steve Fehr | October 2, 2005; 06:44 AM ET | Email a Comment

Is the Board of Supervisors Vulnerable on the Issue of Development?

A dozen people from all over the county came to The Post's Fairfax offices yesterday to vent their frustration about development in their neighborhoods. They do not believe the county Board of Supervisors listens to "the little people" in Fairfax. They say the board too often favors big developers, who have their way in Fairfax because they contribute money to the supervisors' campaigns. They targeted their wrath at Board Chairman Gerald E. Connolly (D) and Linda Smyth (D-Providence). The folks fighting such projects as Metro West near Vienna Metro, Wedderburn in Vienna and the proposed redevelopment of an area of rural Hunter Mill Road in Reston/Vienna said they believe there are many county residents who feel disenfranchised because of the behavior of the supervisors. I get a sense that we could be seeing a repeat of 1987, when voters fed up with traffic and growth threw out the board chairman...

 

By Steve Fehr | September 30, 2005; 12:36 PM ET | Email a Comment

 

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