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Votes

Supervisors Reconsider Zoning

Board of Supervisors send Belmont Glen’s rezoning request back to Land Use.

After already voting down a rezoning request, the Board of Supervisors decided Monday to send Belmont Glen, L.C.’s proposal for a 143-acre site back to the Land Use Committee.

The McLean developer requested rezoning the site from one unit per acre to a planned development community of 196 single-family detached units. The Board of Supervisors voted Sept. 15 against the request, requiring the site remain as a base zoning or by-right development as already allowed under the county’s zoning ordinance. The site’s location is west of Belmont Ridge Road, or Route 659, a half-mile from the Dulles Greenway, or Route 267.

Supervisor Charles Harris (D-Broad Run) asked the board at the Oct. 6 meeting to reconsider Belmont Glen’s rezoning application by sending it back to Land Use. He referred the application to the committee for further site planning and discussion on the development’s potential environmental impacts if it remains as by-right instead of a rezoning. He liked that the developer was offering to provide $2.25 million in proffers at a rate of $42,000 per housing unit to help cover the development’s infrastructure costs. The county would lose those proffers by retaining the site under a by-right status.

“This is the highest proffer for a rezoning the county has ever seen,” Harris said. “Although I have a lot of concern about adding 50 houses, the proffers are the better option.”

In addition, Harris worried over the environmental impacts the by-right development could have on the site, which fronts Goose Creek and is near the Beaverdam and Goose Creek reservoirs. In its rezoning request, Belmont Glen offered to mitigate the development’s potential environmental impacts by incorporating conservation design principles, providing water quality protection measures in the Goose Creek watershed and preserving forested areas and open space, along with providing the county with a 61-acre passive recreation public park along Goose Creek.

“By right is devastating to the environment. I’m more than happy to take it back to Land Use,” Sally Kurtz (Catoctin) said.

The board voted 6-2-1 in favor of Harris’s motion with Drew Hiatt (R-Dulles) and James Burton (I-Mercer) voting against and chairman Scott York (R-At large) absent from the vote.

IN OTHER BUSINESS, the Board of Supervisors heard the 2003 annual report from the Soil and Water Conservation District, a political subdivision of the state that aims to conserve natural resources, improve water quality and provide education on environmental issues.

“Despite budget constraints, this has been another year of great accomplishments,” said James Boland, district chairman.