Park Authority Approves Laurel Hill Plan

Park Authority Approves Laurel Hill Plan

The Fairfax County Park Authority approved a conceptual plan for the new Laurel Hill park at its July 28 meeting. The 1,200 park located on the grounds of the old Lorton prison is one of the last major tracts of land left in Fairfax County. The plan was two years in the making and involved workshops and hearings with citizen groups. The plan calls for both playing fields and environmental conservation. Following is a legend to the map above:

A: The Park Authority envisions a conservation area on the northern section of the site with protected wildlife habitat as well as interpretive signs, trails and possible a future nature center.

B: A North-South trail system would connect the park and connect to the various features of the park. The trail would be located on the site of the prison's original railroad bed.

C: The plan calls for light and irrigated rectangular fields on a former Nike missile control site.

D: On the western tip of the park, the Park Authority plans to build a tot lot and picnic area for local residents.

E: A museum is planned for this site, an old Nike launch facility.

F: Next to the museum, the plan calls for lighted and irrigated ballfields.

G: The main green would provide a lawn suitable for fairs, markets and special events. The area may also provide space for park-goers can fly kites or shoot model rockets.

H: The plan proposes to maintain this area as a meadow with a visitor's center as well as opportunities for fishing, hiking and Frisbee golf.

I: This site is planned as a community park for the Shirley Acres and Gunston Corners neighborhoods with playgrounds, ballfields, picnic areas and a dog park. The park would be accessible via Lorton Road.

J: The plan envisions an art exhibition area for this site as well as farm exhibits, community gardens, open meadows and campsites.

K: This area would become an equestrian center suitable for classes and therapeutic riding. A mountain biking site, community gardens and a campsite are also possibilities for part of the site.

L: The plan calls for lighted and irrigated fields here.

M: The park's entrances would be designed to reflect the area's history.

N: This site is currently being used as a landfill but is projected to close in the future and become park land. The Park Authority will decide later what to do with the site.

O: The site of the former youth prison could become a sports complex.

P: This parcel could be annexed to Occoquan Regional Park.