The Changing Face Of Mount Vernon

The Changing Face Of Mount Vernon

Land use (re)development highlights.

The project team has broken the three and a half-mile stretch of U.S. Route 1 being improved into five main sections.

The project team has broken the three and a half-mile stretch of U.S. Route 1 being improved into five main sections. Image courtesy of Eastern Federal Lands Highway Division

A look at land use changes and proposals targeting the Mount Vernon area:

  • Penn Daw area of U.S. Route 1: The former Penn Daw Plaza shopping center was rezoned as part of a 2012 Comprehensive Plan amendment for the Penn Daw area and is set to be demolished to make way for a mixed-use development called One Kings. According to the Southeast Fairfax Development Corporation (SFDC), One Kings will feature 400 apartments, between 30 and 50 townhouses, and ground-level retail. The project is in the site plan phase, according to Supervisor Jeff McKay’s (D-Lee) office.

“We've been trying to get the Huntington Metro station redevelopment happening at the same pace we see redevelopment happening around other transit stations,” said McKay. “So what's happening in that Penn Daw area is big. That one's been passed up for the longest time.”

  • Opening of Wegmans at Hill Top Village: Though the new destination grocery-restaurant was previously slated for a late spring opening, McKay now says to expect an opening in the May-June timeframe — among other reasons, due to the substantial training employees must go through. The 350,000 square-foot facility will be an anchor at Hilltop Village Center (the corner of Telegraph Road and Beulah Street), which will also feature a gym and other retail.

“One thing we've experienced at the Springfield Town Center is its popularity is unbelievable,” said McKay. “The appetite, especially for restaurants, literally, is so big in that area, that the more we can build and provide services to people closer to where they live, the better.”

  • North Hill area: Redevelopment proposals are coming in for mixed-income and affordable housing, as well as park space, for this 33-acre piece of land along U.S. Route 1 and by Lockheed Boulevard. The proposals are being reviewed by the Fairfax County Redevelopment and Housing Authority (FCRHA) but no findings have been released yet, according to Supervisor Gerry Hyland (D-Mount Vernon).

  • Bus Rapid Transit Center: As buses become more of a force providing mass transit on U.S. Route 1, county staff are looking for a transit center site that would facilitate change of direction for the increased fleet. One area currently under consideration is a site just off the highway, south of Buckman Road.

  • New Fairfield Inn & Suites at 6421 Richmond Highway: The Hersha Group is finished with demolition of the Fairview Motel and has construction permits to move forward with a new 108-room Fairfield Inn & Suites.

  • Ross Dress for Less at Mount Vernon Crossroads: The discount clothing retailer is expected to move in this year, and is going through a building permit phase.

  • Buffalo Wild Wings: The popular chicken wings, beer and sports restaurant is expected to open a corporate restaurant this year in Mount Vernon Plaza, in the building that formerly housed Chevys Fresh Mex restaurant (7732 Richmond Highway).

  • Habitat for Humanity’s ReStore closed: Gold’s Gym is planning to expand the space at 7770 Richmond Highway.

  • Widening of Richmond Highway Still Underway: The $180 million project to widen 3.5 miles of U.S. Route 1 from four to six lanes and also accommodate mass transit, bicycles and walking is expected to be completed in 2016.

  • The Parker at Huntington Station: The decades-old VSE office building situated by the Huntington Metro was torn down and is set to be replaced a 390-unit, four-to-six-story residential development, as well as a 15-story, 260,000 square foot office-retail building and a 150-room hotel. Rezoning and a site plan were approved in 2012, and apartments and a parking garage are under construction.

  • Starbucks: 7511 Richmond Highway, formerly a Checkers restaurant, is the site of a new Starbucks Coffee (complete with drive-through service) set to open soon.

Sources: Supervisor Gerry Hyland (D-Mount Vernon) and land use aide, Supervisor Jeff McKay (D-Lee) and land use aide, and Southeast Fairfax Development Corporation.