PUBLIC HEARING AGENDA REQUEST

Owners/Applicants:

Board of Supervisors Meeting Date:

Fauquier County School Board

January 11, 2007

Staff Lead:

Department:

Melissa Dargis, Assistant Chief of Planning

Community Development

Magisterial District:

PIN:

Cedar Run

7914-89-0204-000

Topic:  

A Resolution to Approve SPEX07-CR-002: Fauquier Elementary School #11 Special Exception and CCRV07-CR-001: Comprehensive Plan Compliance Review

Topic Description:   

Special Exception: 

The applicant requests approval for a Special Exception to allow for the construction of a new elementary school.

Comprehensive Plan Conformance Determination:

As part of the school site location, the Planning Commission has made a determination that the proposed school, at this location, is in accord with the Comprehensive Plan.

Project Information: 

The project site is adjacent to the approved Kettle Run High School, that is currently under construction.  It is part of the former Mabel V. Lunceford Estate property.  The total site area, subject to this request, is estimated at approximately 23 acres and it is zoned Rural Agricultural (RA).

School Administration’s objective is to have this school open in August 2008.  Many of the local county elementary schools have reached their physical student population capacity and are now utilizing modular classrooms.  This facility will help alleviate the overcrowding and accommodate student growth in the New Baltimore area. 

Typical school operations for this school and other elementary schools are from 7:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m. on weekdays, with events and community use irregularly scheduled after hours.  The core facility will be designed to accommodate up to 700 students and approximately 70 full time faculty and staff. 

The building will be a single story rectilinear masonry structure of about 70,000 square feet.  The palette of materials will be complimentary to the surrounding neighborhoods.

The applicant proposes to update its current traffic study (conducted for the third high school) in time for submittal of the Site Plan for this project. The Board of Supervisors is currently in the feasibility stages of locating a second access point that could be utilized for both the high school, elementary school and other potential County uses on both parcels “A” and “B,” as shown below.

The Zoning Ordinance allows the school use by Special Exception.  According to the applicant, the proposed expanded use of the subject property for an additional school will not adversely affect uses of surrounding agricultural land or residential properties.  The school provides an important amenity to the community by providing community and recreational space, in addition to the school itself. 

 

Land Area, Location and Zoning:      

The property is located at the intersection of Rogues Road and Grapewood Drive.  A map of the property is shown below.  The section labeled as “A” will contain the proposed elementary school and the approved third high school.  Attachment 1 shows the Special Exception Plat which includes the building footprint as well as associated parking and recreational fields.      

 

 

 

 

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Vicinity Map for the Property

 

Neighboring Zoning/Land Use: 

The property is currently zoned Rural Agricultural (RA) and is bound to the north and east by Residential-1 (R-1) and RA; to the south by RA and to the west by R-1.  Rogues Road (Route 602) functions as the edge of the New Baltimore Service District.  Thus, the property located to the west of the project parcel is within the New Baltimore Service District and has been developed as a single-family detached residential neighborhood.

Action Requested of the Board of Supervisors: 

Conduct a public hearing and consider adoption of the attached resolution.

Planning Commission Recommendation: 

On December 19, 2006, the Planning Commission held a public hearing on these items and recommended unanimous approval, subject to a series of Special Exception conditions and found the location of the school to be consistent with the Comprehensive Plan. 

With that recommendation, the Commissioners strongly advised the Board of Supervisors to proactively pursue and acquire a second access point for both the elementary and high school being constructed at this location.

 

Staff Analysis 

Staff and the appropriate referral agencies have reviewed this request for conformance with the Comprehensive Plan, the Zoning Ordinance, and other relevant policies and regulations.  Findings, comments, and recommendations are summarized below. The actual responses from referral agencies are available upon request.

Comprehensive Compliance Determination

§15.2-2232, Code of Virginia, Comprehensive Plan Compliance Review.  Here the Planning Commission is required to make a finding that the proposed elementary school (a public facility feature) is substantially in accord with the adopted Comprehensive Plan at this location. 

The New Baltimore Service District Plan (NBSD)  Plan objectives and policies for all school categories are: 

Objectives: 

ü      To provide quality public schools that are not overcrowded and situated in safe, quiet environments; 

ü      Encourage the co-location of schools and parks for the development of neighborhood and community facilities providing for an efficient use of land; and

ü      Ensure public sewer is made available to new schools, and where possible, existing schools are connected to public sewer. 

The NBSD Plan has a very limited area designated for WSA sewer service (AB-1).  Brookside represents the southern edge of AB-1, with sewer available for the Eddington Drive neighborhood.  WSA sewer service is not available to locations outside such designated areas within New Baltimore.  To solve this problem for the elementary school, Chapter 6 – Service Districts of the Comprehensive Plan (reference p. 5) provides a provision which states that the Comprehensive Plan “does not intend to preclude the extension of public water and sewer to existing or planned governmental facilities that are near or adjacent to service districts.”  This section empowers the Board of Supervisors to allow extension of both sewer and water services to the elementary school site. 

Note that sewer service lines will be sized to exclusively serve the Fauquier County School Board site.  This connection will be made through the WSA facilities available through Brookside.  The WSA has onsite wells and service available to the proposed high school. 

Policies: 

ü      The acquisition of school sites should be accompanied with the provision of sewer services.  If a new school for the New Baltimore Service District is located in an area not planned for public sewer, the sewer line will then be sized only to serve that school facility, with no other connections allowed; and 

ü      Recreational facilities available at school sites should be made available for community-wide use.

When meeting rooms and fields are not in use, the Fauquier County School Board makes such facilities available for public use through requisite scheduling.  This facility is a major County investment and community resource, and such provisions are expected. 

New Baltimore Service District Plan Update.  The Board of Supervisors appointed Citizen Planning Committee is providing the 5-Year review of the adopted 1999 NBSD Plan, and has prepared proposed refinements to that document for both Planning Commission and Board of Supervisors consideration.  It needs to be noted that this County owned property has been designated as a proposed school site in that document. 

Planning Commission Finding.  As described herein, the adopted 1999 New Baltimore Service District Plan identified the need for an elementary school to serve the growing student population within its boundary and the surrounding neighborhoods.  The proposed location is consistent with the proposed New Baltimore Service District Plan’s objectives and policies.  (The Plan is currently under view by the Board of Supervisors.)  The Planning Commission has agreed with the Fauquier County School Board and determined that this proposed elementary school is a public facility feature that is substantially in accord with the adopted Comprehensive Plan. 

Engineering 

The Engineering Office has reviewed the Concept Plan for the reference project and has the following comments/concerns in regard to the information presented. 

  1. The SWM/BMP facility is proposed to be located near the existing wetlands. Design of that system should consider the likelihood of wet soils with high groundwater table.

 

  1. It appears that there is a planned future bus storage area and refueling station east of the proposed elementary school.  Some of that area may drain to the proposed SWM/BMP pond associated with this project.  Design of the new pond must consider the increase in runoff from the bus parking area as well as provide fuel/oil separator accommodations should that area drain to any SWM/BMP facility.

 

  1. Wetlands are shown to exist on and/or near the site. Potential impacts on those wetlands should be evaluated and permits obtained where necessary.

VDOT 

The Warrenton Residency staff reviewed the above referenced Special Exception, and has the following comments:

 

  1. The traffic counts for this school were not part of the TIA that was done for the high school and bus yard.  The frontage improvements should be evaluated to ensure they are adequate to handle the additional capacity.  It is not anticipated with the signalized intersection that there will be a problem, but they should be reviewed.

 

  1. At the pre-construction for the high school, VDOT advised the engineer and school representatives that the pavement design being placed for the high school plan should take into consideration the ultimate traffic counts for this road.  This will ensure it is designed to adequately handle the additional anticipated traffic.

 

  1. A cul-de-sac needs to be provided at the end of the state maintained portion of the main road going to the schools.

 

  1. Limits of clearing and grading shown on the plan do not show the road being constructed up to the end of the road being constructed by the high school plan which is just past the entrance to the student parking.  It is not clear who will construct the road in between.

 

  1. Dedicated right-of-way should be indicated for the main road for the school if this is intended to be state maintained.

 

 

Summary and Recommendations: 

Staff recommends the Board hold the public hearing on these items and consider the Planning Commission’s recommendation. 

The applicant and its design team have conducted a scoping meeting to upgrade the existing Traffic Impact Analysis (TIA) to include the elementary school.  This amendment is essential to determine if any additional improvements to Route 602 are needed, and such an amendment is simply required of any applicant with a project of this scale.  Although the actual TIA was not available at the time of preparation of this report, the consultant summarized the findings to indicate that with the addition of the elementary school to this site, no new transportation improvements are required.  In summary, no additional improvements are needed in 2008.  In 2014, an eastbound right turn lane will be needed on Route 652 to achieve level of service (LOS) C.  However, this improvement is needed without the elementary school. 

The County staff continues to encourage the use of “Green Building” and Low Impact Development (LID) designs for projects within the Service District.  As a result, it is recommended that the County lead by example with such designs in its new buildings and facilities; the elementary school and site would be an excellent first step.  Staff hopes to encourage “Green Building” designs for this facility.  School’s Administration has done research on this topic previously when planning the third high school.  In particular, the incorporation of Low Impact Design (LID) principles regarding design of the stormwater management facilities, as well as capturing runoff from the building and parking lot were reviewed.  If it is the Board’s wish, staff will draft a condition related to LID requirements for the elementary school. 

 

Identify any other Departments, Organizations or Individuals that would be affected by this request:

Fauquier County Department of Community Development
Virginia Department of Health 

ATTACHMENTS: 

1.            Special Exception Plat

2.            Statement of Justification

 

Back to Agenda...