applicant is seeking special exception approval to relocate a
business operation on the subject 330 acres of land on the east
side of Route 17 between Bealeton and Morrisville.
The applicant currently operates its business at Vint Hill,
and needs room for expansion and a more remote location for
testing its unmanned aircraft machines.
The County Economic Development Office has been working
with the applicant to find a new location, and the applicants have
a contract to purchase two parcels totaling approximately 330
acres, contingent upon special exception approval.
proposal initially calls for less than one acre of the total land
area to be used for the construction of an 8,300 square foot
building with associated parking, landscaping and a launch pad
area to be used in testing the remote controlled aerial vehicle
systems that will be assembled on site.
Other than the occasional test flights, all business
operations would occur indoors.
The special exception conditions recommended by the
Planning Commission include some of the following provisions:
- Limit number of employees to 25
- Limit hours of operation from 8:00 am to 5:00 pm, Monday through
- Prevent the subdivision of the property during the term of the
- Various conditions to prevent interference with adjacent property
owners or other aircraft
- Building design similar to adjacent agricultural or residential
- No retail sales permitted
The Planning Commission determined that, due to the
minimal area to be used, the imposition of the proposed conditions
and the fact that there is already a mixture of commercial and
industrial uses in the immediate area, this application had
sufficient merit for recommending approval.
Following a public hearing and a site visit, the
Planning Commission recommended by a vote of 3-2 that the
application be approved, subject to the 17 conditions listed in