PUBLIC HEARING AGENDA REQUEST

Sponsor:

Board of Supervisors Meeting  Date: 

Fauquier County Planning Commission

October 8, 2009

Staff Lead:

Department: 

Holly Meade, Senior Planner

Community Development

Magisterial District:

Scott  

 

Topic: 

Service District: New Baltimore

An Amendment to Comprehensive Plan Chapter 6 – Service Districts – New Baltimore Service District Plan (CPAM09-SC-007) - to Amend the Land Use Plan, the Transportation Plan and Associated Text for the Area East of Lee Highway (Routes 15/29), West of Grays Mill Road (Route 674) and North of and Including the Mill Run Business Park

 

Topic Update:

Since the last public hearing, after discussion with the Scott District Commissioner and Supervisor, staff added language to the proposed amendment to address concern regarding the industrial three acres and how it may potentially develop.  The proposed language would apply the same building orientation and landscaping guidelines to the industrial three acres as it would to the proposed office park.

Topic Description:

On February 26, 2009, the Fauquier County Planning Commission initiated a transportation and land use study in the area east of Lee Highway (Routes 15/29), west of Grays Mill Road (Route 674) and north of and including the Mill Run Business Park.    The purpose of the study was first to look at the road network in the area, traffic volumes on Lee Highway (which now exceed 45,000 vehicle trips daily in this area), accident data, Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) access management standards, and VDOT’s intent to add u-turn restrictions and close median crossovers.  The study then explored alternate road networks.  Secondly, the study looked at existing land uses, the Comprehensive Plan Land Use Plan, and explored other land use alternatives.  Thirdly, the study took account of environmental considerations, historic and cultural resources, and design and landscaping considerations. 

Staff held two community meetings with area residents.  The first meeting was held on April 9, 2009.  Staff reviewed existing conditions and sought community input on transportation and land use issues.  A second meeting was held on May 12, 2009.  At this meeting staff presented numerous options and received community feedback on those options.  A summary of community concerns and comments is included as Attachment 1.

Based on feedback from the community meetings and the Planning Commission work session and public hearing, staff has drafted Comprehensive Plan text amendments in the following areas:

·         Land Use Plan, Figure 1:  The Comprehensive Plan Amendment proposes changing land use designation on two parcels totaling 3.298 acres from Low Density Residential to Industrial.  These two parcels are located immediately adjacent to the existing Pepsi-Cola Bottling Company.  Pepsi has filed an application to rezone these two parcels to Industrial (I-1) with the desire to expand their business.  The text amendment further proposes to redesignate 18.043 acres from Low Density Residential to a new category titled “Office Park.”  The Future Land Use Chart, Table 1 would be updated to reflect these changes. 

·         Objectives, Policy & Implementation Strategies – Commercial Land Use (pg. 18):  The text amendment proposes a new Commercial “Office Park” land use category.  This area is envisioned to contain a mix of business, education, recreation, personal services and public and quasi-public uses.  If adopted, the text would restrict the amount of retail and personal services, allow drive-throughs for banks only, provide for small civic or public spaces, limit access on Route 29, provide additional landscaping and screening, focus buildings inward, be pedestrian friendly and limit signage. 

·         Transportation – Primary Road Recommendations (pg. 44):  On April 15, 2002, the County approved a Comprehensive Plan Amendment, sponsored by VDOT, which added a collector road in the New Baltimore Service District Plan.  The collector road was designed to collect traffic generated by the adjoining industrial park, and channel traffic movement to the east and west along Route 29.  In light of increased traffic volume and accidents, the community is experiencing more difficulty in safely accessing their property.  With this amendment the location of the collector has changed.   

The new proposal has a loop road from the intersection with Old Alexandria Turnpike to a new right-in/right-out on Route 15/29.  It also has internal connections and a connection to Grays Mill Road.  The new proposal is in line with access management goals and policies.  The proposal further reduces crossovers and entrances along the corridor as well as provides site access alternatives to commercial and industrial properties.  An additional benefit is the realignment of Route 674 with greater separation from Old Alexandria Turnpike than the existing Telephone Road intersection.  The grade differences of the northbound and southbound lanes of Route 29 will influence the engineering details as well as impact the cost of the needed improvements.

·        Primary Road Improvements Priorities (pg. 47):  This adds the reconfiguration of the Old Alexandria Turnpike (Route 693) and Route 15/29 intersection with a signal as priority 6 which was overlooked with the 2002 New Baltimore Plan update.

·         Road Classifications and Design, Table 5 (pg. 49):  This primary road improvement was inadvertently left off the chart with the 2002 New Baltimore Plan update.  This text amendment adds the improvement as priority 6.

·         New Baltimore Service District Water and Sewer Service, Figure 2:  The text amendment proposes designating the increased industrial and business park areas as AB.2, with public water and sewer.

·         Transportation for Buildout, Figure 3:  See detail in Transportation-Primary Road Recommendations section above.  Of the options shown at the community meetings in New Baltimore, this is the community’s and VDOT’s preference for the collector road.  The plan shows a number of Comprehensive Plan roads in addition to the loop road.  These likely will be provided as part of future development.  Alternative creative financing, such as a special taxing district, may be used to fund improvements.  The area may qualify as a local technology zone or enterprise zone, which can be further explored in the future.

·         Five Year Transportation Plan (2006-2010) Secondary Roads, Figure 4:  Places the Alexandria Turnpike, Route 15/29 intersection with signal as improvement priority 6.

Planning Commission Action of July 30, 2009:

On July 30, 2009 the Fauquier County Planning Commission held a work session and public hearing on the Comprehensive Plan text amendment.  At the work session the Planning Commission discussed whether the district should be named a Business Park or an Office Park.  The Planning Commission determined the Office Park designation more clearly explained the vision for the area.  At the public hearing six individuals spoke in opposition to the proposal.  The main disagreement was based on the transportation component of the proposal and its potential impacts.  Some individuals voiced concern that the text amendment would encourage sprawl.  Three individuals spoke in support of the proposal.  These individuals stated the economic impact and road safety benefits of the proposal far outweighed any potential negative impact.

The Scott District Commissioner stated that she believed this study was a successful process which engaged the community.  She believed the previous Comprehensive Plan loop road was a disservice to the community and that the new proposal was the best possible solution for future traffic and access to the surrounding neighborhood.  Staff, VDOT and the Planning Commission have carefully analyzed the road alignment, and explicit language has been provided in the text of the Comprehensive Plan to prevent development of anything resembling a strip mall.  Commissioner Garreau stressed that no property would be taken, no rezoning would occur, and no road would be built on individual properties unless owners of the property filed a rezoning application.  She believed the text amendment represented the best solution with the facts given and was extremely proud of the planning effort.

The Center District Commissioner stated he was in support of the Office Park with the stipulations outlined in the text of the proposed amendment.  However, he did have a problem with the proposed signal due to the impact with Old Alexandria Turnpike across Route 29.  The Lee District Commissioner agreed and stated that the north side of Route 29 needed to be addressed.  It was explained that a transportation study would be done regarding the proposed signal near Old Alexandria Turnpike prior to any road improvements being undertaken. 

It was moved to forward this item to the Board of Supervisors with a unanimous recommendation of approval.  The Planning Commission further stated that the road network north of Route 29 (specifically Old Alexandria Turnpike) should be studied.  Based on Planning Commission action, staff added specific language to the proposed text of the Comprehensive Plan requiring a traffic impact analysis (TIA) and a signal warrant study prior to any transportation improvements. 

Board Action of September 10, 2009:

The Board of Supervisors held a public hearing and two individuals spoke in opposition to the proposed amendment.  The individuals were concerned how this amendment would affect the future of their property.  They felt they had not been given any answers regarding the timing of the impact to their property.

Action Requested of the Board of Supervisors:
Conduct a public hearing and consider adoption of the attached Ordinance

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

Department of Community Development
Department of Economic Development
Commissioner of the Revenue
New Baltimore Area Businesses and Residents

  

 Attachments:

1.      Summary of Comments From April 2009 Public Meeting

 

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