Board of Supervisors Meeting Date:


Planning Commission


October 13, 2005

Staff Lead:



Frederick P.D. Carr, Director


Community Development



A Resolution Adopting the Text Amendment to Chapter Six-Warrenton Service District Plan


Topic Description:


The text amendment to the Warrenton Service District Plan includes proposed changes to land use designations, service district boundaries, mapped clarification of the limits of public sewer and water service, as well as more detailed recommendations regarding the transportation network and access.


Requested Action of the Board of Supervisors:


Consider adoption of the attached resolution.

Financial Impact Analysis:

None completed.


Summary Staff Report:


Background Information:


On November 17, 2003, the Board of Supervisors adopted the Warrenton Service District element of the Comprehensive Plan. Based on Supervisor Richard Robison’s subsequent request, the Board of Supervisors appointed a Citizen Planning Committee on March 14, 2004. The Committee’s assignment was, for example, to review final element revisions that were adopted in 2003 and recommend refinements as appropriate, with special focus placed: on Community Business and Campus Office & Employment land use designations, service district boundary adjustments, consideration of more detailed transportation network improvements for Board of Supervisors consideration. 


Examples of just some of the Committee’s recommended actions or areas of refinement are as follows:


ü      Affirmed the Community Business land use designations along U.S. 15/29 occurring north of Warrenton;


ü      Changed the Moriah Farm from its Campus & Employment land use designation to Rural Agriculture;


ü      Removed Moriah Farm and Central Park Complex from the Service District;


ü      Recommended a revised street access plan for the general area affecting the restaurants, car dealerships and the Comfort Inn along U.S. Route 15/29;


ü      Recommended transportation network options for the eastern service district to better link and serve the growing Town and County neighborhoods; and


ü      Added the collector road connecting Rt. 211 and Rt. 17 as a last resort, if improvements on Broadview Avenue fail to effectively move anticipated levels of increased traffic volumes.  This roadway option was to have a more neighborhood character, rather than serve as a regional arterial.


The Committee unanimously approved the draft Warrenton Service District Plan on February 12, 2005, and presented it to the Planning Commission at its March 31, 2005 meeting.  The Planning Commission conducted its public hearing on April 26, 2005, had subsequent work sessions, and forwarded the text amendment on June 30th, including final revisions, for the referenced Plan with a unanimous recommendation for Board of Supervisors adoption. 


The Draft Plan forwarded to the Board of Supervisors can be viewed at the following County Website:

It needs to be noted that the draft represents the Citizen Committee’s recommended Plan revisions underlined in black, while the Planning Commission’s added refinements are underlined in red text.



Summary Update:


Current Revisions:  At its September 8th work session and regular meeting, the Board of Supervisors directed the following immediate revisions to the draft Warrenton Service District Plan forwarded by the Planning Commission:


a.       Figure 10 – WA – 1: Regional Transportation.  Remove the entire orange alignment west of Warrenton and connecting Route 211 with Route 17 (e.g., it includes the Timber Fence Parkway).


b.      1.c. Transportation (pages 3-5).  The following marked text revision is required:


None of these bypasses have resolved the issue of traffic movement from Route 211 to U.S. 15/29 east.  Significant growth in nearby Culpeper and Rappahannock Counties is generating increasing levels of through traffic – estimated by the Town’s traffic consultant to reach 13,440 vehicles per day in 2020.  These existing and future motorists have no alternative but to travel on an already congested Broadview Avenue – Lee Highway.  For the last 15 years, County plans have proposed that Routes 211 and 17 be linked by a minor arterial road.  A minor portion of this road has been completed on the alignment proposed in the 1992 Comprehensive Plan.  This limited access connector would have an impact on neighborhoods that have developed since the road’s inception and on Fauquier High School.  As a result of that impact, the link is shown as a collector road right-of-way reservation.  As a result, alleviation of congestion on existing Route 29/211 (Broadview Avenue) will continue to require careful analysis, inter-jurisdictional cooperation and coordination, face significant funding constraints and require the staging of selected options.  The preferred priority is phased construction improvements along Broadview Avenue (e.g., widening, spaced medians and associated turn lanes) with the goal of enhancing traffic flow.  It is also recommended that the County and Town create a joint Task Force, composed of elected officials, residents, businesses, to assist the local governments and VDOT in identifying the practical, cost effective and integrated transportation solutions to alleviate this crossroads of growing regional and local traffic.


c.       8.a. Lee Highway and Broadview Avenue (pages 22-23).


Given projected traffic increases from Culpeper and Rappahannock Counties on Route 211, the Plan proposes that the design and performance of U.S. Route 15/29 Business, Lee Highway and Broadview Avenue, be significantly upgraded to provide more efficient through traffic flows for vehicles traveling from Culpeper and Rappahannock Counties to Route 15/29, and other destinations east by means of:


·     Streaming arterial, collector and local access traffic;

·     Improved road and intersectional engineering;

·     Median separations and crossovers; and

·     Greater inter-parcel-access between commercial developments alongside the arterial road. 


To this end, the County will assist the Town of Warrenton in the effort to find funding through the VDOT 6-Year Improvement Program for the restructuring of this important element of U.S. 15/29 (Business).  In addition, as represented in Figure 10-WA-1, the plan recognizes the existing right-of-way reservation between Routes 211 and 17.


For this future collector, both the Town and County need to effectively collaborate with the local and affected neighborhoods in developing a public road design that: (a) safely and compatibly fits the residential neighborhood community environment; (b) allows external roadway linkages; (c) controls vehicular speed with a variety of traffic calming and management techniques (e.g., median and refuge islands, paving treatments, bike path and landscaping treatments); and (d) ensures a safe and walkable community for local residents.


Other Proposed Revisions:  Since the last Board of Supervisors meeting, the subsequent underlined revisions are recommended for consideration:


1.      1.c. Water and Sewer Utilities (page 5):


The Town’s wastewater plant has a permitted design capacity of 2.5 million gallons per day.  Warrenton is located within two watersheds, the Occoquan and the Rappahannock.  Effluent from Town customers located in the Occoquan basin is pumped to the Town’s sewer plant on Route 211, where it is treated and discharged into Great Run Creek, a tributary of the Rappahannock River.  (Note: the Town’s DEQ permitted discharge into the Rappahannock Watershed avoids the more costly capital and treatment costs associated with the Occoquan basin, which is subject to far more restrictive Commonwealth standards.)  However, increasingly more stringent wastewater outflow regulations in the Rappahannock basin may require significant and costly engineering upgrades if Warrenton decides to expand its wastewater plant to full capacity.


2.      1.c. Water and Sewer Utilities (page 6)


It should be noted that the limited public sewer and water service extension capabilities of the Town, which to serve the unincorporated areas of the Warrenton Service District, are controlled by agreements reached between the Town and County in the summer of 2001.  The two jurisdictions defined certain limited areas where Town water and sewer would be provided, and established that such service should not be expected for the remainder of the Service District. Those limited areas are identified within The Town/County Master Water and Sewer Agreement (refer to Figures 6-UT-1 and 6-UT-2). Properties that are not specified within this agreement for sewer service or served within a community sewer system owned, operated and maintained by the Fauquier County Water and Sanitation Authority (WSA), refer to Figure 6-UT-1, are located in the designated Non-Sewered Area of the Warrenton Service District.  Furthermore, all future development needing public sewer and water in areas not designated for Town of Warrenton or WSA public utilities would also require a Plan Amendment authorizing service to be provided by the Fauquier County Water and Sanitation Authority or the Town of Warrenton.


3.       1.f.1.(2). Streams (pages 7-8):


Greater care and more refined techniques in the future may be needed to restore and preserve keep these watersheds healthy and productive.  The Commonwealth of Virginia has provided the local jurisdictions not immediately adjacent to the Chesapeake Bay with an option to adopt the more stringent standards presently operative in Counties contiguous with the Bay.  (Chesapeake Bay Preservation Act, Section 10.1-2108.)  These additional standards include such simple mechanisms as setting development further back from streams and watercourses as well as more sophisticated engineering techniques.


4.      2.2 (Vision Statement; page 8):


The social and commercial heart of the community will remain Main Street.  This continued characteristic will be the result of combined and sustained Town and County efforts.  Additionally the Town, School Board and County will pursue a consistent policy of co-locating service agencies, from scattered office sites throughout the County, into offices above mid-block structured parking.  Complementing this effort to enhance the downtown as a place of work and recreation will be the construction of coordinated radial sidewalks and trails reaching into surrounding residential neighborhoods. 


5.      3.b. Land Use Designations (page 12):


Finally, land to southwest of Route 17, now zoned RA, is designated Rural Gateway-Greenway Open Space reflecting community wish to preserve the transition from rural to urban qualities which occur at this road juncture and recognizing that the circumferential park is desirable to cross this tract. 


(Note: this designation was removed from the proposed Plan, and this remnant language is from the previously adopted Service District Plan.)


6.      6. Rappahannock and Occoquan Watershed Protection (pages 17-18):


It appears that existing engineering protocols in the Rappahannock and Occoquan watersheds have been insufficient to prevent erosion and protect water quality.  The County has recently adopted a stormwater management ordinance as a tool to assist in the protection of these water resource areas.  Another proven aid for achieving water quality protection is the preservation of riparian buffers adjacent to perennial water bodies.  The Chesapeake Bay Preservation Act requires Virginia's Tidewater localities, those located closest to the Chesapeake Bay, to adopt riparian provisions by establishing Resource Protection Area buffers adjacent to perennial waters.  These buffers are not mandated outside of Tidewater Counties, however section 10.1-2110 of the Chesapeake Bay Preservation Act provides the authority for Virginia localities outside of the Tidewater to incorporate the Act's water quality protection tools into their comprehensive plans and ordinances.


The Warrenton Service District Plan proposes that the County exercise this option to incorporate the Chesapeake Bay Preservation Act’s protection tools in the Rappahannock and Occoquan watersheds.


(Note:  the balance of this section amply covers watershed management and protection.)


7.      Public Sewer and Water Services.  The Planning Commission has included additional maps in the draft Plan representing in parcel detail where Town of Warrenton or WSA utilities exist or are planned.  Graphics which display the availability of public sewer (Figure 6-UT-1) and water (Figure 6-UT-2) services are now included within the Plan.  The areas designated as existing Town Sewer or Water and Authorized Potential Customers are graphically part of a signed agreement between both the Town of Warrenton and the Fauquier County Board of Supervisors. The WSA water supply areas are also similarly marked and have been noted in the Service District Plan.  The maps also identify community wastewater treatment facilities that will exclusively serve the Raymond Farm and Warrenton Chase communities and, once permitted, constructed and operational, will be transferred to WSA for its ownership, operation and maintenance.


8.      Other Considerations:


a.       Central Sports Complex & Moriah Farm:


The planned County recreational facility is not included within the proposed Plan’s Service District boundaries, as is the case with current and adopted Board of Supervisors Warrenton Service District Plan.  The site will need WSA water service; the suggested text revision to the Plan is:


ü      Add the following language to 1.c. Water and Sewer Utilities (page 6):


Furthermore, all future development needing public sewer and water in areas not designated for Town of Warrenton or WSA public utilities would also require a Plan Amendment authorizing service to be provided by the Fauquier County Water and Sanitation Authority or the Town of WarrentonOne exception is the extension of public water service for the planned county recreational facility and fair grounds designated on Figure 6-WA-1 (Land Use Plan) and Figure 6-WA-2 (Warrenton Greenway Linear Park Plan); or


Some discussion may need to occur regarding the remaining Moriah Farm property immediately west and adjacent to the County facilities. Some interest still seems to remain on the addition of both this referenced property, the park and fairgrounds within the boundaries of the Service District. If that represents the Board of Supervisor’s preference, then the following actions need to be considered: 


ü      Include the park facility, fairgrounds, and the balance of Moriah Farms within the Service District boundaries. 


ü      This action would result in the need to amend Figure 6-WA-1 (Land Use Plan) to provide a land use designation for the remaining Moriah Farm property (e.g., Campus Office and Employment as shown in the adopted November 2003 Service District Plan).


ü      Figure 6-UT-2 (Water Service) would need to include this property, and all applicable maps would need to be amended to reflect the extension of the Service District boundary to include all three identified properties. 


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

Town of Warrenton

Virginia Department of Transportation


PLEASE NOTE:  a copy of the Draft Text Amendment to Chapter Six-Warrenton Service District is not currently available through the electronic agenda, but is available for public inspection at the following two locations: (1) Board of Supervisors Office (Location: 2nd Floor, Warren Green Building, 10 Hotel Street, Warrenton; or (2) Planning Division of the Department of Community Development (Location:  3rd Floor, Warren Green Building).