Supervisors get look at final U.S. 29 plan

The Prince William Board of County Supervisors will get its first look at final plans to develop the U.S. 29 and Interstate 66 corridor at its meeting today.

An advisory committee’s proposed sector plan will be presented to the board as an informational piece.

The plan has been controversial, leading to creation of “the resident’s plan” by Gainesville residents who want less commercial development, less residential density, more integration of neighborhoods and less traffic.

Supervisor Edgar S. Wilbourn III, who represents Gainesville, said the advisory committee’s plan does not stray far from what is already in the comprehensive plan.

“The committee made a mission statement to stick with the general comprehensive plan as it was approved in 1998, so they didn’t try to make significant changes,” he said. “Generally, the plan complies with that.”

The planning staff has added its recommendations to the mix, revising what the advisory committee turned in.

“There were five or six major issues where the staff took a different approach from what the CAC [citizen’s advisory committee] took,” said county planner John White. “Most of them deal with land-use designations.”

Ultimately, it will be up to the board of supervisors to approve the plan.

The Planning Commission will discuss it further at a Jan. 16 meeting, but action will not be taken at that time. The commission will discuss transportation matters, and residents will get 30 minutes to present their counterplan.

The official 19-member CAC was appointed in September 1999 by board members.

The committee has been studying the area — 3,200 acres that are commercially zoned around U.S. 29 and I-66 — for 15 months.

The area is economically significant because of its location at the convergence of three major thoroughfares I-66, U.S. 15 and U.S. 29. Known as “the Golden Triangle,” it is also located about 20 miles northeast of Washington-Dulles International Airport.

Land immediately to the west of the sector plan area is in the Rural Crescent, 80,000 acres — from the Quantico Marine Corps base to the Loudoun County line. To the east lies Conway Robinson Memorial State Forest and the Manassas National Battlefield Park.

To the north is the town of Haymarket and large planned residential projects, including Heritage Hunt, Piedmont and Dominion Valley.

Up to 9,000 homes could be constructed north of the sector area, plans say. To the south are Lake Manassas and large residential projects along U.S. 29 and in the Linton Hall Road Corridor. These could yield another 9,000 units, according to county calculations, leading to concern about residential densities.

The comprehensive plan calls for long-range planning of the area. The committee was also charged with determining the impact of the Virginia Department of Transportation’s planned reconstruction of the I-66/U.S. 29 interchange in Gainesville.

Staff writer Diane Freda can be reached at (703) 878-4723.

Similar Posts