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September 20, 2019

Panel postpones 166-home New Baltimore plan vote

Part of the reason we love it here is one house per acre. And, it was designed that way for a reason. And, I do not believe that we need to revisit that.
— Renee Orr
By .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)
Staff Journalist
For nearly an hour Thursday night, they poked holes in an innovative proposal to use the density of four properties to create a 166-home subdivision near New Baltimore.

Twenty-four people — all but a couple of them area residents — spoke during the county planning commission’s Sept. 19 public hearing on Lakeside Homes LLC’s request to rezone the 112.5-acre site from one to four homes per acre.

The commission postponed action on the Broad Run Estates project for 90 days to give Lakeside Homes time to provide additional information and discuss the application with county staff and the community.

Seventeen speakers opposed the project, six supported it, including the applicant’s representative, and one seemed to express no opinion.

Through the “transfer” of potential home lots, the concept would allow the preservation of most of the undeveloped 73.3-acre Ringwood Farm property along Rogues Road, just outside the New Baltimore Service District.

Ringwood Farm has a maximum 62 potential home lots.

Three of those lots would remain with the farm along Ringwood Road. The balance of the property would be placed under a conservation easement, prohibiting its further subdivision, according to the applicant.

With the three Ringwood Farm home lots, the proposal calls for a total 169 of dwellings.

> Documents at bottom of story

The Broad Run Estates site has a by-right maximum density of 148 lots.

Opponents voiced concerns about the project’s potentially negative effects on schools, roads, the existing residential and rural character of the area, the water supply, the environment and taxes.

Renee Orr objected to changing the density from one to four homes per acre.

“Part of the reason we love it here is one house per acre,” Ms. Orr said if the area. “And, it was designed that way for a reason. And, I do not believe that we need to revisit that.”

Henry Tarring agreed.

“It sounds to me like R-4 (four homes per acre) is kind of overkill,” Mr. Tarring said.

The proposed 166 homes would be clustered on about 50 acres, with many of them fronting Broad Run Church.

The remainder of the site would remain undeveloped.

Mr. Tarring worries about the maintenance of the project’s “green space.”

“If it’s not managed properly, it could be a major problem,” he told the planning commission.

Pat van Gils doesn’t believe area roads can accommodate traffic that the project would generate.

“I don’t think the infrastructure is set up for that many homes,” said Ms. van Gils. “The roads are not equipped to handle so many cars.”

Mark Knisely believes the Broad Run Estates’ project should include bike and pedestrian connections to nearby neighborhoods.

“This well be a land-locked community” as proposed, Mr. Knisely said. “It has no pedestrian access, no bicycle lanes. The kids won’t be able to cross the street to go from this subdivision to Ritchie (Elementary School), unless you put some crosswalks in.”

For a couple of reasons, Ringwood Farm neighbor Laura Wahl favors eliminating all but three of the property’s potential 62 home lots.

Ms. Wahl believes Ringwood Road, which serves the farm, would be unable to handle traffic the potential homes would produce.

And, a subdivision that size would “disturb my quality of life,” she said.

Nick Guilmain supports the project because he believes Lakeside Homes will deliver a well-designed community.

Lakeside constructed his home at nearby Brookside subdivision, Mr. Guilmain said.

“Everything’s quality,” he said of the builder’s work.

Lakeside representative Chuck Floyd, who recently conducted a community meeting on the project, told the commission: “We are trying to be as sensitive as possible” to residents’ concerns.”

Mr. Floyd, a land planning consultant, admitted the project needs work.

With refinements, he believes “it will be a worthwhile application” and hopes the commission “will feel that way as well.”

The commission serves as an advisory panel to the county board of supervisors, which has final authority. The supervisors will conduct a work session and at least one public hearing before deciding the matter.

Contact Don Del Rosso at Don@FauquierNow.com or 540-270-0300.

Ringwood/Broad Run Estates ... by Fauquier Now on Scribd

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Jeannette Griffin · September 21, 2019 at 11:30 am
South of 29 it will happen no matter what. It's not like it concerns the more equal people in Plains.
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