Letter: Russell Woolard, Leesburg

Editor: I was surprised to learn that the Leesburg Town Council moved to rescind the Crescent Parke application—and did so for reasons that remain unclear, at least to me.

As far as I can tell, not one council member indicated the three or four reasons that differentiated the proffers they saw on July 26 from the packet they saw on Aug. 19.  There was talk about “what a great application” or “this deserves reconsideration,” but no reasons.

Since then, I have learned there was another set of proffers that came in Sept. 23. In my mind, this raises questions as to whether the developer really knows what he wants.

As I understand it, the acreage shrunk from 53 acres to 51. The non-residential development square footage remained the same. The housing was reduced from 380 units to 344. But interestingly enough, the density increased from 14 units per acre to 15 per acre. The units themselves shrank in width (about half went from 20 feet wide to 16 feet wide) and grew in height (two over two – 2/2 or stacked townhouses).

It’s also interesting that where the newly created “Active Adult” units are the developer wants the option to create 2/2 units over commercial first level. So those “active” oldsters will have climb up at least one flight of stairs to reach the first unit or three flights to reach the second unit. Let’s hope they’re in good shape.

The phasing increased from 5 percent to 12 percent of the commercial space at 50 percent build out of the residential. Not a great stretch for the developer.

The park, Old Izaak Walton Park, will be dedicated to the town in its entirety versus 18+ acres.  It will happen within a year of application approval, versus two years.

Since the rescission—in Sept. 23 proffers—the developer committed to clean up the pond, stock it, and construct a walk around it that may or may not lead to his development. Further, he proffered to maintain the pond in good repair for two years.

So, was it that hard for the council members to look at the packet and compare the proffers? Was it so difficult to tell us why they are voting to rescind it? Do they really think that the above—minus the pond stuff, which didn’t come in until after the rescission—offered sufficient rationale to change their vote?

Russell Woolard, Leesburg

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