After Lengthy Search, Loudoun School Board Buys Land for HS-9

After searching for more than a year for property on which to build a much-needed high school, the Loudoun County School Board tonight gave the official thumbs-up to purchase 151.5 acres for $10 million.

“I’m thrilled to finally have this land,” School Board member Jill Turgeon (Blue Ridge) said after the vote. “This is something we’ve been waiting for for a long time.”

The high school, for now called HS-9, will be built on land at 25077 Lightridge Farm Road, just south of Braddock Road near the Willowsford community.

Land at 25077 Lightridge Farm Road will be the home of HS-9 come 2021.
Land at 25077 Lightridge Farm Road will be the home of HS-9 come 2021.

The land was assessed at just more than $4 million, according to county records, and was previously owned by Hovatter Farms LLC of Shalimar, FL.

When the new school opens in fall of 2021, it will relieve overcrowding at John Champe High School, which is on track to enroll an estimated 930 students more than its building capacity by 2020.

The property will also have space for a future elementary school.

Board members have said for months that they wanted to take into account HS-9’s location as it redraws attendance boundaries for secondary students in that part of the county. But, until now, they didn’t know where school leaders would find land.

It could mean one less boundary change process for families in the Dulles South area.

“It’s good to have this in sight so we can make plans accordingly,” Turgeon said.

dnadler@loudounnow.com
twitter.com/danielle_nadler

5 thoughts on “After Lengthy Search, Loudoun School Board Buys Land for HS-9

  • 2016-10-27 at 2:37 am
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    But wait. We are told that the school board had to discuss this purchase in a very secretive closed meeting so that their “negotiating position” wouldn’t be compromised. Could one’s negotiating position possibly be more compromised than this?

    In fact, downtownres is correct in questioning who is benefitting. Maybe if these meetings weren’t all held in secret, board members wouldn’t be so quick to offer 2.5x the assessed value in your taxpayer $$ for some land. But hey, maybe Chairwoman Phyllis Randall and her gang at the BOS is happy our LCSB are such horrible negotiators. Randall will be asking for more largess in higher tax rates in just a few months. Hang on for the ride, folks.

  • 2016-10-26 at 5:09 pm
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    Glad to see I’m not the only one who caught the sales price vs assessed value. As a homebuyer, there is not a bank in the county that would fund that loan for any one of us – 2.5 times assessed value? Really? Shame we are all so busy we don’t attend enough meetings to keep local officials in check. Glad my kids moved out of the county so they won’t be paying this bill for years to come!

  • 2016-10-26 at 4:58 pm
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    The better question is – what’s the connection to the former property owners – who’s your buddy??

  • 2016-10-26 at 4:54 pm
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    This is a win for the school board and the future students who will attend these schools. This is a significant loss for the rural policy area and the transition policy area. Northstar Blvd and Braddock Rd will need to be widened to handle the extra capacity of two high schools, four elementary schools, a middle school, a gas station, and the largest Harris Teeter in Northern Virginia.

    As exciting and necessary as these new schools are for residents and students, it is just a symptom of the excessive growth Loudoun County is experiencing. Two years ago, John Champe High School was under capacity. You can expect that in 5 years, these schools will be at or over capacity the day they open, roads will be at capacity, and we will still be trying to catch up on our infrastructure needs.

    By-right development in the Transition Policy Area is set to add thousands of homes to Loudoun County. The new comprehensive plan could remove the zoning protection of the Transition Policy Area which will double or triple the number of homes, potentially adding tens of thousands of homes to a county that just can’t keep up. Let’s plan for Reasonable Growth.

  • 2016-10-26 at 8:49 am
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    LCSB purchased land assessed at $4M for a price of $10M. Well, I guess we can bestow on them another title: Best ‘Negotiators’ in Loudoun County. The only question is for whose side were they negotiating?!

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