Public Comment Period Opens on New Loudoun Growth Plan

Despite heavy rainfall—and a tornado watch that temporarily evacuated the event to the school library—the first public review session for the county’s proposed new comprehensive plan was well-attended at Harmony Middle School near Hamilton on Monday night.

Planners at the meeting reported transportation and density were the biggest issues raised at the meeting—such as how the current transportation network can support Metro. Deputy Director of Planning and Zoning Alaina Ray said, “most of the comments were generally positive.”

Nonetheless, lingering concerns about adequate protection for the rural west were raised—including by Supervisor Geary M. Higgins (R-Catoctin), who restated his opposition to a plan proposal to move some parcels out of the Rural Policy Area into the Transition Policy Are That’s an idea supported by members of the Envision Loudoun stakeholders committee that helped develop the draft plan during the past two years.

“We told them from the start that we didn’t want to change the rural policy area,” Higgins said. To concerns that rural policies will need to be rewritten to protect the west, he said. “I don’t have a problem with leaving that language pretty much as written.”

More open houses are planned around the county, including Thursday, May 24 from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. at John Champe High School; and Monday, May 21 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Loudoun County Government Center in Leesburg.

To see the full draft comprehensive plan and comment online, go to envision-loudoun.org.

Once complete, the “Loudoun 2040 Comprehensive Plan” will include the county’s general plan and countywide transportation plan. After this round of public review, the plan will go to the Planning Commission and Board of Supervisors for more public hearings and adoption.

rgreene@loudounnow.com

County planners and area residents mix at Harmony Middle School near Hamilton on Monday night during the first Envision Loudoun open house since the county unveiled a draft of its next comprehensive plan. [Renss Greene/Loudoun Now]

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