As the All Dulles Area Muslim Society tries to move overflowing services in Beaumeade Circle next door for more space, an attorney representing the mosque balked at conditions from the county that would require crosswalks or shuttle service to a parking lot across four-lane Beaumeade Circle.
County staff has added two new suggested conditions for approval since a contentious public hearing in May. Those conditions would require ADAMS to submit to zoning administration a parking plan with designated spaces and safety procedures for pedestrians and vehicles in the lot. They would also require ADAMS to conduct a pedestrian crossing study and either get a crosswalk from VDOT or, failing that, set up shuttle service.
ADAMS’s representative, David Culbert of Culbert & Schmitt PLLC, has not agreed to those conditions.
At a Planning Commission work session Thursday, June 9, commission Chairman Jeff Salmon (Dulles) pointed out that those are rules that the area’s Cape Court Commercial Condominium Owners Association can deal with on its own.
“What prevents us from simply sending this to the COA and saying, listen, if we approve this application as-is, then the condominium association, whom all owners of the property belong to, can work this out on their own?” Salmon said. “Why can’t we just say that? Because they have the legal authority to do so.”
“For the county to tell us with whom we must deal, and how we must deal with them, I think is frankly just going a bridge too far,” Culbert said. He also said the VDOT study would be a waste of money—it would find that right now, there is next to no foot traffic across Beaumeade Circle, and that therefore a crosswalk is unwarranted.
“I see no reason to agree to a condition that’s going to cost us money and result in a very predictable end result of no,” Culbert said.
Commissioner Dan Lloyd (Sterling) said the commission is “beating a dead horse”—ADAMS would act to protect its congregants in its own best interest.
“The more I think about it, I just realize the ADAMS Center loves the poeple that go to their facility, and so they’re going to do whatever they can to make sure nobody gets hurt,” Lloyd said. “And I don’t know if we need to be overreaching in this area.”
Commissioner Cliff Keirce (Broad Run) made the motion to recommend approval on ADAMS’ request with the two new conditions.
“I can’t get away from the fact that the plan is to potentially, at some point, have people going back and forth across that street,” Keirce said.
The commission voted 4-2-1-2 to recommend approval to the Board of Supervisors with all conditions of approval intact. Commissioners Lloyd, Keirce, Salmon, and Fred Jennings (Ashburn) voted aye; Commissioners Eugene Scheel (Catoctin) voted against; Commissioners Kathy Blackburn (Algonkian) and Ad Barnes (Leesburg) abstained; and Commissioners Charlie Douglas (Blue Ridge) and Jim Sisley (At-Large) were absent.