County supervisors have reopened the discussion on a rezoning application by One Loudoun which they voted down on Feb. 23.
Although supervisors and a representative for One Loudoun declined to give details, board Vice Chairman Ralph M. Buona (R-Ashburn), who made the motion to reconsider the application, said he and Supervisor Matthew F. Letourneau (R-Dulles) have been in discussions with the developer since the application was voted down.
“We believe we’ve reached an acceptable conclusion and solution,” Buona said. After meeting, he said “I’m not trying to hide anything, we’re just saying the pieces are still moving.”
Cooley LLP attorney Colleen Gillis, who shepherded the application through more than a yearlong review process, also declined to give details until the developer, Miller & Smith, finishes a proffer negotiation with the county.
“A denial of an application, particularly one that has been around for a long time, is not something that is to be celebrated for anyone,” Letourneau said. “It is an unfortunate outcome, and it usually is a sign that there was a breakdown in communication.” He said it was “unfortunate that it took this particular twist to get to this point.”
The One Loudoun application will come back to supervisors at the March 23 meeting. County Chairwoman Phyllis J. Randall (D-At Large) and Supervisor Kristen C. Umstattd (D-Leesburg) voted against reconsidering the denial vote. Supervisors Tony R. Buffington Jr. (R-Blue Ridge) and Geary M. Higgins (R-Catoctin) were absent for the vote.
“I think the confusion on this issue did not come from the applicant,” Randall said. “I think the confusion on this issue came from my colleagues on the dais. I think there were a lot of statements made, and a lot of kind of deals brokered that didn’t happen, a lot of behind-the-scenes talk, and it just got very, very convoluted very quickly.”
Supervisor Ron A. Meyer Jr. (R-Broad Run), who ruffled feathers on the board during the previous meeting by promising to “hold accountable” anyone who voted against the application, said he was glad the application would be reconsidered.
“I wasn’t particularly happy with how I reacted that night, but I think it partially has to do not only with—I certainly will take responsibility for my part, but we as a board have to do a better job of communication with each other as well,” Meyer said.
When the board last saw the One Loudoun application, it was a request to add authority to build 40 more townhouses, 260 more apartments, and make other changes such as a reduced setback along Rt. 7 and adding a self-storage mini-warehouse. One Loudoun was previously approved for 3 million square feet of office space, more than 700,000 square feet of retail, restaurant and entertainment space, and 1,040 residential units.