Some residents not so happy about ballpark in their backyard
There has been a lot of excitement since the announcement of a new ballpark for the Loudoun Hounds and a professional soccer team coming to the much hyped One Loudoun mixed-use development.
However, not everybody is excited about the news.
Several neighborhoods are very unhappy about the change, which was announced on Oct. 1.
The Potomac Green neighborhood, which sits approximately a half a mile from the site of the proposed ballpark has been leading the charge.
Potomac Green is a 55 and older community with 1,400 single-family, condo and attached homes.
The community held a town hall meeting with Board of Supervisors Chairman Scott York (R-At Large) and Supervisor Shawn Williams (R-Broad Run) at the Potomac Green Community Center Nov. 14 to discuss the concerns of the citizens. Approximately 240 community members attended.
Also tagging along with the Supervisors was VIP Entertainment President and CEO Bob Farren and Bill May, vice president of Miller and Smith – who operate One Loudoun.
The meeting got a little heated at times, according to a two residents, and the crowd remained animated throughout the interaction, frequently booing and cheering when they agreed or disagreed with an answer.
According to one resident who asked not to be named the community’s main concerns include traffic, parking, noise, lights and security.
Traffic has been a concern of many after this announcement, based on the existing traffic volume on Route 7 during rush hour.
In an interview with the Times-Mirror, VIP Entertainment spokesman David D’Onofrio noted they don’t foresee traffic to be an issue.
“The thing that is better about Loudoun is the multiple ingress and egress points right in the middle of putting in a new entrance to the town center off Loudoun County parkway,” D’Onofrio said. “At Kincora, we didn’t have has many points to work with. It will actually flows better.
“Now, everybody sees Route 7 and the backups and that is here today. Hopefully, by the time we get there that will be solved,” D’Onofrio said.
According to a traffic study conducted when the site was at Kincora, during the commuter peak hours approximately 20 percent of baseball traffic will arrive. An hour before game time, 70 percent of baseball traffic will arrive. Also in the hour following the game, 90 percent of ballpark traffic will be leaving the area.
Given the move, these traffic studies will likely need to be updated before VIP goes before the Board of Supervisors for final approval.
Residents of Potomac Green are also worried about people coming into the neighborhood and parking for games and then walking over to dodge paying for parking.
As a result, safety issues have been voiced about people walking back to their cars under the influence and causing damage to the neighborhood because it is not a gated community.
Noise is also possible issue, because concerts, baseball and soccer games have the potential for a high noise volume. Fireworks is another frequent noise concern.
During the Summer Concert Series, which was held at Landowne Resort,approximately 2.5 miles away from the Potomac Green Community Center, the concert was heard according to residents. Residents also claim events at the Ashburn Village Community Center can be heard inside their homes well.
D’Onofrio noted that they will be doing everything in their power to meet the concerns of residents surrounding the new ballpark.