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EXCLUSIVE: One Loudoun seeks to terminate stadium lease; looks for new baseball and soccer owners

Renderings of Edelman Financial Field. - Courtesy Photo
The developers of One Loudoun are seeking to terminate a lease with VIP Sports and Entertainment to build a stadium on the expansive residential, commercial and entertainment development in Ashburn.

In a complaint filed in Loudoun County Circuit Court One Loudoun, LLC. is seeking the determination that VIP no longer has any right to a ground lease the two groups signed in 2012.

"We have taken legal action to terminate the ground lease," said Bill May, the Vice Presdient of Miller and Smith Developers for the One Loudoun Development.

According to the documents, the complaint was filed in an "attempt to revive the public's dream of bringing professional baseball and soccer to Loudoun County."

The documents site the inability of VIP to deliver a stadium at Route 7 and Loudoun County Parkway by April 2014. They state that VIP has " no hope of obtaining the bona fide funds for the stadium project, now refuses to acknowledge the loss of its tenancy interest in the stadium property."

Plans are in place to find new owners to lead the effort to bring two professional sports teams to Loudoun, according to May.

VIP had struck deals to bring a minor league baseball team called the Loudoun Hounds to the stadium, as well as a North American Soccer League team named the Virginia Cavalry FC.

"Within a month's time we'll cast a net to see who is out there," said May.

May has made it clear that Miller and Smith has no desire to own the team, and would instead like to find a partner to own the team.

Baseball could still come to Loudoun, but VIP will not be part of the future at One Loudoun.

The Loudoun Hounds have moved out of their Dulles offices and the organization's phone numbers have been disconnected.

One Loudoun is also seeking monetary damages in the amount of $500,000.

Robert J. Farren, the president and CEO of VIP, could not be reached for comment nor has he returned calls in recent weeks.



Comments


@Everett - I think your guess is not that far off base for some folks.  But there is a segment of the population that seems to be motivated to get into these homes and this model of a community.  I’m familiar with 3 couples that have purchased homes there.  Two of them are young couples, recently married.  One couple is an empty nester.  In all three cases, they seem to be really sold on the idea of being in a walkable community where they One Loudoun serves as a central point for them.  The same price point does offer larger lots as you drive further out in Loudoun.

@more cowbell - Got it! I was actually interested to hear that such development might be taking place. 

Regarding the stadium, i’m not sure what to make of this “slight of hand” anymore.  It’s certainly very discouraging.  I met Bob Farren a couple summers ago at “The V” restaurant on Waxpool.  He definitely came off as arrogant and self centered.


Back to the Hounds -

What’s going to be really interesting is what the people and companies who invested their hard-earned money in this venture do next. According to county records, there are 59 shareholders in Virginia Investment Partnership (some of whom are married couples holding shares in their individual names).  According to one source, these shares were very expensive. Will these 59 people/entities now sue Farran? Or the Hounds? Or VIP? And if they do, where’s the money? All gone?  Where? Or to whom?

And the further question arises - in addition to these known shareholders, were there also unnamed shareholders? People to whom shares were secretly given, who did not, in fact, pay for their shares at all but received the shares for some other reason?

This story may get even more interesting as it unfolds further.


One day I drove down I believe it is Gloucester Road coming from Ashburn Village to Loudoun Cty Pkwy. On the left side there is just a sea of condos/apartments.

I cannot believe that this was approved WITHOUT A METRO station in sight. The proposed station in 2017/2018 is at least 3 miles away.

Ashburn Fella my guess is people who have no choice bought these homes or felt pressured to buy because prices were (or are) rising. It is either buy these homes ( Loudoun One) that are almost on top of each other, or live further out and drive longer to work.  So pick your poison.


@ashburnfella…That was meant as a joke, but who knows in Loudoun. Every developer seems to get additional housing added after the initial approval. It’s shocking to see how many houses went up in Loudoun One, so close together, and more townhomes.


Sorry my idea of restaurants doesn’t consist of trendy burger joints and a sports bar.  Supposedly uncle Julio’s is coming which is a start.  How about a coastal flats.  MS grill. McCormick and schmicks….and yeah a Morton’s, Ruth Chris, or other high end places would be nice as well.  This is the richest place in America they say.  I think loudoun could do better than the teams that were slated to play at the stadium.  Why not dc united or a real minor league team?  And regardless of the scale of the venue if you think the traffic is going to be anything short of a nightmare you crazy.  That’s why any stadium in loudoun should be near the metro.


As a baseball fan i’ll say that ‘private’ baseball is lame. Bottom line. Has-beens and can’t-make-its. If the right groups, or business people, etc., want something people can be proud of, i.e. want to support, they need to buy a super low level ‘real’ (MiLB) minor team that isn’t getting support somewhere in America and bring it here. I was born in Ashburn in the late 70’s, knew every family, and a team of young guys, who one day just might be on the Nat or whoever, is something i’d go see weekly, and I bet it is something that would make the area even more united. Anyone would love to say “I saw Bryce play in Ashburn in the minors, we used to go after school with Mom and Dad”. And I’m not criticizing the way the area is now in any way. I still see old timers, and new families, and seeing them all come together to support a ‘real’ minor team would be sweet…  Hopefully we can forget the Hounds and have someone do it right.


Somewhere there is a piece of evidence that would lead to proof that this baseball deal involved bribes and kick backs and they all lead to Scott York and his pal Fallen.

Lets not forget the trip to Germany to promote baseball York took with Fallan.


Everett - I agree.  Hard to figure who is buying these houses.  500+ houses in your choice of 2 styles with lots not much bigger than the foundations -  and you can choose either grey or tan plastic siding!  Building tomorrow’s ghettos.


@Everett - You’re question should be why ARE people buying the homes?  Not why WOULD they buy the homes…  One Loudoun is selling fast and outpacing most every community, on a national level.  The time for speculating on whether or not people will buy homes so close to one another is over.  Clearly there is a market.


When the baseball stadium got moved to One Loudoun, the Board of Supervisors did not approve any additional housing units. That number stayed the same as the original approval in 2007, which is around 1,000 units.  I also am pretty sure they are NOT approved for any 20-story condos.  I think there are multi-family units coming in the future, but should be around half that height.

It is a more urban, mixed-use environment, so housing options will be closer together and somewhat higher than usual in Loudoun.  That is what is needed to support the upscale restaurants and shopping people want. There has to be a critical mass of people that can walk to them.


This fiasco is a telling example of clueless—a stronger word may be appropriate—politicians helping friends and supporters. The Board of Supervisors should apologize for their reckless, indefensible actions to the citizenry. Voters should judge the elected officials at the next election. “Throw the rascals out” has been heard throughout our nation’s history.


I drive by there once in a while for that Fresh Market that opened up last year.

I cannot believe how close those houses are together (SFH’s).  Why on earth would someone spend 600K + on something like that ? Yes, the land is expensive, but there is probably some greed on the builder side of things as well.


@cowbell - where are the rumors originating about 20 story condo towers? can you provide any concrete information?


At least they were able to build more houses close together at Loudoun One. Great job BOS, you all should be fired. Rumor has 20 story condos coming soon….


The Loudoun Hounds have moved out of their Dulles offices and the organization’s phone numbers have been disconnected.

One sentence says it all.


Can we all now agree that Bob Farren is a snake oil salesman. Between the fast track for the special exemption for Kinkora and then the lightening speed of One Loudoun, also granted a special exemption. Why on earth did this BoS even think having simultaneous SE permits for The Loudoun Hounds think this was a smart ED business decision to allow Farren & Company bypass the normal application process?  Shame on the BoS for being that naive to be seduced so easily by the salesman peddling snake oil. Bob Farren and the Loudoun Hounds panned out to be an elaborate high desiity housing scheme.


Hey Mopar - were you sold on the developer hype ? I wasn’t.  They are no different than the other cookie cutter developments to pave over Loudoun in the last 25 years.  Expect little and you won’t be disappointed.


Two words- Hagerstown Suns.  They are a Nationals single A farm team and for the last few years have been on the verg of leaving Hagerstown- first for Winchester, now Fredericksburg.  But that’s seems delayed.  They would be perfect


This is good news! 

How anyone could ever consider a sports stadium on that already jammed section of Rt 7 is inconceivable (as is how the board of supervisors could have approved it).

Can you imagine sitting on Rt 7 at 6PM, before a game?


Maybe the Potomac Nationals will relocate to Loudoun.


@mopar19 - What are you looking for in a restaurant? Capital Grille? Ruth’s Chris? The restaurants are packed a night and there are a lot of people with their family walking around. None of these teams are “large scale sports venues” as you’re referencing. Do you consider AAA baseball and NASL major sporting teams? If so…the world has news for you.


The baseball thing was always a developer’s scam…it just didn’t get reported that way by the booster local press.


Well its not like this wasn’t expected.  Farren has been playing three card monte with the Hounds since the beginning.


@mopar19 - Why are you piling the blame on One Loudoun?  And did you really think we were getting a Reston Town Center?  Not sure I understand your line of logic on this one.  If the restaurants are mediocre, they will be weeded out by the economy and competition.  How is the quality of restaurants/food the responsibility of OL?


What a waste.  Loudoun one is definitely not living up to all the hype everyone was sold on.  The restaurants are mediocre at best.  They tout these sports teams which were nothing more than glorified soft ball and adult league soccer teams.  The traffic is already a mess with that new light on Loudoun county pkwy that changes for one car turning left.  Seems like time a and time again we think we are getting a Reston town center and end up with a sterling park strip mall. 
Any type of large scale sports venue should be put next to metro anyway.


did they take those signs down along the 7 freeway EAST about baseball and soccer coming soon ?

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