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Proposed development in Broadlands faces resistance from Loudoun supervisors

View of proposed Broadlands development. Section 104, the site of the proposed commercial and retail space and Section 108, the site of the proposed 28 townhome development.
Loudoun supervisors have agreed to take a closer look at a 28-townhome and commercial development proposed in Broadlands after neighboring residents, homeowner’s associations and several board members voiced concerns at a public hearing last week.

If approved, Broadlands Associates, LLP will construct a 12-acre commercial and retail development at the northwest end of the intersection of Broadlands Boulevard and Claiborne Parkway south of the Dulles Greenway. That parcel would include office space, a mini-warehouse and popular German grocer Lidl.

The applicant is also proposing to build 28 townhomes on a separate seven-acre property on the other side of Claiborne Parkway at the northeast end of the intersection of Broadlands Boulevard and the Dulles Greenway. That parcel was originally planned to be proffered to the county for public use. Instead of its original public use proffer, the applicant instead would proffer out $2.3 million for recreational uses in Ashburn.

But traffic and congestion in an already crowded neighborhood were among the top concerns of both supervisors and the community.

“I’m not opposed to new development in general, but I also feel what makes Broadlands special … is how well it has been planned,” said Broadlands resident Mark Vachher, who lives near the site of the proposed commercial space. “Deviating from that plan, where there’s already three existing commercial centers in Broadlands, doesn’t make sense to me.”

Vachher said the community’s major concerns were how traffic would be managed in their neighborhood, how the buildings and parking lots would be screened and ensuring the development would have similar signage, lighting and character to the existing residential.

“Should these new uses move forward, I would request substantial improvements to the application,” he added.

Representatives from the nearby Ashburn Farm Association, Ashburn Run and Ashburn Reserve HOAs voiced their opposition to the board about more residential units in the area. They feared the developments would cause more traffic and overcrowding and take away much-needed public space.

Vice Chairman Ralph Buona (R-Ashburn), who represents the discussed area, said he did not want the residential component of the application. Buona also said he wanted to applicant to condition out any “undesirable by-right uses.”

Supervisor Ron Meyer (R-Broad Run) echoed many of Buona’s concerns about the residential, as well as traffic and safety concerns.

“Until we actually have the school growth problem under control, I’m going to have a really hard time with townhouses as a whole,” he said.

Meyer also criticized the Planning Commission for forwarding the application to the board without taking the time to properly vet it.

Supervisors voted unanimously to send the application to a Transportation and Land Use Committee meeting in January for further review.


Chicory - what “job” do you think the PC is supposed to do? You know that they are merely a recommending body, and they can only review the application that’s been brought before them (and that the staff has reviewed, and that the public has seen and provided public comment on). They are not problem solvers, they are not negotiators, they provide a recommendation on what is put in front of them.  Meyer is completely off-base to be saying that PC should be “fixing” or making better these proposals, and tee-ing them up for quick approval by the Board.  That is not the way volunteer commissions are supposed to operate.  The elected officials are the ones who should get their hands dirty, negotiate, and make decisions. If the public doesn’t like those decisions, we vote against them next time.  The commissioners are appointed by the Supervisors, and thus don’t answer to the electorate. 

As for your comments, I’ve been hearing it all for over 20 years.  Don’t Fairfax Loudoun. Yada yada. Go ahead and move, 19 will fill your void in one day.

Why don’t we start ding this…sure, you can build your townhouses, but not until the commercial space is built and leased.  Period, no exceptions, from now one any builder who tries to sell us on more housing with faux-promised commercial space will actually have to build and lease the commercial space first.

Otherwise, the BoS will continue to be played for chumps, with exception after exception like One Loudoun rendering the % of promised commercial an absolute joke.

Taking into account the massive amount of high density housing that will be built in eastern Loudoun over the next decade, why would the county even consider something like this?

I’m telling you, 10 years from now eastern Loudoun is going to be a traffic MCF of Los Angeles-like proportions.  And don’t even get me started on the schools.

No problem.  What’s wrong with lining up a few more identical, beige, townhouses with plastic siding.  We can never have enough of these….  Ghettos of tomorrow.

Planning commission does not seem to do their job right. Loudoun is suffocating from traffic congestion and schools are over filled. Because of money and greed, once beautiful county is no different than arlington or alexandria. How sad. We are looking for a house in another state to leave becuase of this.

How much is the current owner paying in property taxes for land that apparently would allow 4 families per acre? What is the cost to LCPS for student generation over upcoming decades? When half the county is only allowed to have one residence for 20 acres doesn’t it sound a bit unfair when an area of the same county can squeeze in about 83 times as many families? I seriously doubt it is assessed 83 times what a 20 acre parcel in western Loudoun would be assessed. When does high density housing approvals, inaccurate student generation forecasting, unfair county wide assessments, traffic congestion and political donations get analyzed at the same time publicly?
Bob O__ Esq.

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