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Arlington County Civic Federation

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Development Issues in Arlington

Below is a listing, grouped by categories, of the issues the Civic Federation Membership raised during the March 5 General Membership Meeting. These served as the basis of our presentation at the Community Planning Forum sponsored by ABC. It was quite a turnout.

The issues follow below:

The County as a Developer

  • What is the obligation of the County or the APS in the planning process when either is the landowner and/or developer, especially with respect to the local community? How does this compare to the obligations of private developers? Does the County (and Schools) have any less obligation than a private developer?

  • What is the process for siting or vacating of streets? Is there a public notification process? Do plans for County/Schools facilities comport with our projections with workday and residential populations? What�s the upper limit for population growth that we can accommodate?

  • Members are concerned about the siting of sports and recreation facilities � how is that addressed through the GLUP and how is the impact on neighborhoods considered? How do we avoid more issues like the schools/county staff�s plans to condemn property in Yorktown for a park?

    Note � additional comment The issue at Yorktown had nothing to do with coordination between the County and Schools. It was strictly the County (Recreation) responding to its constituency and neglecting the neighborhood.

  • Is there a mechanism for coordinating the planning process between the School Board and the County. Are they well coordinated?

  • How can neighborhoods turn public spaces into parkland and ensure that parkland stays parkland � and is not rezoned for other uses?

  • Should there be a periodic review of public properties, to see if some should be excessed and sold for private use?

Planning for Large Commercial Developments

  • How do you get information about upcoming projects? Staff suggests going to the staff or the developer.

  • How do neighborhoods find out when projects enter the planning stages?

  • Are school impacts considered in approving large new developments?

  • For larger developments with greater community impacts, can there be a requi rement that impacts be considered in a more comprehensive context?

  • While adjacent property owners may be notified in the planning process � when are Civic Associations notified?

  • How can we encourage family sized units in multi-family housing?

  • How can we accommodate entry-level singles in our high cost housing market?

  • How do Phased Development Site Plans work, such as in Shirlington? How does a neighborhood know development will actually occur in accordance with the plan? How does a neighborhood get any leverage to influence a plan as it is being conceived?

  • In phased developments, can there be thresholds for transportation goals that must be reached before the next phase can proceed?

Subdividing and Infill Issues

  • When is the County going to resolve the long-standing issues regarding site coverage and pipe stem lots?

  • How do you preserve the character of our neighborhoods when there is a high turnover rate for properties (i.e. as older owners move out) � and new owners subdivide to maximize property values?

General Items of Concern and Other IssuesS

  • Why does the County decline to repave streets without curbs and gutters?

  • It would be helpful if new Civic Association Presidents were issued county maps that show zoning and land use plan designations.

  • Is there a way for the Federation to become more involved as an advocate on behalf of civic associations?

  • The funding for neighborhood conservation seems to be inadequate for the need For property owners who want to develop � how do you find reputable developers?

This page was last revised on: December 28, 2003.
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