Planning commission hearing set for proposed NASL’s Virginia Cavalry home
By Jimmy LaRoue
A public hearing before the Loudoun Planning Commission in Leesburg will be the first big test tonight for a proposed 5,500-seat stadium in Ashburn that would be used for the NASL’s Virginia Cavalry franchise as well as the Loudoun Hounds minor league baseball team.
The Washington Post is reporting that there are “significant problems” with the relocation of the stadium from a previously approved site on Route 28 to the current proposed location at the intersection of Route 7 and Loudoun County Parkway.
The area around the One Loudoun property would have to be rezoned to allow the proposed stadium and other commercial and office uses, according to a Department of Planning staff report, which “has identified a number of outstanding issues related to the development of the sports stadium as well as concerns with the applicant’s development revisions that are unrelated to the stadium. Staff recommends that the applications be forwarded to a work session for further discussion.”
The concerns listed in the report are:
• That the stadium “is not consistent with” the current allowed uses for the property
• That there are a lack of design commitments that give “no assurances that the high quality design standards called for in the Revised General Plan will be met with the proposed stadium.”
• Compatibility issues (unresolved issues with regard to number of events, start times, curfews, lighting and noise impacts, firework display impacts and stadium parking impacts
• Attendance limitations – The staff report says the information provided by One Loudoun “does not reflect an accurate depiction of the number of patrons that could be attending events,” and limits of 5,500 for athletic events and 8,000 for special evens should be established.
• Traffic operations plan to facilitate parking for sporting and special events
• Lack of a stadium transit service to connect the stadium with planned Metrorail stations.
The report also lists several non-stadium concerns with the proposal.
The developer of the project, One Loudoun, said it is addressing concerns, but a group called No Stadium on 7 has lined up in opposition to the project, which hopes to break ground soon in time to have a stadium ready by 2014.
The stadium, while seating 5,500, would have a capacity of about twice that, according to the Post article.