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Makers on the Brink of a Big Break

makers

By Andrea Gaines
About eight months ago, Makersmith’s Executive Director Pat Scannell made a formal proposal to the Town of Purcellville to give his organization a crack at rehabilitating a nine-acre unused piece of town property near the intersection of A and South 20th Streets. Through a great deal of persistence, it seems likely the organization will make good on this dream. Mayor Kwasi Fraser is firmly behind the idea, and the organization is pledging not to give up until the deal is done. … Continue Reading

AT&T Short Hill Update: Confusion and Activity at Site Continues

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By Andrea Gaines

In June, AT&T suspended plans to construct a 160,000 sq. ft. expansion of its current transmission utility substation on Short Hill Mountain, requesting that an earlier commission permit application be withdrawn.

As we reported in July, despite that withdrawal AT&T continues work on the mountain ridge, applying for a site plan amendment related to a separate permit on the same day it submitted its letter of withdrawal. … Continue Reading

County Considers Major Density/Use Changes In Transition Policy Area

July 7, 2016 Development, News 3 comments
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In a process drawing sustained citizen opposition, the Loudoun County Board of Supervisors met on June 15 to discuss major density and use changes to the Transition Policy Area. At the conclusion of the meeting the issue was moved to the Transportation and Land Use Committee’s July 15 session.

Per the county comp plan, the TPA is “a permanently defined policy area” designed to protect Loudoun’s rural west from the more densely developed east. While it allows for substantial residential and commercial growth, development within the area must be “clustered with 50 to 70 percent open space.”
… Continue Reading

Has AT&T Short Hill Project Gone Down In Smoke? A Timeline Of Events

July 7, 2016 Development, News 4 comments
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On June 13 AT&T told the Loudoun County Department of Planning and Zoning it had “decided to suspend our plans to construct the proposed building as part of our telephone transmission utility substation on Short Hill Mountain,” requesting to “withdraw the commission permit application.”

The permit process – which started in 2015 – triggered a large and well organized citizen opposition effort. Citizens “worked the rooms” from the kitchens of western Loudoun to the county seat in Leesburg to Capitol Hill, where citizens meet with representatives from the offices of Virginia Senator Mark Warner and the House of Representatives’ Barbara Comstock.

… Continue Reading

An Overview: Purcellville Planning Commission – June

July 7, 2016 Development, Government, News, Our Towns Comments Off on An Overview: Purcellville Planning Commission – June
town of purcellville sign

– By Nathaniel Stephens

On June 2 the Purcellville Planning Commission met to revisit agenda items from its May 5 session, addressing talking points from the Comprehensive Plan Review and the adjustment of zoning ordinance language concerning streams and land disturbance.

Planning Commissioner Nedim Ogelman challenged the manner in which the consulting firm hired by the town to assist with the comp plan review had portrayed Purcellville’s options in rewriting the ordinance, repeating his objections that all options presented by the firm had the effect of pushing growth. … Continue Reading

Loudoun Joint Architectural Review Board Seeks Nominations For 2016 Awards Program

July 7, 2016 Development, News Comments Off on Loudoun Joint Architectural Review Board Seeks Nominations For 2016 Awards Program
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As part of its 9th annual awards program, the Loudoun County Joint Architectural Review Board is again seeking nominations from the public for projects that exemplify the protection, preservation or enhancement of historic buildings, landscapes, properties or other resources in Loudoun County. 

Nominations may include, but are not limited to: Restoration work (including interior projects), educational workshops and displays, interpreted cultural landscapes, and other significant undertakings to preserve the heritage of Loudoun County.
 
… Continue Reading

Dominion Power Relents On Controversial Power Lines Route

July 6, 2016 Development, News Comments Off on Dominion Power Relents On Controversial Power Lines Route
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Dominion Power has withdrawn support for its preferred route for new power lines it plans to build as part of its Poland Road 230kV Transition and Substation Project. The electric power giant has also withdrawn support for alternative routes A and B, telling the State Corporation Commission it is now prepared to support Loudoun County’s “Alternative 6” route.?This route starts at the Yardley Ridge data center project, located at the intersection of Evergreen Mills Road and Route 606 near Dulles Airport. The route continues south from there along route Route 606 to Route 50, avoiding the stretch of Route 50 between Northstar Boulevard and Route 606.

… Continue Reading

Virginia State Parks announces future state park in Loudoun County

July 1, 2016 Development, News Comments Off on Virginia State Parks announces future state park in Loudoun County
ILVSP

RICHMOND, Va. – On June 14, 2016, 604 acres of the ~900-acre Blue Ridge Center for Environmental Stewardship land preserve, donated by the Robert and Dee Leggett Foundation to the Old Dominion Land Conservancy, were acquired by the Department of Conservation and Recreation.

Representatives from DCR, Virginia State Parks, the Robert and Dee Leggett Foundation, and the nonprofit Blue Ridge Center for Environmental Stewardship that has been managing the land held a brainstorming meeting on June 27 to begin the process of establishing an interim management plan.
“We look forward to working with stakeholders, the community and General Assembly as we flesh out the details of a short term arrangement with the Blue Ridge Center board of directors for the continued operation of the site and work on the long-range goals in developing the site’s master plan,” said State Parks Director Craig Seaver. Master planning for a state park is a public hearing process in which an advisory committee and public groups meet to discuss development of the park.

… Continue Reading

Repairs to Loudoun County Government Center Parking Garage to Affect Public and Employee Parking

June 27, 2016 Development, News Comments Off on Repairs to Loudoun County Government Center Parking Garage to Affect Public and Employee Parking
Loudoun County Government Center Parking Garage

Repair work at the Loudoun County Government Center parking garage at 1 Harrison Street, S.E. in Leesburg will impact public and employee parking through the end of August. The parking garage will generally be closed to parking Thursday and Friday nights and all day Saturday and Sunday during the period of repairs. There are a few exceptions, including the July 4th holiday weekend and the weekend of August 19.

Any vehicles parked in the work areas during the repair work will be towed to prevent damage from debris. The project, estimated to last eight to ten weeks, includes repairing concrete, grouting, and stairwell treads. Some of the work is weather dependent.

The complete schedule, which is subject to change, is online at www.loudoun.gov/ParkingGarage. Updates to the schedule will be posted to the webpage.

Photo: Loudoun County Government Center Parking Garage

Purcellville Comprehensive Plan Workshop May 19 – Going through the Pro Development Motions

June 1, 2016 Development, News Comments Off on Purcellville Comprehensive Plan Workshop May 19 – Going through the Pro Development Motions
town of purcellville sign

By Nathaniel Stephens

On May 19, the Town of Purcellville hosted a rezoning workshop to explore resident feedback on future town growth. Only thirty citizens attended, as the workshop was not widely advertised. … Continue Reading

Residents Urge BOS To Deny AT&T 160,000 Sq. Ft. Facility

June 1, 2016 Development, News 2 comments
Loudoun County Seal Color

At the April 26 meeting of the Loudoun County Planning Commission, AT&T approved a commission permit, in a 6-2-1 vote, to build a 160,000 square foot telecom building on top of an existing underground facility on Short Hill Mountain. The Loudoun County Board of Supervisors has 60 days to either approve or deny the permit, which will go into effect on June 25 without board action. … Continue Reading

VDOT To Improve 10 Rural Roads

May 4, 2016 Development, News 1 comment
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Partnership with Preservationists Targets Safer Roads/$13M in Savings
By Andrea Gaines

Starting with a pilot program in 2002, VDOT undertook a major, multi-year initiative to improve the state’s rural road systems. Known as “The Rural Rustic Roads Program,” the initiative is designed to preserve the roads while maximizing VDOT budget efficiencies – addressing nine water management, erosion control, safety, and conservation factors peculiar to rural road systems. When approached as rural road systems in need of better long term maintenance versus “up to code” modernization, VDOT realizes significant costs savings, motorists enjoy safer travel and preservationists can sometimes realize big things on their wish list. The total Loudoun County costs associated with the program is estimated to be approximately $4,336,000. If approached the traditional way, the state estimates the costs at upwards of $17,800,000; for a total cost savings of nearly $13,475,000. … Continue Reading

Town Seeks Input on East Market Street Corridor Future Development

March 22, 2016 Development, News Comments Off on Town Seeks Input on East Market Street Corridor Future Development
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Community members are invited to participate in the planning process by completing a short survey on the Leesburg Listens online forum.

The Leesburg Planning and Zoning Department recently kicked off “Envision East Market Street,” a planning process to reconsider the land use designations within the East Market Street corridor, from the Route 15 Bypass to the eastern Town limits (see map below). … Continue Reading


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Columns

Hundreds Will Join 20th Annual Butterfly Count August 6

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By Andrea Gaines How Is a Butterfly Like a Rainbow? Scientists recently discovered that some butterfly wings contain tiny structures called gyroids that diffract or break up light into the colors of the spectrum. You may also have seen this …

Your Retirement Plan B

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Take the time to design an alternative retirement plan should retirement come earlier than expected. Imagine this. You’ve spend decades working, saving, and planning for your version of the ideal retirement. Your company was just acquired, and your boss is …

Learning Patience As a Camp Counselor

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By Mary Rose Lunde They say that one of the biggest blessings is being a teacher. It is also one of the hardest. Explaining to nine-year-old kids how to build a fire is one of the most challenging things I’ve …

Remembering the Man Who Never Forgot

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By Samuel Moore-Sobel “God is God because He remembers.” The implication being that the defining element separating humans from God is the Divine’s inability to forget. Elie Wiesel was defined in part by his willingness to remember, along with his …

Just Like Nothing (Else) On Earth: Balch Library

Thomas Balch Library

By Tim Jon Solitude, peace, and quiet: Not exactly the first three adjectives I’d choose to describe the greater portion of downtown Leesburg, although its charms do shine through even on the busiest of weekday afternoons. The last morning I …

Superforecasting a Book Review

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The book “Superforecasting” by Philip Tetlock and Dan Gardner contains a nearly complete list of the attributes of superforecasting, as well as critical thinking. Tetlock’s research empirically confirms the aspects of critical thinking I’ve been discussing in this column. Their …

Pokémon GO: A Fun New Gaming App or an Accidental Treatment?

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Penicillin was accidently discovered in 1928 when scientist Alexander Fleming returned to his lab from vacation to notice that a strange fungus growing on a culture had killed off the neighboring bacteria. After WWII, psychiatrist and researcher, Dr. John Cade, …

Student News

Congratulations, Class of 2016

6 Jul 2016

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Woodgrove High School’s Class Of 2016 Graduation – By Amanda Clark On June 16, Woodgrove’s Class of 2016 was the 5th graduating class to walk the stage and accept their diploma. The ceremony was filled with anticipation as the chorus, …

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Buckland Earns Degree In Medicine

6 Jul 2016

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Molly Buckland, D.O., graduated from the West Virginia School of Osteopathic Medicine with a degree of Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine on May 28. While at WVSOM, Dr. Buckland received the Dr. Roland P. Sharp President’s Award and the James R. …

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Adams Promoted To Lieutenant

6 Jul 2016

adamspromoted

Lt. James Adams, from Sterling and a Potomac Falls Halls Graduate, earned the promotion to the rank of Lieutenant. Adams is a Navy Week and Executive Outreach Planner for the Navy Office of Community Outreach in Millington, Tennessee. U.S. Navy …

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Calendar

August 2016
Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday
August 1, 2016

Hot & Cool featuring glass artists Dave & Dale Barnes and abstract painter Kay Layne

August 2, 2016

Hot & Cool featuring glass artists Dave & Dale Barnes and abstract painter Kay Layne

August 3, 2016

Hot & Cool featuring glass artists Dave & Dale Barnes and abstract painter Kay Layne

August 4, 2016

Hot & Cool featuring glass artists Dave & Dale Barnes and abstract painter Kay Layne

August 5, 2016

Hot & Cool featuring glass artists Dave & Dale Barnes and abstract painter Kay Layne

August 6, 2016

Hot & Cool featuring glass artists Dave & Dale Barnes and abstract painter Kay Layne

OysterFest & Roussanne Release!

Notaviva Vineyards - Bluegrass Jam - FREE event

Doug Parks

August 7, 2016

Hot & Cool featuring glass artists Dave & Dale Barnes and abstract painter Kay Layne

August 8, 2016

Hot & Cool featuring glass artists Dave & Dale Barnes and abstract painter Kay Layne

August 9, 2016

Hot & Cool featuring glass artists Dave & Dale Barnes and abstract painter Kay Layne

August 10, 2016

Hot & Cool featuring glass artists Dave & Dale Barnes and abstract painter Kay Layne

August 11, 2016

Hot & Cool featuring glass artists Dave & Dale Barnes and abstract painter Kay Layne

August 12, 2016

Hot & Cool featuring glass artists Dave & Dale Barnes and abstract painter Kay Layne

August 13, 2016

Hot & Cool featuring glass artists Dave & Dale Barnes and abstract painter Kay Layne

August 14, 2016

Hot & Cool featuring glass artists Dave & Dale Barnes and abstract painter Kay Layne

August 15, 2016

Hot & Cool featuring glass artists Dave & Dale Barnes and abstract painter Kay Layne

August 16, 2016

Hot & Cool featuring glass artists Dave & Dale Barnes and abstract painter Kay Layne

August 17, 2016

Hot & Cool featuring glass artists Dave & Dale Barnes and abstract painter Kay Layne

August 18, 2016

Hot & Cool featuring glass artists Dave & Dale Barnes and abstract painter Kay Layne

August 19, 2016

Hot & Cool featuring glass artists Dave & Dale Barnes and abstract painter Kay Layne

August 20, 2016

Hot & Cool featuring glass artists Dave & Dale Barnes and abstract painter Kay Layne

The Lucketts Fair

Live Music: Stealing Dawn

August 21, 2016

Hot & Cool featuring glass artists Dave & Dale Barnes and abstract painter Kay Layne

The Lucketts Fair

August 22, 2016

Hot & Cool featuring glass artists Dave & Dale Barnes and abstract painter Kay Layne

AUDITIONS

August 23, 2016

Hot & Cool featuring glass artists Dave & Dale Barnes and abstract painter Kay Layne

August 24, 2016

Hot & Cool featuring glass artists Dave & Dale Barnes and abstract painter Kay Layne

August 25, 2016

Hot & Cool featuring glass artists Dave & Dale Barnes and abstract painter Kay Layne

August 26, 2016

Hot & Cool featuring glass artists Dave & Dale Barnes and abstract painter Kay Layne

August 27, 2016

Hot & Cool featuring glass artists Dave & Dale Barnes and abstract painter Kay Layne

The Fabulous Hubcaps

August 28, 2016

Hot & Cool featuring glass artists Dave & Dale Barnes and abstract painter Kay Layne

August 29, 2016

Hot & Cool featuring glass artists Dave & Dale Barnes and abstract painter Kay Layne

August 30, 2016

Hot & Cool featuring glass artists Dave & Dale Barnes and abstract painter Kay Layne

August 31, 2016

Hot & Cool featuring glass artists Dave & Dale Barnes and abstract painter Kay Layne

September 1, 2016

Dreams of Trees and Other Living Things

September 2, 2016

Dreams of Trees and Other Living Things

September 3, 2016

Dreams of Trees and Other Living Things

Dear Creek Live at North Gate Vineyard

Notaviva Vineyards - Bluegrass Jam - FREE event

Snaggy Mountain Boys

September 4, 2016

Dreams of Trees and Other Living Things

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Lifestyle

Winchester Plans Patsy Cline Music Festival Labor Day Weekend

11 Aug 2016

Patsy Cline

The Patsy Cline Music Festival will be held Labor Day weekend in her hometown of Winchester, Va. in honor of the legendary singer’s birthday anniversary on September. 8. Celebrating Patsy Cline sponsors the celebration that begins with a block party from 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. in front of the Patsy Cline Historic House, 608 S. Kent St. Music will …

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Vigil for Lost Promise to Remember Loved Ones Lost to Drugs

11 Aug 2016

sheriff

Residents and local leaders are encouraged to join the many families, friends and community groups to share the light of their loved ones lost to drugs. The Vigil for Lost Promise will be held Tuesday, August 16, 2016 at 7:30 p.m. The event will be held at the Drugs: Cost and Consequences Exhibit (DEA Museum), located at 750 Miller Dr. …

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August Is National Peach Month: Eat a Peach in Salad

3 Aug 2016

peach

Are You Kidding? No. A nectarine and a peach are basically the same species. Nectarines are bald peaches, in effect. In early cultivation, nectarines occasionally appeared on peach trees, the result of a recessive allele, the fruit from which were then cultivated as nectarines. Peaches are also part of the rose family. No wonder why we like all three, so …

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Editorial

Grief and Greed

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By Matthew Parse What would drive a single individual to cause so much emotional stress and financial burden on hundreds, if not, thousands of families? What would drive the Town …

Op-ed

Opinion: Terrorism, Debt, and China: Oh My!

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– By Nick Reid world can be a very dangerous place sometimes, especially for a nation state such as the United States. Although danger is always present, the number and …

Metro Money Mess Pushing West

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– By Delegate Dave LaRock (R-33rd) A local paper recently quoted Loudoun Board Chair Phyllis Randall as saying that in her observation “some of the concerns raised by the people …

Dear Editor

Lessons from Short Hill

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It’s been a little over two weeks since the Commission Permit for the proposed AT&T facility on Short Hill was overruled by the Board of Supervisors. This is just about …

Thank You

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Dear Citizens of Purcellville: As your town council member it is my vision and priority that you feel welcome at your Town Hall and take part in shaping Purcellville’s future …

View From the Ridge

An Open Letter to the Citizens of Purcellville

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Mark Your Calendar, They’ve Asked for Our Input So Let’s Give It To Them By Steady and Nobull The Purcellville Planning Commission has tentatively scheduled a series of public input …

Around Virginia

Land Trust Receives Large Donation

land trust

On August 22, The Land Trust of Virginia received a $10,000 gift from the Sharon D. Virts Foundation, based in Herndon. The presentation of this grant was part of the Foundation’s official launch event, held at Selma Plantation in Leesburg. Notable speakers included Sharon D. Virts, FCiFederal Founder and Chair, …

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Farmers Urged To Be On The Lookout For Marijuana

marijuana

Farmers in Southwest Virginia are being urged to check their property for marijuana planted by trespassers. Within the past year, hundreds of marijuana plants have been discovered between rows of hay bales on farms in and around Pulaski County, according to the Claytor Lake Regional Drug Task Force. “Unfortunately this …

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State Senators Investigate University of Virginia’s $2.3 Billion Operating Surplus

Uva-logo

Senators Chap Petersen (D-Fairfax City) and Bill DeSteph (R-Virginia Beach), are calling for an investigation into disclosures that the University of Virginia has accumulated a $2.3 billion operating surplus, now titled a “Strategic Investment Fund,” that is significantly larger than the Commonwealth’s own cash reserves. Both senators agree that the …

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Sports

Let’s Make Some Memories

3 Aug 2016

baseball

American Legion Baseball At Fireman’s Field, August 3 – 7 By Andrea Gaines American Legion Baseball is here at Fireman’s Field in a big way, featuring five consecutive blockbuster Mid-Atlantic Tournament games – August 3, 4, 5, 6 and 7. Our local Leesburg Post 34 Rangers had some nice wins …

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Registration Open For Ida Lee’s Fall NFL Flag Football

7 Jul 2016

NFL_Flag_Football_at_IdaLee

Ida Lee’s Fall 2016 NFL Flag Football League will begin with player evaluations on Saturday and Sunday, July 30 and 31.  Players must be registered by Tuesday, July 26, to participate. This fall, Ida Lee’s Leesburg NFL Flag Football House League will have the following age groups:  6-7; 8-9; 10-11; …

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