PURCELLVILLE, Va. November 20, 2020 — The Town has received several inquiries about the development plans for three adjacent properties located on Hatcher Avenue, addressed as 141, 151, and 161 Hatcher Avenue (collectively, the “Property”).
The Property is located in the ‘C-4’ central commercial zoning district. All non-residential properties in Town that are located in a commercial zoning district are subject to the regulations of the Architectural Control Overlay District (found at Town Code Section 54-61, et seq.), which require that new buildings be approved by the Town’s Board of Architectural Review. In keeping with this requirement, the owner of the Property submitted an application to the Town’s Board of Architectural Review, seeking approval of the proposed architecture, scale, and building materials for a new three-story building to be located on the Property, once the existing structures are demolished.
The Board of Architectural Review conducted two public meetings regarding the proposal, the first on September 15, 2020 and the second on October 20, 2020, and issued its approval of the proposed building’s architecture, scale, and materials at the latter meeting. The architectural renderings of the proposed new building are on file with the Town, and may also be accessed through the Town’s website at the following URL: https://purcellville.novusagenda.com/AgendaPublic/CoverSheet.aspx?ItemID=1879&MeetingID=1194. Once there, scroll to the bottom of the document and click on “Second Submission,” under “ATTACHMENTS.” A video of the meeting conducted on September 15th may be viewed at this URL: https://purcellvilleva.new.swagit.com/videos/75767 . A video of the meeting conducted on October 20th may be viewed at this URL: https://purcellvilleva.new.swagit.com/videos/87428. It should be noted that an appeal contesting the BAR’s approval was filed with the Town on November 19, 2020. If all required elements of the appeal are in order, the Town Council will hear the appeal on a date that remains to be scheduled, most likely on or before December 22, 2020.
In addition to the architectural application described above, the property owner also submitted an application to the Town seeking written verification that the existing buildings on the Property may be demolished under Town ordinances. Once obtained, such written verification would be submitted by the property owner to Loudoun County in order to obtain a County-issued demolition permit and any associated grading permit. While demolition of the existing structures is allowed under Town ordinances, such demolition cannot occur until the proper permits are obtained from the County, which ensure that demolition occurs in accordance with public health and safety regulations and that the site is stabilized and restored after demolition is complete. No County permits have yet been obtained.
Prior to commencing construction of a new building on the Property, the property owner must obtain approval from the Town and the County of a detailed engineered site plan, construction plans, and erosion & sediment control plans, among other things. The Town and County will review such plans for compliance with their respective ordinances. It should be noted that no public hearings are part of this process; if the plans comply with existing ordinances, they must be approved. At this time, no such plans have been submitted. When these application are submitted to the Town and County, the files become part of the public record, and the public may view them upon request.
The property owner has discussed with Town staff the possibility of establishing a mixture of commercial and residential uses within the new building, once it is constructed. Before such uses can be established, the owner must receive from the Town an approved “site plan,” a “zoning permit,” and an “occupancy permit,” and no such plans or permits have been applied for at this time. Examples of uses that are currently allowed in the C-4 zoning district, per the Town Zoning Ordinance, include “hotel,” “eating establishments,” “retail,” and “office.”
Any questions about the process by which such projects are reviewed and acted on may be directed to Andy Conlon, Town of Purcellville Senior Planner, at 540-751-2341.