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Alexandria Planning Commission Approves Waterfront Rezoning

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Planning Commissioner Stewart Dunn moves for approval of the Alexandria waterfront plan.
Michael Pope
Planning Commissioner Stewart Dunn moves for approval of the Alexandria waterfront plan.

City leaders in Alexandria are moving forward with a controversial zoning change that could have drastic consequences on the waterfront.

In a late-night vote, the Alexandria Planning Commission unanimously approved a plan that would almost triple density at three sites on the waterfront slated for redevelopment, compared to what's there now. Currently, the sites have 300,000 square feet. Now commissioners have approved more than 800,000 square feet of development.

Several speakers said city leaders should wait for the conclusion of two separate lawsuits. But City Council members want to press on, despite the pending lawsuits.

Now the Planning Commission has approved the increased density. That sets the stage for a final confrontation between opponents and supporters during a March 16 public hearing. Council members will also consider new rules that could limit the ability of citizens to challenge zoning changes in the future.

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