Alexandria Waterfront Plan On Hold After Board Rules For Opponents | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

WAMU 88.5 : Morning Edition

Filed Under:

Alexandria Waterfront Plan On Hold After Board Rules For Opponents

Play associated audio
A rendering of the potential Alexandria waterfront once it is redeveloped according to new zoning laws. 
Alexandria Department of Planning and Zoning
A rendering of the potential Alexandria waterfront once it is redeveloped according to new zoning laws. 

Members of the Alexandria City Council have scheduled an emergency closed-door meeting on Saturday to chart a new course for the Alexandria waterfront, after a ruling from the Board of Zoning Appeals that could overturn the controversial waterfront plan. In a late night vote, the Alexandria Board of Zoning Appeals reversed a determination by the city planning director to reject a protest petition filed by opponents of the plan.

At issue is a challenge filed by hundreds of property owners along the waterfront who oppose the city's efforts to increase development and allow hotels. Bert Ely and others who have opposed the plan for months said the decision was a hard-won victory.

"We're absolutely delighted at how the Board of Zoning Appeals voted tonight in support of the citizens who filed a petition, played by the rules and now the ball is going to be in the city’s court," he said.

The protest petition filed earlier this year would have required the City Council to have a super-majority of votes to pass the waterfront plan. The proposal was adopted on a 5-2 vote back in January, one vote shy of a supermajority. 

That means the Alexandria waterfront plan is on hold, at least for now.

The city will appeal the decision to the Alexandria Circuit Court, according to city attorney James Banks. "They were, I think, sidetracked on a couple of issues and I think there’s plenty of grounds for an appeal," Banks said.

Members of the Board of Zoning Appeals say the planning director erred in her decision to reject the petition, adding that city officials seemed to go out of their way to prevent citizens from being involved in the process.

Correction: The original version of this story misstated the outcome of the Board of Zoning Appeals' vote. Board members voted in favor of the opponents of the waterfront plan. 

NPR

Mia Wasikowska On The Sounds Of Camels And The Lure Of Travel

Melissa Block talks with actress Mia Wasikowska about her new film, Tracks, which follows a woman on a long journey with only camels and a dog for company.
NPR

Giving Chickens Bacteria ... To Keep Them Antibiotic-Free

What does it take to get chickens off antibiotics? According to Perdue Farms, an added dose of the "good bacteria" known as probiotics can help crowd out the harmful microbes that make a chicken sick.
NPR

Why Did Congress Kick The Can On Funding Islamic State Mission?

The president got approval for his plan to train and equip Syrian opposition fighters, but lawmakers didn't approve funds to pay for it or the broader air campaign.
NPR

Some Tech Firms Capitalize On Privacy

Steve Henn of NPR's Planet Money team profiles some entrepreneurs who are working on a novel business model to start up a new tech company. It's pay for service. What a concept.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.