Board Seeks to Protect Farm from Taking by VDOT

Google+ Pinterest LinkedIn Tumblr +

Provided by Prince William County


In a special meeting Monday, Oct. 26, the Prince William Board of County Supervisors voted unanimously to send a letter to Aubrey Layne, the Virginia Secretary of Transportation, opposing a proposed commuter lot at the Heflin family’s Cedar Farm in the Gainesville District.

The letter, sent as an official board request, stated in part, that the board would like the Virginia Department of Transportation to “reexamine all possible alternatives for the commuter lot facility in Haymarket, which is proposed as part of the ‘I-66 Outside the Beltway Project.'”

The letter went on to ask that VDOT remove the property as the proposed site for the park-and-ride lot while it considers other feasible alternatives.

“We are committed to working with VDOT to determine a more appropriate location for a much-needed commuter lot in Prince William County and will help explore various options in the design and the funding of the lot,” the letter states.

In June, the board sent comments to VDOT regarding improvements to the I-66 Outside the Beltway Project within Prince William County. The comments spoke to the need for certain off-ramps, maintaining High Occupancy Vehicle (HOV) lanes, improving secondary street systems impacted by the project, including a bike and pedestrian plan, reserving sufficient right-of-way for future transit and using parking structures rather than surface parking lots for park-and-ride opportunities.

Prince William Board of County Supervisor’s Chairman Corey Stewart said the board’s comments didn’t in any way endorse the commuter lot. “Unfortunately, somewhere along the line, VDOT went ahead with a preferred alternative and placed Heflin Farm as a commuter parking lot as the preferred alternative, which would essentially take the entirety of their farm. It’s one of the last working farms in Prince William County, and that was certainly not the intention of this board member. I doubt it was the intention of any one of the board members.”

Gainesville District Supervisor Pete Candland said that after a meeting with the Heflins and VDOT, the department indicated that it could reconsider the placement of the commuter lot, but needed some official board action. “They needed to hear from the Board of County Supervisors that we’re willing to take a strong stand on this, that we’re willing to back the Heflins to make sure that…ultimately, this land gets taken off VDOT’s plans.”

The next Board of County Supervisors meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, Nov. 17 at 2 p.m. For more information about the board,


Leave A Reply