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Your Realtor® Advocacy team works tirelessly to protect the real estate industry. Although not an exhaustive list, check out recent victories that Realtors® can be proud of, including legislative, executive and judiciary branch wins.  

Affordable Housing - Realtor® Advocacy Wins

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Anti-Money Laundering - Realtor® Advocacy Wins

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Inflation Reduction Act

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CARES Act Notice-to-Vacate Requirement:

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Fixes to Existing Programs

Relief for Borrowers at Fraudulent For-Profit Institutions

Technology - Realtor® Advocacy Wins

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SECURE Notarization Act

Transportation and Infrastructure - Realtor® Advocacy Wins

Bipartisan Infrastructure Framework Funding

Coming soon: Brand New NV/RPAC Live from Richmond Series!

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Government Affairs Blog

From the Ground Up - September 14, 2022

Sep 14, 2022, 17:27 PM by Josh Veverka
A look at economic development, rezoning, and residential and commercial projects happening in Northern Virginia.
From the Ground UpA look at economic development, rezoning, and residential and commercial projects happening in Northern Virginia. 

ARLINGTON COUNTY

The Arlington County Board will hold public hearings September 17 on the adoption of the Courthouse West Special General Land Use Plan Study Document.
The County recently conducted a Special General Land Use Plan (GLUP) Study process for a block in the Courthouse Metro Station Area at the request of the applicant, 2636 Wilson LLC and 2601 Clarendon LLC. A community engagement process concluded in May 2022 with input focused on several key themes including, but not limited to, guidance on maximum building height and density. Based on the outcome of the study process, staff is recommending maximum building height guidance in the Courthouse West Special General Land Use Plan Study Document (“Study Document”) it views as contextually appropriate for the subject site, which would support less intense development than the applicant’s desired building height limit. Additionally, Long Range Planning Committee (LRPC) members, the Planning Commission, and community members share differing views on maximum building height and density guidance appropriate for the study area. At its meeting on July 16, 2022, the County Board authorized the advertisement of public hearings on this subject, as well as the advertisement of future public hearings to consider a GLUP amendment from “Service Commercial” to “Medium” Office-Apartment-Hotel for the study area (which would occur concurrent with consideration of associated rezoning and site plan applications). The County Board also expanded the breadth of the advertisement to consider maximum building heights ranging up to 16 stories.

The Arlington Site Plan Review Committee (SPRC) will meet September 15 to review the Crystal Plaza 5 project
The 681,168 sq. ft. (15.6 acres) site is located at 2250 Crystal Drive and 223 23rd Street S., in the Crystal City neighborhood. The site is currently occupied by the Crystal Plaza 5 office building at 223 23rd Street S. and a one-story retail building along Crystal Drive. The site is bordered by Crystal Drive to the east, 23rd Street to the south, the WeLive Crystal City apartment and coworking building to the west, and Crystal Plaza Apartments and the 2200 Crystal Drive office building to the north., Arlington, VA 22202.  The applicant, JBG Smith, proposes to redevelop the site (“Crystal Plaza 5”) and construct two new multifamily residential towers with ground floor retail space. 

Missing Middle/ zoning changes dominate first Arlington County Board debate of season
Drawing flak from both sides, the lone incumbent County Board member on the Nov. 8 ballot attempted to hew a middle-of-the-road path on Arlington’s contentious Missing Middle housing debate during the opening event of the community’s two-month election sprint. Matt de Ferranti, a Democrat who is seeking to hold the seat he won four years ago, positioned himself in between challengers Adam Theo (who wants more housing variety than even de Ferranti is willing to support) and Audrey Clement (who opposes Missing Middle as a “scheme” to enrich developers while forcing out poorer residents).

New Teleconnect Space Available at Columbia Pike Library
There is a new option for Arlington residents and visitors who need an internet connection and privacy for virtual meetings. Arlington Public Library will open The Teleconnect Space at Columbia Pike Library, in partnership with the Arlington County Department of Community Planning, Housing, and Development (CPHD) and the Department of Technology Services (DTS). The Teleconnect Space is a single meeting room at the library branch that is outfitted with a hardwired computer equipped with web access to Zoom, Skype, and other video conferencing software.

Plan Langston Boulevard Community Meetings on the PCP
The planning team is pleased to share the Preliminary Concept Plan (PCP) for the Langston Boulevard corridor. Based on community input, the PCP refines the ideas and concepts previously shared in the land use scenarios into a preferred concept for Langston Boulevard and describes planning goals and policies for development. Please join the Plan Langston Boulevard team to ask questions, share feedback, and discuss the PCP. 

  • Wednesday, September 14 | 7 - 9 PM | Area 2 Neighborhoods Meeting
  • Wednesday, September 21 | 7 - 9 PM | Area 3 Neighborhoods Meeting
  • Thursday, September 22 | 7 - 9 PM | Area 5 Neighborhoods Meeting
  • Tuesday, October 11 | 7 - 9 PM | Topic-Based Meeting to Discuss Housing, Stormwater, and Transportation  

RELATED: New concept plan for Langston Blvd shows sweeping vision of greener corridor with taller buildings

Arlington offered $23M for Amazon HQ2. So far, it hasn’t paid a dime
When Amazon announced its plans to build a second headquarters somewhere in North America, cities and states around the continent stopped at nothing to woo the tech giant. They made promises of billion-dollar tax breaks and massive financial incentives — in a few cases, bigger than some countries’ economies — to get picked as the company’s new home. Nearly four years after winning that sweepstakes, Arlington County has yet to pay Amazon a single penny. And that’s by design.

ALEXANDRIA

Planning Commission Approves King Street Dining, Residential Development Items at September Public Hearing
The Planning Commission considered the following items at the September 6 meeting:

  • Initiation, Public Hearing and consideration of a Text Amendment to the Zoning Ordinance to align the King Street outdoor dining program with new City outdoor dining design guidelines and the commercial parklet program. On a motion by Vice Chair McMahon, seconded by Commissioner Lyle, the Planning Commission voted to recommend approval of Zoning Text Amendment #2022-00009. The motion carried on a vote of 6-0.
  • Initiation, Public Hearing and consideration of a Text Amendment to the Zoning Ordinance to allow administrative special uses on both the ground and upper floors in the KR/King Street Urban Retail zone. On a motion by Vice Chair McMahon, seconded by Commissioner Lyle, the Planning Commission voted to recommend approval of Zoning Text Amendment #2022-00010. The motion carried on a vote of 7-0 on the Consent Calendar. Scheduled for City Council Consideration at September 17 meeting.
  • Initiation of a Master Plan Amendment; and (B) Public Hearing and consideration of the update to the Water Quality Management Supplement Chapter of the City’s Master Plan. On a motion by Commissioner Lyle, seconded by Vice Chair McMahon, the Planning Commission voted to initiate Master Plan Amendment #2022-00003. The motion carried on a vote of 7-0. Scheduled for City Council Consideration at September 17 meeting.
  • Public Hearing and consideration of a request for rezoning to construct a 24-unit multifamily building with ground-floor commercial uses and the rehabilitation of two historic buildings for commercial use. On a motion by Commissioner Lyle, seconded by Vice Chair McMahon, the Planning Commission voted to recommend approval of Rezoning #2022-00006. The motion carried on a vote of 7-0. On a motion by Commissioner Lyle, seconded by Vice Chair McMahon, the Planning Commission voted to recommend approval of Development Special Use Permit #2022-10011 and Transportation Management Plan Special Use Permit #2022-00053. The motion carried on a vote of 7-0. Scheduled for City Council Consideration at September 17 meeting.


City Council to Hold Hearings and Consider Final Approval amendments September 17.

Pedestrian Zone In Unit Block Of King Street Extended
The pedestrian-only zone in the unit block of King Street and part of the Strand has been extended as the City of Alexandria considers the future of the closure.

Alexandria Among Top Cities For Projected Apartments In U.S.: Report
A study analyzing new apartment construction data found Alexandria to be one of the top in the DC region and among U.S. cities. RentCafe, an apartment search website, analyzed new apartment construction data in 125 U.S. metropolitan areas.

FAIRFAX COUNTY

Planning Commission to Consider Somos at Tysons Workforce Housing Project September 21
This rezoning application increases the supply of workforce housing in Tysons within 1/3 mile of a Metro station. The Applicant, Somos at Tysons LLC ("Somos" or the "Applicant") has partnered with 1750 Old Meadow LLC (the "Owner"), and its affiliates, to propose a 460 unit residential community at 1750 Old Meadow Road (the "Application Property") in Tysons. Somos intends to construct at least 300 of the 460 units – more than 65% - as workforce housing serving residents who earn up to 60% of the area median income ("AMI"). These affordable units will exceed the anticipated workforce housing proffers for the proposed use of the Application Property and for the existing workforce housing proffers for two nearby properties owned by the Owner's affiliates. This application will produce a greater number of affordable units that serve lower AMIs than would be achieved under those existing proffers and the ambitious affordable housing policies in the Tysons Plan. In addition, all of these affordable units would be constructed at one time with the proposed building, rather than being delivered piecemeal in multiple buildings over the multi-year buildout of the respective properties. Property is part of an office park known as West*Gate that was developed with low and mid-rise office buildings and associated parking on the industrially-zoned sites. With the approval of several rezonings since adoption of the Tysons Plan in 2010, this part of Tysons is transforming from a suburban office park into an integrated mix of office, hotel, residential and retail uses in a transit-oriented urban design. The Application Property is currently developed as a 7-story brick, suburban office building with a 3-level parking garage located behind the building. Access to the garage is from two entrances along Old Meadow Road.

Fairfax County to move forward with proposal for new Reston library, apartments
Fairfax County is positioning itself to move forward with a proposal by developer Foulger-Pratt to build a new library and affordable units in Reston. The Fairfax County Redevelopment and Housing Authority will hold a public hearing this week to get input on a potential agreement with Foulger-Pratt for a redevelopment project called Bowman Towne Court, an area located at the intersection of Bowman Towne Drive and Town Center Parkway.

Draft Reston Comprehensive Plan outlines future of development, but some questions remain
After more than 50 meetings, Fairfax County will present draft amendments to Reston’s comprehensive plan at public meetings this fall, advancing the first major update to the planning document since 2015. The process kicked off in 2020 to determine how new development will impact the community, public infrastructure and growth-related issues. Reston has seen more than 50 rezoning applications since the last update in 2015, prompting concerns about growth management.

High-rise housing with public, urban park proposed for Tysons’ Arbor Row

With the region’s office market still in flux, the developer behind Arbor Row in central Tysons will bet on housing instead. Cityline Partners recently submitted a proposal to Fairfax County asking to swap an office building that had previously been approved for the neighborhood’s Block C2 for a residential high-rise with ground-floor retail.

FAIRFAX CITY

Rent Prices Increase Near Fairfax City Metro Stops Since 2021: Report
Rent prices increased near most of the DC region's Metro stops, including those around Fairfax City, a new RentHop report says. RentHop compiles an annual report on median rent prices near Metro's 91 stops in DC, Maryland and Virginia. The report analyzes prices of one-bedroom apartments from May 1 to July 31, 2021 and 2022 from RentHop and Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority GIS data for Metrorail stops from DC.gov.

Mason now a top 10 public university for diversity, innovation, and cybersecurity education, U.S. News rankings show
George Mason University is among the top 10 most diverse and innovative public universities in the country, as well as top 10 in undergraduate cybersecurity, according to U.S. News & World Report’s “2023 Best Colleges List” rankings released Monday. Mason jumped five spots to seventh nationally for diversity, and moved up one place to eighth nationally and first in Virginia for innovation. Mason remains first in Virginia for both categories. The undergraduate cybersecurity program jumped to 10th nationally among public universities, up from 15th.

FALLS CHURCH

5 Falls Church City Council Actions To Know From Sept. 12 Meeting

After a break from meetings in August, Falls Church City Council returned to make several notable actions Monday. City Council discussed the Founders Row project and will continue discussions on Sept. 27. Another key item involved the transfer of city-owned Virginia Village apartment buildings to affordable housing developer Wesley Housing. A long-term goal could involve redevelopment into permanent affordable housing.

HERNDON

Vertical farm ‘Beanstalk’ opens in the Town of Herndon
At area Harris Teeter locations, leafy greens, herbs and vegetables trace their roots to Beanstalk, a new vertical farm in the Town of Herndon. Local and state officials — including Virginia Gov. Glenn Youngkin — gathered on Sept. 13 at 3 p.m. to celebrate the grand opening of the farm, which uses hydroponic technology — which is soil-less — and heirloom seeds to grow its products. The farm is located at 251 Exchange Place.

LOUDOUN COUNTY

Planning Commission hears Comment, to hold Work Session, on Draft Zoning Ordinance Rewrite
The Planning Commission held a public hearing on portions of the draft Zoning Ordinance text on August 30, 2022. The planning Commission will hold a future public hearing on other portions of the proposed Zoning Ordinance. The proposed text updates are available for public review and comment. The portions of the draft Zoning Ordinance the Planning Commission considered on August 30 include:

  • Acronyms
  • Definitions and Rules of Interpretation
  • Development Standards
  • Land Development Fees
  • Nonconformities and Adaptive Reuse
  • Officials, Boards, and Commissions
  • Procedures
  • Signs

Board to Hear Public Comment on Large Residential Developments September 14.
The Loudoun County Board of Supervisors is scheduled to hear public comment on several large residential and mixed use development projects at the September 14 scheduled public hearing.  Items on the agenda include:

  • ZMAP-2021-0006, SPEX-2021-0022, ZMOD-2021-0020, ZMOD-2021-0023 & ZMOD2021-0024, Hyde Park, is a request to convert approximately 58 acres of planned office use to residential use in order to permit up to 779 residential dwelling units, including 432 single-family units and 347 multifamily units. The property is located on the south side of the Dulles Greenway in the northeast corner of the intersection of Belmont Ridge Road and Broadlands Boulevard in the Ashburn Election District. The Planning Commission (Commission) held a Public Hearing on May 26, 2022. Eight members of the public spoke on the item, stating concerns regarding traffic impacts, school capacity, availability of commercial services, pedestrian safety, residential density, parking, and environmental impacts. The Commission forwarded (6-2-1: Barnes and Kirchner opposed; Hayes absent) the applications to the Board of Supervisors (Board) with a conditional recommendation of approval, contingent upon revisions.
  • ZMAP-2021-0007, ZMOD-2021-0025, ZMOD-2021-0026, ZMOD-2021-0027 & ZMOD2021-0028, Innovation Multifamily request to convert low density residential use to the Planned Development – Town Center (PD-TC) zoning district in order to develop 415 attached multifamily (MF) units on 4.8 acres. The subject site is located north of Innovation Avenue, east of the Route 28/Dulles Toll Road interchange, and west of Fairfax County in the Broad Run Election District. The Planning Commission (Commission) held a public hearing on April 26, 2022. There were no public speakers. The Commission inquired about the transportation commitments and discussed the proposal’s conformance with the Loudoun County 2019 General Plan. On June 9, 2022, the Commission forwarded (6-3: Hayes, Kirchner, and Miller opposed) the applications to the Board of Supervisor (Board) with a recommendation of denial.
  • ZCPA-2021-0002 & ZMOD-2021-0032, One Loudoun seeks to revise the One Loudoun Proffer Statement (Proffers) and Concept Development Plan (CDP) in order to add 1,745 new multifamily (MF) units, 250 of which can be stacked (two over two) units. The subject site is located south of Route 7 and west of Loudoun County Parkway in the Broad Run Election District. The Planning Commission (Commission) held a public hearing on May 26, 2022. There were three public speakers who expressed concern with the additional residential density and the loss of open space. On July 14, 2022, the Commission forwarded (7-1-1: Kirchner opposed; Hayes absent) the applications to the Board of Supervisors (Board) with a recommendation of approval subject to the applicant agreeing to revise the Proffers.

Loudoun Supervisors Approve Dulles, South Riding-Area Townhouses
County supervisors have approved separate rezonings to permit 61 townhouses near Dulles Town Center Mall and 41 townhouses near South Riding. At Colonnade, a project on an undeveloped parcel within Dulles Town Center at the corner of City Center Boulevard and Stefanie Drive, supervisors approved an application to rezone 4.15 acres from commercial zoning to residential use to permit 61 townhouses. At Mountain View Residential, supervisors approved up-zoning 6.33 acres of residential land to permit 41 townhouses on Hopestone Terrace, between Savoy Woods Estates and the Reserve at South Riding. Currently, that site contains a vacant house, garden center, and some forest.

Leesburg initiates annexation of Compass Creek, including Microsoft data center
The Leesburg Town Council voted unanimously Tuesday night to initiate annexation proceedings of the entirety of the Compass Creek development, including the proposed Microsoft data center. The town claims that stymied tax revenue sharing agreements with Loudoun County led to the motion. County Public Affairs Officer Glen Barbour said in an email that the county has been “continually engaged” with the town, calling the town’s move “adversarial.”

PRINCE WILLIAM COUNTY

Prince William County Board holds Sept. 13 Hearings on Riverside Station Mixed Use Development
Rezoning #REZ2022-00007, Riverside Station Land Bay A and Rezoning #REZ2022-00008, Riverside Station Land Bay B were approved unanimously by the Planning Commission July 27. The proposal would rezone ±6.30 acres and ±12.95 acres from B-1, General Business, to PMD, Planned Mixed Use District, to permit a combined 970 dwelling units and 130,000 square feet of nonresidential uses, with associated waivers and modifications. One property is located at the northwest quadrant of the Occoquan Road and Rt. 1 intersection with the other located at the southwest quadrant of the Gordon Blvd. and Rt. 1 intersection. The site is designated TC, Town Center, in the Comprehensive Plan and is located in the North Woodbridge Small Area Plan and Redevelopment Overlay District.
Related: Planning Commission approves rezoning for North Woodbridge Town Center

County Board holds Sept 13 hearing on Independent Hill Planned Mixed Residential Development
This is a request to rezone ±69 acres from A-1, Agricultural, to PMR, Planned Mixed Residential; and to allow for the development of up to 197 residential units and 219,000 square feet of commercial and office development. The site is located on the south side of Dumfries Road, east of its intersection with Independent Hill Road, and north of Bristow Road. The Planning Commission at its May 11, 2022, meeting recommended denial of Rezoning.

Protests continue as 'PW Digital Gateway' data center plan heads to the planning commission
The proposed "Devlin Technology Park," a plan to allow between seven and 11 new data centers to be built behind homes in Bristow, is on hold for now. But protests continued Tuesday against the much larger Prince William Digital Gateway, which is scheduled for its first public hearing before the Prince William County Planning Commission Wednesday night. On Tuesday, Sept. 13, the Devlin Technology Park comprehensive plan amendment and rezoning was supposed to go before the Prince William Board of County Supervisors for a final public hearing and vote. The application seeks to replan and rezone about 270 acres at Devlin and Linton Hall Roads in Bristow to allow for seven to 11 new data centers on property now slated to become a new residential area of 516 homes.
Related: Prince William County planners recommend approval of PW Digital Gateway

About 100 protest data centers proposed, approved for Bristow
Citing concerns about noise, huge buildings visible from their homes and years of destructive blasting from construction, about 100 people protested along Linton Hall Road in Bristow Saturday to urge the Prince William Board of Supervisors to put the brakes on “runaway” data center development that they say is destroying their neighborhoods.
Related: Developer puts Devlin Technology Park data center project on hold amid protests

Planning Commission to hear Quartz District Mixed Use Development Hearing September 21
REZONING #REZ2019-00018, Quartz District is a request to rezone ±145.05 acres from A-1, Agricultural, O(H), Office High-Rise, and R-2, Suburban Residential, to PMR, Planned Mixed Residential, and PMD, Planned Mixed Use District, to allow up to 1,015 residential units and 374,000 square feet of  nonresidential uses. The site is located at the northwest quadrant of the intersection of Prince William Parkway and Minnieville Road.