F.C. Council Formally Refers Out City’s S. Washington Plan

The Falls Church City Council tonight formally referred out for review to City boards and commissions the ambitious S.Washington Street Corridor Small Area Plan developed in house by the City’s Planning Division and its director, Jim Snyder.

The plan covering 33.6 acres of potentially the most commercially-dense area of the City could be developed from its current 0.56 floor to area ratio (FAR), with a third of the land surface parking lots now, yielding $6.4 million in annual tax revenue to the City, to a 2.5 to 4 FAR area bringing in a minimum of $15.4 million annually.

Council member Phil Duncan singled out the plan’s reference to a “town center” concept in properties adjacent the historic Falls Church Episcopal where a mix of commercial and public uses could be developed.

“I’d love to see this occur,” he said, “and I’d like to see what the community thinks of it.”

A spate of “interim improvements,” such as the undergrounding of utility lines, sidewalk improvements and benches, may be implemented in advance of the rest of the plan, Snyder suggested. “Often when this happens, such improvements spurs interest by investors in an area.”

The S. Washington plan had its last public hearing in late April, and Snyder said he hopes to get it finally approved by fall.