F.C. Planning Chief Says He’s Getting Constant Inquiries About Campus Site

MEMBERS OF THE CONSULTING team of Alvarez and Marsal briefed the full F.C. City Council on their work to help the City work out the “highest and best use” for the 10 acres dedicated for commercial development at the West End GMHS campus site Monday night. At the far right is James Snyder, chief of the City’s Planning Department.(Photo: News-Press)
James Snyder, planning department chief for the City of Falls Church, confirmed at Tuesday’s F.C. Council work session that despite the fact the City may be almost a year away from deciding on a developer for the GMHS Campus Development site at the City’s west end, developers are constantly contacting him with expressions of interest in the 10-acre site. The news suggests that when it comes time for the City to issue a formal “request for proposal” for commercial development of the site, there may be plenty of “gentleman callers” by then.

The Alvarez and Marsal consultants to the project briefed the full F.C.City Council for the first time on their road map for moving forward on the project, and emphasized that the City should be prepared to be responsive to whatever creative ideas may be coming forth from the development community for how to build out the 10 acres. Their mantra was to avoid the temptation to pre-prescribe too much about what it would like to have on the site ahead of time, because they would deter developers, especially those with novel ideas for it.

Snyder told the News-Press Tuesday that the frequent inquires about the site have not yet yielded any specific development preferences, but have mostly been in the form of general inquiries