Fairfax County Establishes First Community Development Authority
April 27, 2009
At its regularly scheduled meeting today, the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors established the Mosaic District Community Development Authority (CDA) for the 31-acre Mosaic – Merrifield Town Center development.
“This CDA enables a highly desirable mixed-use project to move forward and is vital to the revitalization of the Merrifield area,” said Sharon Bulova, chairman of the Board of Supervisors. “CDA is an exciting new funding tool that reflects the current economic climate.”
The Mosaic – Merrifield Town Center development will be located south of Lee Highway/Rt. 29, west of Yates Way, east of Eskridge Road and north of Luther Jackson Middle School. The rezoning for the development was approved by the Board of Supervisors in October 2007, and consists of approximately 1,000 dwelling units; a multiplex theatre; 125,000 square feet of office space; 500,000 square feet of other non-residential uses and a 150-room hotel. Virtually all parking will be provided in structures.
Among planned public improvements are two parks; the realignment and widening of Eskridge Road; the widening of Lee Highway; improvements to the Lee Highway/Gallows Road intersection; and construction of a grid of streets. A portion of these public improvements will be funded by the CDA through bond financing and there will be no general fund or debt impact to the county.
A CDA is a flexible funding tool that can address a broad range of infrastructure needs, as well as services, and can cover varied areas such as a single shopping mall, a mixed-use development or a downtown redevelopment area.
A petition to the Board of Supervisors to establish a CDA must come from a majority (51 percent) of landowners within a proposed area; the CDA is then governed by board appointees. Either land area or assessed value can be used to determine the 51 percent.
Fairfax County's Office of Community Revitalization and Reinvestment led a county staff and consultant team that worked with the developer on the establishment of the CDA. The petition for the Mosaic District CDA was evaluated against the county’s “16 Principles for Public Investment in Support of Commercial Redevelopment,” which were adopted by the board on July 21, 2008, to advance revitalization and reinvestment opportunities within the county. The evaluation also determined that the project, which is planned to become the town center of Merrifield, would not occur without funding a portion of the public facilities through bond financing.
The 16 principles were developed by Fairfax County in collaboration with the Community Revitalization and Reinvestment Advisory Group; its membership includes community, business and county government representatives. The principles were developed in response to the county’s changing development climate. By 2030, Fairfax County is projected to add 245,000 jobs and 290,000 new residents.
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