Fairfax County Board of Supervisors Approves Final Bonds for Dulles Rail Phase One Tax District

September 11, 2012

News Highlights

  • Board of Supervisors authorized the final bond sale for Phase 1 Tax District to help pay for Dulles Rail.
  • This last bond sale marks a milestone for the county towards fulfilling its funding obligation to pay for the first phase of Dulles Rail.
  • Of the county's share for the entire Dulles Rail project, approximately 80 percent of the funding will be paid for through voluntary, special tax districts agreed to by landowners.


At its meeting today, the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors approved the final sale of bonds from the Phase I Transportation Improvement District for Dulles Rail.

Illustration of the a Dulles Rail Metro station in Tysons

This sale allows this tax district to fulfill its obligation to provide $400 million to help pay for the county’s costs for the Dulles Rail project’s first phase. The county will sell revenue bonds through the Fairfax County Economic Development Authority, and the bonds are secured by tax collections from the Phase 1 district.

As part of its 2009 agreement with the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority, Fairfax County agreed to establish this tax district to cover the majority of construction costs for Phase I. While Fairfax’s total bill for the first phase amounts to approximately $467 million, this last bond sale marks a milestone for the county.

Of the $400 million obligation for the Phase I tax district, the balance of funds will come from future tax collections from this district. Previously, the county issued $220 million in bonds on behalf of the district in May 2011, and the district contributed $94 million in cash payments from prior tax collections accrued since the district’s inception in FY 2005.

The county’s share for the entire Dulles Rail project is estimated to be $900 to $965 million. Of this amount, $730 million—or approximately 80 percent—will be paid for by two voluntary, special tax districts petitioned by the landowners. In the Phase 1 Tax District, landowners agreed to pay up to a total of $400 million, and in the Phase 2 Tax District, property owners agreed to contribute up to $330 million. 

In the Phase I district, the current tax rate of 22 cents per $100 of assessed has remain unchanged since it was first established in February 2004.

Dulles Rail’s first phase—which runs from Tysons to Wiehle Avenue—is currently under construction, and it is expected to be completed in early 2014. The rail extension’s second phase runs from Wiehle Avenue in Fairfax County to Route 772 in Loudoun County. The second phase of the project is estimated to be completed in 2017.

Dulles Rail is key to the county’s plan to transform Tysons into a walkable, green urban center. There will be four Metro stations in Tysons, and the county plan calls for high-density, mixed use development around these stations. As the county’s downtown, Tysons will home to up to up to 100,000 jobs and 200,000 residents by 2050.

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