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Old Colchester Park and Preserve and Mason Neck West Park

Park Authority Initiates Master Planning Process for
Old Colchester Park and Preserve and
Mason Neck West Park

Fairfax County Park Authority continues to strive to provide nationally recognized parks to the community.  As part of that process, the Park Authority recently held a meeting with the community to begin the master planning process for two county parks in the Mason Neck area - Old Colchester Park and Preserve and Mason Neck West Park.  The meeting on March 19 provided a great opportunity to share some of the research done on these sites as well as listen to the community’s vision for these parks.  There was lots of great discussion throughout the evening.  The meeting presentation and a list of the comments received that night have been posted to the project web page for your review.

Not able to make the meeting?  Don’t worry! There is still plenty of time to share your thoughts and suggestions for Mason Neck West Park and Old Colchester Park and Preserve.  E-mail us your thoughts today!

The Park Sites

Old Colchester Park and Preserve, located at 10646 Old Colchester Road, is largely undeveloped and possesses many unique resources.  This 141-acre park was acquired largely through the Federal Lands to Parks Program in 2007 with several smaller adjacent parcels acquired over the ensuing years.  This property contains a variety of forest/plant communities and animal species, some which are considered to be rare.  The site’s location and resources contain a variety of archaeological resources that help tell the story of our county’s past.  Planning for Old Colchester Park and Preserve will emphasize appropriate protection of these resources, both natural and cultural, as well as how best to share the knowledge these features provide.

Mason Neck West Park is located at 10418 Old Colchester Road.  The original park consisted of 14 acres that were acquired in 1983.  Mason Neck West Park developed with an athletic focus in keeping with a park master plan approved in 1984.  A 65’ diamond field, a multi-use court, and two tennis courts help to meet the athletic needs of the local community.  In 2007, an additional 31.5 acres was acquired, which has not been master planned.  The master plan process will examine this added land and new opportunities to serve the community as well as options to enhance existing facilities.

The Process

This Public Information Meeting will feature a presentation about the site’s existing conditions and the park master planning process.  Following the presentation, the meeting will continue with an informal moderated public discussion session to identify community concerns, answer questions, and receive suggestions for future park features.  This meeting allows the public to identify issues and uses to be considered by the Park Authority in developing the draft master plan.  The Park Authority will post public meeting presentations, summaries and other relevant materials to this website to help you follow the plan’s progress.

Using this input, the site conditions, along with the existing master plan, a draft master plan will be prepared by the staff team for each park.  The planning process will take into account public access, site assets and constraints while evaluating alternatives to determine the best possible options.  Once the draft master plan is completed, it will be published on this project website, available in print format on request, and presented to the community at a public meeting, which is anticipated to be held in late 2014.  Public comments can be presented at this meeting or in various other ways during the 30 day public comment period following the meeting date.  As the plan process progresses, updates will be provided to the community on the status of the proposed park master plan.

More information on the Master Plan process can be found by visiting the Park Planning and Development homepage.

To provide comments throughout the planning process or for further information on the master plan process for Old Colchester Park and Preserve and/or Mason Neck West Park, contact Gayle Hooper, Project Manager, Park Planning Branch, Planning and Development Division, Fairfax County Park Authority, 703-324-8725 or through parkmail@fairfaxcounty.gov.

The Future Park

Both master plans are expected to be completed in early 2015. No funding is currently identified for any new development on these properties. Site design, engineering, construction timing, and funding are determined by the Park Authority Board through adoption of a Park Capital Improvement Program and voter approval of Park Bond Referendums. In some cases, alternative funding sources may become available to provide park improvements.  Approval of these master plans, however, is a critical step to allow the Park Authority to identify funding sources appropriate to the planned park development.

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