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Park Authority Initiates Olander and Margaret Banks Neighborhood Park Master Plan Process

Park Authority Initiates Banks Park Master Plan Process
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05/25/11 APPROVED Master Plan

05/25/11 Park Board Item

05/05/10 Meeting Presentation

05/05/10 Meeting Comments

02/17/11 Meeting Presentation

02/17/11 Meeting Comments

Park Authority Board Approves the Olander and Margaret Banks Neighborhood Park Master Plan

The Park Authority has submitted an application for planning determination pursuant to Va. Code Sec. 15.2-2232 (aka 2232 application). The staff report for the Olander and Margaret Banks Neighborhood Park, 2232-L11-19, scheduled for Planning Commission public hearing on 12/15/11 can be found at http://www.fairfaxcounty.gov/dpz/2232/staffreports/.

On May 25, 2011, the Fairfax County Park Authority Board voted to approve the master plan for the Olander and Margaret Banks Neighborhood Park. The master plan will serve to guide future development of the site by identifying uses which are appropriate for this park. Initiated in the spring of 2010, the Olander and Margaret Banks Neighborhood Park Master Plan was developed through an iterative process guided by a multi-disciplinary master plan team with input from the community. The plan was also established with coordination from Park Authority Board members and Supervisor Jeff McKay.

The Park Site

The Olander and Margaret Banks Neighborhood Park, located at 7400 Old Telegraph Road, Alexandria, includes approximately ten acres of land in the Kingstowne area of the Lee Supervisory District, where opportunities for new, publicly-accessible open space are few and far between. The site is characterized by a mixture of open lawn areas, mature canopy trees and a stream that bisects the property.

The Park Planning Process

The master planning process for the Olander and Margaret Banks Neighborhood Park focused on establishing a balance between providing leisure opportunities in context with the surrounding neighborhoods. The overall master plan process is designed to take into account community preferences, area facility needs and site related issues such as transportation needs, public access, site assets and physical constraints.

Public input is a key component of the master plan process. Two public meetings were held during the course of developing the master plan for Banks Park with public comment accepted throughout the process until March 21, 2011. All information and alternatives were accepted and evaluated in preparation of the master plan. The Park Authority is appreciative of all who took the time to participate in the process and to share their vision for Banks Park. As a result, many of the opinions and preferences within the community were able to be incorporated into the final plan. Additionally, the approved plan seeks to reflect not only the preferences of the immediate neighborhood but also the future needs of the broader community.

The Future Park

Although the master plan is approved for Banks Park, no funding is currently identified for the development of this property. 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 the master plan, however, is a critical step in allowing the Park Authority to identify funding sources appropriate to the planned development of the Olander and Margaret Banks Neighborhood Park.


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