Franconia Park Master Plan Revision Process Update
The draft master plan was shared with the community in April 2014. In response to concerns regarding safety and traffic, approval of the master plan was deferred for two years. The deferral allowed additional time to monitor the park and improve communications between the community, police, the Department of Neighborhood and Community Services (NCS), and the supervisor’s office. With ample time to observe site conditions, Supervisor McKay has requested that the park master plan process be completed.
Franconia Park Planning Background
Located along the Capital Beltway, at 6432 Bowie Drive, in Springfield, Franconia Park has over 62 acres of playing fields, garden plots, parking, trails, and forest. Franconia Park is located in the Lee Supervisory District, and is classified as a district park. Please refer to the vicinity map. Franconia’s current master plan approved in 1974 has guided its uses and development for the last 40 years. As with many park master plans of that era, the plan consists of a graphic conceptual plan representing the approved planned uses. This 1974 Master Plan, existing uses, use patterns, and public input will inform the master plan revision.
The Fairfax County Park Authority initiated the public master planning process to revise the 1974 Park Master Plan for Franconia Park, with a public information meeting held on July 16, 2013, at Key Middle School. The presentation and a summary from this meeting are available online. This meeting allowed the public to identify issues and uses to be considered by the Park Authority in developing the draft Master Plan.
The Lee District Supervisor, Jeff McKay, and Park Authority co-hosted a community meeting to discuss safety and traffic concerns related to Franconia Park on March 17, 2015 at Lee High School. Representatives from the Fairfax County Police, Virginia Department of Transportation, Park Authority, and Supervisor's Office were present to provide safety information and answer questions. A summary of this meeting is available in the document list on this webpage.
As the spring sports season begins, the Department of Neighborhood and Community Services (NCS) communicated with the athletic field users to remind them of neighborhood concerns and asked for their cooperation in being mindful of neighborhood impacts. Supervisor McKay requested that the master plan process be put on hold for a year so existing issues can be improved through better communications between the community, supervisor’s office, field users, police, and transportation office.
On November 12, 2014, a community meeting was held to present and discuss the second draft revision to the Franconia Park Master Plan at Key Middle School. Comments on the second draft were accepted through the end of December 2014.
The second revision seeks to address community concerns raised at the public comment meeting held in April by reducing the number of athletic fields, expanding parking and reorienting other fields and features. The revisions include reorientation of the existing diamond fields away from residences and towards the Beltway. A planned third rectangle field shown on the first revision has been removed from the draft plan and other park features such as the playground, picnic area, dog park and skate spot, have been rearranged accordingly. Planned parking has been expanded within the park and phasing text has been added to the plan that prioritizes the provision of parking prior to building new facilities.
Future Park Improvements
Although park planning should be completed in 2017, it has yet to be determined when approved improvements will be implemented. Funding will be sought through future bond programs as funding through current park bonds do not include resources for design or construction within Franconia Park. Site design, construction timing, and funding are determined by the Park Authority Board through adoption of the Capital Improvement Program. In some cases, sponsorships and funds proffered from private developments may be available to provide park improvements.