Fredericksburg City Beat

This blog includes news about City Hall, city schools and other 22401 news.

Pamela Gould reports on City Hall. You can reach her at 540-735-1972 or Robyn Sidersky reports on city schools. You can reach her at 540-374-5413 or

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Notes from last night

- Susan Spears has been appointed to fill the Planning Commission vacancy left by Mary Katherine Greenlaw’s election to the council.

- The Free Lance-Star’s application for a special use permit to build over the 50-foot height limit in the Battlefield Industrial Park was approved. This is for a new high-tech printing facility. The company will break ground on this facility this afternoon.

- 1200 Prince Edward St., which may one day rival the former Maury School in terms of how long it sits and rots while people try to figure out what to do with it, will be on the council’s agenda for an Aug. 12 public hearing. At that point, the council members will have to take a crack at determining its fate. Charlie Payne, an attorney for the owner, reiterated last night a position he’s been arguing for two years now: The owner has already put forward what he thinks is the best solution for the building, a plan to develop it as a minimum of four condo units. But the council rejected that plan in 2006. Interestingly, new Councilwoman Mary Katherine Greenlaw was on the Planning Commission that recommended approval of that plan. She voted for the plan. Councilman George Solley was also a Planning Commissioner at the time. He cast the only vote against the plan, which the City Council ultimately rejected. More to come next month.

- Next up: The council will hold a special meeting next Tuesday to consider the incentives proposal meant to lure Creative Dimension Group to the city’s industrial park.

- Elsewhere: If the housing market and gas prices have you down, the Daily Press editorial board may be able to offer some optimism. The paper has an editorial today on how high gas prices might actually help curb suburban sprawl and make people want to stop living so far away from where they work.