vanessa-newVanessa Remmers covers Stafford County government and schools for and The Free Lance-Star.

Check here for the latest reports on news from Stafford County. You can email her at

RSS feed of this blog

TDRs to come back March 21

Transfer of Development Rights were discussed at Wednesday’s Planning Commission meeting. They’ve talked about them a lot in the past, including at a public hearing back in December. But the commission didn’t recommend a plan to send on to the Board of Supervisors – or even if they thought it was something the county should support doing. The board last month told the commission there has to be some type of recommendation before they move forward.

Here is what TDRs are all about: TDR describes land in terms of “sending” and “receiving.” If you own land in the sending area and it fits certain specifications set by the county, such as number of acres, you can voluntarily sell the development rights for that property–and you still own the land itself. A conservation easement is placed on the land requiring that it remain undeveloped. The development rights for that land are sent to the receiving area, which in this case, are the Courthouse and Brooke Station urban development areas. They have been identified as sites of mixed-use, high-density development.

The Planning Commission talked about the two different proposals that are on the table now – one that they developed, one that the Board of Supervisors developed. They will bring it back up March 21. Planning Director Jeff Harvey said he’d come back with commission-driven changes, including making the Courthouse UDA the only receiving area. (The Brooke UDA is currently identified as a second receiving area.)

I’ll have more on TDRs in the paper soon.

In other news at the Planning Commission meeting:

  • Gordon Howard resigned to become a member of the Utilities Commission. He essentially switched places with Bob Gibbons, who returned to the PC on Wednesday. Gibbons served on the commission for 9 years, and was a Supervisor for 16 years.
  • VDOT presented what could be close to a final plan for the I-95 Interchange at Courthouse Road. Essentially, if you’re trying to get onto I-95 from U.S. 1, you wouldn’t connect via Courthouse Road anymore. It would be shut off near the Public Safety Building. Commissioners were concerned about the impact on emergency vehicles if this were done. We’ll report more on these issues soon.