Update on High School Plan

View Updated HS Proposal Here

On behalf of the Conservancy and the HOA, I would like to provide an update on the proposed high school (Dulles North HS/HS-14) which is planned for a site north of The Grant accessed from Red Hill Road. LCPS presented their application to the Planning Commission on February 24, 2024, and eight speakers including board members and residents shared concerns about the plan. The Planning Commission voted 5-3-1 to send the application to a work session asking that LCPS meet with Willowsford to discuss concerns about tree loss, lighting and fencing.

In March, HOA board president Fred Ferares and I met with LCPS staff by Zoom to discuss the concerns voiced in the public hearing. The conversation resulted in some important improvements to their application and two items that still might be of concern to the community. Here is a summary of the changes from the revised application:

1. Tree Conservation Area – The applicant has extended the proposed 40-foot wide TCA along the southern property boundary from 1,000 feet to 2,500 feet to increase vegetative buffering adjacent to the Willowsford residential community.
2. Tennis Court Relocation – The applicant has relocated six of the proposed lighted tennis courts to a more interior location on the northern portion of the site.
3. Parking Area – The applicant has reduced and reconfigured the proposed parking area to serve the high school that is located next to the proposed lighted tennis courts.

The revised plan certainly will have a reduced impact upon Willowsford compared to the earlier proposal and the inclusion of a TCA will create a buffer for homeowners and preserve character of the Grant Loop Trail and wildlife habitat. Of note, however, is that LCPS has not included a fence internal to their property (citing that it would be very challenging to install one along our property) and has not demonstrated how lighting will comply with DarkSky Certification for Sports Fields. While relocating the lighted tennis courts wll reduce light pollution, a lit sports field still sits near Willowsford homes. We hope to continue to request consideration of these improvements. If you have comments or concerns, please email our Planning Commissioner Robin-Eve Jasper at robineve.jasper@loudoun.gov and county planner Allison Britain at allison.britain@loudoun.gov. If approved by the Planning Commission, the application will go before the Board of Supervisors this summer.

This revised application will be presented to the Planning Commission in a work session on Thursday, April 11 at 6 pm (Loudoun County Gov Ctr, First Flr Board Rm, 1 Harrison St, SE, Leesburg, VA 20177). Sign up to speak for two minutes in person or online here

Kind regards,
Sophie Lambert

Executive Director
Willowsford Conservancy