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Walking tour of Old Town Fairfax

by on 05/22/2016

Old Town Fairfax has seen dramatic changes that are bringing more people into Fairfax City and making the historic downtown a more vibrant place. But more remains to be done to make Old Town a more walkable, bike-friendly destination with the right mix of housing, retail businesses and offices. On Sunday May 22 the Coalition for Smarter Growth teamed up with Fairfax City Citizens for Smarter Growth to lead a walking tour of Old Town and nearby areas. Despite the wet conditions, more than 30 people attended the walk.

Brooke Hardin and Mayor Silverthorne discuss the planning history of Old Town Square.

Brooke Hardin and Mayor Silverthorne discuss the planning history of Old Town Square.

Mayor Scott Silverthorne provided welcoming remarks to the group at Old Town Square, the downtown park that opened in 2015. Also among the attendees were City Councilmembers David Meyer, Janice Miller, and Ellie Schmidt, and incoming Councilmember Jon Stehle.

Brooke Hardin, Director of Community Development and Planning, Cindy Petkac, Planning Division Director, and Stewart Schwartz, executive director of the Coalition for Smarter Growth, discussed redevelopment and transportation efforts that have been implemented, such as Old Town Square and Old Town Plaza, and those that are still being planned. The group learned about the challenges and opportunities of working with property owners to shape the future of areas such as the Courthouse Plaza Shopping Center, and of making streets like Old Lee Highway and University Drive more bicycle-and pedestrian-friendly.

During the next year, Fairfax City will make some big decisions about future housing, land uses and transportation improvements around Old Town with the update of the city’s comprehensive plan. It was great to see so many residents in and around Fairfax City brave the rain to learn more about new developments in the city, and the opportunities to make the city an even better place to live, work and enjoy.

 

Participants learn about opportunities to make Courthouse Plaza a more vibrant destination.

Participants learn about opportunities to make Courthouse Plaza a more vibrant destination.

Hardin and participants discuss the development of Old Town Plaza.

Hardin and participants discuss the development of Old Town Plaza.

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