While a new $112 million bond referendum is on the ballot for November, further planning for Salona Park in McLean will remain on hold.
The 2020 bond will include money for design planning of Salona Park, though the planning will remain paused pending approval of the Langley Fork Park master plan.
Planning for Langley Fork Park will be contingent on the completion of a land exchange that has been years in the making with the National Park Service that includes Langley Oaks Park.
“We need to figure out what’s going to be at Langley Oaks Park, and then we can really finish planning Salona based on what would go on in this other park,” said Judy Pederson, public information officer for the Fairfax County Park Authority. “Once the master plan is approved, then we will start to plan out Salona Park and that master planning process.”
As the process moves along and eventually reaches the planning phase for Salona Park, there will be more community discussion to find a middle ground with members of the public on the eventual development of the park.
Consideration during the planning process for Salona Park will weigh the previous planning efforts, community input, and take into account the current conditions at the site and whether the needs of the community have changed over the years.
“It’s really going to depend on what’s right for the community and what kind of consensus we can find,” Pederson said. “So that’s the great unknown.”
Salona Park was granted to the Fairfax County Park Authority under a conservation easement in 2005. Plans for Salona Park were previously discussed in 2012, but were not solidified due to a divergence in public opinion over whether the park should be preserved in a natural state or used as an athletic field.
Following community input and approval from the Board of Supervisors for the county, the master plan will also need to be approved by the county’s planning commission.
“There are just too many unknowns for us to really prognosticate on the timing,” Pederson said. “All I can say is that we’re ready to start. And we just will be working with the supervisor to figure out what the first next step will be.”
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