Developer offers accommodation around Sterling Superfund site
A developer met with county staff about a proposal to build 91 homes around a former landfill between Broad Run Farms and CountrySide in northeast Loudoun.
The Hidden Lane landfill site on this site was a private 25-acre landfill that operated from 1971 to 1984, when regulators and county courts closed it due to groundwater contamination and because the county had never approved the landfill. In 1989, the Loudoun County Health Department found evidence of a common degreaser in the groundwater and well water of homes around the property. A total of 36 homes contained contaminated well water. And in 2008, a 150-acre area including the landfill was added to the Environmental Protection Agency’s Superfund list of the nation’s most contaminated sites. The EPA also decided to pay to provide central water service to affected homes.
Ultimately, a company created by the estate of the former owner, Persimmon Lane, struck a deal in 2017 to reimburse the federal and state governments for cleanup costs with the proceeds from the sale of the property, while the EPA. The new proposal, from Christopher Companies, combines the Persimmon Lane property with a neighboring property for a total of 237 acres – most of which is unusable for homes, either because of the toxic dump site or in the floodplain.
The single-family homes now on offer are said to be on three parts of the property that are at a higher elevation than the rest, according to preliminary documents submitted to the county. Twenty-two would be on an extension from Youngs Cliff Road to Broad Run Farms along the Potomac River; 88 would be along the roads connecting McCarty Court and Selden Court to CountrySide; and three would be south of Persimmon Lane. The houses would be tight against each other, with five feet of yard on each side, 15 feet in the front and 25 feet in the back.
The proposal also includes the installation of solar panels at the landfill site, bringing this land back into service for the first time in decades, which would require a separate rezoning request. There is also a cemetery on the property at the south end near McCarty Court which should be protected.
If the request is accepted, it will go through a legislative review process that includes public hearings at both the Planning Commission and the Board of Supervisors.