Leesburg Council to Consider Request for Drive-Throughs in Compass Creek

Next week will see a major test Leesburg Town Council’s willingness go along with the stipulations of property owners on land the council hopes to bring into town limits.

That’s when the council will consider a rezoning request and four special exception applications that would allow four drive-through restaurants on Compass Creek property. The approval of the applications is one of the conditions the owner, Peterson Companies, has placed on its acceptance of incorporation into the town. The council is hoping to complete a boundary line adjustment with Loudoun County that would bring hundreds of acres of land, much of which is planned for commercial uses, into Leesburg, including the rest of the Compass Creek property. The majority of the land in the development is eyed for a Microsoft campus.

 The applicant is requesting permission to rezone 4.6 acres of land just south of the Battlefield Parkway/Compass Creek Parkway intersection from I-1 (Industrial) to B-3 (Business), and for the approval of four special exceptions to allow four drive-through eating establishments. The four restaurants would include two proposed fast-casual restaurants, at nearly 2,325 and 3,000 square feet, respectively; a 2,200-square-foot restaurant with outdoor seating eyed for a high-end coffee shop; and an additional two-story, 3,000-square-foot fast casual establishment, according to Cooley LLP attorney Colleen Gillis, who is representing the applicant. In a recent presentation to the Planning Commission, Gillis noted the Compass Creek development’s convenience and proximity to sports entertainment venues, including the nearby ION International Training Center, Evergreen Sportsplex, the DC United soccer complex, and Freedom Park, making the drive-through options an ideal neighbor.

 Just shy of two years ago, the council denied a somewhat similar application for the Meadowbrook development along South King Street, where the applicant sought to construct three drive-through restaurants. In that instance, however, in addition to the application not being tied to a sought-after boundary line adjustment, council members opposed to the application pointed to its proximity to residences and the overwhelming neighborhood opposition to the project. 

 The public hearing on the applications is set for the council’s Tuesday, Jan. 14, meeting, which begins at 7 p.m. in Town Hall Council Chambers.

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