What is the Issue?
Loudoun County School Board has contracted to buy the Cangiano/Burgess
property in Wheatland for a three school, 4000 student complex. This
170 acre site is at the intersection of
The Wheatland Alliance, a group of citizens, believes this to be a huge mistake for the following reasons:
- Policy: The Comprehensive Plan calls for schools to be located, whenever possible, in existing towns and communities. Wheatland is not a town. County policy is to promote a viable rural economy. Wheatland, in the relative middle of nowhere, has a diverse and successful farming community across the road from the planned high school. The school system and its consultants report that this complex will likely use an average of 17,313 gallons of precious ground water per day — with potential peak demand of 108,058 gallons per day — endangering the nearby farms' critical supply of irrigation water.
- Process: The School Board has not conducted a comprehensive, transparent site search, and insists there is no alternative to putting an enormous suburban style school campus in this completely rural area. There was zero public input about the Wheatland site prior to the signing of the contracts for its purchase, and without any contract contigencies concerning the legal suitability of the site for the proposed use.
- Price: The current $47,500 per acre offered price for the Cangiano portion of the land in question is too high, despite being approximately 23% less than the price originally negotiated by LCPS. Given the current western Loudoun real estate market, even this price represents a windfall for the seller. The assessed value of the Cangiano property for tax purposes in 2009 is $2.83 million, less than $18,000 per acre.
What Can You Do?
Contact us to be added to our mailing list, call or write your representatives on the County Board of Supervisors, the Planning Commission, and the School Board to tell them this is a bad idea, and consider writing a letter to the editor of your favorite newspaper. We have emails ready to send!