Read this email from a local supporter of the PW Digital Gateway

From: Anthony Carpino Sent: Friday, January 7, 2022 4:24 PM Subject: I support PW Digital Gateway for PWC

It’s time to make an exclusionary zone. into an opportunity zone Putting a Data Center Corridor along existing massive transmission lines just makes good sense and offers PWC residents' opportunity. The PEC/PW Alliance /Smarter Growth do not live on Pageland Lane. They are paid lobbyists whose mission is to protect Fauquier from Prince William County and keep Western Prince William County their buffer. The current land use designation offers no opportunity for inclusion or opportunity to help lower PWC’s residential tax burden. We support the PW Digital Gateway.

I know that the above is a "form letter" of sorts, but it is still accurate. I thought the following article from the Prince William Times would be the best way to describe how many residents view the PWC Rural Crescent. The Rural Crescent was created in 1998 by the then Board of County Supervisors. there was no vote of the residents and with a stroke of a pen 52% of the county was zoned 1 dwelling per 10 acres with no access allowed to water and sewer. Landowners saw their property down zoned and devalued, and low-income residents saw little opportunity for affordable housing.

PWC needs to increase its commercial tax base, we need to create jobs within the county for our residents, and we need a mix of housing that includes affordable housing not just expensive homes on 10 acre lots. Please take the time to read the article below. It's short, to the point and relevant. Please support the PW Digital Gateway for PWC.



Tony Carpino

Gainesville, Virginia 20155

Prince William Times

In the “rural crescent” debate some see conservation, others see exclusion

Who's left out of the 'rural crescent'?

· By Daniel Berti Times Staff Writer

· Feb 18, 2021 Updated Oct 18, 2021

There is a line in Prince William that carves the county into two halves. On one side, there is vast, mostly open space that includes the Marine Corps Base Quantico, Prince William Forest Park and the Manassas Battlefield. It’s home to about 27,000 people.

On the other side, 443,000 people live in an area that runs the gamut from urban to industrial to semi-rural.

The line separating the two areas is known as the “rural area boundary,” part of a land-use policy adopted by the board of county supervisors in 1998 to put the brakes on suburban growth when the county had 200,000 fewer residents. It splits the county into the rural area, or “rural crescent,” on one side, where only one home can be built per 10 acres, and the development area on the other.

And while the population in the development area has increased dramatically since 1998, the rural area’s strict zoning rules have kept it sparsely populated.

Now, some local elected officials and community members say the policy is shutting out lower- and middle-income people and contributing to overcrowding in the rest of the county, while rural crescent advocates fiercely defend it as a land conservation strategy. Meanwhile, officials are reaching a key decision point on rural area zoning as updates to the county’s comprehensive plan are expected in the coming months.

Are the rural crescent rules a form of 'exclusionary zoning'?

Some supervisors have used words like “segregation” and “exclusionary zoning” to describe the policy – words that carry with them the long legacy of racist housing policies that proliferated in the United States in the 20th century, some of which continue today.

“If you have a few sections of the county where the only people that can access [it] are people ... rich enough to afford a 10-acre lot, that's already a form of segregation in my opinion,” Supervisor Kenny Boddye, D-Occoquan, said in a recent interview.

Others, like at-large board Chair Ann Wheeler (D) and community activist Rev. Keith Savage, have referred to the rural area policy as a form of exclusionary zoning – a practice historically used to keep racial and ethnic minorities from moving into middle- and upper-class neighborhoods.

Exclusionary zoning often imposes minimum lot sizes and prohibit multi-family dwellings that make certain areas less affordable for low- and middle-income people. But the term is most often used in reference to cities – not exurban and rural areas.

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