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Loudoun Plows Under Its Rural Past To Emerge As Virginia’s New Trendy, Upscale County

Want to get a jump-start on upcoming deals? Meet the major D.C. players at one of our upcoming events!

There's a continuing boom in Loudoun County, VA, and it's not from the flights in and out of Dulles International Airport. That's why we're excited to present the Loudoun County State of the Market Cocktail and Schmooze on May 11 at Smokehouse Live in the Village at Leesburg.

Loudoun Plows Under Its Rural Past To Emerge As Virginia’s New Trendy, Upscale County

"Loudoun is experiencing an incredible amount of development," says Rappaport president Henry Fonvielle, who will be a panelist at the event next week, fueled in part by the county's demographics and growing amenities.

Because of the exceptional demographics, developers continue to look at mixed-use and residential and retail in that area, Henry, snapped at last year's event, explains. Those exceptional demographics include the almost 60% of Loudoun's residents who have a bachelor's degree or higher, according to a county fact sheet. And not only are they well-educated, but well-heeled as well.

Loudoun ranked first in the nation in 2014 in median income ($122k) for jurisdictions with a population of 65,000 or greater. Developments fueling the boom include Brambleton, a residential community of about 5,000 residents along Ryan Road in Ashburn, developed by Anthony Soave's Soave Enterprises. Brambleton will grow by another 2,500 homes over the next three years with some 1,500 of them set aside as an active adult community.

Loudoun Plows Under Its Rural Past To Emerge As Virginia’s New Trendy, Upscale County

Among other major developments are Rappaport's Village at Leesburg (above); Commonwealth Center, a Peterson Cos development; and One Loudoun, developed by Miller & Smith. By 2020, when Metro's Silver Line is scheduled to reach Loudoun, housing units are expected to reach almost 144k, up from this year's estimate of 130k, according to county projections.

There are several exciting projects all across Loudoun which are serving different age groups and demands. The area around One Loudoun is developing into a sorely needed entertainment and restaurant destination, says Andrew Painter, land use and zoning attorney at Walsh Colucci Lubeley & Walsh.

Loudoun Plows Under Its Rural Past To Emerge As Virginia’s New Trendy, Upscale County

Andrew, snapped above doing the same thing last year he will next week, moderating a panel, also cites Kincora's planned 53k SF Children's Science Center near the intersection of Routes 28 and 7, and Knutson's Crescent Place: 224 residential units and 30k SF of retail and commercial space in downtown Leesburg. The rooftop terraces are the first of their kind in the county.

Andrew tells Bisnow he's excited that Loudoun's Board last month authorized a comprehensive plan amendment that he hopes will better foster smart growth in the county.

He says the amendment should include a more advanced style of comprehensive planning that covers places such as the Transition Area, the areas around future Metrorail stations, revitalization of older areas, and the conversion of single-use strip malls into mixed-use centers, among others.

The resulting amendment "needs to be creative, interesting, and forward-thinking," says Andrew. The Loudoun boom is "much bigger" than just the coming of the Silver Line, says Susan Bourgeois, senior director of leasing and brokerage at Rappaport. She calls it a balanced blend of commercial and residential construction.

Village at Leesburg will receive a big boost this year when Russell Branch Parkway's missing segment between Battlefield Parkway and Crosstrail Boulevard will be completed, Henry says.

Future segments of Russell Branch Parkway will take pressure off Route 7 all the way to Loudoun County Parkway and its 88,000 daily vehicles. "There's more traffic there than at Tysons," Henry adds.

Susan says Loudoun residents really have no need to go into Washington for entertainment and dining because there's plenty within the county, and more to come. Several well-known DC-based chefs are adding new restaurants to Leesburg's growing gastronomical menu.

Smokehouse Live, a family barbeque and country music venue in Leesburg, will play host on May 11 to Bisnow's Loudoun County State of the Market and Schmooze Fest.