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Data Center Development Drama And More: The Latest News In Prince William County

A map showing the boundaries of the 2,139-acre PW Digital Gateway area.

1. After a heated meeting Nov. 1 that lasted from 7:30 p.m. to 8:10 a.m. the following day, the Prince William County Board of Supervisors voted to pass the Prince William Digital Gateway plan. The plan calls for up to 27M SF of data centers to be built in the area. Hundreds of residents spoke both for and against the project, with supporters claiming it would boost the local economy and opponents expressing concerns about the impact it could have on the local landscape.

2. In July, Prince William County Supervisor Peter Candland faced a recall petition from local residents after they discovered that he owned part of the site for this new data center expansion project. “A serious, ethical person would have realized an elected official who cannot discuss his constituents’ most important issue would have the decency to resign,” Elena Schlossberg, executive director of the Coalition to Protect Prince William County, which is leading the recall effort, said in a press release. As of November, Candland still holds his position. 

3. Local leaders from D.C., Maryland and Virginia recently spoke with WUSA9 about whether they would be open to building a new sports stadium for the Washington Commanders now that Daniel and Tanya Snyder have announced that they may sell the team. Virginia state Sen. Jeremy McPike weighed in on what the future could hold for such a project in Prince William County. In May, the team acquired the rights to purchase land for a possible stadium site in Woodbridge, but the team said it was still considering other locations. 

A rendering of the Riverside Station development in Prince William County.

4. In September, the Prince William County Board of Supervisors voted to unanimously approve Riverside Station, a $380M, 19.2-acre town center development that will include up to 970 housing units and at least 130K SF of dining, retail and other nonresidential elements. IDI Group, the developer behind the Rivergate Apartments, has partnered with Boosalis Properties, owner of Station Plaza, to build the development.

5. On Oct. 25, officials in Prince William County announced they had chosen a new county executive. Christopher Shorter will lead the Prince William County government starting Jan. 3. Shorter has spent the last two years as city administrator with the Baltimore City government and served as assistant city manager in Austin, Texas. 

6. In 2016, Buchanan Partners submitted a request to rezone 116 acres in Prince William County to create a massive mixed-use development at 10671 University Blvd. that would include a hotel, 750 residential units and 750K SF of commercial space. But the company announced in July it was downsizing its plans after selling 91.96 acres of the land. It now plans to build 120 rental townhouses, 5,760 SF of office and a drive-thru Sheetz on the remaining 24.94 acres. The site is part of the 1,700-acre Innovation Park that also includes George Mason University's Science and Technology campus and another mixed-use project planned by Castle Rock Partners and Stanley Martin Homes.