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Hounds Push for 2014 at One Loudoun

Change of site for minor league's stadium may bolster competing "town center."

After delays pushed back construction of the Loudoun Hounds stadium — and the team’s inaugural day — the anticipated new minor league baseball team today announced plans to move its diamond up the road to One Loudoun, with sites set on a 2014 season.

“Well, HoundsNation, in my last Inside Pitch I told you that our one and only goal is to open our ballpark in 2014,” said Bob Farren, the Hounds’ president and CEO, in a newsletter to fans. “I am happy to tell you that the accomplishment of that goal is looking very, very good.”

The developers of One Loudoun, at Route 7 and Loudoun County Parkway, just to the west of the stadium's planned location at Route 28 and Route 7, were enthusiastic.

“We’re excited,” said Bill May, vice president of developer Miller & Smith. “We think this is a major anchor for us that is going to enhance the live, work, play environment.”

The Kincora development at the southwest quadrant of Route 28 and Route 7 apparently had not kept pace with the team’s schedule; the Hounds initially had hoped to be playing in 2012 and the delays have garnered some critics.

“As we have said over the past several months, timing has been the paramount issue,” Farren explained in the newsletter. “While we wish our friends at Kincora the very best in their endeavors, the One Loudoun project is ready today for our ballpark and will be a great home and partner to VIP.”

The change comes as three “town centers” are competing to provide environments where residents can live, work and play — vying for attention, and tenants. The Kincora site is between One Loudoun and the Dulles Town Center, and planners pondered during the approval process whether three such developments could all move forward successfully.

May said the move shows that One Loudoun is best prepared to move forward with projects that come along.

“We think One Loudoun’s the best place with the best location in the county for any of the mixed-used projects,” May said.

The move places the Hounds’ stadium near the Alamo Drafthouse Cinema, now under construction at One Loudoun, along with lots of new homes. Signs on the property indicate the drafthouse should be open early next year. Miller & Smith previously announced plans for a World Trade Center and, May said, additional announcements were expected later this month.

“We’re off to the races with the leases we have so far,” he said.

Other than the relocation, Farren said the details of the park remain the same, including that it will be privately financed.

“The essential facts of the ballpark which you’ve already heard all about, including its size, amenities, event offerings and the fact that it is financed entirely privately, with no public monies whatsoever, remain true,” he said.

Some critics questioned plans for a stadium tax that could be imposed on events at a professional stadium in the county and used to pay construction costs. Only those attending events would pay the tax, if the General Assembly authorizes and the Loudoun Board of Supervisors institutes it.

Farren said a ceremonial groundbreaking and a second Hounds FanFest will be planned, along with other team-related events.

It’s not yet clear what impact the move could have on the construction of Gloucester Parkway between Loudoun County Parkway and Route 28. Kincora’s developer recently received authorization to obtain a state loan to pay for the project.

Jim October 01, 2012 at 08:14 PM
Lisa, even the local news broadcasts are guilty of this. I remember going back to when I was a kid and the news happened to be on in the house, the minute the anchor said "we have breaking news"- the whole house froze as we all knew it was something very serious. Nowadays, "breaking news" usually means a traffic jam or broken water pipe.
bayou beader October 01, 2012 at 10:58 PM
Batta, Batta, Swing!
joe brewer October 03, 2012 at 03:04 PM
So how many more crappy townhomes will they put in at Kincora to fill the vacancy left by the boondoggies?
SeasonedCitizen November 04, 2012 at 12:19 AM
What are these people thinking? The stadium will be located 1/2 mile from an existing retirement and "active adult" community, and one mile from an assisted living complex! 10,000 people can equal 3000 to as high as 5000 vehicles. Route 7 is already a nightmare, if you think its bad now can you imagine how bad it will be when this goes in?
joe brewer December 16, 2012 at 12:55 PM
Show me a timetable for the streets and interchanges. Until the traffic flow improvements are made there should be no sporting events at this site .I know the tax was approved by the BoS. I assume that the 10% tax goes into the Loudoun County coffers and not into any development for the stadium please correct me if I am wrong on that Seasoned Citizen

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