A New Community Blossoms Where Prisoners Once Lived

By
Real Estate Agent with Integrity Real Estate Group

For over 100 years Lorton was an area that most residents of Northern Virginia went out of their way to avoid.   As a prison complex the 3,200 acre site was huge and at night driving by the area the signs warning you not to pick up anyone on the road were ominous.  When the facility was ordered closed in 1998, Fairfax County began planning in earnest with what to do with the land and buildings that made up the infamous prison.  In 2002 Fairfax County officials received title to 2400 acres and the re-development of the property began.

Laurel Hill TownhousesMultiple neighborhoods were carved out of the grounds, along with parks, schools, golf course, arts center and future equestrian center.  The largest of the neighborhoods, Laurel Hill has 700 homes built by Pulte or Centex Homes.  In addition to Laurel Hill, other neighborhoods that have grown out of the redevelopment of the old prison land include Laurel Crest, Laurel Highlands and the over 55 community of Spring Hill

In 2006 the new South County Secondary School opened and this year redistricting will increase the student population in the 8-12th grade facility to 1600 students.  A new elementary school is proposed to open in 2009.  With the revitalization of the area the new neighborhoods have grown popular with military families moving to the Northern Virginia.  Only a few miles from the main gate of Ft. Belvoir and with easy access to the VRE or HOV lanes a trip to the Military District of Washington, Pentagon or Navy Yard is quick as well.  A reverse commute to Quantico can be clocked in 20 minutes.

The Laurel Hill golf course operated by the Fairfax County Park Authority opened in 2007 and with an 18 hole championship course and 9000 square foot club house it has become a terrific place for Lorton residents to gather.  Bike paths and walking trials connect different sections of the community and also connect with the Fairfax County Cross County Trail.  Located 10 minutes from Burke Lake Park owners who are looking for more outdoor activities can either ride their bikes or hop in the car for a quick trip to the park.

The jewel of the redevelopment is the Lorton Workhouse Arts Center.  The grand opening of the center will take place the week of September 19-27th with tours and artists studio openings happening all week long.  Proposed new stores and restaurants will round out the neighborhood making once was depressing area the newest "it" place in Northern Virginia.

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                                   Real People*Real Lives*Real Estate

If you are interested in learning more about the Northern Virginia Real Estate market including Alexandria, Arlington, Fairfax and Prince William Counties give Cindy Jones and Integrity Real Estate Group a call at 703-346-2213.

Military Relocation Specialist serving military families relocating to and from the Pentagon, Fort Belvoir, Quantico MCB and all of the Military District of Washington installations. 

Military Relocation Professional


Check out www.varealestatetalk.com and www.cjrealtygroup.com for more information.

Integrity Real Estate Group
 
Real People*Real Life*Real Estate

Licensed in the Commonwealth of Virginia



 

 

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Re-Blogged 1 time:

Re-Blogged By Re-Blogged At
  1. Pat Fenn 08/16/2008 12:12 PM
Topic:
Real Estate General Information
Location:
Virginia Fairfax County Lorton
Groups:
Military Relocations
VIRGINIA
Northern Virginia Real Estate
Posts to Localism
Localism Success and Accountability Group
Tags:
quantico
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lorton
fort belvoir
military relocation news
lorton workhouse arts center

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Rainmaker
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Chris Tesch
RE/MAX Bryan-College Station - College Station, TX
College Station, Texas Real Estate

Wow, what a turn around for that area!  I've seen downtown areas get revitalized, but this goes beyond that!  Excellent new changes.

Jul 31, 2008 08:08 AM #1
Rainer
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Carol Swain
Keller Williams Real Estate - Langhorne, PA
Realtor, -www.swainsells.com- Bucks County, Pa

What a success story!  They tried a few years back to revitalize a city near me.  However it never came to be.

Jul 31, 2008 08:55 AM #2
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Cindy Jones
Integrity Real Estate Group - Woodbridge, VA
Pentagon, Fort Belvoir & Quantico Real Estate News

Chris-this planned community has come a long way from the days of the prison grounds.  Swimming pools, tennis courts, tot lots, green space and sidewalks.  It may not be everyones cup of tea but it has been a popular area since it first went up.

Jul 31, 2008 01:34 PM #3
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Cindy Jones
Integrity Real Estate Group - Woodbridge, VA
Pentagon, Fort Belvoir & Quantico Real Estate News

Carol-I'm sorry to hear that your area didn't have success in revitalization.  It has become more important to look for ways to come up with adaptive reuse of space as our land becomes more precious.

Jul 31, 2008 01:36 PM #4
Rainmaker
412,982
Lisa Heindel
Crescent City Living LLC - New Orleans, LA
New Orleans Real Estate Broker

What a terrific plan and execution to take what could have been an eyesore and neglected property and turning it into something fabulous!  I love that so many of your communities are relatively self-contained with green space, retail and entertainment in such close proximity.

Jul 31, 2008 02:24 PM #5
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Cindy Jones
Integrity Real Estate Group - Woodbridge, VA
Pentagon, Fort Belvoir & Quantico Real Estate News

Lisa-there are some that don't like the idea of "new urbanism" but it is here to stay.  With no more land to add to the US we have to look at ways to build communities around a "central" core.  Smaller yards and more public space.  I like in a community that is designed this way and neighbors are out walking their dogs and actually talking to their neighbors.  Something that doesn't happen if you are hiding in your own backyard.

Jul 31, 2008 02:27 PM #6
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Kate Elim
Dockside Realty - Spotsylvania, VA
Realtor 540-226-1964, Selling Homes & Land a

Hi Cindy...How interesting!  I'm going to share this blog and your other one about the former Lorton prison with my husband.  It is wonderful to see something happen to all of that "real estate".  Having lived up in Northern Virginia this is interesting news for us.  Thanks for the photos.

I was taking pictures of a school turned into a library/senior center today and thinking of how good it is to recycle old buildings.

Kate

Jul 31, 2008 03:28 PM #7
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Cindy Jones
Integrity Real Estate Group - Woodbridge, VA
Pentagon, Fort Belvoir & Quantico Real Estate News

Kate-I'm a volunteer at the Arts Center and have been excited to see some of these building saved.  I know the history isn't pretty but if you can make something positive out of the space then it is a good thing.  I look forward to seeing your pictures of the senior center.

Jul 31, 2008 11:07 PM #8
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304,164
Cynthia Tilghman, Realtor® Onslow County NC Home Specialist
Kingsbridge Realty, Inc - Hubert, NC

Cindy,
That is wonderful, I love to see building recycled..don't you?  It's smart and ecological. 

Aug 02, 2008 02:52 AM #9
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Cindy Jones
Integrity Real Estate Group - Woodbridge, VA
Pentagon, Fort Belvoir & Quantico Real Estate News

Cynthia-if I could build my own house now it would be very green and use as many recycled pieces as possible.  I'm keeping an eye out for the lofts they said might come out of the prision rennovation.  I could be interested in one of them!

Aug 02, 2008 12:05 PM #10
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