A Prince William County Circuit Court judge rejected a Woodbridge mobile home park’s argument Friday that the site of a disastrous flood last year should be reopened to residents.
Attorneys for Holly Acres Mobile Home Park had originally planned to argue that rebuilding on the site, which was inundated and cleared during Tropical Storm Lee in September, should be permitted to begin immediately and that displaced residents should be able to move back.
Instead, they opted to try to persuade the court to issue an injunction that would overturn Prince William officials’ decision on eight mobile homes at the site that are in a federal flood zone and have been declared uninhabitable. The broader issue of whether the mobile home park can be rebuilt and residents allowed to move back will be decided by the court at a later date.
County officials say they won’t allow anyone to move into those eight mobile homes, saying that they remain dangerous and that the county would run afoul of Federal Emergency Management Agency regulations.
“Why would you want to put someone back in danger?” asked county spokesman Jason Grant.
Mark Moorstein, a lawyer for Holly Acres, has said that residents should be able to fix up those homes and move back in and that many people in Virginia live in flood zones.
Circuit Court Judge Lon E. Farris ruled against the mobile home park, Moorstein said, adding that he is considering an appeal.
The mobile home park has sued the county for $8 million, and the county has appealed a decision by an independent zoning panel that said it was wrong to clear the park after the storm and prevent residents from returning.
Those lawsuits have been combined and are scheduled for trial in July, Grant said.