The Fairfax County Board of Zoning Appeals, turning aside objections from the Great Falls Citizens Association, has granted a special-use permit for a proposed private school.
The Charter School, which would include 12 grades, would be on 67 acres at the corner of Georgetown Pike and Utterback Store Road.
The citizens' association expressed fears that the school would tax the area's well-water supplies and create serious traffic safety problems.
School organizers, led by Glen J. Sedam Jr., a Fairfax County attorney, contended the school would use no more water than a 30-house subdivision, which under curren tlanduse rules could be built on the site without a special permit.
As for traffic and safety problems, Sedam said, "Traffic is already a problem there. The state must do something. There's already a school [Forestville Elementary] on Utterback Store Road. There should be a light at the intersection."
However, after hearing the citizens' objections, school officials agreed to limit enrollment.
After approving the special-use permit 5-to-0, the BZA voted to immediately hear additional testimony from the citizens' group.
"We are extremely frightened by the prospect of having a half-completed school . . . that would go bankrupt," citizens' spokesman Curtis Bradley told BZA members.
Bradley asked the zoning board to impose stringent financial conditions on the Charter School's organizers.However, board chairman, David Smith, backed u pby his colleagues, said the BZA should confine its action to land-use issues.
After hearing Bradley's testimony the BZA again voted 5-to-0 to grant the permit.