Loudoun County

The following were among actions taken at the July 17 meeting of the Loudoun County Board of Supervisors. For more information, call 777-0202.

FARM MARKETS -- The board voted unanimously to allow farm markets, considered by the county to be commercial enterprises, in agricultural areas. Under the new ordinance, farmers may open markets if they obtain a special exception permit from the supervisors, a process that enables the board to deny the request or to attach conditions for approval.

The board put the issue on its agenda partly as a result of the efforts of the Hutchison family, which operates a farm south of Leesburg. The Hutchisons now sell their produce and other goods at their Chantilly Farm Market on Route 50 in Chantilly and have been trying for nearly two years to obtain county permission to operate a market as well at their farm on Route 15.

The county's Department of Economic Development also urged the board to allow farm markets in agricultural zones.

To make sure that farm markets are "agriculturally based enterprises," the supervisors mandated that at least 25 percent of the goods sold at farm markets near towns and other heavily populated areas be produced on site. At farm markets in outlying areas, at least 75 percent of the goods must be produced on site.

The new ordinance also specifies what items may be sold. At farm markets near towns, at least 90 percent of the products must be horticultural or agricultural, such as nursery stock, flowers and bulbs, produce, Christmas trees and honey. The other 10 percent may be products such as pottery, baskets, small garden tools and baked goods. In outlying areas, at least 95 percent of products sold must be horticultural or agricultural.

Under the new ordinance, farm markets may be set up only along paved roads, and there must be adequate road visibility for drivers, right and left turn lanes when required and roadside space for customer parking.

LIBRARY SITE -- In preparation for Saturday's groundbreaking for the Eastern Loudoun Regional Library, the board accepted a deed for the site from developer Kettler & Scott.

The seven-acre parcel of land was donated to the county as part of a package of roads and land given in exchange for the right to build Cascades, a 3,000-acre development now under construction between Route 7 and the Potomac River in Sterling.

The library site is on Route 7 next to Northern Virginia Community College. The new building of 30,000 square feet -- the county's largest library -- is scheduled for completion late next year.

Town of Leesburg

The following were among actions taken at the July 11 meeting of the Leesburg Town Council. For more information, call 777-2420.

BOND SALE -- The Town Council authorized the sale of $4.5 million in general obligation bonds on Aug. 1 to pay for its new municipal parking garage at Loudoun and Wirt streets.

Construction on the garage began early this month and is expected to be completed next spring.

The bond sale will complete a total $9 million bond issue that the council approved last summer. Last fall it authorized the sale of $4.5 million in bonds to finance the following projects: completion of a new municipal government center at Market and Wirt streets and the recreation center at Ida Lee Park; storm drainage improvements along Dry Mill Road and Loudoun Street; and the town's share of costs to extend the runway and install an instrument landing system at Leesburg Airport.

Leesburg has a high bond rating of A, which means it can sell bonds at a low-interest rate. Bond debt is to be paid back over a 20-year period after the sale date.

PARKING -- The council voted to add a block of metered street parking spaces in the Old and Historic District and to reduce the monthly parking fee for one of the town's parking lots by $10.

The council took the actions to partially compensate for the loss of dozens of parking spaces in the lot behind the town office. The lot has been excavated for construction of a new municipal parking garage.

The new metered parking will be on the west side of Wirt Street between Loudoun and Royal streets. The fee for monthly parking at the town's Liberty Street lot will be $20, instead of $30, while the new parking garage is being built.

Town of Middleburg

The following were among actions taken at the July 12 meeting of the Middleburg Town Council. For more information, call 687-5152.

TOLLHOUSE -- The Town Council directed members of the town's Historic District Review Committee to find a storage place for an old building that once served as a toll collection station.

To store the building, it will have to be dismantled. But Mayor Anne Lackman said the council wants to have the building reassembled and placed in a permanent place as a tourist attraction.

So far that has been a problem. The vacant building, built in the 1800s, once sat along Route 50, a former toll road. But it was moved recently to make way for a housing subdivision. The tollhouse is now sitting on a temporary site at the eastern tip of Marshall Street, but must be moved to make way for the extension of the street. The town has not been able to come up with another location.

The town also would like to renovate the tollhouse but doesn't have the money in its budget now, Lackman said. Fund-raising efforts have been directed toward "The Pink Box," another historic building that the town is renovating with private donations and grants and plans to convert into a visitor's center.

"We've got to take care of The Pink Box first," Lackman said.

The tollhouse was used by travelers between Alexandria and Winchester.

PROFESSIONAL BUILDING -- The council approved an application by Dr. Ronald Jackson, a dentist, and Dr. Frederick Griffith, a physician, to build a two-story brick professional building on the eastern end of Federal Street.

Jackson's office will be on the top floor and Griffith's on the ground floor. A third doctor's office may be located in the basement level.

Town of Purcellville

The following was among actions taken at the July 10 meeting of the Purcellville Town Council. For more information, call 338-7421.

ZONING ORDINANCE -- The council unanimously ordered its Planning Commission to stop its work on an update of the town's zoning ordinance and to immediately forward its draft update to the council.

Council members said that work on updating or revising the zoning ordinance, last changed in 1987, was taking too long. The Planning Commission had been working on a revised ordinance for about a year, and had scheduled future public hearings on one controversial section of the ordinance that deals with the amount of development that would be allowed in a residential area at the west end of town. The council cancelled those hearings.

The controversial section deals with West Main Street, now zoned for town houses and apartments. A consultant to the council had suggested that offices be permitted on West Main Street, whle some residents of the street want the zoning ordinance changed to permit only single-family homes. Council members said the issue was slowing down the entire zoning process.

"Council had the feeling {that Planning Commission members} were kind of holding the entire document hostage until this west end controversy was resolved," Town Manager Jerry Schiro said.

Schiro said the council would start working on the zoning ordinance revision at its August meeting.