This Monday, June 3, the Town Council meeting will have two different public hearings, on two different MAC buildings, in the same meeting. Not only will the Town Council (almost surely) pass the 380 Maple West proposal (39 condos plus retail, corner of Wade Hampton and Maple), they will also take public comment on the Sunrise Assisted Living facility planned for Maple and Center.
Why the rush, you may ask? Particularly in the context of the shady bait-and-switch that occurred for the Marco Polo project — still unresolved and not subject to any investigation or explanation by the Town. Particularly in the context of the Chick-fil-A-car-wash, where Town Council apparently just didn’t realize that the drawings provided by the developer did not provide accurate representations of the size and location of the building.
They are in rush because the new Town Council is seated July 1. Town staff are therefore working diligently to ensure that the Town Council approves these buildings before members-elect Patel and Potter are seated. Patel and Potter campaigned against the MAC statute as written, and their election takes away the pro-MAC majority that currently dominates Town Council.
Now, if you simply count votes from the last Town Council election, identify Bloch and Hays as the pro-MAC candidates and the others as anti-MAC, you would find that a stunning 73% of votes were cast for the openly anti-MAC candidates, in this year’s Town Council election.
You might think that would give the pro-MAC Town Council members pause? But that’s not how this has worked. When challenged or questioned, the pro-MAC Town Council members have simply doubled down on MAC (Post #227).
So, with that as history, then of course, if almost three-quarters of Town voters said “please put a stop to this”, it’s completely predictable that these folks would move full speed ahead. In Fairfax County, they would not even allow a vote like this during a political transition, because you don’t want lame duck politicians — no longer beholden to the electorate — making important land use decisions. But in the Town of Vienna, it’s just business as usual.