After the National Trust for Historic Preservation announced it will not renew Woodlawn Stables’ lease after it expires in 2016, the Trust has decided to consider all options for the land.
The National Trust for Historic Preservation will honor Woodlawn Stables’ lease through its expiration in 2016. This announcement was made weeks before the alternative bypass option for the widening of Richmond Highway was passed by the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors.
Once the effects on the Richmond Highway widening project on Woodlawn are better understood, the NTHP will consider potential uses for the property. This would include proposals from public and private parties, National Trust spokesperson Jessica Pumphrey told Patch.
“The National Trust decided not to renew the current lease of Scanlin Farms, a for-profit business, that expires in 2016 because the lease is not sustainable and extending it would not be a sound business decision,” Pumphrey said. "We are focused on Woodlawn’s future as a vibrant historic site, which includes consideration of all options for this land.”
According to the Trust, the Woodlawn Stables land would be obtained by the government under eminent domain and a strip of land would be taken for the highway, along with land for the storm water management ponds.
“To ensure permanent public use of one of the area’s few remaining open spaces and potential public parklands, the National Trust would be willing to consider options from the county or state to purchase the southern parcel of our property,” Pumphrey said.
Arcadia Farm has had a working relationship with the National Trust for the last several years. The Trust requested Arcadia present a plan detailing how they will utilize Woodlawn in the next few years. According to the trust, the plan presented by Arcadia is flexible enough to incorporate the southern parcel of land for new agricultural-related uses, but the Trust has not made any recommendations or selections regarding whether they will open the process up to businesses.
The Woodlawn Plantation and Pope-Leighey House are financially sound, according to the Trust. The National Trust has invested in site improvements including a comprehensive restoration project for the mansion’s wood windows. This project will be completed later this year. In addition, the Trust is also performing masonry repairs on the walls of Woodlawn and the 19th century dairy structure on the property, and electrical repairs at Woodlawn were completed this year.