City Rejects Unsolicited Bid for New Mason; Seeks Other Bids
By FALLS CHURCH CITY OFFICE OF COMMUNICATIONS
May 15, 2015
The Falls Church City Council and School Board voted this week to reject a developer’s unsolicited bid to build a new George Mason High School in exchange for the right to build a dense retail and residential complex on the adjacent land.
However, the two panels also voted to immediately begin a Community Visioning process to gather broad input for the construction of a new Mason; expansion of Mary Ellen Henderson Middle School; and commercial redevelopment of up to 10 acres of the site. The firm Cooper Carry has been contracted to handle the Community Visioning project following a competitive proposal process.
The Council and School Board have returned the unsolicited proposal from Edgemoor Infrastructure and Realty, a private developer, concerning a public/private redevelopment of the school campuses, citing difficulty in revising the unsolicited proposal to meet the needs of GMHS and MEHMS under the existing guidelines of the Public-Private Education Facilities and Infrastructure Act of 2002. The contents of the unsolicited proposal will not be released.
Community Visioning, which will be completed by mid-July, is among the first of a series of items on a draft timeline (www.fallschurchva.gov/CampusRedevelopment). Following this robust community engagement, a Request for Proposals (RFP) for the project will be issued under the Virginia Public Private Educational Act with responses due in October, and a finalist selected in May 2016. A referendum, if necessary, would be on the November 2016 ballot. The timeline is subject to change.
By Stephen Siegel
May 15, 2015