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WTOP wtop.com 15 Sep, 2021 19:00 am

Fauquier Co. considering new rules for building large churches

Fauquier Co. considering new rules for building large churches
A record number of applications to build “megachurches” in Virginia’s Fauquier County has the Board of Supervisors considering new zoning rules for them.

5 FM Fauquier County, Virginia, has seen an increase in applications to build “megachurches” — mostly in rural areas — and is considering tweaking its approval policy to make sure places of worship don’t overwhelm area roadways and parking.“Typically, places of worship are located in the rural areas due to the available land that is more affordable,” according to the board’s staff report.In addition, these places of worship “can become destination centers with dining facilities, fitness centers, recreational facilities, and entertainment activities,” according to the staff.” Other concerns for new, larger places of worship include light pollution, land clearing, water and septic demand, and fire suppression needs.

More Virginia News Currently, there is one category for places of worship in the county’s zoning ordinance, all of which require a special permit approval.The board is considering dividing places of worship into two categories: minor or major.

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