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Church planned for Popes Head Road in Fairfax could complicate parkway widening

La Biblia Church Ministries proposed building on Popes Head Road (via Fairfax County)

A two-story church just shy of 50,000 square feet in size is coming soon to Fairfax.

La Biblia Church Ministries, Inc. is seeking the county’s blessing to build the church, which will be located at 11600 Popes Head Road.

Although the Board of Zoning Appeals approved the project in October of last year, the board required the applicant to apply for a special permit before proceeding with construction.

The church would be constructed in a single phase, but interior improvements would be phased out, starting with plans to build a 650-seat fellowship hall. A second phase of improvements would include a sanctuary with up to 1,000-set hall.

Classrooms are also planned as part of the project, but it currently does not include a private or nursery school.

The latest application to Fairfax County increases the number of parking spaces from 224 to 302, along with similar increases in the amount of undisturbed and open space.

The project butts heads with the Virginia Department of Transportation’s plan to improve the Fairfax County Parkway and Popes Head Road. The ministry group plans to dedicate roughly 26,00 square feet of the right-of-way required to move that project forward.

A single access point to Popes Head Road is proposed during the first phase of development. A connection to Shirley Gate Road is planned during the second phase.

A series of public hearings prompted La Biblia Church to tweak its proposal. The building was shifted further north to allow further separation from Popes Head Road. More landscaping is also proposed between the road and building while access to the main road is more linear.

The house on the property will remain for a member of the proposed church.

The application has been flagged for a number of deficiencies in submission materials.

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