Old Town Basilica Plans New Expansion, Featuring a Tower and Archway

The Basilica School of Saint Mary (310 S Royal Street) in Old Town could grow by two new buildings if a new development application goes through.

The Catholic Diocese of Arlington is requesting permission to build a new library and media center at their 400 Green Street property.

“St. Mary’s has operated on the Property since 1948, and has grown and changed along with the needs of the student body and the community,” the diocese said in the application. “The proposed addition would connect two school buildings on the Property and allow students to safely travel between the two classroom buildings. Site improvements include reorienting the parking lot and student pick-up and drop-off area, adding one elevator for ADA accessibility, and other landscaping and playground improvements.

Even with the added buildings, the diocese said the floor area ratio (FAR) of 0.7 is still significantly below the permitted 1.5 FAR.

“The proposed addition connects the southeast corner of the Main Building with the northwest corner of Stephen’s Hall and contains approximately 19,298 square feet of floor area on the library level,” the diocese said.

The proposal will also add a new tower to the campus, described as “architecturally distinct from the existing cupola” but still borrowing from parts of the main design.

The new design also aims to cut down on the traffic from the school piling up on nearby streets.

“Currently, the existing pick-up and drop-off pattern involves significant queuing in surrounding streets and neighborhood,” the diocese said. “In order to internalize the pick-up and drop-off traffic, the Applicant proposes to reorient the pick-up and drop-off area to the rear of the school, behind the gym. Parents will enter the School from South Royal Street, drive under the proposed addition to the rear of the school, where faculty will direct the pick-up and drop-off process. To exit the School grounds, they will drive down a one-way alley along the western side of the Main Building and exit on to Green Street.”

The item is scheduled for review at the Thursday, April 8, Planning Commission meeting.

Recent Stories

Without school resource officers and the next school year starting in less than a month, Alexandria City Public Schools Superintendent Gregory Hutchings, Jr. has a plan to beef up security….

Rep. Don Beyer (D-Va.) swung by Arlington’s County Board last week to recognize 60 local first responders who responded to the Jan. 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol. It’s the latest step in…

From comic books to donuts, Alexandrians have been going all out for the Olympics this year — particularly with T.C. Williams High School graduate Noah Lyles competing in the 200…

After years of legal wrangling and pandemic pressures, the controversial halal slaughterhouse at 3225 Colvin Street quietly opened on Wednesday, July 28. There is no discernible smell of chickens in…

×

Subscribe to our mailing list