Council to discuss school swing space at public hearing

Council to discuss school swing space at public hearing
An Alexandria City Council public hearing. (File Photo)

By Missy Schrott |

Council will discuss various items at its public hearing on Saturday, including the Patrick Henry School swing space, The Mill restaurant at Robinson Landing and the city’s proposed legislative package for the 2020 Virginia General Assembly.

The future of the city’s e-scooter pilot program, originally slated to be discussed at the Nov. 16 hearing, has been pushed back a month, to the Dec. 14 public hearing.

One of the most significant items to go before council on Saturday is the Patrick Henry swing space. Earlier this year, the school board approved a preliminary plan to use the old Patrick Henry School building as a swing space while Douglas MacArthur Elementary School is rebuilt.

The decision drew opposition from Patrick Henry parents, as it would delay the opening of new athletic fields at the school. The project now goes before city council members, who will consider a development special use permit and site plan to use the old school building as a temporary swing space for about three years.

Council is also slated to vote on legislative priorities and principals for the city for the 2020 Virginia General Assembly session. The top three priorities this year are state investment in infrastructure; protection and expansion of local authority and funding for localities; and access, equity and equality, according to a city document. If approved, the priorities will inform the work of city staff at the General Assembly, which commences on Jan. 8.

Saturday’s docket also includes special use permit applications for various businesses.

The Mill, a new southern eatery proposed for 10 Duke St. by Murray Bonitt of Bonitt Builders, requested a SUP to operate a restaurant in a historic warehouse. The Mill is one of three restaurants slated to open in the Robinson Landing development on the waterfront. Bonitt recently announced he is partnering with James Beard Award-winning chef John Currence for the concept.

Council will also consider a request by applicant Maricela Noble to operate a health profession office called Your Life Energy, which will offer energy healing services to address anxiety, emotional stress and physical pain, as well as holistic skincare services, at 705 Prince St.

In addition, council will consider license agreements with telecommunications companies, a waiver that would allow events to take place on consecutive weekends at Waterfront Park and more. The hearing will commence at 9:30 a.m. in council chambers at city hall. Find the complete docket online at