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Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Parks bond provides funds for White Gardens, fields, and trails

The White Gardens: a hidden gem in Falls Church
The $75 million park bond, on the Nov. 6 ballot, would fund several projects in the Annandale area, including improvements to the John C. and Margaret K. White Gardens and synthetic turf fields at Pine Ridge Park.

The bond includes $63 million for the Fairfax County Park Authority and $12 million for the Northern Virginia Regional Park Authority. There aren’t any NVRPA-run parks in Annandale or Mason.

Twenty percent of Fairfax County funds would be used for land acquisition and stewardship, 31 percent for park facility expansions, 37 percent for the renovation of existing facilities, and 12 percent for new community parks and new park facilities.  

The bond would support the following Fairfax County parks projects in the Annandale/Mason area:
  • Build an internal trail network and shelter as the first phase of improvements at the John C. and Margaret K. White Gardens, a 13.5-acre horticultural park in the Falls Church part of the Mason District—$500,000.
  • Pave portions of the Cross County Trail in Wakefield Park (Braddock)—$400,000.
  • Renovations and upgrades at Lake Accotink Park (Braddock)—$1 million.
  • Replace cart paths and irrigation systems at three golf courses, including Pinecrest Golf Course in Mason—$1.5 million.
  • Install synthetic turf on athletic fields at Pine Ridge Park (Mason)—$810,000.
Several countywide projects are proposed, too, including:
  • $5 million for land acquisition (including an unspecific amount for expanding Green Spring Gardens); 
  • $1 million to replace outdated, unsafe playground equipment; 
  • $1 million for energy management improvements in RECenters and golf course buildings; 
  • $300,000 for the Mastenbrook matching grant program
  • $2.2 million for trail improvements; 
  • $400,000 to develop a branding approach for identifying Fairfax County park facilities and update signage;
  • $1 million to assess and protect cultural and historic resources; and 
  • $1 million for natural resources management.
The single biggest project in the park bond is a $9.9 million expansion and gym addition at the Spring Hill RECenter in McLean.


  1. The White Gardens will be an excellent addition to the park system - a gem. When will this open to the public? Not in a rush - as we need to be on a "pay as you go basis" so I'll wait several years if I have to as long as we are fiscally responsible. This is certainly a "nice to have" NOT a priority. Look forward to it opening someday.

  2. In the mean time, the gardens need care to prevent destruction by invasive overgrowth. There is a small group of Friends of White Gardens working to save do just that. To join the Gardening Parties, see FOWG & contacts at