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Monday, March 18, 2019

Zoning board to rule on a Buddhist temple operating in an Annandale house

4901 Ravensworth Road
The Fairfax County Board of Zoning Appeals will take up an application involving the use of a single-family home in Annandale for religious purposes.

The applicant, Tuan Viet Chau/Phuoc Thanh Buddhist Association, purchased the property, on 4901 Ravensworth Road, in October 2016 and is using it as a Buddhist temple.

The property was deemed in violation of the county code in October, after an inspector found it was being used as a place of worship without a special permit, which is required in an R-1 zoning district.

The Board of Zoning Appeals has scheduled a hearing for June 5. A staff report is expected to be issued a week before the hearing.

Loan Nguyen, the agent for Tuan Viet Chau, a monk, submitted an application for a special permit in January.

A letter to county officials from Chau says the property would be used for meditation, prayer, and workshops. It would be open 6:30-8:30 p.m. on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, and 10 a.m.-2 p.m. on Sunday. At those times, about 10 to 15 people would be present. It would be open twice a month 10 a.m.-1 p.m. on Saturday, drawing 30 to 35 people. Three people live there.

18 comments:

  1. No more temples in residential neighborhoods. This is ridiculous!

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  2. The once 2 bedroom bungalow at 6822 Columbia Pike obtained a permit to "add new roof trusses" and look at it today. Those are some huge roof trusses, that somehow gave birth to a 2300 sq foot 2 level expansion. There is the encroachment of the county easements in the front of the property, and destruction of the entire lawn for conversion to parking spaces. Not to mention the statuary, flags, dozens of cars, anytime they choose. It's basically the Cathedral of temples in the area. Replacement of roof trusses!???

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  3. Not unlike the use of a 3 bedroom house for the purpose of an apartment building for 12 or more residents.

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  4. It appears that more and more that because people can't, or won't get the permits and approvals that are necessary to build what they want, they do it illegally, and then hope for forgiveness and exceptions to ordinances. This is not the first time this has happened. I don't begrudge people worshiping, but I do object to people getting their way by circumventing regulations. This impacts the community and sets a bad precedence. The county has to uphold its regulations and put a stop to this approach to building modification.

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    1. This is so sadly true in Mason District.

      Had renters next door, breaking the law … called MD police, they came by and said, I QUOTE "WHAT WILL MAKE YOU HAPPY?"

      I replied, ENFORCE THE LAW.

      The officer tried to follow up and was abruptly transferred to another station.

      Ever wonder why Mason District has such a high turnover of commanders? I did, research how often other precincts change leadership, it's sobering

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    2. If you have ever driven pass this Temple on Ravensworth during worship there are cars everywhere and very loud music blasting from a PA system. The Buddahs need to go though the proper channels in the county zone ordinances or be shut down. No more neighborhood open places for worship for whatever their God may be..

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  5. There are literally three other churches within walking distance, I guess we should get rid of them too.

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    1. That is a strawman argument. The issue is whether a property that is intended as a residence was properly permitted and whether a building zoned for residence should be used commercially. The churches were built and zoned commercially. This is about process and proper use of property.

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    2. You're right, I'll admit that. I can also sympathize with being neighbors with someone who randomly decides to use their property for completely unintended (and potentially illegal) purposes. But, I do notice a lot of people on this blog picking up their pitchforks for any tiny infraction of the rules for non-christian churches, when the pass is given in the vice versa situation, and it drives me fucking nuts.

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    3. I agree we should not be differentiating between denominations. That said, is there an example or two you are thinking of in particular?

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    4. The mosque on Braddock for one

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    5. I meant what pass is given for Christian churches by people on this blog? You stated that people criticize non-christian churches which is true but then alluded to giving a pass in the "vice versa" situation. Assuming you mean a Christian church as a vice versa situation, what is an example of a rules infraction for one of these that has been given a pass? It seems to me that folks care about how the property is used or misused, not who is using it. Also, you mention "tiny" infractions. What example of a tiny infraction are you thinking of?

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    6. The mosque on braddock. People moaned about how people took up parking at bradlick on Friday evening, but the very large church across the street absolutely demolishes the area every Sunday which people conveniently seem to ignore.

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    7. Immanuel Church has arrangements for Sunday parking with the shopping center as well as the school nearby.

      OFF-SITE PARKING LOTS
      There are 4 areas where we can park offsite on a Sunday in addition to our on-site parking lots. The following is a list of spaces available at each of the parking areas.

      Immanuel Main Lot: 448 spaces and 20 handicap spaces
      Phillip's School Lots: 140 spaces
      Bradlick Shopping Center Back Lot: 94 spaces
      Bank parking lots: 20 spaces

      PARKING AND SHUTTLE STOPS
      Immanuel shuttles operate between Immanuel and the Bradlick Shopping Center back lot and Phillips lots from 7:00am–12:45pm,

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  6. Why not call all of our houses places of meditation and prayer and enjoy the same tax exemption being doled out to these folks snapping up single family houses in this scam?

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  7. From the last Zillow listing:

    "What I Love About The Home

    $715,000. PRIVATE 2 LEVELS COLONIAL HOUSE SETS ON ONE ACRE LAND IN ANNANDALE* BROOK HILLS ESTATE SUBDIVISION* TOTAL 2 LEVELS 3,200 SQF* 7 BEDS, 5 BATHS, WALK OUT BASEMENT, 15 FEET CEILING, FIREPLACE, CROWN MOLDING, KITCHEN W/ SS APPLIANCES & GRANITE. PRIVATE DECK & GRAND BATH* ALL STUCCO, UPDATED THE WHOLE HOUSE* PUBLIC WATER AND WELL, PUBLIC SEWER. CORNER LOT, BROOK HILLS AND RAVENSWORTH* EXCELLENT LOCATION* DC, NV COLLEGE, 395, 495 TWO MINUTES. A LOT SPACE FOR PARKING, BIG TRUCK AND BOAT...THREE ENTRANCES, GOOD FOR OPEN PRESCHOOL OR DAY CARE.... PLEASE LOOK OUTSIDE FIRST AND CALL OWNER AT 703-928-3489. (4901 RAVENSWORTH RD INTERSECT WITH BROOK HILLS). THANKS."

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