Pine Ridge Park

Pine Ridge Park
3401 Woodburn Road
Annandale, VA 22003

Type District

Size 42.74 acres

Planning District Annandale Planning District

Pine Ridge Park is a a 42.74-acre district park and open air farmer's market and cafe for the homeless in Annandale.

22 acres of the land of the park was initially acquired by the Fairfax County School Board for the construction of a 2000-student intermediate school.[1][2]

However, the School Board subsequently decided on a plan that would convert the all-Black Luther Jackson High School to an integrated intermediate school and construct a new high school.[2] Since the Board needed 20 more acres of land to construct the high school, they forced the Collins family, a Black family that had owned an adjoining 10-acre tract known as The Pines since the early 1900's, to sell out under threat of condemnation, and demolished the Collins' family's homes.[2]

The proposed Pine Ridge High School was never built.

In 1975, local residents first obtained permission to use part of the land for garden plots.[2] In the late 1970's dirt from the construction of Mobil Oil's headquarters nearby was dumped on the land.[2]

In 1981, the School Board leased the unused property to the Fairfax County Park Authority.[3] The FCPA built ball fields on part of the property in 1983.[1]

Always hungry for cash to feed the bottomless maw of the Fairfax County Public Schools system, the School Board considered selling the land to a developer.[3] In 1996, Northern Virginia Community College proposed building a medical education campus on the property, but the uproar from the local NIMBY faction caused them to discard the plan.[3] A vote by the Board of Supervisors to amend the Comprehensive Plan so that the land could not be used for the construction of anything except a school put the final nail in the coffin for NVCC's plans.[4]

The School Board and the county government negotiated for several months in 1999 to swap the property for a 9-acre site near the Fairfax County Government Center.[5] However, upon discovery of a restrictive covenant on that parcel of land which limited it to public use, the Board of Supervisors instead voted on March 27, 2000, to purchase the land from the School Board.[5][6]

Annoyed by the last-minute switcheroo, and because the money from the sale would have to be used for capital improvements, the School Board told the BoS to get lost.[5]

Eventually, a compromise was reached where the County would give FCPS title to its adminstration building as well as $6.2 million in payments towards FCPS's bond debt.[7]

The park wholly surrounds the Sons and Daughters of Liberty Graveyard, in which several members of the long-evicted Collins family are buried.[1][2]

In addition to the ball fields, the park contains the Bo White Gardens, 159 community gardening plots that are regularly raided by the county's homeless, vandalized by its youth, and provide a home for its vermin.[8]


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 "Sons & Daughters Of Liberty Cemetery."Fairfax County Cemetery Survey. Fairfax County Public Library, n.d. Web. 7 May 2014.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 Salmon, Jacqueline L. "Park's Allure Hides Pain of Past; Family Recalls Lost Homestead at Pine Ridge." The Washington Post: 0. Apr 14 2000. ProQuest. Web. 7 May 2014.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 Lipton, Eric. "Debate Over the Future of Pine Ridge; Park Users Fear Development of School-Owned Land." The Washington Post: 0. Jun 26 1997. ProQuest. Web. 7 May 2014.
  4. Lipton, Eric. "Springfield Restoration Wins Support; Fairfax Board also Backs Church Move, Protects Park." The Washington Post: 0. Nov 20 1997. ProQuest. Web. 7 May 2014.
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 Benning, Victoria, and Michael D. Shear. "Fairfax Schools Rebuff County on Parkland; Parties had Agreed to Swap Sites, then Supervisors' Offer was Changed." The Washington Post: 0. Apr 01 2000. ProQuest. Web. 7 May 2014.
  6. Shear, Michael D. "Fairfax Board Votes to Save Popular Park; County Education Officials had Considered Building High School on 42-Acre Site." The Washington Post: 0. Mar 28 2000. ProQuest. Web. 7 May 2014.
  7. "METRO IN BRIEF: Fairfax, School Board Join to Save Park." The Washington Post: 0. Nov 22 2000. ProQuest. Web. 7 May 2014.
  8. Ashford, Ellie. "Extensive Vandalism at Community Garden Plots in Annandale." The Annandale Blog. Ellie Ashford, 10 Feb. 2015. Web. 05 Apr. 2017.