WOODSTOCK - Shenandoah County leaders gave a proposed nature retreat a green light Tuesday.
The Board of Supervisors voted 6-0 at their meeting to approve a special-use permit requested by Wellmore Partners Limited Liability Company. Wellness Partners proposes to use 552 acres of property it owns at 1815 Turkey Run Road in Star Tannery for a private nature retreat under the working name Simply Shenandoah.
The proposal calls for the retreat to provide wellness experiences for adults in a wilderness setting, according to county information. The retreat can hold up to the maximum of 180-190 guests. Each guest must stay for at least three nights with an anticipated average of five to seven nights. The retreat includes 18 modern cabins, each with six rooms; two to three lodges and two to three cottages for employees. The retreat would feature facilities for meeting and dining and recreational activities.
The land slated for the retreat is zoned for conservation and includes a vacant home. The property lies adjacent to other land zoned for conservation with protected parcels to the west and south.
The developers must abide by the requirements as stated in the comments provided to the county from various agencies such as the Virginia Department of Health and Department of Transportation.
At the meeting, supervisors also voted to:
• Adopt an ordinance that makes changes to the county code section pertaining to vehicles and traffic. The changes allow the Sheriff’s Office to issue summonses and notices of violation of county ordinances and apply local fines and fees without conflicting with state law. The board voted 5-0. Supervisor Richard Walker abstained from voting, saying that he did not want to take action on the matter because he lacked information about specific changes to the law.
• Approved 6-0 a special-use permit requested by Mark and Donna Mashburn to run a bed-and-breakfast in their home at 10648 Old Valley Pike, Mount Jackson. The Mashburns intend to use three or four bedrooms in their 1840s house for the bed-and-breakfast business. The property lies in the Mount Jackson Agricultural and Forestal District. The county zoning ordinance allows such a use in the district with a special-use permit.
• Approved 6-0 a request to renew the New Market Agricultural and Forestal District for a 10-year term and to modify land within the area. The county established the district in 1989 as a way to preserve, embrace and support the agricultural aspects of the locality and those who live or work on such land. The county last renewed the district in 2009. The district covers 2,455 acres. The board’s action also removed the definition of “more intensive use” from the language of the code establishing the district.
• Adopted by a 6-0 vote an ordinance to terminate the Cedar Spring Run Agricultural and Forestal District. The county reached out to property owners to gauge their interest in remaining in the district. Only one property owner expressed interest. However, the property fell below the 200-acre threshold to meet state requirements for a district’s renewal. The owner’s property will be added to the adjacent Lebanon Church Agricultural and Forestal District. The board in the same action adopted an ordinance to add the property to the Lebanon Church district.
• Approved revisions to the chapter of the Shenandoah County Comprehensive Plan pertaining to the local economy and economic development.
• Approved a request to use $43,000 surplus funds generated by the Department of Parks and Recreation in fiscal 2019 to pave all walking trails in the Shenandoah County Park.
• Adopted a resolution to allow the Winchester Regional Airport Authority to borrow no more than $1.7 million to buy a privately owned hangar.