Naming Fairfax City Streets

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On July 12, 2022, the Fairfax City Council voted to change 14 street names as recommended by the Connecting Fairfax City for All Stakeholder Advisory Group. Thousands of names were received via a public survey. The names have been reviewed, and the subcommittee has provided Council with names for consideration. Council will vote on new names at its Nov. 29 meeting.

Residents are encouraged to weigh in on the proposed names, or suggest others, until 5 p.m. Nov. 28. Please use the comments tool below, or send email to streetnames@fairfaxva.gov.

CURRENT NAMES

RECOMMENDED NAMES

Confederate Lane

Union Lane

Continental Lane

Lee Highway

Fairfax Boulevard

Main Street

Lee Street

Lilac Street

Mosby Road

Orchard Drive

Orchard Court

Grefe Drive

Mosby Woods Drive

Fair Woods Drive

Old Lee Highway

Blenheim Boulevard

Plantation Parkway

Fair Woods Parkway

Fairfax Forest Drive

Raider Lane

Fox Lane

Ranger Road

Rambler Road

Reb Street

Cross Lane

Cincinnati Street

Scarlet Circle

Crimson Circle

Singleton Circle

Appomattox Circle

Concord Circle

Square Circle

Stonewall Avenue

Rock Wall Road

Stone Wall Road

Traveler Street

Old Robin Street

Beecher Street


For background on the Connecting Fairfax City for All initiative, please visit the archived project page.

On July 12, 2022, the Fairfax City Council voted to change 14 street names as recommended by the Connecting Fairfax City for All Stakeholder Advisory Group. Thousands of names were received via a public survey. The names have been reviewed, and the subcommittee has provided Council with names for consideration. Council will vote on new names at its Nov. 29 meeting.

Residents are encouraged to weigh in on the proposed names, or suggest others, until 5 p.m. Nov. 28. Please use the comments tool below, or send email to streetnames@fairfaxva.gov.

CURRENT NAMES

RECOMMENDED NAMES

Confederate Lane

Union Lane

Continental Lane

Lee Highway

Fairfax Boulevard

Main Street

Lee Street

Lilac Street

Mosby Road

Orchard Drive

Orchard Court

Grefe Drive

Mosby Woods Drive

Fair Woods Drive

Old Lee Highway

Blenheim Boulevard

Plantation Parkway

Fair Woods Parkway

Fairfax Forest Drive

Raider Lane

Fox Lane

Ranger Road

Rambler Road

Reb Street

Cross Lane

Cincinnati Street

Scarlet Circle

Crimson Circle

Singleton Circle

Appomattox Circle

Concord Circle

Square Circle

Stonewall Avenue

Rock Wall Road

Stone Wall Road

Traveler Street

Old Robin Street

Beecher Street


For background on the Connecting Fairfax City for All initiative, please visit the archived project page.

Comments on Proposed Street Names

Share your thoughts on the proposed street names, or suggest others, until 5 p.m. Nov. 28. Council will vote on new names at its Nov. 29 meeting.

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Thank you for the opportunity to comment. I think MKC's suggestion of birds, plants, or animals for the streets of Mosby Woods is a good one. Public safety agencies and professional drivers will appreciate the mnemonic assistance that comes from a consistent theme. Alternatively, consider colors, opera characters, baseball-team names, or the nine Olympian muses of mythology.

I agree that it is a good idea to rename Old Lee Highway, and some additional history might be helpful: According to the City's official history book, the Blenheim house was built in 1856 for Albert Willcoxon, whose father Rezin owned the tavern across from the Fairfax Courthouse. Its historical significance lies not as a home to enslaved people or Confederate traitors, but in its use as a field hospital by the Union army during the Civil War, and as a repository of graffiti left by Union soldiers who occupied the house during the war. That is why the City spent substantial taxpayer funds to buy, restore, preserve and curate the site and to construct the Civil War Interpretive Center.

Blenheim was a battle fought three centuries ago in and about the Bavarian town of Blindheim, and won by the Duke of Marlborough. Blenheim Palace is a country estate in England, built for Marlborough in gratitude for his victory. (It was, parenthetically, the birthplace of his descendent, Winston Churchill.) But there apparently was no person named Blenheim, at least none associated with the house during the ten or so years before slavery was abolished. According to Wikipedia, the earliest known reference to the Willcoxon house as "Blenheim" was in 1903. So the name "Blenheim" evidently doesn't have anything to do with slavery or secessionists.

There may be other names for Old Lee Highway as good as or better than "Blenheim Boulevard." It does not make sense, though, to reject the name based on a misapprehension of the historical facts. Not only is Blenheim not named after a person associated with secession, it is probably not named after any person. It is associated more than anything else with the City's recognition of the importance of history and historic preservation.

Whatever new name is chosen for Old Lee Highway, I suggest the suffix should be "Boulevard," in keeping with the planned improvements to the road, recognizing the primacy of safe and comfortable pedestrian passage. (A highway or avenue connotes efficient movement of vehicles, sometimes in detriment to the pedestrian experience, which would be inconsistent with the planned improvements.) "Street" would also work.

If "Blenheim Boulevard" is too much of a mouthful, I suggest as alternative new names for Old Lee Highway: Willard Boulevard (Joseph Willard was the son of a Union officer and benefactor of the City, as well as ambassador to Spain), Providence Boulevard, High Street, or Ridge Boulevard.

Thank you again for the opportunity to comment.

Mark Towery about 2 hours ago

I like the idea of celebrating local/Virginia nature through new street names, with an additional theme of American icons/values to keep the cohesiveness in the Mosby Woods neighborhood where many Civil War related street names remain.

My suggestions are as follows:
*Streets in Mosby Woods:

- Confederate Lane 

--> Cardinal Lane (Virginia's state bird)


- Mosby Woods Drive 

--> Merriwoods Drive (to keep "MW"),

--> Little Woods Drive, or

--> Forest Drive


- Plantation Parkway 

--> Bald Eagle Parkway, or

--> Bluebell Parkway (for a native plant Virginia Bluebells)


- Raider Lane 

--> Patriot Lane, or 

--> Creek Lane (the street is right by the creek where many wild animals reside)


- Ranger Road 

--> Rambler Road (I like this suggested name a lot - the street stretches throughout the neighborhood like a perfect rambling road and many residents enjoy walks along the street)


- Reb Street 

--> Cross Lane (this suggested name is rather plain but I think it is fitting to describe this short road that connects two streets), 

--> Finch Street, or

--> Robin Street (these are native birds that reside in our neighborhood; short names too!)


- Scarlet Circle 

--> Liberty Cicle,

--> Beech Circle (for a native tree American Beech), or

--> Starling Circle (a native bird species that lives in the neighborhood and to keep "S")


- Singleton Circle 

--> Unity Circle,

--> Poplar Circle (for a native tree Tulip Poplar), or 

--> Swallowtail Circle (for Virginia's state insect Tiger Swallowtail Butterfly and to keep "S")


- Traveler Street 

--> Dogwood Street (Virginia's state flower/tree)

Mako 6 days ago

I am a Mosby Woods resident and very glad and thankful that the city council is making progress forward on this renaming project in a timely manner.



I like the idea of celebrating local/Virginia nature and features through new street names - this way, residents and visitors are naturally encouraged to admire the beauty of the surrounding nature (and they are neutral and more pleasant!). American icons/values may be an additional theme to keep the cohesiveness in the Mosby Woods neighborhood where many Civil War related street names remain.



My suggestions are as follows:



- Old Lee Highway 


--> Blue Ridge Highway (for such a long stretch of a road, something beautiful and local like Blue Ridge would be perfect; easy spelling and good name for any homes/businesses)



- Stonewall Avenue 


--> Shenandoah Avenue (for a local nature theme and to keep "S")



- Lee Highway 


--> Fairfax Boulevard (the suggested name seems fine to me to keep the currently used name for a stretch of the road)



- Lee Street 


--> Lilac Street (I am fine with this suggested name with a nature theme), 


--> Maple Street (if a native tree is preferred over foreign species), or


--> Bluebird Street (for a native bird)



- Mosby Road 


--> Magnolia Road (for a native tree and to keep "M"), or


--> Orchard Drive (this suggested name is also just fine to me)

Mako 6 days ago

As noted at the 15 November 2022,
Three streets in Mosby Woods currently have names that are Ubiquitous, meaning the words are present, appearing, or found everywhere.
* Ranger
* Raider
* Traveler - (not Traveller, the horse)

There has been multiple requests to keep these streets names, as they do not refer, specifically, to the Civil War.

Furklp 6 days ago

With the county just renaming Lee Highway to it's route number 29 it would be prudent to do as well. It would reduce confusion.

Blenheim Boulevard is a mouthful & difficult to spell, not to mention the alteration is strange.

Fair Woods Parkway & Fair Woods Drive are too similar of names, leading to confusion.

Union Lane feels still too Civil War inspired

Many of the Mosby Woods options feel uninspired & generic. I agree with others seeking names of Plants/Animals/Natural Features.

We don't want to regret the renaming of any of these streets, it's fine if we take time to make sure we do it right.

Hikaruchu 8 days ago

I prefer Stonewall Avenue to be changed to Stone Wall Avenue not Rock Wall Road. It will make it easier for our mail to be delivered without interruption. How can you change an avenue to a road?

MSJEB 8 days ago

I live on Ranger Rd and find the recommendation of change to Rambler Rd fine. Our street did not come together as a community to put forward this idea (at least not involving my household!) but, for us, it works and I hope it feels okay for my neighbors. We're also open to other ideas if that's what's preferred.

I think the suggested new names for Plantation Parkway are lacking. They feel generic in Fairfax in a way that I think they will be hard to remember and differentiate. For sure the Fair Woods options is too similar to the condo's proposed road name of Fair Wood Drive. (I am constantly confused by roads in Fair Oaks that all begin with Fair.) I also think this is a great opportunity to move away from Parkway. My recommendations for Plantatain's new name are: Proclamation Dr, Community Dr, or Generation Dr.

Introducing the name Continental for Confederate seems weird, dipping into Revolutionary War history in a neighborhood of Civil War names. If people find Confederate's rename to Union to be problematic, I reassert the idea of American.

Two other Civil War themed names I have previously offered but still feel like helpful ideas for any problematic rename efforts are Treasury and Telegraph. Both are pieces of Civil War era history.

Lee Highway being changed to Main Street sounds super confusing. Does that mean 50 and 263 would both be Main Street?

Thank you to Council for pressing forward and getting these needed street name changes done.

amc 8 days ago

As a resident who must always spell out my long and not easily spelled or pronounced street name, I'd suggest rethinking Blenheim Boulevard! My street name appears in my neighborhood as both "Drive" and "Circle". So, I'd also suggest reconsidering Fair Woods Drive and Fair Woods Parkway as well. Street names have a life beyond a list, where they might seem ok. But mail delivery, directions and the like benefit from clear, easy to spell, easy to pronounce names. "Union" has past connotations and "Grefe" (is that pronounced like grief?) are also, I believe not good choices for the long term. Finally, "Main Street" for Lee Highway. We already have a Main Street, don't we? That portion of 236 that runs through the downtown? Thanks for the opportunity to comment!

DECORSI 8 days ago

It is obvious the Council has already made up their minds and could care less about what its constituents want. A petition was circulated on our street. While our residents were divided in opinion whether or not the name change should occur at all, it was nearly unanimous if the change were to occur, we would be accepting of changing our street name from Stonewall to Stone Wall. Is there any point to responding to these surveys if the majority's opinions are completely disregarded by the City? I feel like I'm wasting my time.

Diane B. 9 days ago

As a Ranger Road resident, it would be great to be more explicitly connected to the other forest/flower/animal themed streets in the surrounding area.
Some ideas:
Robin Rd.
Rain Tree Rd.
Maple Trail
Maple Dr.
Wood Stream Rd.

Thanks for the consideration!

Hsaffoori 9 days ago

Please do NOT rename Plantation Parkway "Fair Woods Parkway" and Mosby Woods Drive "Fair Woods Drive"! The names are just too similar and invite Postal Service delivery problems. I favor renaming Mosby Woods Drive "Fair Woods Drive" and Plantation Parkway "Fairfax Forest Drive".

Cheryl M 9 days ago

I don’t like Main Street or Fairfax Boulevard instead of Lee Highway. I propose Sunset Highway, because twice a year there are several weeks where the sun seems to set directly due west of the highway.

Greg 9 days ago

I agree that Blenheim Boulevard is a mouthful. Wasn't Providence the original name for the town, in 1805? What about Providence highway or Providence Boulevard for a name that reaches back in history

Jay 9 days ago

Old Lee Hwy should be renamed Great Oaks Lane to encapsulate our reputation to be the City of Oaks.

Tbbolton 9 days ago

Wfranz, I agree with your comments. I think we need to get away from anything Civil War related. Wfranz I like this idea of yours"d rather something simpler and more general related to birds, animals, plants, or other features that evoke a sense of our location. " I had suggested Virginia native plant names. I live on Plantation and I'm happy to see it go , but Fair Woods Parkway or Fairfax Forest Drive are just ick. Fair and Fairfax are used to much in the city and county.

MKC 10 days ago

I would agree with the first comment that let's try to avoid past mistakes and also make these street names simpler. Lilac street and Orchard drive seem fine but yes I would not want Blenheim Boulevard for the issues with pronunciation and spelling.

I'm currently on Confederate Lane so I have Union or Continental. I'm not fond of either though yes I'm happy to be rid of Confederate Lane. For Union it feels unnecessarily still connected to the war, let's move past it. Continental is okay but yes I'd rather something simpler and more general related to birds, animals, plants, or other features that evoke a sense of our location. I think on the survey I suggested Sparrow Lane but there are plenty of simple, elegant names to choose from.

I was also very perplexed by the free choice entry survey. Did those survey answers impact this new list in any way? Having completely free choice seemed like an odd way to hold that survey and these new options it is unclear how they relate if at all to those entries. Certainly it will be impossible to make everyone happy, my main hope would be for simple names that evoke the area in which we live and are far removed from the previous naming centered around the war.

wfranz 10 days ago

Please consider a different name for Old Lee Highway. I thought we're trying to not name streets after people?! After all, the house was home to enslaved people and confederate traitors! Honoring this home and its former residents this way would be an embarrassment.

Let's not repeat our mistakes. Suggest names relating to nearby streams (Daniels Run or Accotink) or something else that speaks to the character of the surrounding neighborhoods today. Not another reminder of the civil war and the secessionists.

Additionally, Blenheim Boulevard is not pleasant to say, will result in spelling and pronunciation challenges, and does not represent the future. If "Blenheim" must be kept, please change street name to something that's not alliterative, such as Blenheim Avenue or Blenheim Parkway.

Thank you.

MLD 11 days ago
Page last updated: 18 Nov 2022, 05:45 AM