Today was a sad day for friends of the reservoir, all hopes for open access were dashed. Loudoun Water held their first board of directors meeting since the April 22 announcement. Three individuals approached the board with comments about the reservoir closure. After the comments session closed, Chairman Rocca filled the group in on the closure.
According to Mr. Rocca, Loudoun Water has already spent 30 million to acquire the property and is going to be spending another 15 million over the next five years for upgrades to the reservoir. During the upgrade process, the reservoir will be completely drained. Mr. Rocca also stated that he personally ordered the reservoir closed. The five year figure is up from the four quoted in the April 22 article.
Board member Hobie Mitchel asked if the reservoir was completely closed to the public. Mr. Rocca responded that it was and signs had been posted.
Liability was cited as reason several times as to why the public was not able to use the facility. Mr. Rocca mentioned that LW did not enjoy sovereign immunity and that council had told him that access needed to be closed.
The only glimmer of hope that Mr. Rocca left was that he was willing to entertain organizations requesting access on a case by case basis.
Prior to the Feb 6 statement by Fred Jennings, that access would remain open, it appears there was discussion about leasing the reservoir for recreational purposes. This is from the Dec 2013 meeting minutes.
Today Loudoun Water completed the purchase of all Loudoun based water assets from Fairfax, this includes the reservoir, water treatment plant and pipeline along the W&OD. Funding was provided by water rate increase in 2012.