July 10, 2020
FEDERAL PUBLIC NOTICE
The District Commander has received a joint application for Federal and State permits as described below:
Digital Western Lands LLC
Attn: Mr. David Lucey
Four Embarcadero Center, Suite 3200
San Francisco, CA 94111
WATERWAY AND LOCATION OF THE PROPOSED WORK: The project is located within the Stallion Branch watershed, on an approximately 433 acre parcel southeast of the intersection of Old Ox Road (Route 606) and Beaver Meadow Road (Route 614) in Loudoun County, Virginia.
PROPOSED WORK AND PURPOSE: The applicant proposes to construct a large scale, phased, data center campus and substations at the subject location. The project is called Digital Dulles and will impact 4.91 acres of palustrine forested wetlands (PFO), 0.56 acres of palustrine scrub/shrub wetlands (PSS) and 0.1.51 acre of palustrine emergent wetlands (PEM) and 420 linear feet of stream channels. The impacts are associated with eleven, two-story buildings and associated infrastructure. The proposed activity will avoid and minimize impacts to the maximum extent practicable and mitigation for all impacts will be provided by credit purchase from approved wetland and stream banks or the Virginia Aquatic Restoration Trust Fund.
In addition to the required Department of the Army permit, the applicant must obtain a Virginia Water Protection Permit from the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) assuring that applicable laws and regulations pertaining to water quality are not violated. A Vicinity Map and Project drawings are attached and the Joint Permit Application can be found on the Virginia Marine Resources Commission website at:
AUTHORITY: Permits are required pursuant to Sections 401 and 404 of the Clean Water Act (Public Law 95-217) and Title 62.1 of the Code of Virginia.
FEDERAL EVALUATION OF APPLICATION: The decision whether to issue a permit will be based on an evaluation of the probable impact including cumulative impacts of the proposed activity on the public interest. The decision will reflect the national concern for both protection and utilization of important resources. The benefits which reasonably may be expected from the proposal must be balanced against its reasonably foreseeable detriments. All of the proposal's relevant factors will be considered, including conservation, economics, aesthetics, general environmental concerns, wetlands, cultural values, fish and wildlife values, flood hazards, flood plain values, land use, navigation, shoreline erosion and accretion, recreation, water supply and conservation, water quality, energy needs, safety, food and fiber production, mineral needs, consideration of property ownership and, in general, the needs and welfare of the people. The Environmental Protection Agency's "Guidelines for Specification of Disposal Sites for Dredged or Fill Material" will also be applied (Section 404(b)(1) of the Clean Water Act).
The Corps of Engineers is soliciting comments from the public; Federal, state, and local agencies and officials; Indian Tribes; and other interested parties in order to consider and evaluate the direct, indirect, and cumulative impacts of this proposed activity. Any comments received will be considered by the Corps of Engineers to determine whether to issue, modify, condition or deny a permit for this proposal. To make this decision, comments are used to assess impacts on endangered species, historic properties, water quality, general environmental effects, and the other public interest factors listed above. Comments are used in the preparation of an Environmental Assessment and/or an Environmental Impact Statement pursuant to the National Environmental Policy Act. Comments are also used to determine the need for a public hearing and to determine the overall public interest of the proposed activity. Anyone may request a public hearing to consider this permit application by writing to the District Commander within 30 days of the date of this notice, stating specific reasons for holding the public hearing. The District Commander will then decide if a hearing should be held.
Preliminary review indicates that: (1) no environmental impact statement will be required; (2) after conducting the NAO ESA Project Review Process, the Northern Long Eared Bat may be affected, but the 4(d) key was completed and no further coordination with the Fish and Wildlife Service is required; and (3) no known properties eligible for inclusion or included in the National Register of Historic Places are near the permit area. The Permit Area and Area of Potential Effects consists of the entire parcel. Additional information might change any of these findings.
COMMENT PERIOD: Comments on this project should be in writing and can be sent by either email to firstname.lastname@example.org, or by regular mail, addressed to the Norfolk District, Corps of Engineers, Northern Virginia Field Office, 18139 Triangle Plaza, Suite 213, Dumfries, Virginia 22026, and should be received by the close of business on August 11, 2020.
PRIVACY & CONFIDENTIALITY: Comments and information, including the identity of the submitter, submitted in response to this Public Notice may be disclosed, reproduced, and distributed at the discretion of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Information that is submitted in connection with this Public Notice cannot be maintained as confidential by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Submissions should not include any information that the submitter seeks to preserve as confidential.
If you have any questions about this project or the permit process, contact Mr. Ron Stouffer at 757-201-7124 or by email at the address above.