What Happens When the Airport Doesn’t Come to Town?

Burke Center Airplaine

Ask the residents of Burke Centre and they can tell you.  In 1950 the farming community of Burke was the proposed site for Dulles Airport and due to the efforts of the few families that lived in the area at the time the airport plan was derailed and moved to Chantilly where Dulles Airport is today. Even though they fought and won the battle not to build the airport most of the farm homes and land had been purchased and condemned by the government leaving the area virtually deserted.

The area of Burke can trace it's history the same way as most of Fairfax County, by land grant through Lord Fairfax. When distribution of land parcels began in the 1700’s Lord Fairfax gave one parcel to the Ward family. Until this year the original Ward home was used as the Woods Community Center in Burke. Ward’s daughter married Silas Burke who was the plantation manager. Silas Burke worked to become the highest ranking public official in the county and brought the Orange and Alexandria railroad station to the area. Burke Station  as it was originally called played a prominent role in the civil war in the area.  At some point the "Station" was dropped from the name and Burke became the commonly used name for the entire area.

After the Dulles Airport proposal was killed the area of Burke began to develop. Part of the land that had been condemned was turned over to the newly created Fairfax County Park Authority and became Burke Lake Park. You can still find remnants of Burke Centre’s history throughout the area. The Silas Burke House built in 1824, Mulberry Hill built in 1790 and Brimstone Hill are a few of the older homes you will still find standing.

The homes that make up the area known as Burke Centre were built on a 1700 acre parcel of land and with the strong Burke Centre Conservancy retain a great connection with nature. Thirty miles of bike paths, six ponds, a lake residents and five community centers owners can find nature and activities right outside their doors. Terra Centre Elementary School was one of the first earth sheltered schools built in the area and the roof is still used today by students as their athletic field.

Burke Centre Map

With over 5800 homes divided into five distinct neighborhoods: Landing, Woods, Oaks, Commons and Ponds; Burke Centre is one of the largest planned communities in Fairfax County. With the Burke Station VRE, Metro Bus transportation and major highways close by Burke Centre is a popular location for Northern Virginia homeowners who work in DC. Since the first homes were built in Burke in 1976 the area has also been popular with military families stationed at Ft.Belvoir, the Pentagon and Military District of Washington installations.



Cindy Jones


As an Associate Broker with RE/MAX Allegiance in Northern Virginia and native of the area I can assist you whether you are buying, selling or renting a home anywhere in Northern Virginia. For more information about the area or my services you can check VaRealEstateTalk or my Northern Virginia website.

Search all homes available in the Northern Virginia area.



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If you are interested in learning more about the Northern Virginia Real Estate market including Alexandria, Arlington, Fairfax and Prince William Counties give Cindy Jones and Integrity Real Estate Group a call at 703-346-2213.

Military Relocation Specialist serving military families relocating to and from the Pentagon, Fort Belvoir, Quantico MCB and all of the Military District of Washington installations. 

Military Relocation Professional

Check out www.varealestatetalk.com and www.cjrealtygroup.com for more information.

Integrity Real Estate Group
Real People*Real Life*Real Estate

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Comment balloon 6 commentsCindy Jones • December 16 2007 10:23PM


This is all very interesting. Thanks for sharing with us all. All the best for a great holiday season and good 2008.
Posted by Bob & Carolin Benjamin, East Phoenix Arizona Homes (Benjamin Realty LLC) over 11 years ago
Thank you and Happy Holidays to you as well.
Posted by Cindy Jones, Pentagon, Fort Belvoir & Quantico Real Estate News (Integrity Real Estate Group) over 11 years ago
News to me...I had no idea that Dulles was originally planned for Burke.  It is amazing how people supporting their community can make such a lasting affect.
Posted by Chelle Gassan, NOVA Realtor and Stager (RE/MAX Regency and Staged Homes VA) over 11 years ago
Chelle- One of the nice things about being a native of the area is that I've watched places like Burke grow from the ground up.  I used to board my horse on the property that is now going to be a new Fairfax County library.  When I bought my first house in the area in 1981 my parents thought I was crazy for moving "all the way out there".  Of course when we moved to Springfield in the mid-50's their friends thought they were crazy for doing the same thing.  Life goes in funny circles sometimes.
Posted by Cindy Jones, Pentagon, Fort Belvoir & Quantico Real Estate News (Integrity Real Estate Group) over 11 years ago
Cindy-I moved here in the early 80's when Chantilly was the "country"and went to Chantilly HS-aka Redneck High...not anymore.  This area is amazing to watch grow.  I also remember when Rt. 28 was a two lane road to Dulles Airport.  Since moving "way out" to Bristow, 6 years ago, I have watched our area have no stoplights, to now having more than I can count.  It just goes to show that real estate keeps evolving in this great metro area.
Posted by Chelle Gassan, NOVA Realtor and Stager (RE/MAX Regency and Staged Homes VA) over 11 years ago
Land anywhere near Dulles is a premium!   Beautiful country!   We are faced with a situation sort of similar in that we are trying to get a Light Rail system into Hawaii (Oahu).   The by product of all this is condemnation of land and planned communities.   If everything goes as planned now, the very life style of those of us who choose to live on Oahu will be changed.   
Posted by Kai Lani, RE/MAX (RE/MAX Kai Lani) over 11 years ago

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