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Are you ready for Beach Front living inside the Beltway? Planning to purchase a home in Lake Barcroft or anywhere for that matter make certain to use a Buyer Agent so that you have someone representing your best interests. Make sure they have strong negotiating skills and experience.
The lake is a 135-acre man-made reservoir created by a dam in the early 1900s to provide water to the city of Alexandria. The lake and dam were sold to private developers in the late 1940s, and the namesake upper-middle-class residential community was built in the early 1950s.
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The heart of the Lake Barcroft community is, as you might have guessed the privately owned Lake Barcroft itself. Although most of the lakefront property belongs to about 225 individual homeowners, all Lake Barcroft residents — about 1,040 households — have lake privileges and easy access to the water from five sandy beaches.
A wide variety of wildlife lives on or around the lake, including owls, foxes, rabbits, geese, ospreys, great blue herons and more. Throughout the summers, residents gather at the lake for cook-outs, boat races, bonfires and other community events and activities. The Fourth of July means a parade and fireworks.
Some of the original home designs still remain but over the years many homes have been torn down and replaced with more contemporary styles while others have undergone extensive renovation and additions.
Alexandria City Water Company began construction of Lake Barcroft Dam on Holmes Run watershed to create a drinking water reservoir for Alexandria city residents. Construction was completed in 1915, putting a 620 million-gallon reservoir into service. In 1942, the company installed 24 gates at the top of the dam to raise the spillway elevation five feet, increasing the reservoir size to 800 million gallons.
Later in the 1950 period Alexandria began to draw its drinking water from the Occoquan Reservoir. In the early 1950's Barger and Associates began developing the 680 acres into the residential community known as Lake Barcroft. The residents formed a homeowners association called the Lake Barcroft Community Association (LABARCA). In 1970, community residents purchased the lake, dam, and common grounds for $300,000, and established the Barcroft Lake Management Association (BARLAMA).
In 1972, Hurricane Agnes passed over the area. The hurricane caused so much rain that the lake level rose above the top of the dam by 3 feet. The lake overflowed and eroding the western, earthen edges of the dam.
To restore the dam and lake, residents voted to establish the Lake Barcroft Watershed Improvement District (LBWID) to set up a taxing authority to fund repairs. The LBWID is a quasi-governmental entity headed by three state-appointed trustees who are residents of Lake Barcroft. The lake was dry for two years during the early 1970s while the damaged dam was rebuilt. A new gate improved the operation of the dam and is now fully automatic.
The Lake Barcroft Association (LBA) came into being in 1992 when LABARCA and BARLAMA joined up into one private entity. Lake Barcroft has excellent fishing. Largemouth bass, catfish, sunfish and a rare (non-stinging) fresh water jellyfish all inhabit Lake Barcroft. Ospreys, fishing birds of prey, are now on the lake as well. It is an exclusive beach front community inside the beltway in Northern Virginia.
There were 3,589 households with just under 9000 residents as of the 2000 census 26.9% of the households had children under the age of 18 living with them, 56.9% were married couples living together, 7.1% had a female householder with no husband present, and 32.7% were non-families. 26.0% of all households were made up of individuals and 9.1% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.48 and the average family size was 2.97
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