Laurel Hill was the site of a prison commissioned by Theodore Roosevelt for the District of Columbia as a city jail and model for a Progressive-Era correctional facility. Over the years, as Lorton Prison grew to accommodate over 8,000 inmates and practices within the field of corrections changed, the appearance of the facility changed as well. By the mid-1980s, the Lorton complex consisted of four separate prisons and over a million square feet of space for male and female offenders. Today, amidst all the changes that have taken place, the colonial-style courtyards and arcades built by Lorton inmates from handmade bricks commemorate a rich and diverse history that has inspired the planning for the new park.
Planning began several years ago for an equestrian facility at the former Lorton Prison site presently owned by the Fairfax County Park Authority. With its scenic vistas, access to trails, and history of agriculture and animal husbandry, Laurel Hill Park offers the perfect location for an Equestrian Center. The facility will be developed where the old Prison Dairy was located.
Planning for the Laurel Hill Park is continuing in several different directions. Significant progress is being made toward development of new features at Laurel Hill Park. The Fairfax County Park Authority and the Fairfax County Park Foundation signed an agreement to cooperate with Fairfax4Horses to develop plans for a new Equestrian Center at the former Dairy Farm site. Fairfax4Horses is currently conducting a fund raising campaign and providing their expertise in the facility planning efforts.
Help preserve the equestrian heritage ofFairfax County and provide a unique recreational activity for all county residents..