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By Bill Freehling
Regional jobless rate at 5 percent in Dec.
The Fredericksburg area's jobless rate was 5 percent in December, according to Virginia Employment Commission data released Wednesday.
That was down from 5.6 percent in December 2011. The region continues to have one of the lowest jobless rates in Virginia, whose 5.4 percent rate in December was tied for 11th-best in the nation.
The city of Fredericksburg had the region's highest jobless rate in December at 7.8 percent.
Stafford apartments will be redeveloped
A preliminary subdivision plan was filed this month for the redevelopment of the Fox Chase Apartments property in Stafford County.
Plans for Fox Chase Commons call for 99 townhouses to be built on the 9-acre parcel on the east side of U.S. 1 across from Drew Middle School.
The property now holds 14 buildings totaling 46 apartment units. Those structures would be demolished to make way for the new townhouses.
The applicant is Paul-Noel Chretien of Fox Chase Apartments LLC in McLean.
Chretien said the townhouses probably won't be built until 2015 at the earliest, but he wanted to start the long county approval process now so the project will be ready for development when the market improves.
He said the plan is to eventually sell the property to a home builder, but no deals have been lined up yet. Existing tenants at the apartment complex have been informed about the plans.