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Reston Association Starts Process to Add 540-Unit Building

by Karen Goff — March 30, 2015 at 4:30 pm 18 Comments

Comstock's BLVD Apartments

Reston Association has begun the process of adding the 450-unit BLVD apartments to the association.

RA’s Board of Directors voted at its regular meeting on March 26 to undertake the necessary steps to add the 450-unit luxury high rise currently under construction above the Reston Station parking garage adjacent to the Wiehle-Reston East Metro.

BLVD, which will have one-, two- and three-bedroom units, is expected to begin leasing later this year.

Under RA Bylaws, properties can be added to the association with written consent of fee simple owner (in this case, Comstock Properties) and a two-thirds vote of BOD, said RA CEO Cate Fulkerson.

“Before submitted to deed, the board must give notice to members and conduct public hearings,” she said.

The Board of Directors passed a motion several years ago to make adding new construction in Restona priority for the association. Properties within Reston Town Center are not in RA territory. New buildings such as The Harrison, which recently opened on Reston Parkway, and BLVD, as well as planned new and replacement construction at the Crescent Apartments site, are slated to be RA members.

The RA board will vote on the BLVD process on April 15. There will be public hearings on May 28 and June 25, with a final vote by the board in June.

  • Greg

    If added, will Comstock Properties pay the same per apartment as other RA member properties? In better words, what is the RA assessment per apartment?

    • Adam Petersen

      I sure hope it is the same as everyone else. I owned a condo for 12 years and lived by myself and had to pay the same amount as large houses with multiple residents.

      • Ming the Merciless

        Far as I can tell the RA doesn’t provide anything more for detached home owners than it does for condo/townhouse owners. The RA dues maintain RA common areas that SFH and condo owners alike both use. Therefore, condo and SFH owners should pay the same RA fee.

        • Greg

          That’s the same argument used to defeat the ad valorem piece of the bylaw restatement effort. One could argue that the RA provides MORE services to clusters and condos in that it has an outreach coordinator specifically for clusters and condos; it holds an annual contractor showcase (but can’t seem to facilitate bulk purchase agreements or even simple discounts for things that all clusters and condos use every day); and it conducts periodic wholesale cluster inspections, especially on some of the dumpier south Reston complexes. Value added is a matter of opinion, but the cluster coordinator’s communications are intermittent and offer no added value.

          • John Lovaas

            I say hats off to the RA Board for bringing Comstock BLVD and Harrison into the fold. The new residents will now contribute to the facilities and services they most assuredly will be using! Keep it up!

    • Karen Goff

      I am pretty sure it is the same for all RA members, unless you get a small break for low-income. Any apartment renters want to chime in to confirm?

      • Greg

        I found this tidbit on the RA website:

        2014 Annual Assessment Rates
        1. General Annual Rate $634 per/Lot/Unit
        2. Federally or State Subsidized Unit Rate $624 per Unit
        3. Elderly Housing Rate $624 per Unit
        4. Fairfax County Tax Reduction Rate $285 per Lot/Unit

        https://www.reston.org/LinkClick.aspx?fileticket=ijuJgPhIjdY%3d&tabid=225&portalid=3&mid=2607

        • Karen Goff

          Yes. that is pretty much what I just said. “Small break” = 10 bucks. Unless you are low income or elderly, rates are uniform. The vast majority of units in reston pay $634, and this is a luxury building, so doubtful there will be many low income residents.

          • JCSuperstar

            I’m actually shocked Comstock is willing to join. As I recall, entities within the old RCIG are not a part of the Reston Deed, hence they are not subject to the bylaws and do not have to belong.

          • Greg

            Follow the money. Always.

          • Reston Realist

            At the time, Comstock was agreeing to almost anything that didn’t cost them any money to get the highly profitable deal (mid-decade boom, remember?) with the County to build this and other over-sized buildings (hotel, 3 office bldgs) there. So what if their residents pay more?
            I doubt other ex-RCIG developers will be so willing in a more competitive residential market.

          • Greg

            Do the bylaws address being removed from the RA?

            Also, those are 2014 rates. 2015 is $642. That $100k website update is already outdated?

  • vdiv

    So with the new 450 units paying $642 per year each it will take 10 years for the RA to collect enough revenue to pay for the Tetra property. Add TVM and the time gets longer, a lot longer.

  • east297

    Looking fwd to leaving Reston….not the place it used to be. Must have caught the bureaucracy bug from Fairfax Co!

  • LeftPolitico

    At last week’s RA Board meeting, Cate Fulkerson (or Ken Kneuven) said that RA is “negotiating” with Comstock. Could they be considering trying to find a way to charge Comstock less than the $642 per unit listed in the other comments? Would that be legal? What ramifications would that have for future additions to RA membership?

    • Karen Goff

      That is a good question. Yes, part of the official language negotiating. The final result remains to be seen.

      • JCSuperstar

        I go back to my original question: Why would Comstock pay anything to Reston Association?

        They don’t have any obligation to do so, as everyone in the RCIG corridor is not subject to the RA Deed. The Fairfax County Park Authority takes all the dollars.

        • byron

          Comstock did agree in their proffer statement with the county to “negotiate in good faith” with RA about the building becoming part of RA.

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