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Op-Ed: Reston’s Future – A Primer

by RestonNow.com — April 9, 2015 at 11:00 am 60 Comments

Ken Knueven/RAThis is an op-ed by Reston Association Board of Directors President Ken Knueven. It does not represent the opinion of Reston Now.

A lot has been discussed recently in the blogosphere regarding the Reston Association Board’s unanimous decision to send to member referendum the question of borrowing up to $2.65 million for the purchase and renovation of the old Reston Visitors Center and the associated open space on which it sits.

This 3.47 acre parcel is located at the southeast end of Lake Newport and sits between the Association’s Lake Newport tennis court complex on one side, and the cherished park area known as Brown’s Chapel Park on the other.

Here’s why we’re trying to save this building and the open land it sits on:

Ownership of this property would create a contiguous band of 98 acres of Common Area property, parkland and recreational amenities so desperately needed by our growing community.

Development All Around Us

During the past 50 years, Reston has seen substantial growth and expansion and there’s no denying more development is on the way.

We’re all seeing it happen right in front of us. Tower cranes, chopped-up roads, detour signs, and those yellow county sandwich-boards are everywhere, announcing public hearings regarding new development/redevelopment projects.

Just look at the recent efforts already underway: Reston Station, Lake Anne Redevelopment (just across the street from the former Visitors Center), The Harrison Apartments, Reston Heights, Fairway Apartments, Reston Town Center North, the proposed redevelopment of Tall Oaks, and now St. Johns Woods.

Impact

In each instance, the owners/developers are doing everything they can to maximize their property rights — pushing the limits on size and density. This will have an impact on our existing facilities and natural resources.

Our Actions

We have taken steps to ensure our founding principles are upheld, while also striving to maintain a balance of sustainability and progress. We recently passed two Land Use Resolutions in coordination with the County, the Reston Planning & Zoning Committee as well as developers to be involved early in the process — and they’re working.

We are being proactive, having real conversations about impacts to the RA and its member’s properties.

Yet, sometimes we have to take even more proactive steps, championing with fervor, the protection of our open spaces. A good example is the Reston National Golf Course. We are working closely with the dedicated and powerful grass roots efforts of Rescue Reston, providing legal and staff resources to make sure this threat to our community never happens – to the point of purchasing the golf course if necessary, an action fully embraced by Rescue Reston, Reston2020, Reston Citizens Association and members like you and me.

The Old Reston Visitors Center

This brings me to the old Reston Visitors Center. Currently, the Fairfax land designation for this parcel is “convenience center.” This designation envisions that the property will be developed to a mix of convenience, retail, office and personal service uses. The property is zoned to allow office space, with the option to add to the space a two-story building, with an approximately 6,930-square-foot restaurant, having a footprint that could extend 50 feet into Lake Newport.

The latest Reston Comprehensive Plan Phase II identifies the following Vision for the four Reston Convenience Centers:

“Vision — The Sunrise Valley, Lake Newport, Soapstone, and Fairways Convenience Centers will continue to serve as small commercial centers for their respective surrounding neighborhoods.”

Owners and developers will work with their land use attorneys to make sure their property rights can leverage and maximize these designations in this booming Reston market.

This point has already been tested with the Visitors Center. The owner is going to sell the property — and knows his property has significant value in the hands of the right developer.

We see this as the opportunity to step in and do something that is rare these days — add open, green space to our natural resources portfolio.

By purchasing the property, Reston Association members would take total control and ownership of this parcel, protecting it for future generations to come. We would repurpose the property for community and recreation purposes only, providing continuity of ownership and use with the surrounding RA recreational and green space parcels.

By removing the commercial office/restaurant development potential on the site, we will be able to preserve and enhance the existing green space. Further, if acquired, we will plant more trees and shrubs as well as explore the feasibility of increasing green space on the parcel by reducing impervious surfaces (parking) that contribute stormwater water runoff to Lake Anne.

We believe an increase in green space common areas is critical to offset the growth within Reston.

To learn more about this referendum to save the old Visitors Center, visit RA’s information page on the project. In addition, we will be holding a Community meeting, April 21, at 6 p.m. at Brown’s Chapel.

If you want to learn more about our efforts with regard to all of redevelopment/development projects impacting us, please go to the Reston Association Web Site and look under “Development & Future of Reston.”

Something on your mind? Send an op-ed to [email protected] Reston Now reserves the right to edit letters for spelling, style and clarity.

  • Sean

    Not a very compelling argument. I’ll be voting no.

  • FULL TIME BOJANGLER

    Most overused word in RA lexicon is “sustainability”. Please explain in context.

    • Ming the Merciless

      Like “diversity”, it is one of those “good things” whose supposed benefits have never been defined or quantified, but nonetheless Must Never Be Questioned.

    • Rational Reston

      They also like to hide behind the phrase “founding principles” of Dear Leader Bob Simon, which were flawed and are outdated.

      • FULL TIME BOJANGLER

        Right on Rational. I’ve been calling Simon out as a Socialist for a long time.

  • RestonRed

    The protecting against development, and preserving open space argument falls flat in this case. It is such a small area, not in a prime area for development (visibility is awful) and 2 restaurants have already said no to purchase. From what I understand, the landowner has been trying to sell for 10 years, evidently it is not such a hot development property. Also, there is a large Reston Association parking easement on the property, so it is unlikely even moderate development would be able to take place without RA conceding that easement, which they won’t or don’t have to do.
    While protecting open space is important to me as an Reston resident, it is not worth the inflated cost of this Tetra (Visitors Center) property. If the cost of the property were more reasonable and fell in line with its assessment and the fact the landowner has not been able to sell for 10 years, I might be in favor. But if RA goes around saying, we will buy any land you want to develop no matter the cost just to protect the open space, dues will double and triple in the next few years. We cannot afford it.

    • GB

      I generally agree with this. I’m sold on the idea that it’s a desirable property for RA to own. I’d be all for the purchase at a fair price, which I think would be in the $1.5M range. The $2.65M price strikes me as a million-dollar gift to Tetra.

      • Ming the Merciless

        Why do you think RA should own it? There is nothing that anyone could do there that they could not do at some other existing RA facility or at a private facility.

        • JCSuperstar

          I agree, and I also question spending many, many tens of millions of dollars on a golf course. Imagine what the market value for that is going to be. The developers would have to protect a lot of that open space.

    • sally forth

      The RA’s rush to pay the asking price of Tetra’s current owner is egregious. The now-public appraisals for the property show the true value is much less than $2.65 M. To put in a bid on the property without first conducting a thorough building inspection is further evidence of leaping before due diligence was done. The deplorable condition of the building makes continuous expensive maintenance to the building a given. And then to tout reducing parking in favor of planting more vegetation… How does that make sense? How can the building be used without convenient parking? OR is the building’s use really only for LA and N. Pt. residents who can walk there? So much of RA’s ‘plan’ seems short-sighted or ill conceived.

  • Ming the Merciless

    No attempt to address any of the specific criticisms leveled by Farrell or Maynard, among others, just more gassy nonsense.

    By my calculation, 3.47 acres is 0.03% of Reston. But we only paid $2.65 mill to preserve that as green space and deny it to the deveopers. Yaaay!

  • Reston Realist

    This op-ed is worth less than the weekly treatises in all our local newspapers by Del. Ken Plum if that’s possible. Does it have to do with the name “Ken”? Just wondering…

  • ShakingMyHead

    So amazing that when it was the tiny parcel bordering the Lake Anne parking lot the RA land was invaluable, now this is a total rip off? How do you guys figure this?

  • MJay

    I clicked on this link with an open mind. Unfortunately, I was very disappointed to see that he didn’t even offer a cursory response to the notion that RA is paying way too much for the property. Essentially, it sounds like RA is so gung-ho on preserving open space as defined here that RA is wiling to commit more than $1 million of our money beyond what would likely be necessary in any other context to do so. Perhaps that is the real travesty in all this. I welcome the RA board to come back and directly address the overpayment/over-the-barrel aspect.

    • Jim Timmerman

      MJay- years ago I was licensed to sell real estate in Maryland. By definition the market price for property is “what the seller is willing to accept and what the buyer is willing to pay.” Its not an exact science, I’m not sure what you expect them to say. If you think it’s a bad idea you should vote no.

      • Ming the Merciless

        What I’m willing to pay with your money is different from what I’m willing to pay with my money.

        • JCSuperstar

          Ming, what are you willing to pay for the golf course? I haven’t seen one number posted.

          • Ming the Merciless

            Ming commands that the golf course remain undeveloped in case he wishes to park his battlecruiser, and also for the recreational use of the Beast Men of Mongo who live in the nearby Section 8 housing.

          • JCSuperstar

            Sire, please do not vaporize the messenger. But that may require you emptying some of your gold reserves to maintain it as commanded.

          • JCSuperstar

            Mr. Knueven, thank you for jumping into the deep end here. First, I have to ask, is Hooters coming to that spot. Sorry, just adding some levity.

            Thanks for your input. Personally, I still think this property suits proper development, like a restaurant.

          • Ming the Merciless

            The slaves in the asteroid mines will produce all that is needful, or they will feel the sting of the neurolash across their pitiful shoulders.

      • JoeInReston

        By that definition, there is no such thing as over paying for a property. After all, it is what the buyer was willing to pay.

        • Ming the Merciless

          Also, it is what the buyer is able to pay — which is usually limited by what the bank will lend the buyer based on their appraisal of the property. In this case, since the buyer is using Other People’s Money, the sky’s the limit!

  • Terry Maynard

    As Reston 2020 explains ( http://www.reston2020.blogspot.com/2015/04/the-tetra-property-is-already-heavily.html ), the alleged threat of commercial development on the Tetra property–restaurants or convenience center–is virtually non-existent because of over-riding federal, state, and local environmental laws, regulations, and ordinances striving to protect the Chesapeake Bay.

    So why do we need to buy this property for $2.65 million?

    • JCSuperstar

      I’m sorry, who and what is reston2020? I went there and for the life of me, can’t figure out the underlying question — why? Who’s your audience? No comments, no dialogue, no nothing. You trying to be the next Heritage Foundation?

      • Reston Realist

        DId you look at the top of the page, JC? It says, “Reston 2020 is an independent committee of the Reston Citizens
        Association (RCA) dedicated to sustaining Reston’s quality of life
        through excellence in community planning.” In fact, Mr. Maynard was RCA’s representative to the Reston Master Plan Task Force for several years and co-chairman of the Reston 2020 Committee. I think he still runs the blog.

        The blog is open to comments as it says. If you don’t want to comment, that’s fine.

        • JCSuperstar

          I’m sorry, I have no idea what that tag line means. Is that a mission statement? Quality of life? What is the Reston Citizens Association? What do they do? They don’t appear to have any commenters either. WTF

  • Rational Reston

    Sorry Mr. Knueven, this just does not make long term sense. So now it’s “RA is buying this property to maintain greenspace”, before it was “RA is buying this property for recreational usage that’ll make some money”, then it was “RA is buying this property because they don’t want someone else to buy it”.

    Please admit it openly and publicly: RA has ZERO idea of what to do with this property, RA is sitting on a solution (buying the property) and is now searching for a problem to solve with it.

    RA’s story has shifted in the few weeks this has been an issue, this is indicative of a weak long term (and short term) strategy, it’s just an ad hoc activity where RA just throws around our (ever increasing) RA fees.

    Mr. Knueven, I’ll vote NO on this referendum, AND I’ll not vote for any current sitting member of the RA board, and I’ll keep doing so until someone at RA has some actual respect for the money and responsibility of the people of Reston.

    • Ken Knueven

      I’ll do my best to answer your questions and those of other here.

      First know this board voted unanimously to approve the referendum. And most here know, this year’s board is composed of a diverse group of Directors, with many different viewpoints on many different topics – and that’s a wonderful thing to see.
      But on this matter, everyone saw the value of going forward — again unanimously.

      With regard to your points above, regarding the “story” — it has always been the same — to protect and preserve that parcel. Allowing the Members to have complete control over it and use it to satisfy their needs. As is stated in the fact sheet: to protect against future development, to preserve and enhance the existing greenspace. and lastly increase community & recreational use opportunities. They are all interrelated, achieving the ultimate goal of keeping that space in the Members’ natural resources portfolio with total control over how it is used – by the Members.

      This action is no different from the actions we, as a Board, have taken with regard to the Reston National Golf Course — to protect and preserve the open spaces that must remain in our natural resources portfolio.
      With regard to price, here again, this diverse board agreed unanimously that it is a fair price in this market. Folks here may disagree. That’s fair.

      But, know the board, it’s committees and staff have had the opportunity to interact with the public at all of our publicly held meetings as well as discuss the matter individually — face-to-face, through comments sent to RA, and even via phone calls. I can say unequivocally, the comments so far have been positive and very productive.

      This is a choice to be made by the members, not the board.
      Ken

      • Reston Realist

        “But, know the board, it’s committees and staff have had the opportunity
        to interact with the public at all of our publicly held meetings as well
        as discuss the matter individually — face-to-face, through comments
        sent to RA, and even via phone calls.”

        And yet the public didn’t have a chance to see the draft sales contract, the “final” (draft #11??) fact sheet, the appraisal, or the property condition BEFORE the sales contract was signed. So they could not “interact” in an informed manner, just play back the highly spun story laid out by the Board, staff, and counsel at its various meetings and yets still refuse to respond to the requests for information by RA members.

        It may be a way to win a debate and referendum, but it’s not the way to run an HOA and spend other people’s money.

        • Ken Knueven

          The decision was announced at the board meeting on the 23rd of January, witch included the Referendum Schedule, where to get more information and how to provide input. This info was tracked even here, on Reston Now, which has been covering this in great detail.

          • Reston Realist

            Wow, Mr. Knueven, I think you just proved my point.

            As much as I hated to do it, I looked at all the minutes of all the RA Board meetings–regular & working–from July 2014 through the end of the year, and the word “Tetra” does not appear a single time. Not once. Never.

            Then, as you say, “the decision was announced” on January 23, 2015. So what input did Restonians have if this was not discussed–or at least not recorded as being discussed–in the prior six months of RA Board meetings?

            Actually, here’s what the Jan. 23 minutes say about Tetra:

            “G. Proposal for Addition to Reston Association Property – North of the Dulles Toll Road

            “President Ken Knueven gave the following comments:

            “‘Over a year ago, our CEO was approached by the owner of the Tetra property (abutting Brown’s Chapel Park and the Lake Newport Tennis Complex) and a third party regarding the
            possibility of purchasing a portion of the parcel owned by Tetra.

            ‘Recently, the third party dropped out of the discussion and the Association was offered the opportunity to purchase the entire parcel. This evening, staff and legal counsel will present information about the parcel and steps that would be required by the Association if the Board should choose to add this parcel to our Common Area portfolio.

            ‘I would like to turn the floor over to staff and legal counsel.’

            “Senior Director of Parks, Recreation & Community Resources Larry Butler gave a brief overview of the property under consideration for purchase.

            “Land Use Counsel John McBride described the status of the property with regard to Fairfax County’s Comprehensive Plan (Reston Master Plan Phase 2) and proposed uses of the property. Mr. McBride also gave an overview of the potential appraisal process for the property.

            “Chief Financial Officer David Harris presented hypothetical financials related to the purchase of the property.

            “Legal Counsel Ken Chadwick and Chief Executive Officer Cate Fulkerson presented an outline of the Member referendum that would be required in order to purchase the property.

            “President Knueven, seconded by Director Chew, moved to: 1) approve the action of sending the issue of purchasing the Tetra Property located at 11450 Baron Cameron Avenue, Reston, VA 20190 to referendum amongst Reston Association Category A and B Members; 2) adopt the proposed schedule for the conduct of the referendum; 3) appoint Intelliscan as the independent counting agent to receive and tabulate the results of the Tetra Property Purchase referendum; and, 4) authorizes the CEO in coordination with legal counsel, to negotiate a Letter of Intent (LOI) to be reviewed and approved by the Board on during at Special Meeting to be held on Monday, February 9, 2015.

            The motion passed unanimously.”

            There you have it. The RA membership was ambushed in January with a proposal, immediately approved by the Board with no reported questions, answers, or discussion with the RA membership that may have been present, much less a broad RA audience.

            Sure saves a lot of time trying to answer simple straightforward questions, like how much is this going to cost? What are the alternatives to buying the property? Why are we buying the property? etc.

            And, of course, no pertinent documents until after the deal was done. RA members bushwhacked again!

          • Ken Knueven

            You appear to be looking for a smoking gun. I believe the minutes state the facts very well. It was discussed, and as I stated, a very diverse board agreed this matter should be brought to referendum. Again, the Members determine the outcome.

          • Ken Knueven

            You appear to be looking for a smoking gun, and I’m sorry there isn’t one. The minutes state the facts well.

          • Reston Realist

            They do, Mr Knueven, including the ABSENCE of any public discussion of this proposal before it was approved in January by the Board.

            What could be less transparent than that?

      • RestonRed

        Mr. Knueven, simply saying that all members of the RA Board believe it is a fair price and that all support going forward with the referendum lacks respect for RA members. I don’t just accept something because those in power tell me they agree, especially when it is something they are voting to do with my money. Having worked in politics for most of my life, I understand the closing ranks strategy you are employing to make it appear that those who oppose you are not the majority or average RA member. That somehow because all RA Board members are for it, that shows it is the better position. If RA makes it a policy that they will pay basically whatever price it costs to buy space like Tetra, the golf course, etc., you will be ruining the Reston you are trying to protect. The debt will be oppressive and dues will be unmanageable. Vote NO on Tetra!

        • Ken Knueven

          If you like, I’m happy to say – “Based on my own interactions to date with the Community, fellow directors and staff — the input and comments, in my opinion, have been positive and productive.

          Again, the Members will decide this outcome, not the nine people on the board.

      • John Farrell

        Richard Chew voted against the referendum and the fact sheet. So it was not unanimous.

        There has never been a competing offer for the property at or near the agreed purchase price in the last 6 months.

        Nothing compelled the RA Board to spend the money on attorneys fees, the appraisal fees, the inspection fees or the costs of the referendum.

        Nothing compelled the RA Board to engage in the extended withholding of the appraisal, the contract or the inspection report.

        Nothing compelled the RA Board to rush this referendum to a vote in 90 days.

        Nothing compelled the RA Board to refuse to answer questions about this sale at the “District” meetings.

        These were all choices made/tactics employed by a body determined to achieve a predetermined result.

        The refusal to accept responsibility for the choices the RA Board has made is disingenuous, at best.

        • Ken Knueven

          John,

          The referendum was voted on during the board meeting, 23rd of January, and was unanimous. In fact, Richard Chew seconded the motion. Here are the minutes:

          “President Knueven, seconded by Director Chew, moved to: 1) approve the action of sending the issue of purchasing the Tetra Property located at 11450 Baron Cameron Avenue, Reston, VA 20190 to referendum amongst Reston Association Category A and B Members; 2) adopt the proposed schedule for the conduct of the referendum; 3) appoint Intelliscan as the independent counting agent to receive and tabulate the results of the Tetra Property Purchase referendum; and, 4) authorizes the CEO in coordination with legal counsel, to negotiate a Letter of Intent (LOI) to be reviewed and approved by the Board on during at Special Meeting to be held on Monday, February 9, 2015.

          The motion passed unanimously.”

          • John Farrell

            There was a second and final vote on the referendum and face sheet.

            Richard voted no.

          • Ken Knueven

            You are wrong John. Director Chew voted against the Fact Sheet specifically, and voted FOR the conditional contract and to move forward — a unanimous vote.

            See the YouTube video at around 5:05:00:

            https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jqHu0tXqr4w

          • John Farrell

            Different, later vote on contract.

            The motion was on the final wording of the referendum and the fact sheet. The vote was 4-1-2.

          • JCSuperstar

            Wow.

          • Ken Knueven

            As I stated, Director Chew voted against the fact sheet, as it was still not clear enough, in his opinion.

            Director Chew voted FOR the conditional contract to be executed and the referendum move forward — a unanimous vote

          • John Farrell

            He voted against it because as he stated there was no compelling case made to buy the property.

          • Ken Knueven

            John, at the end of the day the facts are clear.
            On the 23rd of January the board voted unanimously to move forward on the referendum.
            On the 26th of March the board voted unanimously to go forward.
            Director Chew could have voted NO on the contract and directing staff to move forward — he did not.

        • John Farrell

          You said that RA was approach to buy the property in 2014.

          Why was that approach not disclosed to the RA membership in 2014 instead of being kept secret until January 2015?

          • Ken Knueven

            John please read the facts:

            “‘Over a year ago, our CEO was approached by the owner of the Tetra property (abutting Brown’s Chapel Park and the Lake Newport Tennis Complex) and a third party regarding the
            possibility of purchasing a portion of the parcel owned by Tetra.

            ‘Recently, the third party dropped out of the discussion and the Association was offered the opportunity to purchase the entire parcel. This evening, staff and legal counsel will present information about the parcel and steps that would be required by the Association if the Board should choose to add this parcel to our Common Area portfolio.”
            As its states, we were approached. It was a three way deal for purchasing a part of the poperty. Not to our liking. So there were NO further conversations until close to January when the third party dropped out. An opportunity now existed to bring to the board.

          • John Farrell

            Now that the quibbly is out of the way, how about answering the question:

            Why wasn’t “the approach by the owner over a year ago” disclosed to the RA membership?

        • JCSuperstar

          Hey everyone, there’s a fight in the cafeteria !!

          • Ken Knueven

            Folks, I’m going to have to call it a day. I have to get back to my day job to-dos before the night is out.

            I welcome this dialogue, and the offer stands to meet with you over a beer or coffee. I’ll try to add more with everyone in the am, until then, have a very “good night.”

            Ken

      • Rational Reston

        Thanks for taking the time to reply, but …

        Sorry, the RA Board is far from diverse in ideas or thinking, every talking point I’ve ever heard or seen from anyone on the RA Board is largely interchangeable with any member. The RA Board plays fast and lose with Reston money and there is little thought effort or creativity to achieving responsibility or efficiency.

        And no, there are many differences between Reston National and Tetra. RA just voted that they liked and supported green spaces. RA never committed to putting Reston MILLIONS of dollars in debt in order to purchase Reston National, though the financial balance sheet of the golf course is considerably more sound than those I’ve seen for the Tetra purchase.

        Here, again, you are hiding behind ‘the principles of Reston’, open space, community, etc. There is no reasonable or rational case for Reston to sink that much money into such a small property WITH NO CLEAR PURPOSE. If RA had a wishlist of capital or strategic projects with solid plans and were simply waiting on a opportunity to make some a reality and the Tetra purchase fit one of those plans, the situation would be different. But largely but what we’ve seen and what we’ve heard is still a solution in search of a problem.

        The RA has had publicly held meetings, which usually happen at what? 6PM, when the RA Board knows fully well that a lot of Reston residents work close into the District, Tysons, or further away. 6PM is a great starting time for a meeting if you held it in 1975, not 2015. The RA Board knows it will only get its choir to show up at these times.

        That problem that needs solving is the RA Board itself.

        • Ken Knueven

          I believe members of this board have many diverse opinions on a large number of topics facing Reston. Just meet and speak with any of them.

          With regard to the Reston National Golf Course, this board stated it will do everything to protect that open space, including its purchase. This is public knowledge. Reston Now has reported on it. This action is fully supported by RCA, Reston2020, Rescue Reston and members like you and me.

          I’m sorry the times of public meetings are not good for you. But know, we publish the agendas a week in advance for you to review, and in most instances you have time to hit those items of interest without sitting through the entire meeting. We also livestream the meetings on YouTube. If you cannot attend a meeting you can easily send your comments to be read for the record, or just call one of us.

          • Rational Reston

            I can only go by what I’ve seen through the media (thanks, RestonNow) and by the publications and RA news releases, you all sound the same to me. Maybe you see many shades of green, I just see green. However, there are no shades of blue, red, grey, etc.

            You’re still comparing apples to oranges with regard to the golf course and the Tetra purchase. The golf course purchase was an idea (a fairly decent one), but never went beyond that, did it? Did RA get the golf course appraised? Did they attempt to secure a loan for the deal? No, I don’t think RA did. It was an idea. The Tetra purchase is an action. Beyond the claim that you make that RA would like to preserve as much RA green space as possible (BTW, why did we tear down all the trees along Snakeden Branch if that’s the case?) the Tetra and Reston National actions by the RA board are miles apart. Or were we mere months away from a Reston National purchase referendum?

            Your comment on the timing of the meetings is EXACTLY the deaf and out of touch tone I’ve come to expect from RA.

          • Ken Knueven

            Well, I guess we will just have to graciously agree to disagree on some things here.

            But, know I welcome you thoughts, and also welcome meeting with you over coffee or a beer if you’d like.

            Ken

          • Rational Reston

            Yes. Thank you for the dialogue.

  • Wings!

    I’ve heard talk of RA buying this property in homes of franchising a Hooters on the lake. I think that is a wonderful idea. #RestonsNeedsHooters

  • Deborah

    This does not address the issues raised in the last Op Ed, such as amount of unusable or water covered land, the parking spaces or area already controlled by RA, the high price of the property, etc. no one was disputing the need for more green space in Reston. I think you missed the point.

  • ConcernedDuesPayer

    Thanks for taking the time to answer questions:
    (1) A selling point of the referendum is that the purchase will create a contiguous band of 98 acres of Common Area property or parkland (inclusive of Fairfax County Baron Cameron Park). The statement seems dis-ingenuous as there already exists pre-purchase a significant band of contiguous greenspace. How many contiguous acres exist without the purchase?

    (2) Adding to the greenspace is a selling point, conditional on RA removing parking lot. The revenue stream is dependent on large ticket wedding events, etc. Is there sufficient parking to support these types of events with and without the reduction of parking spaces?

    (3) A selling point of the referendum is that it will add the potential for increasing the current limited indoor programming spaces. Is there a current need for additional space; ie. are there programs which have been eliminated due to a lack of space? What other alternatives have been considered for adding year-round indoor programming spaces?

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