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Sunrise Valley Drive Continues March Toward New Development

by Karen Goff — July 29, 2016 at 10:30 am 12 Comments

Rendering of RP 11720 Sunrise Valley/Fairfax County

Just days after the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors approved a controversial residential development on the site of the former American Press Institute building, the Fairfax County Planning Commission reviewed an application from the same owner for 54 townhomes a few feet away.

Office building at 11720 Sunrise Valley Dr.RP 11720, LLC, part of Rooney Properties (which also owns the API building), plans to tear down a 30-year old office building at Sunrise Valley Drive and Roland Clarke Place to build the urban-style homes.

The commission expressed concerns Thursday about parking, both in everyday and in special situations. Among the concerns: is 19 feet wide enough for garages, which are planned for the four-story townhouses? And where will delivery trucks go when servicing the units that front Sunrise Valley Drive?

The developers believe that width is sufficient for garages and planning staff says the delivery may have to block someone’s driveway.

Parking, transportation demand management (TDM) contributions and money to the Fairfax County Park Authority also came up as issues at Thursday’s public hearing, so the commission deferred decision on the project until Sept. 24.

Developer representatives said they did not include TDM because of the low-density estimate for the new neighborhood but they are willing to work with developers towards that if it is a development condition.

The parcel is at 11720 Sunrise Valley Dr., just west of the Mercer Condos, (part of JBG’s Reston Heights) and right across Roland Clarke Place from the American Press Institute property, where 34 townhouses and 10 condominiums are planned.

The property also sits across from Reston National Golf Course, which has fended off redevelopment for now.

The development would include a quarter-acre pocket park to the north of the proposed private street, which is designed to include public art, sidewalks, signage, bike racks, benches, light poles and landscaping, according to the application.

The applicant also proposes a pedestrian walkway that transverses the property north to south to provide a pedestrian connection through the development to the pocket park and to the trail and cycle track along Sunrise Valley Drive.

The developer is proposing a $151,160 proffer contribution to the Fairfax County Park Authority for the construction and maintenance of athletic fields of $151,600. The park authority has requested $260,752, based on the calculation of $1.72 per square foot of gross floor area.

Lori Greenlief of Mcguire Woods, speaking for the developer, said they think that amount is sufficient since residents would also be full Reston Association members with access to RA recreational facilities.

Photos – Top, rendering of new townhouses/Credit: Fairfax County; Bottom: current office building at 11720 Sunrise Valley Drive/Reston Now file.

  • Chuck Morningwood

    Development: taking the green out of Reston, one building at a time.

  • Waterlogged

    Time to fire the architect. Who keeps designing this residential garbage. After all the years of good town-home/cluster architecture we are now turning into Arlington.

    • GreenVillage

      Many Reston clusters have significant setbacks and tree/landscaped buffers from main roads. This would be a departure from that.

  • Chuck Morningwood

    I was just over at Popeye’s. That Vaj construction is going to make it impossible to get back in there for lunch.

    • Greg

      The owner sells about a million bucks worth of fried chicken annually from a building worth about the same amount. When the property value triples, my bet is he will sell.

  • Greg

    Surely the cubist building is a heritage landmark, no?

  • It is approved and going forward…..no point in discussing it any more it is coming and it is consistent with the Reston plan.

    • Ken Perkal

      Screw you.. James Wade Golley.

    • Ken Perkal

      It’s crap. Bad design. Epic Fail. Bad for Reston.

  • Waitwhat

    How will we ever evacuate when the zombie apocalypse begins?

  • Arielle in NoVA

    Of course the developer doesn’t want to pay what they need to. Of course they want to squish people in more than they should. Of course their concern isn’t with maintenance, emergency access, or bus access (school or public transit). But they should have to address these issues to Reston’s satisfaction and to make it so kids in those neighborhoods don’t have to wait for the bus on Sunrise Valley Drive itself.

    PS – another nice building down the drain 😛

  • Ken Perkal

    Ugly townhouses for 2017 architectural standards and details. They look like a 1980’s design.gsrages too narrow??? What a sham. developer is cheap. Prices marked at $850k + who are they kidding? Right next to the Toll 267 Road.. these will sit empty, bad design, bad for Reston.

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