Cross School Road Residents Aim to Stop Installation of Large Street Lights

Light poles on Cross School Road

A group of Reston homeowners will meet with Hunter Mill Supervisor Cathy Hudgins Wednesday to voice their concerns about new street lights lining Cross School Road.

Four of 10 planned light poles were installed two weeks ago as part of the renovation project at Sunrise Valley Elementary School. A Fairfax County Department of Public Works and Environmental Services spokesman says the lighting is standard for all county redevelopment, including schools.

“There is increased need for lighting for pedestrian safety at elementary schools,” said DPWES spokesman Matthew Kaiser.

But the powerful lights — similar to what are installed along the Dulles Toll Road — are directly across from single-family homes on Cross School Road, and that is a bit too much lighting, residents say.

“The lights they’ve installed on this very short stretch of road between Sunrise Valley and Midsummer are in addition to several lights the county has already installed at the school — which is now very well lit,” said Cross School resident Roberta Gosling in a letter to neighbors. “As a result of multiple phone calls from the neighbors to both the county and to Cathy Hudgins’ office, when Dominion showed up to install the remaining six [of 10] lights, they got a call to put the project on hold.”

Gosling said the residents are working to have the four lights removed and the project halted. 

“We really do not understand why these lights are being installed in the first place — especially since they are industrial lights in a residential neighborhood. We believe the county has not followed its own processes on this issue,” she wrote.

The lights are powerful, between 14,000 – 18,000 lumens, said Gosling. She added that neighbors had no notice that the lights were going into place.

“For many of us, these lights, once hooked up, will shine directly into our master bedrooms,” she said. “The limited number of neighbors I’ve spoken with along the directly impacted area believe NO lights should be installed.”

“From a safety standpoint the school is very well lit and houses along that stretch generate ambient light. We also believe that a waiver can be issued to stop the installation of these lights if there is a reason the county believes they need to be installed.”

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