Reston Association hopes to start the process soon for for two artificial turf soccer fields — paid for by Reston Soccer — to be installed at RA’s Lake Newport Soccer fields.
The implementation of the estimated $2.4 million plan depends on many factors, including a member referendum under RA bylaws.
According to the Reston Deed, if the Board of Directors wishes to make a single capital addition, alteration or improvement to the Common Area that costs more than $369,000, there must be a referendum. A 10 percent turnout is necessary for a quorum, with 51 percent of those votes needed to pass the referendum.
The RA Board will vote at its meeting Thursday on a timeline that includes:
- Gathering input from RA groups, including the Parks & Recreation Advisory Committee, Environmental Advisory Committee, Design Review Board (21 day Notice Requirements to adjacent neighbors/cluster apply to DRB information session) and Fiscal Committee this fall/winter. The groups will report their opinions to RA by January. The Fiscal Committee will also formulate a five-year cost analysis.
- The Board Operations Committee will draft non-Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) that will form the basis of a 20-year agreement between Reston Association and Reston Soccer Association regarding the use and maintenance of the synthetic turf fields.
- RA will hold public hearings on the proposed referendum question, fact sheet and MOU in mid-January and February.
- In late February, the board would decide whether to move forward with a member referendum. The referendum would take place in March and close April 3.
Reston Soccer first approached RA about the partnership in July. Reston Soccer President Robert Anguizola said the sports group is not looking for RA money for the project.
“In a referendum, we would ask ‘Does community want this amenity? Yes or No. If the answer is yes, then we would go fundraise,” he said. “What we would ask, if we donate the money, then we want promise we can use it. You would end up having surplus time [to rent it for] other uses and sports.”
Lake Newport is the most suitable place in Reston on which to build the turf fields, Anguizola has said. Virginia laws prohibit a public-private partnership on a Fairfax County Park Authority field (such as at Lake Fairfax Park or at Baron Cameron Park) with special requests for usage. Also, Lake Newport is the only RA field complex with two fields, as well as space for other potential amenities such as the clubhouse or a tot lot.
Adding turf and lights would add 191 extra field hours (assuming lights could be on until 8:30 p.m.) per season, plus an additional 550 hours in what is now the offseason, said Anguizola.
Anguizola says the organization would use organic material and not tire crumb rubber for the turf surface.
The RA Board was receptive to the idea at previous meetings.