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by Dave Emke — May 19, 2017 at 5:00 pm 74 Comments

Following a community meeting last month regarding the potential addition of bike lanes to Glade Drive, the Fairfax County Department of Transportation has decided not to go forward with that possibility.

“We obviously heard from the community along Glade about their preference for parking, and that helped to drive our decision,” said Adam Lind, FCDOT’s Bike Program manager, Friday morning. “We’re not going to take any parking; we’re sticking with just sharrows.”

A shared-lane marking, or sharrow, is painted in a travel lane to show where bicycles may be on the road and what direction they should be traveling. Lanes remain the same width, as does space for cars to park.

Some residents had expressed concern that if bike lanes were added to Glade Drive, the subsequent removal of street parking would cause problems with overflow parking at Glade Pool, Walker Nature Center, the Quartermaster Soccer Field and other locations along the road.

In another community meeting in March, Lind presented possibilities for bike lanes on Colts Neck Road, North Shore Drive and Twin Branches Road. In regard to those plans, Lind said:

  • bike lanes will be added in both directions on Colts Neck Road, along with a road diet
  • there will be a bike lane in one direction and sharrows in the other along North Shore Drive, with the location of each alternating “depending on the section of the street”
  • bike lanes will be added in both directions on Twin Branches Road

“No major alterations [from what was presented],” Lind said. “Most of the tweaks have been local comments about specific items — [such as] where we’re looking to shift the double yellow to give more room for people to pass when there’s parking along a road.”

At March’s meeting, a number of residents were particularly concerned about the proposal for the road diet on Colts Neck Road, which will take the road from four lanes of vehicle traffic to two between Glade Drive and South Lakes Drive.

Bicycle riders responded by saying Colts Neck Road is particularly dangerous for them and for pedestrians as well. The road diet could also allow for the addition of a crosswalk. Lind also said it is not believed the diet will have a major adverse effect on vehicle traffic. In a presentation during the March meeting, Lind said roads with traffic less than 20,000 cars per day don’t require four travel lanes, and a traffic count showed less than half that on Colts Neck Road. Those cars will be slowed by the diet and safety will be increased, Lind said.

Residents argued, however, that the road is a major “cut-through” during rush-hour times when traffic is backed up on Fairfax County Parkway, and that the road diet would cause additional traffic delays specifically during those times. According to a recent study, less than 1/2 of 1 percent of Fairfax County commuters bike to work — an amount some residents said is not worth potentially causing daily bottlenecking of cars. Possible safety hazards that could be presented by a center left-turn lane were also raised by citizens.

Repaving and re-striping will be conducted by the Virginia Department of Transportation after school lets out for the summer, Lind said. Further details will be provided on VDOT’s paving program website.

Anyone seeking additional information can request it by emailing [email protected].

Let us know what you think below:

File photo at top from Glade Drive community meeting April 27. Map of Colts Neck Road redesign via Fairfax County Department of Transportation.

by RestonNow.com — May 19, 2017 at 4:00 pm 5 Comments

In the Design Studio with Anna banner

This is a sponsored post by Anna Gibson, owner of AKG Design Studio and an award-winning, certified kitchen and bathroom designer. AKG Design Studio is a boutique design firm specializing in kitchen, bathroom designs and cabinetry sales. Earlier this week, AKG was honored with a first-place award for Best Kitchen Design Firm in Virginia Living’s Best of Virginia 2017 edition. Contact Anna at 571-989-2541 or [email protected], and follow her work on HouzzPinterestFacebook and Twitter.

Like fine wine and cheese, pairing countertops and tile is an art of mix and match!

But which comes first? The chicken or the egg — I mean, the countertop or the backsplash?

While most homeowners are set on their cabinets style and colors, things get a little dicey when it comes to selecting countertops and backsplash. It seems the possibilities are endless and there are insane amount of combinations and materials.

First things first, let’s have a quick look at the counters and backsplash options (really fast!)

Countertop: If you think counter, the first thing that comes to mind is granite. Yes, granite is fantastic but there are some many other options out there — wood (butcher blocks), stainless steel, concrete, recycled glass, marble, quartz, manmade quartz, Formica, Corian, and did I say recycled-paper countertops? Yes, it’s a thing!

No matter what your life style, design taste or budget, there is a counter top for you.

Backsplash: The word “tile” became so broad in recent years that we no longer just talk about ceramic. Tiles for backsplash are made from porcelain, glass, recycled glass, stainless steel, salvage wood, wallpaper (yes, it’s making a big comeback!), mirror, concrete and much more. I think you get the point! If there is a material out there, it can be made into backsplash.

So how do you pair the two? Here are four ways to choose:

Pick the countertop first: Since you can’t function without a countertop (backsplash can always wait), focus on the counters first. Consider the durability of the stone compared to your lifestyle — how often do you cook, and what other activities are taking place on the counters? After deciding on function, figure out form. Do you like big veins or clean lines? Which pattern will work with your overall design style? No matter what, after collecting a lot (we know you did!) of small samples, make sure to visit the fabricators to see the full slab, so you can see all the variations of the piece.

Pick the tile first: After running around looking for cabinets and pinning ideas galore, you know that this tile is your must-have! This is the pop of color that you need in your life, or the statement piece for your kitchen. In the case of the customer in the photo below, they fell in love with this recycled skateboard backsplash, which made the selections for the countertops revolve around the fantastic colors of the skateboard. They narrowed it down to quartz, to have a muted countertop that let the backsplash shine.

Pick the same materials: Tile countertop is an option most people avoid it, preferring not to have grout lines on the counter. However, you can run your solid surface up to the cabinets. You will no longer need to match another material and it works for a large or a smaller space alike. You can run it all the way to the cabinets, or save some cost and just go with 4 inches high and paint the rest.

Phone a friend: Still not sure what will work best for you project? Here is your last option: Hire a pro! If you just can’t make a decision to save your life, are having hard time seeing the full picture, or are just lost between slabs of countertops, it is best to hire a designer to help you chop down the selections, offer pairings that work and give you your weekends back!

Tell us: Love your countertop and backsplash combination? Please post a photo in the comments section below and share the details.

by Dave Emke — May 19, 2017 at 3:15 pm 12 Comments

(This article was edited at 4:45 p.m. with comment from Wegmans.)

Upscale grocery store Wegmans is looking to expand into Reston, the Washington Business Journal reports.

According to the report, sources tell the WBJ that the Western New York-based chain is looking at a 23-acre property on Association Drive, near the intersection of Sunrise Valley Drive and Soapstone Drive. The several owners who own pieces of the property have banded together to offer the assemblage for sale, the WBJ previously reported.

That location is only about a half-mile west of the Wiehle-Reston East Metro station, in an area that is seeing a huge amount of residential and retail development.

There are more than 90 Wegmans stores in six states, ranging from Massachusetts to Virginia. The nearest current locations are in Sterling (Dulles 28 Center) and Fairfax.

Among factors that may burden any deal for the property is the planned Soapstone Connector, which would cut through the property. The grocery chain is also considering property close to the future Herndon Metro station at Fairfax County Parkway, according to the report.

Wegmans requires a large footprint — approximately 15 acres — for one of its stores.

In response to an inquiry from Reston Now regarding the report, Wegmans media relations coordinator Valerie Fox said the following:

On our website is a list of sites where we have announced plans to build a store. There are always many rumors about other new sites, but we don’t comment on rumors or speculation. We open just three or four stores each year and our new store growth is concentrated in the northeast and mid-Atlantic regions.”

The site shows two future locations in Fairfax County:

  • A Chantilly location, at Route 28 and Westfields Boulevard, is scheduled for a 2018 opening
  • A Tysons location, near I-495 at Route 123, is listed as a “future site”

by RestonNow.com — May 19, 2017 at 2:45 pm 0

The big event this weekend is the Northern Virginia Fine Arts Festival, which will bring tens of thousands to Reston Town Center  beginning tonight. The kickoff party is from 6-9 p.m. tonight; tickets are $50. The event itself is the next two days, with admission a $5 suggested donation for adults. It will run from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday.

But there is plenty else going on in the area this weekend too. Here is just a sampling of what’s available to you, your family and friends in the coming days:

  • Reston’s Relay for Life event will begin at 1 p.m. Saturday at South Lakes High School (11400 South Lakes Drive). The luminaria ceremony is set for 9 p.m. Saturday, with the event to continue through the night and wrap up at 7 a.m. Sunday.
  • The Reston Farmers Market will take place from 8 a.m. to noon Saturday at Lake Anne Village Center. The Pink Armoire Fashion Truck will be in attendance this week.
  • Lake Anne is also hosting Sunday Yoga on the Plaza each week, at 9:30 a.m.
  • Radcliffe Bailey: The Great Dismal Swamp” remains on display at Greater Reston Arts Center (12001 Market St.) through August.
  • The Habitat Heroes program seeks volunteers to cut back the large invasive bush honeysuckle that has taken over the field edge at Sunrise Valley Rec Area (10805 Oldfield Drive), Saturday from 10 a.m. to noon.
  • There will be a bird walk Sunday from 7:30-10:30 a.m. at Stratton Woods Park. Meet at the Polo Fields Recreation Area.
  • Reston Association will host an open house at The Lake House on Sunday from 10 a.m. to noon.
  • The 18th annual Teachers and Students Exhibit remains on display at the Jo Ann Rose Gallery at Reston Community Center-Lake Anne (1609 Washington Plaza N.) through June 5.
  • Live music at Reston Town Center this weekend will include a performance from 6-10 p.m. tonight at Tavern64 (1800 Presidents St.) and both tonight and Saturday from 10 p.m. to 1:30 a.m. at Crafthouse (1888 Explorer St.).
  • Lucky Dog Animal Rescue will have an adoption event at PetSmart (11860 Spectrum Center) from noon to 2 p.m. Saturday.
  • This week at Reston Regional Library (11925 Bowman Towne Drive), Frying Pan Farm Park will visit Saturday from 11 a.m. to noon; and “First Ladies and Scandals in the City” will be presented Saturday from 1-3 p.m.
  • The My Health Matters 5K/1-mile Walk and Free Health Fair is slated for Saturday from 8 a.m. to noon at the 505 Building at Herndon Square (505 Huntmar Park Drive).
  • Kalypso’s (1617 Washington Plaza N.) will have live music tonight, 9:30 p.m. to 1:30 a.m., from Medicated Sunfish. DJ Kram will play Top 40 hits Saturday night.
  • Vinafera Wine Bar and Bistro (11750 Sunrise Valley Drive) has live music from 7-10 p.m. every Friday and Saturday night.
  • Matt Waller will play at The Tasting Room Wine Bar (1816 Library St.) from 8-11 p.m. Saturday.

by RestonNow.com — May 19, 2017 at 1:30 pm 72 Comments

This is an op/ed submitted by a group of area bicycling advocates. It does not reflect the opinions of Reston Now.

Today is Bike to Work Day in the Capital Region. Cyclists will be all over the trails and roads like cicadas emerging from their hibernation.

And as the weather turns warmer and summer approaches, it seems true that many of us and our neighbors begin to head outdoors to exercise, emerging from gyms into the spring sunshine. Roads and trails begin to fill up with walkers, runners and cyclists who are enjoying the benefits of warmth and longer days.

Our region has made incredible strides in providing infrastructure to support these activities. From the Washington and Old Dominion Trail to the Fairfax County Bicycle Master Plan (BMP) that was recently passed, we are all fortunate citizens to have a government with the foresight to build and plan infrastructure for the future.

While riding a bike is legally allowed on all non-limited-access roads in the Commonwealth, the increase in traffic of all kinds, motor and bicycle, has led the county to seek ways to increase safety for all road users. One way in which the Fairfax County Department of Transportation (FCDOT) upholds the BMP is through a partnership with VDOT.

When VDOT repaves a road, in many cases the road is studied for installation of a “road diet.” A road diet is a change in the allocation of space on an existing road to increase road safety for all users. A road diet can include a center turn lane for left-turning traffic as well as bike lanes. Since the passage of the Bicycle Master Plan, over 100 miles of bike lanes and road diets have been implemented.

Road diets and the addition of bike lanes and center turn lanes serve to slow traffic through many of our streets, some of which used to be quiet neighborhood roads, but which have now become fast cut-throughs for commuters. The benefit of slowing traffic on those roads, through the re-striping during repaving, accrues to the people who live on those roads as well. People who want to walk their dogs, chat with neighbors, cross the street to pick up their mail — all of them benefit from road design that slows the traffic passing through.

Fairfax County is home to an incredibly diverse population. However, one thing that is universal is we all want our loved ones to come home safely. No one wants to get a call that their mother, husband, daughter, brother, wife, father, sister or son was killed for any reason. This universal human desire is sometimes forgotten when people take to the wheel of a multi-ton vehicle, ignoring the indisputable facts of physics. The human under the bike helmet in front of you us is 150 percent more likely to die when hit by a car at 40 mph than at 25 mph (Source: NHTSA). It’s in all of our interest to address this.

Cyclists are members of the community — we are your neighbors, your doctors, your waiters and your pharmacists. We ride bikes for transportation, exercise and recreation. Some of us do not have cars and commute solely by bike. But we are no different from you and your neighbors in our desire to get home safely. That’s all we ask.

Fairfax Alliance for Better Bicycling
Reston Bicycle Club
The Bike Lane
Green Lizard Cycling
Evolution Cycling Team

by RestonNow.com — May 19, 2017 at 11:30 am 1 Comment

The Reston Citizens Association elections will be held June 7-22. Four district seats and two at-large seats on the group’s Board of Directors will be chosen.

“This upcoming year is going to be another exciting one for RCA, as we continue to focus on educating and engaging the community and reflecting their voice,” said Sridhar Ganesan, RCA president. “New development, re-development, transportation and other Reston infrastructure, open spaces and other issues like Reston Town Center pay parking have been at the forefront for Reston and RCA during the last two months and will continue to be important for the people that live here.”

The six seats up in the 2017 elections are for three-year terms as the Hunters Woods District, the Town Center/Lake Anne/Tall Oaks District, the South Lakes District, the North Point District and an At-Large seat, as well as a one-year term in an At-Large seat to replace a director who resigned in 2016.

Anyone wishing to run for a seat must:

  • be a Reston resident
  • live in Small Tax District 5
  • be 18 years or older
  • vote in designated precincts/polling places within Reston districts

Those interested in joining the Board must file a completed candidate form by May 30. For more information, email [email protected].

by Dave Emke — May 19, 2017 at 10:30 am 18 Comments

Organizers of the Reston pit stop for Bike to Work Day 2017, one of 85 such stops across the region, say their efforts this morning were a big success.

About 525 bicyclists had passed through the stop at the Wiehle-Reston East Metro station plaza as of about 9 a.m., said Ashleigh Soloff, Reston Association’s special events coordinator. She said this is the third year the event has been held at the Metro plaza in coordination with Comstock Partners.

“[Riders] have been telling me that this is the best pit stop that they’ve come through today so far,” Soloff said of participants’ feedback on the event. “It’s very active and lively.”

Nineteen organizations participated in the event to share information and goodies with riders. Food was provided by Whole Foods and Einstein Bagels. A DJ was playing music and giveaway drawings were being held every half-hour.

Soloff said the concept of biking to work is important to Reston Association.

“We’re trying to get everybody out of their cars just for one day, but then they learn that ‘Hey, I can actually do this every day,'” she said.

Rod Colen, of Reston, was riding along with his daughter, Steph. He said increasing participation in bicycling to work is important for multiple reasons, including public health and improving commute times.

“There’s just so much pressure on everybody for productivity and hours and commute time,” he said. “As traffic gets worse, biking to work will actually be competitive.”

Colen said improved infrastructure and planning is needed to increase the number of bike commuters in Fairfax County. His daughter, who now lives in Arlington but works in Reston Town Center, said she doesn’t regularly ride to commute but she chose to today.

“I also have friends who live in Arlington and work in the Town Center who decided yesterday when they found out about [Bike to Work Day], they’re not big bikers, but they were just going to do it casually,” Steph said.

Adam Lind, Bike Program manager for the Fairfax County Department of Transportation, said the county seeks to expand participation in Bike to Work Day each year. He was providing visitors with information including copies of the county’s new bike map. In addition, he said, the county is running a 50 percent discount through the end of May on yearly memberships to Capital Bikeshare, which is expanding in Reston.

The regional Bike to Work Day event is organized by Commuter Connections, a program of the National Capital Region Transportation Planning Board at the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments that promotes bicycling to work, ridesharing and other alternatives to driving.

by Dave Emke — May 19, 2017 at 9:00 am 18 Comments

Board President Addresses Pool Schedule — Sherri Hebert, president of the Reston Association Board of Directors, says RA’s pool schedule is broken into six sessions this year in the effort to maximize association resources. She says the board will be looking at each line item in the 2017-18 budget “to identify ways to shift funds to meet the community’s requests as they apply to pools and other matters.” [Reston Association]

Television Interview at RTC Cut Short — When a local television crew came to Reston Town Center to do a story on the effects of paid parking, they had to move across the street after security told them “photography is no longer allowed on the Town Center’s site.” [WHAG]

Bojangles’ Coming to Northern Virginia — The restaurant chain has a multiunit development agreement with a new franchisee that will bring its Southern-style chicken joints to the area. No news yet on how many are coming or where they will be. [Washington Business Journal]

Registration Open for Women’s 5K — Reston Runners will put on the “Seize the Day” women’s 5K on Saturday, June 17. The course is on Reston Association pathways. [Reston Runners]

by RestonNow.com — May 19, 2017 at 6:00 am 0

On Fridays, we take a moment to thank our advertisers and sponsors:

Reston Station, Summerbration will offer something to watch, listen to, taste and enjoy all summer long.

Greater Reston Chamber of Commerce, the business community for the vibrant region.

BLVD, Comstock’s apartments at Reston Station.

AKG Design Studio, boutique design firm specializing in kitchen, bathroom designs and cabinetry sales.

Berry & Berry, PLLC, Reston law firm specializing in federal employment, retirement, labor union, and security clearance matters.

Reston Real Estate, Eve Thompson of Long & Foster Real Estate specializes in Reston homes.

Reston Carpet Cleaning, local cleaning service.

Becky’s Pet Care, offering friendly pet services in Northern Virginia.

Reston Community Center, serving Reston’s recreational and cultural needs.

MakeOffices, shared work spaces with five area locations, including Reston.

Boofie O’Gorman, Top Producer Realtor at Long & Foster Reston.

Goldfish Swim School, specializing in children’s swim lessons year-round.

Small Change Consignment, serving Reston’s kids for more than 30 years.

A Cleaning Service, professional residential and commercial cleaning.

Reston Montessori, private co-educational school for children ages 3 months to sixth grade.

Kalypso’s Sports Tavern, providing great food and drink at Lake Anne Plaza.

Bright Horizons at Commerce Metro Center, new child care facility in Reston.

Reston Children’s Center, providing care, preschool and private education and summer camp enrichment.

Ryan Homes — Westmoore, Loudoun County’s hottest new Metro community in the heart of Ashburn.

Knutson Brambleton, Loudoun County urban townhomes with yards in the sky.

Knutson Crescent Place, urban townhomes in Leesburg — Loudoun’s authentic town center since 1758.

Lofts at Village Walk, urban townhome condominium designs at The Village at Leesburg.

Towns of Lansdowne Square, a collection of 23 luxury urban townhomes in downtown Lansdowne.

Tall Oaks Assisted Living, assisted living, memory care and more senior care services.

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