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by Fatimah Waseem November 9, 2017 at 4:00 pm 1 Comment

The access road to the Herndon-Monroe commuter garage, which runs from Sunrise Valley Drive to the Herndon-Monroe park and ride facility, will shut down from Friday through Sunday, Nov. 26.

Access is limited due to the construction of a new parking garage for the future Metro Silver Line Herndon station. To use the current garage, commuters can enter through the Dulles Toll Road, a detour that requires a payment of $1, according to a county press release.

The roughly $45 million project is expected to cause major delays on routes that serve the park-and-ride facility. The following stops served by routes924, 926, 927, 937, 950, 951 and 551 will be missed:

  • Stop #3495 at Colt Brook Drive

  • Stop #3541 at Milburn Lane

  • Stop #3566 at Thunder Chase Drive

Commuters using these stops take buses at the Herndon-Monroe Park and Ride facility. Bus bays are still accessible through the garage entrance.

The new 2,007-space garage includes a pedestrian bridge to the Metrorail Silver Line station, connections the existing 1,745-space Herndon-Monroe parking garage and bicycle storage facilities. The project is expected to be complete in the spring of 2019.

A groundbreaking ceremony last year celebrated the launch of the project, which is managed by Fairfax County. HGA Architects is the firm designing the project.

For more information on the impact of the project, call 703-339-7200 or 703-339-1608. Questions can also be addressed to [email protected]

Rendering courtesy of Fairfax County

by Fatimah Waseem November 9, 2017 at 2:45 pm 4 Comments

Ideaventions Academy for Mathematics and Science, a Reston-based school for gifted children between  grades 4 and 12, received an award recognizing the school’s emphasis on Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics.

The school is the first in Virginia to receive the certification, called AdvancED STEM, from AdvancedED, a non-profit, non-partisan organization that involves educational professionals around the world.

School officials said the certification demonstrates the school’s commitment to preparing students for future opportunities. In order to earn the certification, the school had to demonstrate it meets STEM standards across 11 indicators. The organization also interview stakeholders to verify the school’s commitment to connecting learning from the classroom to the local community and the world.

In a statement, Ryan Heitz, head of school, said the certification was a boost for the independent school:

This certification is a reflection of Ideaventions Academy’s commitment to preparing students for top colleges and universities and to becoming the leaders of tomorrow. In this age of tremendous technological revolution, struggling educational systems, and changing workforce needs, the STEM certification acknowledges us as an international model for preparing students for the future with real-world skills and experiences to succeed. It also signals the private-sector that we are committed to exceptional levels of student ability and achievement for their STEM pipeline.

Ideaventions Academy is located on 12340 Pinecrest Road. The academy has small class sizes of 10 students per class or less. To learn more about the certification, email [email protected]

Images courtesy of Dee Donavik

by Fatimah Waseem November 9, 2017 at 1:30 pm 12 Comments

Drive carefully tomorrow as Fairfax County Police will be holding a sobriety checkpoint in the Reston District on Friday.

According to police spokeswoman, the checkpoint will take place from 11 p.m. to 2 a.m. Police did not give advance notice of the exact checkpoint location.

FCPD regularly holds checkpoints in various parts of the county in order to monitor for intoxicated drivers.

The 56-mile Reston District covers Reston, Great Falls, and parts of Vienna, Oak Hill and Herndon.

Along with publicity and awareness, checkpoints have proven to be effective in the fight against drunk driving, police say.

Image courtesy of FCPD

by Del. Ken Plum November 9, 2017 at 11:30 am 18 Comments

This is a commentary from Del. Ken Plum (D-Fairfax), who represents Reston in Virginia’s House of Delegates. It does not reflect the opinion of Reston Now.

I am sure I will have some commentary on the outcome of the November 7 election in future columns, but as I write this column results are not yet known. No matter the outcome, I share the frustration experienced by many with the negativity that seems to inevitably overtake campaigns with high stakes. Political operatives who provide the advice upon which campaigns are planned continue to insist that negative advertising wins elections as it gets people’s attention and creates a fear or anger that moves voters to take part. I am not sure if anyone has measured how many people get turned off and decide not to vote because of the vicious ads.

Even more concerning to me than the half-truths and falsehoods that have slipped into campaigning is the cruelty that has moved into the operation of government. After years of complaining about the Affordable Care Act while in complete control of the Congress and now also the presidency, the Republicans have not been able to repeal and replace what they came to call Obamacare. The reason might simply be that provision of health care to all with coverage for pre-existing conditions in a developed nation is the right thing to do. Failing to achieve legislative success, the administration has set about trying to kill the program through administrative actions and neglect. That is where the cruelty sets in.

The first effort at killing the program came with an executive order to withhold subsidies which allowed insurance companies to keep premium increases to a minimum. With the loss of the subsidies, Anthem pulled out of Virginia in August leaving 60 jurisdictions with no insurer offering coverage; they reversed their action after intense efforts by Governor McAuliffe. The loss of federal support will be devastating in Virginia where 240,000 Virginians rely on subsidies to be able to afford insurance. There clearly must not be a lack of money in Washington with the huge tax cuts now being proposed for the very wealthy.

The cruelty does not end there. To reduce the program further the advertising budget to remind persons about open enrollment was slashed by 90 percent, and the time to enroll was reduced from 12 weeks to 6 weeks. The open enrollment started November 1 and will close on December 15. Tell anyone you know who might be eligible and spread the information through social media programs in which you participate that open enrollment ends on December 15.

A final crippling blow could be the administration announcement that it will not enforce the individual mandate that has been critical to keeping costs down by spreading the risk across a wide pool of participants. As though this is not enough, the Republican Congress and administration failed to reauthorize the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) that provided care to 65,000 children and 1,100 pregnant mothers in Virginia. We have a new insurance program in place in this country; it is called Trumpcare. It is a very cruel system!

by Fatimah Waseem November 9, 2017 at 10:15 am 1 Comment

The National Weather Service issued a freeze watch today for Maryland, Virginia and Washington, D.C. In Reston, the freeze watch is in effect from Friday evening through Saturday morning.

Temperatures are expected to fall below freezing after sunset Friday night and through Saturday morning at around 10 a.m.

Freezing temperatures may kill or damage sensitive vegetation like outdoor plants, according to NWS.

The Farmers Almanac provides the following tips to protect your plants from frost:

If a frost is predicted, cover your plants, both to retain as much soil heat and moisture as possible and to protect them against strong winds, which can hasten drying and cooling. You can use newspapers, baskets, tarps, straw, and other materials to cover your plants. Cover the whole plant before sunset to trap any remaining heat. Be sure to anchor lightweight coverings to prevent them from blowing away.

Keep the soil moist by watering your plants the day a frost is predicted.

by Fatimah Waseem November 9, 2017 at 9:00 am 1 Comment

ABC7 Features Reston Athlete — Rose Pleskow, a Reston resident born with intellectual disabilities and epilepsy, was featured on  the TV channel. She won the bronze medal in the 1500 meters race in the Special Olympic World Games in 2011. Pleskow now competes internationally in open water swimming. [ABC7]

Rich Kleinfeldt and Yuniko Rogers to Perform at CenterStage Today — The artists will perform at CenterStage (2310 Colts Neck Road) from 2:15 – 3:30 p.m. as part of a collaboration between will join us for our free Meet the Artists Series at the CenterStage tomorrow, 11/9, from 2:15 – 3:30 p.m. [Reston Community Center]

South Lakes High School to Perform ‘Almost Maine’ — Students will perform John Cariani’s classic romantic comedy on Nov. 16 and 17 at 7 p.m. and on Nov. 18 at 2 p.m and 7 p.m.  Tickets are $10 for adults and $8 for students. [South Lakes Theatre Arts]

Greater Reston Arts Center Selects Volunteer of the Year — The arts center selected Nicola Shelley as the volunteer of the year. The award recognizes a volunteer that commits personal time and resources to support the center’s programs. Nicola is the lead art coordinator at Buzz Aldrin Elementary School. [Greater Reston Arts Center]

Photo via ABC7/WJLA
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