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by RestonNow.com February 12, 2018 at 4:30 pm 60 Comments

This is an op/ed submitted by Terry Maynard, co-chair of the Reston 20/20 committee. It does not reflect the opinions of Reston Now.

In a February 5, 2018 letter to Supervisor Cathy Hudgins, the Coalition for a Planned Reston (CPR)–a partnership of the Reston Citizens Association, Reclaim Reston, and Reston 20/20–called on the Supervisor to consider a variety of amendments to the Reston plan and to defer the Board of Supervisors’ plan to officially authorize advertisement of the proposed zoning amendment on March 6.

Given county claims that it needs to move forward with the increased density proposed in the Reston PRC zoning ordinance from 13 to 16 persons per acre because the Reston plan calls for it, the CPR letter and its recommendations focus on managing Reston’s growth in a way that would eliminate the need to increase zoning density.

Among other features, CPR’s recommendations for managing growth call for:

  • A maximum population cap in all of Reston of 120,000 four decades from now at a time when its current population is about 62,000. This contrasts with the current plan’s language that would allow 160,000-180,000 people to live in Reston.
  • Limiting density throughout Reston–including the Metro station areas–to 60 dwelling units per acre (DU/A) and limiting redevelopment in the Village Centers to the mixed-use areas only at a “neighborhood-serving” 30 DU/A.
  • The elimination of special interest language permitting the massive–and inappropriate–redevelopment of the Saint Johns Wood apartment complex.
  • The removal of the road that appears on two Reston plan maps across the Hidden Creek Country Club, opening it to development and endangering its future as a major Reston open space.

A second key theme in CPR’s recommendations is to build in assurances that the supporting infrastructure–road and parks especially–keeps pace with development. This is particularly true of the county’s need to acquire space for parks, schools, and other key infrastructure elements. The failure of Reston’s infrastructure to keep pace with recent development so far, including the extremely long lead times for major capital projects, has been a great concern of many Restonians. Part of this includes assurances that proffers generated by development are used in Reston.

The CPR recommendations also focus on assuring that new development is accompanied by a strong commitment to affordable housing, generally calling for developers to provide an onsite allocation of 20 percent affordable housing for each new project.

As these proposals suggest, CPR is anxious to see Reston grow, but to do so in a manner consistent with its creation as a planned community with a grand vision and vibrant planning principles. We believe that Reston’s future ought to continue to be planned and managed, not merely left open to effectively unconstrained commercial development as the current plan allows.

We hope Supervisor Hudgins sees that our proposals are consistent with that legacy and, following up on a meeting of RA and CPR leaders this week, will defer official county action on the PRC zoning amendment proposal. Then we can work with her and county staff to enable Reston to remain one of the world’s great planned communities.

Terry Maynard
Co-Chair Reston 20/20 Committee Member
Coalition for a Planned Reston

by Fatimah Waseem February 12, 2018 at 2:30 pm 14 Comments

Car parts were stolen from more than a dozen vehicles within a half-mile radius in the Herndon area late last week, according to the Fairfax County Police Department.

The police department told Reston Now it’s unclear if the incidents, which happened between Wednesday night and Thursday morning, are connected.

“These incidents are still under investigation so we are unable to confirm or deny if they are connected,” a spokesperson for the police department wrote in a statement.

Police reported eight separate incidents where parts were taken from vehicles on the 13100 block of Fox Hunt Lane. On the 2300 block of Rolling Fork Circle, car parts were taken from another eight vehicles. One incident occurred on the 1200 block of Rolling Fork Circle.

Other larcenies from vehicles over the same time period include:

2300 block of Cavesson Court, wallet from vehicle.

11500 block of Embers Court, wallet from vehicle.

12500 block of Fox View Way, laptop from vehicle.

2200 block of Halter Lane, personal items from a vehicle.

12600 block of Noble Victory Lane, wallet from vehicle.

No other information was immediately available.

Anyone with information about any of the crimes reported by FCPD should call 703-691-2131 or 1-866-411-TIPS(8477), or text “TIP187” plus the message to CRIMES(274637).

File photo.

by RestonNow.com Sponsor February 12, 2018 at 1:45 pm 0

Written by Mina Fies, Synergy Design & Construction

Like many of us, Pam and Mike have a busy family life. After living in their Herndon home for twelve years, they loved their house but knew it was time for a makeover.  Family, friends and entertaining were all high priorities which made a new kitchen, laundry, guest bathroom and updated family room move to the top of their remodeling list.

Since most homeowners fear the disruption a remodel brings, especially when it comes to the kitchen, we do our best to ease their angst by making it as smooth as possible. We always set up a temporary kitchen with the essentials homeowners need — a cooktop burner, a microwave, pots and pans — we’ll even move the fridge to make life easier!

We find it’s the things that make the biggest impact to the remodeling experience. It certainly helped Pam, Mike and their family go about their day-to-day lives while living in the home during the construction phase of their project.

Interested in learning more? Let Pam and Mike tell you in their own words Why Us!

Want to see more inspiring Reston remodeling projects?  

Learn more about Synergy Design & Construction — Reston’s own award-winning home remodeling firm focused on multi-room and whole home renovations. We provide a personal approach to home remodeling that is evident throughout the Reston community. Whether you’ve seen our work on the Reston Home Tour, through RA’s Helping Homes projects or at Cornerstones, we are dedicated to helping Reston “Renovate Happy.”  

by RestonNow.com Sponsor February 12, 2018 at 12:30 pm 1 Comment

This is a sponsored column by attorneys John V. Berry and Kimberly H. Berry of Berry & Berry, PLLC, an employment and labor law firm located in Plaza America in Reston that specializes in federal employee, security clearance, retirement and private sector employee matters.

By John V. Berry, Esq.

Not too long ago, maybe 5 years or so, there were clearly two groups of individuals that would apply for security clearances.

There would be a group of individuals at the highest levels of our government that would be allowed to obtain security clearances despite having very significant security concerns, and then there was everyone else (federal employees and government contractors) that had to go through a often lengthy clearance appeals process to obtain a security clearance with nearly the same issues, sometimes going months without pay while they wait.

This disparity, in this author’s opinion, is starting to fade. In my interview last Thursday with Wolf Blitzer on Inside Politics about the emerging Rob Porter crisis, I spoke about the disparity that exists between highly placed employees (e.g. White House) and most of the rest of employees and contractors that attempt to obtain security clearances.

It occurred to me as I was speaking that we, as a society, may have reached critical mass on this issue. Perhaps it was inevitable due to increased use of social media (Facebook, Twitter, etc.) or just the society we live in today, but change is definitely on the horizon.

It was not too long ago that I would represent security clearance clients at both sides of the spectrum with nearly identical security concerns (e.g. prior drug use, assault allegations or financial issues), where they were treated differently.

Too often, the higher-level employees I represented (usually appointees) would be treated more preferentially than other federal employees or contractors. I always felt that, in that sense, the clearance process was unfair. It certainly doesn’t follow the principles in Executive Order 12968.

In any event, with the recent scrutiny involving the White House security clearance process for Robert Porter and Chief of Staff John Kelly, along with other recent issues and trends, I think that the tide has started to turn.

I believe that we are moving towards a future where employees seeking to obtain a security clearance, at all levels, will start to be treated more similarly. I think that the fear of not doing so, and then being called on it later in social media, may help enforce this; that is a good thing.

I enjoy representing all types of employees and appointees in security clearance matters, but feel that the process should be fairly applied across the board.

Our law firm represents and advises employees on security clearance matters nationwide. If you need legal assistance, please contact our office at (703) 668-0070 or at www.berrylegal.com to schedule a consultation. Please also visit and like us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/BerryBerryPllc.

by Fatimah Waseem February 12, 2018 at 11:15 am 19 Comments

Wheelock Street Capital acquired Charter Oak Apartments in partnership with local investment firm Canandaigua & Pratt Holdings this month.

The news comes as Wheelock Communities, an affiliate of the company, acquired Hidden Creek Country Club in October. The club is adjacent to the apartments, which are located at 11637 Charter Oak Court.

The real estate firm has no immediate plans to redevelop the apartment community, which has 262 units and a mix of one- and two-bedroom apartments.

“As for future plans, they have retained Gates Hudson to manage the property in its current form,” wrote Jeff Laliberte, Wheelock’s managing director, in a statement to Reston Now.

“We plan to invest additional capital into the property in the coming years and look forward to continuing to provide the Reston community with attractive housing options,” he added.

At the adjacent golf course, however, the company’s affiliate has hinted at possible redevelopment, including “new housing choices,” in the future.

A company representative would not disclose the terms of the apartment acquisition, including the purchase price.

Photo via Charter Oak Apartments

by Fatimah Waseem February 12, 2018 at 9:15 am 27 Comments

“Naturally Yours Valentines” Today at Walker Nature Center — Celebrate Valentine’s Day by making a card, enjoying tasty treats and taking home a special gift made from natural materials. The program, which runs from 10-11 a.m., is for toddlers between 18 and 35 months . Can’t make it today? Don’t worry. There’s another session tomorrow: same time, same place. [Reston Association]

Reston Olympian Advances in Speedskating Round — “Biney advanced to the quarterfinal of the 500m despite late pressure from Kim A-Lang. Biney finished with a time of 43.665 seconds, good for second in her heat.” [NBC 4]

County Eyes Other Uses for Office Buildings — “Reston Association’s Land Use Planner, Kelsey Steffen, explains how Fairfax County is forming a policy amendment that would allow for vacant or underutilized office buildings to be converted for other uses, such as retail and residential.” [Reston Today]

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