67°Partly Cloudy

by Fatimah Waseem March 2, 2018 at 4:10 pm 10 Comments

The worst of the windstorm is waning, but Reston Association’s Central Services Facility staff say cleanup on RA’s pathways and common areas could take a minimum of one month.

Staff are focusing on removing trees downed on roadways and pathways and trees hanging or causing safety hazards.

In a release, Reston Association’s director of communications and community engagement wrote the following:

The association is asking members to report any downed trees that pose a safety threat. However, because of the vast amount of damage done by the storm, and the amount of work involved with cleaning up, CSF crews cannot at this time remove trees that are on the ground but do not block roads or pathways and aren’t considered a safety hazard.

Leone told Reston Now most of the cleanup involves down trees. He also said there is fence damage from a downed tree at Glade Tennis Court.

“We continue to closely monitor the situation and are doing emergency tree removal as indicated in the release,” he wrote.

For emergency situations involving downed or hanging trees on RA property, call  703-437-7658.

Photo by Gary Smith

by RestonNow.com March 2, 2018 at 3:45 pm 0

Before we head off into the windy weekend, let’s take a look back at the biggest stories on Reston Now in recent days.

  1. Developing: Reston Association’s CEO Leaves Position
  2. As New Tenants Come to Reston Town Center, Current Businesses Report Losses Due to Paid Parking
  3. South Lakes High School Students Stage Walkout In the Aftermath of Florida Shooting
  4. Proposal to Conduct Third Review of Controversial Tetra Purchase Withdrawn
  5. After Changes, Plan to Redevelop Offices into Condominiums Moves Forward

Feel free to discuss these topics, your weekend plans or anything else that’s happening locally in the comments below.

If you have ideas on stories we should cover, email us at [email protected] or submit an anonymous tip. We’re also looking for photos of Reston submitted by readers. Have a safe weekend.

by RestonNow.com Sponsor March 2, 2018 at 3:30 pm 1 Comment

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. Contact Anna at 571-989-2541 or [email protected], and follow her work on HouzzPinterestFacebook and Twitter.

What is it about spring that we are ready to shed the old and have a bit more space, a clean slate if you would?

Most start to think about their “big” spring cleaning as we dream of warmer weather with light breezes and sunny days. As a kitchen designer, I am often brought in this time of year to help create spaces that allow me to help homeowners to declutter and minimize their small kitchen spaces into something that can stay cleaned out year round.

Unlike a home organizer, I look at a home and help homeowners “declutter” or “spring clean” with the types of cabinet choices there are out there. Adding cabinet spaces that have built-in organization capabilities help keep from “disorganization” happening throughout the year, allowing you to more time to go out and enjoy the spring weather.

They are four main ways that help your kitchen clutter-free.

1. Pull-out storage — Did you know you can add 50% more storage from adding pull-out cabinetry? Other benefits of pull-out cabinetry are they are a great way to keep clutter off your counters because they help organize your small items. Another bonus, they are better on your body as you age, because they put everything at your fingertips.

2. Cleaning Caddy — We all keep our cleaning things under our sinks, but running back and forth, because you could only hold the paper towels and Windex, but forgot the toilet cleaner? Can take the extra time you would instead be doing something else. Adding a cleaning cabinet caddy that rolls out and you can carry with everything you need to clean the perfect answer to cut down the trips for missing cleaning items.

3. Drawer Dividers — People love drawers, yet when it’s an empty drawer with no additional organization tools, it can be hard to place things in them without everything moving every time you open or close it. We suggest drawers with dividers, so its easier to keep the dishes in lower cabinets. These are great for kids and people with different abilities to be able to reach what they need.

(more…)

by Fatimah Waseem March 2, 2018 at 2:00 pm 36 Comments

Big issues, including ambitious growth plans, continue to draw scant attention as voting for Reston Association’s elections begins on Monday.

The beleaguered issue of lower voter turnout, which has hovered between 11 and 19 percent over the last four years, belies the importance of the election. RA commands an $18 million budget, funded in part through assessments from property owners.

In recent years, RA has pushed to boost voter turnout. Last year, nearly 19 percent of eligible voters participated in RA’s election for the Board of Directors – departing from a trend where turnout remained around 14 percent the three years prior.

But RA staff and residents say much more remains to be done.

This year, RA’s elections committee hopes to push turnout beyond 20 percent — a goal that Caren Anton, co-chair of RA’s elections committee acknowledges is a somewhat of a low standard.

“It’s not so much that people are not aware that it’s not happening,” Anton, who has served on the committee for roughly non-consecutive three years, said. “We’re making a real effort to call for candidates.”

Based on a Reston Now analysis of RA elections data over the last four years, voter turnout is significantly higher when elections are contested.

The committee pushed hard to court candidates last year. For the first time, RA will host an open house with all 13 candidates who are vying for four open board seats this Sunday from noon to 2 p.m at The Lake House. The roster of candidates promises a contested race, unlike recent elections for the seat of the Hunter Mill District Supervisor and state Del. Ken Plum.

The impact of past strategies like mobile voting sites at apartments and community centers and postcard mailings has been “minimal,” Anton said. In 2015 and 2016, the elections committee received $54,4000 in reimbursement. The largest expense was a $51,000 services contract with Intelliscan, Inc, which tabulates election ballots and certifies results.

RA staff and volunteers will also distribute a flyer with voting information at Metro Stations, community centers, shops, restaurants, libraries and on cars. Posters on RA property and roadways will go up next week.

Still, limited election engagement is perplexing to some, and RA’s board has grappled with the issue in recent years. The question of whether or not the outcome of RA’s election represents the voice of RA members often elicits pause.

Causes of low turnout have not been studied. Anecdotal evidence suggests members more invested in the community or who have lived in Reston for several years tend to participate more, sources say. Nearly four percent of eligible renters of apartments voted last year, with residents who own property boasting higher turnout.

“Some people think it’s not going to make a difference. And that’s certainly not the case,” Anton said. “It is important to vote and it does matter. We’re doing everything we can to make people aware.”

It’s no surprise the card slated to promote the election reads “important issues face Reston” in bold typeface.

Voting runs from March 5 through April 2. Paper ballots will be mailed on Monday. Electronic ballots can be accessed on RA’s website during the election period.

by RestonNow.com March 2, 2018 at 1:00 pm 13 Comments

(This post, originally published at 10 a.m., was updated at 1:26 p.m. with new information about road conditions andat 2:02 p.m.)

As a nor’easter continues in the area, there are more than 62,000 people without power in Fairfax County. A high wind warning warning is in effect through 6 a.m. on Saturday, but the worst may be behind us.

The National Weather Service suggests remaining indoors as winds with gusts of up to 58 miles per hour roar through the area. The strongest winds are expects late this morning and into the afternoon.

Reston Association urges all residents to steer clear of pathways due to “extremely hazardous conditions.”

Check back here for updates on road conditions, power outages and downed trees and wires.

Road Conditions

  • 2021 Hunter Mill Road – Tree in roadway
  • Leigh Mill Road & Georgetown Pike – Tree in roadway
  • West Ox Road between Centreville Road and Frying Pan Park – Closed due to tree and wires in roadway
  • Georgetown Pike & Ellsworth Avenue – Pole and wires in roadway
  • Green Range Drive & Antiqua Court – Tree in roadway
  • North Shore Drive & Temporary Road – Tree in roadway
  • 1123 Utterback Store Road – Pole and wires in roadway
  • 10004 Beach Mill Road – Tree in roadway

Closures

  • Fairfax County Public Schools — Closed
  • Fairfax County Government — Open with unscheduled leave
  • YMCA Fairfax County Reston — Closed
  • Hidden Creek Club — Closed
  • Reston Community Center — All programs are cancelled. No refunds will be issued for inclement weather. For more info call 703-476-4500.
  • Terry L. Smith Aquatics Center — Open at 9 a.m.

Reporting Downed Trees and Wires

  • Reston Association property: Call 703-437-7658.
  • Dominion Energy: Call 1-866-366-4357 or visit www.dom.com/outage-center.
  • For all emergency incidents, call 911.
  • Roadways: Call the Virginia Department of Transportation at 1-800-367-7623, TTY 711, or use VDOT’s online reporting form.
  • County Government buildings: 703-324-2055, TTY 711
  • Fairfax County Park Authority property: 703-324-8594, TTY 711 or report online
  • Fairfax County Public Schools property: 703-764-2429, TTY 711

Here’s a roundup of what locals are observing on social media:

Photo via Twitter user [email protected]_Lackland

This post has been updated.

by Anna Merod March 2, 2018 at 12:00 pm 0

(Editor’s Note: This is just a limited list of all the events taking place in the Reston area this weekend. If you have an event you would like to ensure is listed on the website, be sure to submit it to our Events Calendar.)

  • Get your fill of books and booze at a happy hour book signing at Mon Ami Gabi (11950 Democracy Drive) on Friday from 5-7 p.m. where local authors Chuck Cascio, Kristina Small Alcorn, Erik MacDicken, and Nathan Leslie will be around to sign their books.
  • Need some for mindful practices in your life? Then check out the mindfulness workshop to learn some simple tools to build calm and focus at the Thomas Jefferson Library from 10-11 a.m. on Saturday.
  • Grab some used books at the used book sale at the Tysons-Pimmit Regional Library on Saturday from 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. The book sale will continue at the same time on Sunday and that day you can fill up a bag of used books for $10.
  • Take an exploratory hike or participate in an indoor Nature House program as a part of the Raptor Exploration at the Walker Nature Center. The event starts at 10:30 a.m. at Saturday and tickets cost $7 for Reston Association members and $9 for non-members.
  • Join Better Said than Done, a local storytelling group, share stories of overcoming adversity and celebrating women’s history at the City of Fairfax Regional Library at 11 a.m. – 12 p.m. on Saturday.
  • Mystery novel fan? Then you can meet Libby Klein, Sherry Harris and Maya Corrigan who will be talking about their mystery series for Kensington and sign their latest books. They will be at Scrawl Books (11911 Freedom Drive) starting at 2 p.m. on Saturday.
  • Watch “Fried Green Tomatoes” as a part of Reston Regional Library’s Fantastic Films: Book to Movie series. The screening will be on Saturday from 2-4 p.m.
  • The Freedom for Family Wellness Summit is being held from Thursday through Sunday at the Hyatt Regency Reston with this year’s theme being “Align. Connect. Act.” The event connects leaders in family chiropractic lifestyle and the holistic health movement.
  • Are you a poet? Then stop by the poetry workshop with the Northern Virginia Poetry Group at the Centreville Regional Library on Saturday from 3-5 p.m. where your work will be shared, critiqued and revised.
  • Join the Reston Chorale for their performance “Out of the Shadows” on Saturday at 4 p.m. at the RCC Hunter Woods in the Community Room. The choir will be showcasing contemporary and classical choral works by female composers.
  • The Reston Ten Miler presented by Fidelity Investments will be held Sunday at 8 a.m. at South Lakes High School. Online registration closes at 8 p.m. today.
  • Meet the candidates for the Reston Association Board of Directors at The Lake House (11450 Baron Cameron Ave.) on Sunday from noon to 2 p.m.

Photo via Potomac River Running

by Fatimah Waseem March 2, 2018 at 9:00 am 1 Comment

Refunds for Metro users — Roughly 17,000 customers will get refunds for trips that took 15 minutes longer than expected on the Orange and Silver lines. Now that’s a silver lining.  [Reston Patch]

Expect delays on all Metro lines — The Rush Hour Promise won’t be in effect today due to the wind storm sweeping the region. Metrorail is running every 12 minutes per line with reduced speeds above ground for safety. [Washington Metropolitan Area Authority]

Deadline for assessments extended — Reston Association members now have until March 8 to pay annual assessments. The deadline was pushed after a power outage yesterday. [Reston Association]

Focusing on body cameras — In the coming weeks, you’ll see more Fairfax County police with the special gear. The county breaks down what the program will look like. [Fairfax County Government]

Flickr pool photo via vantagehill

by Fatimah Waseem March 2, 2018 at 6:30 am 1 Comment

Founding Farmers, a restaurant owned by Farmers Restaurant Group, will open on April 11 at Reston Station, a major mixed-use development by Comstock.

The restaurant, which pushed back its opening date several times since 2016, will take up a two-level, 10,000 square foot location at 1904 Reston Metro Plaza.

The location features a private dining space to seat 40-50 people, a large mezzanine, and a bar with cocktails from their D.C.-based distillery. Their First Bake Cafe will offer freshly-baked goods, sweets and a Compass Coffee blend. The cafe is designed for Metro users and others who looking for a quick bite.

The second floor is dedicated to the kitchen, requiring staff to speed up and down stairs to serve orders.

The build out was complicated by a lengthy permitting process and the unique design of the restaurant, which requires an elevator due to limited space for loading fresh deliveries, staff said.

Founding Farmers relies on daily fresh deliveries and has limited kitchen space for freezing products. It serves weekday breakfast, lunch and dinner and a weekend buffet brunch. According to promotional material, the restaurant’s dishes are made with “pure ingredients honoring the farmers and their hard-earned bounty.”

Parking, which is not free at Reston Station, will be validated. Valet parking will be offered for $3, allowing guests to pull up their vehicles at the plaza.

No word yet on when Sweet Leaf, a community cafe near the Founding Farmers location, will open.

The restaurant has other locations in the District, Tysons Corner, Montgomery County, Md., and King of Prussia, Pa.

Photos by Fatimah Waseem

by Fatimah Waseem March 2, 2018 at 5:00 am 0

(Updated at 6:05 a.m.) The strongest windstorm in years is sweeping through the region, causing major problems on roadways, widespread power outages, and closures.

Earlier this morning, Fairfax County Public Schools announced they will be be closed today. Metro is operating at slower speeds above ground and Metro’s Rush Hour Promise will not be in effect today.

The dangerously high winds have left “all types of debris” on roadways in the county, according to the Fairfax County Police Department. The high wind warning is in effect until 6 a.m., with the strongest gusts expected in the middle of the day.

The National Weather Services advises all residents to remain in doors and away from windows.

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