Planning Commission OKs Parking Changes for Tall Oaks Village Center Redevelopment

by Catherine Douglas Moran November 30, 2018 at 11:45 am 15 Comments

The Fairfax County Planning Commission approved Thursday night (Nov. 29) parking and access adjustments for the Tall Oaks Village Center redevelopment.

Stanley Martin’s redevelopment would transform the Tall Oaks Village Center (12022 North Shore Drive) into a mostly residential neighborhood.

The redevelopment will create 156 residential units, which include 42 two-over-two multi-family units, 44 single units and 70 multi-family units in two residential buildings. It also plans to add nearly 8,500 square feet of retail and 5,800 square feet of office space.

The commission approved:

  • a 200-square foot privacy yard requirement for single-family units
  • tandem parking for the two-over-two dwelling units to count towards the off-street parking requirement for multi-family dwelling units
  • a modification for the required number of loading spaces
  • a modification for the transitional screening and barrier requirements

Ellen Hurley, who represents the Braddock District, abstained from the vote.

The shopping center, which was anchored by a Giant grocery store until it closed in 2007, has struggled without a stable grocer. Roughly 86 percent of the shopping center was vacant in 2016, according to the application.

The Fairfax County Board of Supervisors approved in July 2016 the owner’s plan to redevelop the retail center into a mixed-use project.

The development has been held up several times this year. Reston’s Design Review Board delayed voting on several aspects of the plan for several months. The garage size requirements stalled the redevelopment.

Another issue was the bus pad and bus service for the site. At the time of the approval, the county was planning to continue Fairfax Connector bus service through the development. The Fairfax Connector has since decided to no longer provide bus service through the development.

The Fairfax County Board of Supervisors will consider the project on Tuesday (Dec. 4).

Rendering via Fairfax County Planning Commission

  • Chuck Morningwood

    BWAHAHAHAHAHA. It already sucks trying to drive up Wiehle from Lake Anne during rush hour. Considering how many new housing units are being shoe-horned into that space, it’s going to suck even worse.

    Chestnut Oaks folks, forget about ingress/egress from your community from 7a-10a or 3p-7p. And as for you folks in North Reston trying to get to the Wiehle Metro, well, sucks to be you.

    • Chkitout1

      Just wait until Isaac Newton Square gets redeveloped too. Now the bicycle lanes make sense. Bicycles will be the only way to get around Reston without walking.

      • jak12354

        Hey, if it gets cars off the road, it’s not all bad.

  • Richard

    Once again, this article puts forward the false premise that Tall Oaks failed because there was no grocery store. The real reason is that the owner pushed out the tenants, including the grocery stores, to make the place falsely appear to look like a failed center. They manufactured an illusion so they could sell it at a huge profit for residential zoning instead of the purpose that it was intended. This is a huge failure by Supervisor Hudgins and the rest of the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors.

    • Greg

      So wrong. The Giant, which was rarely busy, closed and doing so had nothing to do with the current property owner. Better, more convenient, and nicer shopping alternatives did.

      And, the two ethnic supermarkets at Tall Oaks also failed as did many other businesses. If more of those complaining about Tall Oaks’ redevelopment would have patronized the failed businesses, they would have been thriving.

      The problem, as it has always been, is the location, not the landlord.

      • Richard

        Not true. Giant specifically said the issue was not the profitability of the store. You’re manufacturing facts to fit your perception.

        • Greg

          It is true. The managers of both the Tall Oaks and the then-new North Point Giants were quite clear. It was in the printed papers of the time.

          More to the point, Tall Oaks was never, ever, a thriving “village center.” As such, its lack of patrons did it in.

          At best it was an ugly, inward facing shopping center with virtually no signage or other visibility. Sorry, but Bob Simon’s concept of village centers failed.

          But, as an unwise old woman once said: “What difference, at this point, does it make”?

          The Tall Oaks of the 60’s is gone. Build yourself a bridge and get over it.

          • Richard

            You may not have liked the aesthetics, but Tall Oaks was not failing without help from the ownership. You’re wrong about the papers at the time. They said just the opposite about the Giant, and I seem to remember that the awful, smelly (but extremely busy) Asian grocery had an issue with an unreasonable lease, not a profitability problem. I also spoke with the owner of El Manantial who said he and others were getting pushed out of the plaza with unreasonable leases. They did not want to leave. Mama Wok also closed because their lease was expiring. Fur Factory seems to have been doing fine. Which businesses were failing? Name a couple?

          • Greg

            How’s that bridge coming along, Richard?

            Maybe it will lead you to the Reston Museum where you can drown your sorrows in things now, finally and thankfully, gone.

          • Christopher Smith

            This whole place is like a museum. I’ve lived here for 17 years and owned two condos; probably don’t quite qualify as an ‘old timer’ but so much of Reston apart from the Town Center and around the Wiehle Avenue station looks like it did in 2001. Is that a good thing? I would argue that it’s NOT.

          • Lynne Mulston

            For what it’s worth – Richard has got his facts straight. Tenants were driven out of the Tall Oaks Village Center because the owners wanted to sell. Leases expired, rates were hiked, driving the popular, neighborhood-serving tenants out.

          • Greg

            No he doesn’t and neither do you.

            The THREE grocery stores and the Burger King at Tall Oaks failed long before and talk of redevelopment started. And the PUBLISHED reason for Giant’s departure was profitability and the disastrous design of the center. Once the anchors failed, the smaller retailers eventually either failed, retired, or, once redevelopment was inevitable, closed or left for other locations.

          • Christopher Smith

            Exactly. People in the ’60s and ’70s moved to Reston to be in some kind of idealic community. Now, it’s all aging (in the case of Tall Oaks absolutely decrepit) condo, apartment and townhouse complexes. So much of this should be absolutely bulldozed. Too bad Amazon didn’t locate their 2nd HQ in Reston! Then maybe property values around here would be going up!

  • Conservative Senior

    Did the county approve Stanley Martins request to shrink the garage size for the units so that most cars will not fit in the garage? SM said buyers should measure the space..buyer beware!

  • Christopher Smith

    When, when will this happen? Hope this isn’t another fail like the Lake Anne redevelopment. Time to tear down that eyesore.


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