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Reston Then and Now: Lake Anne

With help from Fairfax County’s Historic Imagery Viewer, which offers aerial views of the county dating back to 1937, Reston Now has put together a review of how the Lake Anne area has evolved since the lake’s creation.

Like many of Reston’s lakes, Lake Anne is not natural. Photography from 1960 shows the open fields and forests just two years prior to the first development on the site.

According to the Walker Nature Education Center, the lake was first built in 1962 to compensate for the increased water runoff caused by new developments. Throughout the 1970s and 80s, Lake Thoreau, Lake Audubon, and Lake Newport were also built across Reston.

While some of the water in the lake comes from underground springs, most comes from rainfall and surface runoff. The lakes store water as it flows through streams to the Potomac River and the Chesapeake Bay.

By 1976, ten years after it was founded, Lake Anne Village Center took the form is essentially remains in to this day. The center was designed by architect James Rossant to emulate the Italian coastal town of Portofino but with then-popular brutalist themes. The center was designed to be located within a half-mile of most homes in Reston at the time.

Over the next twenty years, the aerial photography shows development on the periphery around the central plaza, like new subdivisions built near Lake Newport to the north across Baron Cameron Ave. New residential developments also emerged on the south side of Lake Anne.

To the southwest, the Lake Anne Elementary School went through substantial upgrades in the 1990s, adding air conditioning throughout the building. In 2003, construction began on a $2.1 million addition and renovation of the school. Forest Edge Elementary School to the east also saw substantial growth between 1997 and 2017.

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Weekend Discussion Topics

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

  1. County Approves $4 Million Grant for Appian’s Move to Tysons
  2. Reston Companies Top Northern Virginia Technology Council’s ‘Tech 100’
  3. County Board of Supervisors Approves Several Developments
  4. South Lake Village Center’s Construction Plan Set for Spring Arrival
  5. Lane and Ramp Closures Near Reston and Herndon This Week

If you have ideas on stories we should cover, email us at [email protected] or submit an anonymous tip.

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

Photo via Appian/Facebook

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Pottery Barn Set to Close in Reston Town Center in January

(Updated at 10:58 p.m. on Dec. 9) The Pottery Barn in Reston Town Center will shut its doors in January, along with the Williams-Sonoma down the block.

Williams-Sonoma Inc. operates both brands.

A store employee told Reston Now that the store will stay open until its closing date — sometime around Jan. 21.

Pottery Barn (11937 Market Street) started a final sale with 30 percent off items throughout the entire store on Monday (Dec. 3), the employee said.

The Williams-Sonoma at 11897 Market Street is also planning to shut its doors in January.

“We plan on closing in early January, but do not have a specific date to share at this time,” a spokeswoman for the company wrote in an email.

This story has been updated 

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Fairfax County Receives Grants to Boost Crime Justice Services

The Fairfax County Police Department (FCPD) and the county’s Office for Women & Domestic and Sexual Violence Services are slated to receive nearly $180,000 as part of grants to boost criminal justice services across Virginia.

Gov. Ralph Northam announced yesterday (Dec. 6) that law enforcement and services for crime victims across the Commonwealth will receive $5.9 million in grants administered by the Department of Criminal Justice Services (DCJS).

“This funding is key to our ability to respond to the diverse needs of our communities and build a safer, healthier Virginia,” Northam said in a Dec. 6 statement. “From survivors of violent crimes to the law enforcement officers who put their lives on the line each day to protect our Commonwealth, these resources will help ensure that all Virginians have the opportunity to thrive.”

The DCJS approved the grants at its meeting in Richmond on Thursday (Dec. 6.) The federal Violence Against Women Act and the Byrne Justice Assistance Grant Program allocated the funds to Virginia.

The awards include more than $4.5 million to bolster the response to crimes of violence against women and services for survivors and $1.4 million to provide equipment, technology and training.

Fairfax County received about 3.1 percent of the funding. Here is a breakdown:

“Each year, DCJS administers nearly 1,000 grants totaling over $250 million in state and federal funds.” Shannon Dion, the director of DCJS, said in a statement. “These grants support programs and initiatives across the criminal justice system and enable DCJS to provide extensive training and technical assistance to agencies throughout Virginia.”

File photo

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Santa Bar Crawl and More This Weekend in Reston

In addition to the Holiday events we covered earlier, there’s plenty to do around Reston this weekend. This weekend should be especially busy for the more artistically inclined readers, with dancing, music, and photography events tomorrow and Sunday.

Tomorrow (Dec. 8)

Cookies with Santa (9 a.m.-12 p.m.) — Hot chocolate and cookies will be available for children and adults at an arts and crafts event hosted by the Reston Association at Lake House (11450 Baron Cameron Ave). The program is geared towards children ages 2-12. Admission is $15 for Reston Association members of $20 for non-members.

Irish Dance (12-1 p.m.) — The Foley Academy of Irish Dance will offer a dance performance and lesson at the Reston Regional Library (11925 Bowman Towne Dr).

Singer Songwriter Crys Matthews (6:30-9:30) — The alternative rock singer-songwriter will be performing at the Lake Anne Coffee House & Wine Bar (1612 Washington Plaza) tomorrow night. Matthew is also scheduled to perform in January at a three-day event for Reston’s Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Birthday Celebration.

National Parks Photography Exhibit Reception (7-9 p.m.) — Artspace Herndon (750 Center St) will host a reception for Jim Schlett’s gallery of national park photography. Most of the work was photographed during ling walked through the parks around dawn or dusk. The exhibit will run until Jan. 5.

2018 Reston Santa Bar Crawl (8 p.m.-1 a.m.) — The rules for a Santa Bar Crawl are simple: wear a Santa suit, or some other holiday costume, and hit up a series of Santa-friendly bars across Reston. A full list of participating bars is available at the event page.

Sunday (Dec. 9)

Christmas at the Farm — The Frying Pan Farm Park (2739 West Ox Rd) will offer cookie decorating, Sant-driven dractor rides, and more for $10 per person. Sessions at the farm are held throughout the day. Children must be accompanied by an adult.

Sunday Afternoon Dance (2:30-4:30 p.m.) — The Reston Community Center (2310 Colts Neck Rd) is hosting a dance for all skill levels, with music ranging from waltz and swing to modern dance selections. Partners are not required. The cost is $5 for Reston residents or $10 for non-Restonians. The event is followed by a County Western Dance from 5:30-8 p.m.

Photo via Facebook

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Trauma Patient Reunites with Crew, Reston Hospital Staff One Year After Motorcycle Collision

 

Most of the Fairfax County crew and Reston Hospital Center hospital staff who treated a motorcyclist critically injured from a 2017 collision had a reunion on Wednesday at the hospital.

Crews responded to a call for a collision involving a motorcycle and a car on April 27, 2017. When they arrived on the scene, they found that Michael Hyman, the motorcyclist, was critically injured, according to a Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department post.

More from the Dec. 6 post:

Our firefighters and paramedics knew time was of the essence. They exhibited excellent teamwork assessing and treating the patient. Medic 416’s time on scene was six minutes before they were off to the trauma center at Reston Hospital.

The crews thought they had done they best they could to give the young motorcyclist a chance to survive. That said, many thought the young man may not make it. As with many critical medical or trauma calls, our personnel deliver the patient to the hospital not ultimately knowing the outcome for that patient.

Hyman, the Fairfax County crew and the hospital staff went over the details of what happened to Hyman on-scene and at the trauma center, along with the treatment, recovery and physical therapy processes Hyman went through.

“He had extensive injuries that none of us had really seen before,” Liz Klemens, a nurse at the hospital, recalled in a Reston Hospital Center YouTube video.

Some of his injuries included a fractured a segment of his spine in his neck, a broken right arm, a snapped femur in his left leg, broken bones in his ankles and three to four places broken in his hip and pelvis.

Hyman now has a metal rod from his shoulder to elbow in his right arm, which he can’t move due to stretched nerves. He also cannot feel anything in his right hand.

The Dec. 5 evening ended with Hyman and his mother, Kim Hyman, thanking the firefighters, paramedics and hospital staff involved in his care.

“Reston saved my son’s life,” Kim Hyman said in the video.

The crew and units that responded on April 27, 2017:

  • Engine 417, Centreville: Captain I Bobby Stricklen, Technician Gary DeFriest, Technician Eric Hoffman and Firefighter Anthony Harley
  • Medic 416, Clifton: Lt. Matt Louzonis and Firefighter Greg Morton
  • EMS 403: Captain II Jennifer Svites

Photo via Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department and screenshot via Reston Hospital Center/YouTube

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Planning Commission Moves Forward Pet Hedgehog Proposal

Chinchillas, hedgehogs and hermit crabs are one step closer to legalized pet status in Fairfax County.

The Fairfax County Planning Commission last night (Dec. 6) approved changing the definition of commonly accepted pets to include all three.

“All those hedgehogs in Fairfax County are extremely happy tonight,” Chairman Peter Murphy, who represents the Springfield District, said after the vote.

Hunter Mill District Commissioner John Carter voted against the proposal, along with Vice Chairman James Hart and Mason District Commissioner Julie Strandlie.

Strandlie said that while she supports chinchillas and hermit crabs as pets, more input from professionals is necessary regarding hedgehogs.

The increasing popularity of chinchillas, hedgehogs and hermit crabs as pets in recent years spurred the proposed amendment to the county’s zoning ordinance, according to the proposal.

Arlington and Loudoun counties allow hedgehogs and chinchillas as pets, with Loudoun County also permitting hermit crabs. Fairfax City and Falls Church either do not allow or remain unclear about the legality of the three animals as pets.

The commission tackled health and safety concerns mainly around hedgehogs as pets at a public hearing last Thursday (Nov. 29), deferring a decision to last night at the request of Mary Cortina, an at-large member of the commission.

Some of the concerns that came up involved hedgehogs’ ability to spread salmonella and how well owners can care for hedgehogs, given their high levels of maintenance.

Hedgehogs are nocturnal animals that require space, exercise and room temperatures above 70 degrees Fahrenheit to ensure they do not start hibernating, according to the Hedgehog Welfare Society.

Hart said he concludes that hedgehogs still fall under the “exotic pet” definition based on the temperature requirements raised during the testimonies last week.

Dranesville District Commissioner John Ulfelder said he took four areas into consideration when deciding how to vote — public safety, public health, environmental impact and animal welfare.

Addressing the salmonella concerns, Ulfelder said that other animals, such turtles, can spread the bacteria.

For him, the prickliest issue concerned animal welfare. “It is true these animals are a little bit difficult to take care of,” he said. “I think for people who are up for that, they can be very nice pets.”

Strandlie praised a student from Longfellow Middle School in Falls Church, who argued at the public hearing in favor of legalizing pet hedgehogs.

The student, who said he has cared for his turtle for eight years and his monitor lizard for two years, said he believes hedgehogs are easier to care for than reptiles, based on his research. If the county approves the amendment, he said he would get a hedgehog.

Even though Strandlie voted “no,” she said the student probably persuaded some of the commissioners to support the proposal.

Fairfax County’s Board of Supervisors authorized a public hearing at 4 p.m. on Jan. 22 to consider the controversial proposal.

“I think we should be allowing people if we can — if they have the ability — to have hedgehogs as pets,” Ulfelder said.

Photo via Planning Commission

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Friday Morning Notes

County remains among the richest — the U.S. Census Bureau estimates that Fairfax County ranks second as the richest county from 2013 to 2017, following Loudoun County. [U.S. Census Bureau]

It’s snow joke — With snow predictions looming, the Virginia Department of Transportation wants residents to stay safe by looking over its 2018-2019 “snow facts.” [VDOT]

Fine arts photography collection — The “La Lumiere DuBois VII” exhibit by Michael DuBois, who highlights his love of nature, opens today at the Reston Community Center Hunters Woods. The exhibit is open until  Jan. 6. [Reston Community Center]

“She Kills Monsters: Young Adventurers Edition” — Watch students from the Herndon High School perform a contemporary dramatic comedy tonight at 7 p.m. Parental guidance is recommended. [Herndon High School Theatre]

Photo by Susan Berger

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