Reston Planning and Zoning Committee to Review Campus Commons, Isaac Newton Square

At its meeting tonight (Dec. 17), the Reston Planning and Zoning Committee will hear presentations on two projects.

1900-1902 Campus Commons LLC’s proposed development, known as Campus Commons, would add an office building and two residential buildings with ground-floor retail space at 1900 and 1902 Campus Commons Drive. The plan retains the two existing buildings at the site on the south side of the Dulles Toll Road and east side of Wiehle Avenue.

“Campus Commons will bolster a pedestrian-focused environment integrated with a system of public urban park spaces to achieve the transit-oriented design goals of the Comprehensive Plan,” the agenda for tonight’s meeting says.

APA Properties No. 6, L.P. and MRP Realty plan to present a redevelopment concept for Isaac Newton Square.

The proposal would convert the office buildings into a mixed-use project, changing the spot into a mostly residential area with a few commercial spaces. The project would include several development blocks and approximately eight acres of publicly-accessible open space, which would include a large neighborhood green that could be used for public events and athletic purposes.

The number of dwelling units and square footage are unknown at the moment, according to the document.

Public hearing dates have not yet been scheduled for the projects.

Tonight’s Reston P&Z Committee meeting will begin at 7:30 p.m. at the North County Government Center.

Images via Google Maps

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Reston Real Estate: Just Sold

This is a sponsored post from Eve Thompson of Reston Real Estate. For a more complete picture of home sales in your neighborhood, contact her on Reston Real Estate.

With so few houses on the market, just 141 as of this post, why isn’t it more of a seller’s market? Interest rates are still crazy low, the job market is stable. All indicators seem to point to a market that favors the sellers, and yet it is not. The market is very balanced.

Today’s buyers are informed, methodical and not in a rush. The amount of time buyers spend researching homes online? Countless. Number of homes buyers saw online before engaging a real estate agent? Hundreds. They’ve done their research and are ready.

The median number of weeks buyers spent viewing homes in person was 10 weeks. Once they actually begin looking at homes, they are ready to take action when the right property pops up.

Sellers need to prepare for a little more time on the market with the average days on market sitting at 40. If you really get your place ready to sell and hit the market at the right price you’ll reduce that number considerably.

Here are a few of the recent sales:

11698 Sunrise Square Place
4 BR/4.5 BA
List Price: $963,520
Sold Price: $963,520

 

 

1311 Quail Ridge Drive
5 BR/3.5 BA
List Price: $785,000
Sold Price: $775,000

 

 

11555 Underoak Court
3 BR/2/2 BA
List Price: $359,000
Sold Price: $353,000

 

 

2022 Chadds Ford Drive
3 BR/3.5 BA
List Price: $549,980
Sold Price: $549,980

 

 

12000 Market Street #161
1 BR/1 BA
List Price: $315,000
Sold Price: $315,000

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Former Herndon Mayor Joins Race for Del. Jennifer Boysko’s Seat

(Updated at 3:54 p.m.) Former Herndon Mayor Mike O’Reilly announced on Friday (Dec. 14) that he will vie for the Virginia House of Delegates seat representing the 86th District, which includes Herndon.

Del. Jennifer Boysko, who currently holds the seat, plans to run for the State Senate seat to replace Congresswoman-elect Jennifer Wexton in the special election on Jan. 8.

“I am running for the House of Delegates to fight for more affordable healthcare, more funding for education and transportation in Northern Virginia, protection of women’s rights, protection from gun violence and to protect the environment,” O’Reilly said in a press release.

O’Reilly was elected Mayor of Herndon in 2004. As mayor, he helped reduce the tax rate, opened a new police station, opened the Senior Center at Herndon Harbor House and completed a rewrite of Herndon’s zoning ordinance.

He is currently a lawyer and the owner and principal of the O’Reilly Law Firm at 761 Monroe Street in Herndon and a member of the Dulles Regional Chamber of Commerce.

O’Reilly, who has lived in Herndon for more than 35 years, is married and has four children.

O’Reilly served five years as a member of the Board of Directors of the Washington Metropolitan Airports Authority, where he negotiated the design, financing and construction of the first phase for the Silver Line project and the procurement and contract award for the second phase.

He chaired for ten years the Governing Board of the Fairfax Falls Church Partnership to Prevent and End Homelessness and also chaired the Board for Arts Herndon.

He faces three other Democratic candidates — Chad ThompsonKofi Annan and Ibraheem Samirah — for the spot at the Jan. 12 primary.

Photo via Michael O’Reilly

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Herndon-Monroe Bus Loop to Close Late Wednesday, Early Thursday

Bus riders, be advised: the Herndon-Monroe bus loop will be closed Wednesday (Dec. 19) evening and Thursday (Dec. 20) morning.

The temporary closure allows Dulles Corridor Metrorail Project crews to complete the pedestrian bridge span at the southwest corner of the bus loop, according to a post from the Dulles Corridor Metrorail Project.

Work is expected to start at 10 p.m. on Wednesday and last through 4 a.m. on Thursday. Buses will pick up and drop off from Sunrise Valley Drive.

The post also notes that the closure of Innovation Avenue has been extended to March.

Map via Dulles Corridor Metrorail Project 

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Capital Projects Slated for Next Year in Reston

With just more than half of the capital projects completed this year, the Reston Association is already looking ahead to ones for next year.

Senior Capital Projects Operations Manager Chris Schumaker highlighted some of the “key” projects slated for 2019 in a Reston Association video.

Originally developed in 1965, the Hook Road Recreation Area will see architectural and engineering changes. The area, which has remained largely unchanged since tennis and baseball amenities were added in 1973, was identified for major revitalization in 2016 after a review of facility enhancements approved by RA’s Board of Directors.

Bathroom renovations are slated for Lake Newport Pool (11601 Lake Newport Road).

A dredging project will begin for Lake Audubon. Residents were warned in September to avoid the lake after a harmful algae bloom was spotted. The bloom, called Microcystis, can produce toxins that are lethal for livestock, fish, and people. Some toxins have been linked to liver cancer.

Nestled in the woods, the Walker Nature Education Center will receive accessibility improvements.

A little more than half of Reston’s capital projects were finished this year, Schumaker told RA’s board at a meeting last Thursday (Dec. 13).

Finished ones included renovating the Pony Barn, located at the corner of Steeplechase Drive and Triple Crown Road, to include an ADA-accessible parking lot, bathroom and pathway, along with adding concrete flooring to the pavilion and grill station. The project also included a new drainage system and playground.

The Central Services Facility at 12250 Sunset Hills Road had a “major transformation” with new energy efficient windows, a new HVAC and bathroom facilities and improvements for accessibility and security. The building had not been updated since it was built in 1982, Schumaker said.

Dredging was completed for Lake Thoreau this year. “Removing the sediment helps improve the overall health of the lake for many years to come,” Schumaker said.

Some of this year’s projects nearing completion include new flooring, paint, fixtures and lighting in the Glade Room at 11550 Glade Drive and tree removal along the dam at Butler Pond at 1145 Water Pointe Lane.

Photos via Reston Association/YouTube

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Legal Insider: Marijuana & Security Clearances Don’t Mix

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

By John V. Berry, Esq.

There have been at least 10 states that have legalized marijuana over the past 5-10 years. The change in state laws has led to significant confusion by security clearance holders about their ability to use marijuana while holding or seeking a security clearance.

States like Massachusetts or California have legalized marijuana, but marijuana use remains illegal under federal criminal law as a Schedule I drug. The state and federal conflict in laws has caused both confusion and problems for security clearance applicants or holders.

Security Clearance Rules Governing Marijuana Usage

Security clearance holders and applicants frequently run into security clearance problems under Guideline H of the Security Clearance Guidelines (Security Executive Agent Directive 4) because they don’t realize that the use of marijuana, even in a state that has legalized it, remains illegal under federal law.

I believe that these guidelines will be amended in the next 5-7 years to change the use of marijuana from a complete ban to an abuse standard, like with alcohol, but the issue remains a problem today for those in the security clearance world.

Additionally, the type of marijuana which is used makes no difference (e.g. candy form, chocolate, brownie, smoking) under the guidelines. We have seen individuals that have had security clearance problems stemming from eating a single gummy candy which contained the active ingredients of marijuana.

We have defended many security clearance clients who have engaged in the light (or even one-time) usage of marijuana, who have had difficulties in overcoming the presumption that even minor use makes one ineligible to hold or maintain a security clearance. If the usage was a long time ago, this can significantly help mitigate a security concern, but the trickiest situations arise when marijuana usage has occurred within the past year.

The key in such cases is to attempt to mitigate security concerns by showing abstinence, changes in attitude, changes in associations with friends that engage in drug use and counseling, where needed.

Guideline H of the SEAD 4 states that:

The illegal use of controlled substances, to include the misuse of prescription and non-prescription drugs, and the use of other substances that cause physical or mental impairment or are used in a manner inconsistent with their intended purpose can raise questions about an individual’s reliability and trustworthiness, both because such behavior may lead to physical or psychological impairment and because it raises questions about a person’s ability or willingness to comply with laws, rules, and regulations. Controlled substance means any “controlled substance” as defined in 21 U.S.C. 802. Substance misuse is the generic term adopted in this guideline to describe any of the behaviors listed above.

Mitigation of Marijuana Use

Certain factors can mitigate security concerns for marijuana usage. These include:

(a) the behavior happened so long ago, was so infrequent, or happened under such circumstances that it is unlikely to recur or does not cast doubt on the individual’s current reliability, trustworthiness, or good judgment;

(b) the individual acknowledges his or her drug involvement and substance misuse, provides evidence of actions taken to overcome this problem, and has established a pattern of abstinence, including, but not limited to:

     (1) disassociation from drug-using associates and contacts;
     (2) changing or avoiding the environment where drugs were used; and
     (3) providing a signed statement of intent to abstain from all drug involvement and
substance misuse, acknowledging that any future involvement or misuse is grounds for
revocation of national security eligibility;

(c) abuse of prescription drugs was after a severe or prolonged illness during which these drugs were prescribed, and abuse has since ended; and

(d) satisfactory completion of a prescribed drug treatment program, including, but not limited to, rehabilitation and aftercare requirements, without recurrence of abuse, and a favorable prognosis by a duly qualified medical professional.

How to Approach a Marijuana Use Issue When a Security Clearance is Involved

It is very important not to underestimate the seriousness involved when a security clearance application, investigation or appeal reveals even minor usage of marijuana. Even minor usage of marijuana can cause the loss of a security clearance.

Marijuana usage issues may change in the future as the government likely moves from complete marijuana abstinence to an abuse threshold. In such cases, mitigation and the Whole-person concept are critical to attempting to obtain or retain one’s security clearance.

Conclusion

If you are in need of assistance in the security clearance process, please contact our office at 703-668-0070 or through our contact page to schedule a consultation. Please also visit and like us on Facebook or Twitter.

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Reston Association OKs Boat Conditions, Annual Boat Fee Citations

Nearly nine months after its formation, the Reston Association’s Lakes, Docks and Boats Working Group will move forward with some enforcement actions after stalling them ahead of the group’s final report.

Back in March, RA’s Board of Directors approved the formation of the working group to provide recommendations regarding the association’s policies on lakes, docks and boats on March 22.

The 18-member group examines the number and types of boats and docks currently on the lakes and ponds, identifies any environmental impacts docks and boats have on the lakes and ponds and recommends amendments and enforcement action. It also holds focus groups and public meetings and reviews governing documents.

Will Peterson, the watershed specialist for the Reston Association, updated RA’s Board of Directors last Thursday (Dec. 13) on the group’s progress this year.

Since its inception, the group has:

  • decided not to recommend a change to the maximum boat size
  • created a Reston lakes environment report
  • created a strategic plan for focus groups, which are set to start in January
  • voted to increase the motor size limit from 3 horsepower to 5 horsepower
  • voted to uphold the 50 percent rule for clusters and condo associations that own lakefront property

The 50 percent rule says that moored boats may take up no more than half of the available lakefront property shoreline. Peterson said that one cluster at Harbor Point by South Lakes Village Shopping Center was found in violation.

Currently, recommendations about boat and dock sealant methods of application are under consideration, along with clarifications surrounding whether or not owners can have two permanently moored boats.

The working group did not meet the November deadline to recommend a plan to the board for possible amendments and is now aiming to have a finalized report with recommendations ready for the board by the spring.

Until the presentation of the final report, the board decided to stay enforcement of boat violations — excluding poor boat conditions and nonpayment of the annual boat fee, which the board approved.

Peterson said that 12 people still have not paid the fee, including one person who has not paid for two years. “Since the implementation, we put a cease to doing any violations, but we still have boats in poor conditions,” he said, adding that poor boat conditions create safety concerns.

Photos via Reston Association/YouTube

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This Week’s Lane and Ramp Closures Due to Silver Line Work

Drivers can expect lane closures along the Dulles Toll Road this week as construction continues on the second phase of the Metrorail Silver Line project.

Most of the closures avoid prime rush hour times.

The closures started on Sunday (Dec. 16) and are scheduled to last until Saturday (Dec. 22), according to a post from the Dulles Corridor Metrorail Project.

The post reminds drivers to use caution; remain attentive to all signage, barricades and speed limits; and obey all police and flagger instructions. Work is subject to weather changes.

The Dulles Toll Road has alternating right and left lane closures of varying lengths from just west of the Route 28 overpass to the Reston Parkway overpass.

The schedule for this is:

  • Monday to Friday: 10 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. and 9 p.m. to 5 a.m.
  • Saturday: 10 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. and 8 p.m. to 5 a.m.

Drivers eastbound on the Dulles Toll Road can expect a triple left lane closure with 20-minute stoppages from the east end of Innovation Center Station to Herndon Station. This will take place from 10 p.m. on Tuesday to 5 a.m. on Wednesday.

Meanwhile, westbound on the Dulles Toll Road has a triple left lane closure with 20-minute stoppages from Reston Parkway to Herndon Station from 10 p.m. on Thursday to 6 a.m. on Friday.

Another triple left lane closure is between the overpass at Van Buren Street to the west end of Innovation Center Station from 10 p.m. on Friday to 5 a.m. on Saturday.

Eastbound on Herndon Parkway will have a right lane closed from 1,000 feet east of Van Buren Street to 800 feet west of Exchange Place.

The times for this are:

  • Monday to Thursday: 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
  • Friday: 9:30 a.m. to noon

Eastbound on Sunset Hills Road will have alternating right and left lane closures from 400 feet west of the Town Center Parkway to the Bechtel Building Entrance. The civil work will take place from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. from Monday to Thursday and from 9:30 a.m. to noon on Friday.

Several spots westbound on Sunrise Valley Drive will have closed right lanes from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. from Monday to Thursday and from 9:30 a.m. to noon on Friday, including:

  • from Dulles Technology Drive to Dulles Station Blvd
  • from Thunder Chase Drive to Millburn Lane
  • from Reston Parkway to 200 feet west of Edmund Halley Drive

Additionally, westbound on Sunrise Valley Drive by Thunder Chase Drive will a right lane closed from 10 p.m. on Wednesday to 4 a.m. on Thursday.

Edmund Halley Drive will have a right shoulder closed from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. from Monday to Thursday and from 9:30 a.m. to noon on Friday.

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Monday Morning Notes

An architect behind Reston’s design died on Nov. 22 — William J. Conklin, who died at the age of 95, helped design the core of Lake Anne Village Center. He also worked on projects in New York, D.C. and Baltimore. [The New York Times]

Nose to toes yoga — Young kids can try out yoga poses movement while enjoying book and songs with a children’s yoga instructor from 10:30 a.m. to 11:15 a.m. at the Reston Regional Library. The event is co-sponsored by the Friends of the Reston Regional Library. [Reston Regional Library]

Town of Herndon employees honored last week — The town’s annual employee luncheon on Thursday (Dec. 13) honored John Johnson and Dave Higgins from the Department of Public Works, Jessica Bynaker from Information Technology and Erika Rodriguez from the Herndon Police Department, along with the Department of Finance. [Town of Herndon]

Reston resident sentenced to 30 years for rape — Joseph Coffinberger, a 33-year-old from Reston, pleaded guilty and was sentenced to 30 years in prison for raping a 13-year-old boy, according to the Howard County State’s Attorney’s Office. [WBFF Fox45]

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