Boston Properties wants to replace garage parking with office space in the final block of Reston Gateway, a massive mixed-use development that’s currently under construction steps from the Reston Town Center Metro Station.
Although the first phase of the project was approved by the county in 2018, the company wants to tweak some aspects of Block D by adding roughly 80,000 square feet of office use on the first four floors of the building. Ground floor retail on the first floor and three levels of above-ground parking are currently approved for the block, which flanks Town Center Parkway.
The project extends Reston Town Center towards the south and includes 2.2 million square feet of office space, a 570-room hotel, 93,000 square feet of retail, and 2,010 residential units. The first phase of the project, which includes four development blocks, is well underway.
In an application to the county, Boston Properties noted that the requested change simply shifts previously approved density for office space to the block, ultimately resulting in ‘higher tax-paying square footage.’
‘This request only strengthens the development program by increasing the habitable space at the corner of Town Center Parkway and Founders Boulevard and enhancing the building architecture there by replacing an above-grade parking with Class A office,’ wrote Molly Novotny, a senior land use planner with Cooley, a Reston-based land use firm.
So far, Fannie Mae is set to occupy Blocks A and B next year and the hotel and retail elements in Block C will be completed by 2023.
The proposed change to the project was reviewed by the Reston Planning and Zoning Committee on Monday.
The Fairfax County Planning Commission is set to hold a public hearing on the project on May 12.
Images via handout/Fairfax County Government
The move comes after Wheelock’s plans to redevelop the nearby Hidden Creek Club were opposed by neighboring community groups and Hunter Mill District Supervisor Walter Alcorn.
The company, which bought the sprawling 29-acre property in 2018, plans to build the townhouses in four blocks on open space.
Although the county’s zoning allows the Connecticut-based company to build two more office buildings on the site, Wheelock chose the residential route to complement existing office space on the site.
“The introduction of an option for residential use will help to complement and balance the existing office use on the property, and will create positive traffic impacts relative to the full office build-out option,” according to the application.
Its plans for the golf course, which it purchased in 2017, are more uncertain. Wheelock has proposed general plans for a community park and between 500 and 2,000 residential units. No formal proposal has been filed with the county yet.
But Alcorn publicly stated he would block any efforts to redevelop the golf course, which requires rezoning and is a flashpoint in several community groups’ efforts to maintain Reston as a community with two golf courses.
The Fannie Mae proposal is in its early phases. The project heads to the Fairfax County Planning Commission on Sept. 22 and a staff report isn’t expected until Sept. 7.
Meanwhile, Fannie Mae is expected to move into Boston Properties’ next phase of development in Reston Town Center next year.
Image via handout/Fairfax County Government
Reston Company Goes Public During ‘Tipping Point’ — “Reston’s SOC Telemed is the latest Greater Washington company to make its debut on the public markets, opening Monday at $10 per share on the Nasdaq stock exchange.” [Washington Business Journal]
How Fannie Mae Helped Boston Properties Land Volkswagen’s Headquarters — “Fannie Mae agreed to give back two floors in the town center’s next phase, previously known as Reston Gateway, to help Boston Properties (NYSE: BXP) seal the nearly 200,000-square-foot lease with Volkswagen Group of America.” [Washington Business Journal]
Return to School Information Available — The Fairfax County Public School system has published a number of guides to help students and parents navigate the return to school. [FCPS]
Photo via vantagehill/Flickr
You may have noticed some new faces this February around McNair Elementary School (2499 Thomas Jefferson Drive).
About 15 volunteers from Fannie Mae’s Reston office have been helping out at the school.
“As a new partner, the firm has offered to provide volunteers on a monthly basis as a way to give back to the Reston and Herndon communities,” according to Fairfax County Public Schools.
The volunteers have been busy supporting read-aloud initiatives and the school’s holiday luncheon, according to FCPS.
The school community can expect the volunteers to help through the end of the year.
Image via Google Maps
An affiliate of Connecticut-based Wheelock Street Capital has bought the office building on 11600 American Dream Way from Fannie Mae further expanding the companies footprint.
The news, first reported by The Washington Business Journal, expands Wheelock Communities’ footprint in Reston. The company purchased Hidden Creek Country Club, which is just next to the office building previously owned by Fannie Mae, in October last year.
The company hopes to convert the golf course into a public park with between 500 and 2,000 residential units. A formal development proposal has not been submitted to the county, but discussions are underway. A spokesperson for the company did not immediately respond to a request for comment from Reston Now.
Wheelock Street Capital, an affiliate of Wheelock Communities, bought the Charter Oak Apartments, in February. The community is also next to the golf course.
Photo via Fannie Mae
The development proposal, which includes 2.2 million square feet of office space, a 570-room hotel, 93,000 square feet of retail, and 2,010 residential units, heads to the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors on July 31.
Boston Properties plans to develop the property in two phases. During phase one, blocks A through D will be building and two existing high-rise buildings on Blocks E through L will remain. During phase two, office buildings will be removed to make way for Blocks E through J. Sixteen percent of the residential units — 322 units — will be workforce dwelling units.
Noting that the project overall seemed strong, Planning Commissioner Ellen Hurley cast the only vote against the proposal. Hurley said she was concerned the developer reduced income requirements for affordable units to 70, 80, and 90 percent of the area median income — a reduction that she said was unfair to the commission.
“If the policy is not working, then perhaps we should revise the policy,” Hurley said.
The project, which runs from the door of Metro to the border of Reston Town Center, is located on the north side of Sunset Hills Road from Reston Parkway to Town Center Parkway.
The commission approved a five percent parking reduction for off-street parking in phase one and a nearly 11 percent reduction in off-street parking for phase two. Overall, the plan contemplates a reduction of 660 parking spaces.
Part of the deal includes the conveyance of a 60,000-square-foot performing arts center planned in phase two of the development. The building would be conveyed to the county’s board or another entity. If the plan fails, Boston Properties will provide required contributions for an athletic field, according to Hunter Mill District Planning Commissioner John Carter.
Carter said he was comfortable with the parking arrangement, especially for residential units. Affordable units will receive one space reduced at a set price based on the income tier and all spaces will be unbundled from units.
Parking reductions for Reston Gateway are acceptable because the development sits on top a Metro Station, Carter said. Unlike the recently approved residential building on 1801 Old Reston Avenue, street parking options and planned sidewalks should encourage more pedestrians to walk in the area, Carter said. A full commitment to the road fund will also be provided.
The breakdown of each block is below:
- Block A: A 420-foot office building with retail and restaurant uses
- Block B: A 380-foot office building with retail and restaurant uses
- Block C: A 249-room hotel with retail and restaurant uses
- Block D: A 600-unit residential unit with retail and restaurant uses. The block will include a five-level parking garage
- Block E: A 930-unit residential building with retail and restaurant uses, as well as three levels of underground parking and six levels of above-grade parking
- Block F: A 480-unit residential building with two levels of underground parking and five levels of above-ground parking
- Block G: This block is pending a Planned Residential Community amendment. It could contain a hotel, retail, restaurants and a six-level parking garage, as well as office uses
- Block H: A two-level building with 6,000 square feet of commercial uses on the ground level and a possible landing area for the second level of a pedestrian bridge across Sunset Hills Road from the Metro Station
- Block J: An office building with three levels of underground parking. This block could be conveyed to the Board of Supervisors for a future performing arts center
Handouts via Fairfax County Government
Under SEC investigation — ComScore, a Reston-based audience company, issued new financial statements showing it overstated revenue by $127 million. [Washington Business Journal]
29 acres are up for grabs — Fannie Mae is expected to vacate three major buildings in the area as it moves to Reston Gateway in 2022. Who will fill the void? [Washington Business Journal]
If you’re heading out to Wiehle-Reston East parking garage — Parking may be limited at times as construction continues in the area. Commuters can park at Reston South Park & Ride for free. [Fairfax Connector]
Flickr pool photo via vantagehill
Boston Properties has secured another win after inking a deal with Leidos Holdings, Inc earlier this year.
Fannie Mae will lease 850,000 square feet in the future Reston Gateway, a 27-acre project that could include up to 3.5 million square feet of transit-oriented development, according to release by Boston Properties.
The financial services company had been scouting for space as it moves to consolidate its services and secure a new hub. Comstock Partners’ Reston Station was one project Fannie Mae was considering.
The company already leases space at several local sites, including a 185,000 square foot lease at One Reston Crescent that was signed in 2015.
Boston Properties touted the binding lease commitment, which validates “Reston Town Center’s unique position as a top experiential development” in the country, the statement read.
Fannie Mae will move into the new space as the anchor tenant in 2020. Reston Gateway could include up to 150,000 square feet of retail and a hotel and more than 1 million square feet in residential.
Rendering via Boston Properties
Before we head off into the weekend, let’s take a look back at the biggest stories on Reston Now in recent days.
The following articles were the five most-clicked links on Reston Now this past week.
- M & S Grill in Reston Town Center Closes
- New Details Surface in the Murder of Reston Couple
- Memorial Service Set for Couple Murdered in Reston
- Longtime Business Leaves Reston Town Center
- Fannie Mae Eyes Move to Reston’s Core
Feel free to discuss these topics, your weekend plans or anything else that’s happening locally. Have a great weekend!
The mortgage giant, which recently made a deal to leave its upper Northwest D.C. location to build an new building at 1150 15th St., longtime site of The Washington Post headquarters.
Meanwhile, The Washington Business Journal reports that Fannie Mae is also planning to lease about 180,000 square feet at an undisclosed location in Reston to support a new commercialization platform it is developing in collaboration with Freddie Mac.
Fannie already owns and leases space at 11600 American Dream Way in Reston, as well as in Herndon, but company spokesman Andrew Wilson told WBJ it has maxed out its space in Reston and needs to expand to roll out the new platform for the mortgage industry.
Fannie Mae occupies nearly 1.5 million square feet of owned and leased space in the region, including a lease set to expire next year at Monument IV at Worldgate in Herndon.
Fannie plans to combine its operations there into the new space, which Fannie has identified says it cannot disclose yet.
Photo: Current Fannie Mae Reston space near Plaza America/file photo