A group of Reston homeowners will meet with Hunter Mill Supervisor Cathy Hudgins Wednesday to voice their concerns about new street lights lining Cross School Road.
Four of 10 planned light poles were installed two weeks ago as part of the renovation project at Sunrise Valley Elementary School. A Fairfax County Department of Public Works and Environmental Services spokesman says the lighting is standard for all county redevelopment, including schools.
“There is increased need for lighting for pedestrian safety at elementary schools,” said DPWES spokesman Matthew Kaiser.
But the powerful lights — similar to what are installed along the Dulles Toll Road — are directly across from single-family homes on Cross School Road, and that is a bit too much lighting, residents say.
“The lights they’ve installed on this very short stretch of road between Sunrise Valley and Midsummer are in addition to several lights the county has already installed at the school — which is now very well lit,” said Cross School resident Roberta Gosling in a letter to neighbors. “As a result of multiple phone calls from the neighbors to both the county and to Cathy Hudgins’ office, when Dominion showed up to install the remaining six [of 10] lights, they got a call to put the project on hold.”
Gosling said the residents are working to have the four lights removed and the project halted.
“We really do not understand why these lights are being installed in the first place — especially since they are industrial lights in a residential neighborhood. We believe the county has not followed its own processes on this issue,” she wrote.
The lights are powerful, between 14,000 – 18,000 lumens, said Gosling. She added that neighbors had no notice that the lights were going into place.
“For many of us, these lights, once hooked up, will shine directly into our master bedrooms,” she said. “The limited number of neighbors I’ve spoken with along the directly impacted area believe NO lights should be installed.”
“From a safety standpoint the school is very well lit and houses along that stretch generate ambient light. We also believe that a waiver can be issued to stop the installation of these lights if there is a reason the county believes they need to be installed.”
Hudgins’ office says “the Open House will provide an opportunity for the Reston community to gather information on proposed, planned and anticipated development activity within the Transit Station Areas.”
“In addition, Fairfax County Government agencies will also present other area projects at this event,” Hudgins’ office says. “The overall goal is for property owners and/or developers to share with the community a comprehensive vision of what is being considered for the future of Reston.”
A request for more information has not been returned, so no word if the blueprint includes any information about a new redevelopment plan for the Lake Anne area.
After years of meetings, Republic Land Development’s plan for the Fairfax County-owned Crescent Apartments was approved by the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors in March 2015. Republic pulled out of the deal at the end of 2015.
It is anticipated that the county will open up another Request for Proposals or formulate a new vision for redevelopment in the area, but nothing has been announced yet.
The open house is at South Lakes High School, 11400 South Lakes Drive, in the cafeteria, from 6 to 8:30 p.m.
Hunter Mill Supervisor Cathy Hudgins/File photo
After years of construction and a move-in delay of several months, the offices of Hunter Mill Supervisor Cathy Hudgins and the Fairfax County Police’s Reston District Station are slated to to move into the new North County Government Center Feb. 23 and 24.
The new building, at 1801 Cameron Glen Dr., has been under construction for more than two years. The current building, constructed in 1985, will be torn down to make way for a parking lot after the moves are complete.
A 2006 bond referendum provided the $18 million funding for the new building.
The new building will be approximate 35,000 square feet, which is nearly double the size of the current building.
The supervisor’s section of the building will include a larger community room. The project will be seeking a LEED Silver certification by incorporating high-efficiency plumbing and HVAC systems, water efficient landscaping, a “cool roof” with high reflectivity, use of recycled components and low-emitting materials and construction waste management practices.
There are also plans to include a public art work on the east side of the building.
County offices may be hard to reach as phones are disconnected on moving day, but after that all phone numbers will remain the same, county officials said.
The building is the first new construction in the “Town Center North” area, which may eventually include a new library, replacement of the Embry Rucker Community Center, a new community center and other mixed-use amenities.
There will be grand opening event for the facility later this year.