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Tuesday Morning Notes

Amazon will bring $15 billion and 62,000 jobs by 2030 A study by the Virginia Chamber Foundation predicts that Amazon’s second headquarters in Crystal City will bring a huge economic impact to Northern Virginia and D.C. [Reston Patch]

Design & Wine — Head to ArtSpace Herndon to sketch and paint unique winter villages with artist Melanie Z Stanley from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. tonight. [ArtSpace Herndon]

New MetroAlerts and real-time parking unveiled– Metro introduced yesterday a new MetroAlerts system to allow Metrorail and Metrobus riders to customize the alerts they receive by day and time, along with adding multiple email addresses or phone numbers on one account. In a separate improvement, real-time parking status is now shown on wmata.com. [WMATA]

Reston Association’s Design Review Board meets tonight — The Wendy’s at 1701 Bracknell Drive is on the agenda for the meeting, which starts at 7 p.m. [Reston Association]

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Wednesday Morning Notes

Opening night for “The Nutcracker” — The Conservatory Ballet begins performances tonight of the holiday classic at 7 p.m. at CenterStage. [Reston Community Center]

Deadline pushed for Silver Line project contractors — The Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority extended the deadline yesterday for proposals to accommodate the vendors interested in operating the extension of the Metrorail Silver Line to March 18. [WMATA]

Reston-based technology developer is raking in the money —  OpenLegacy has raised $30 million in funding. Silverhorn Investment Advisors led the round. [OpenLegacy]

Snow possible this weekend — Get your snow boots out. Forecasters say a chance of wintery storms could hit Reston over the weekend. [Reston Patch]

Photo via Marjorie Copson

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Friday Morning Notes

Don’t let above-freezing temperatures deceive you — Local police advise commuters to exercise caution as they head out today. Road conditions remain icy and local police have already responded to a number of crashes today. [Fairfax County Police Department]

When Wiehle-Reston East commuters were left in the dark — A few weeks ago, Metro commuters were left in the dark when several Silver Line trains weren’t running from Largo Town Center to Benning Road. Metro’s main spokesman won’t say why. [The Washington Post]

Last days to drop-off donations — Cornerstones’ Thanksgiving Food Drive is nearing to an end. The last day to drop off requested donations at a number of local donations is this Monday. [Reston Community Center]

In case you missed it — A car crash sent four people to the hospital yesterday morning. The driver of one car was trapped and was removed from the car. [Reston Now]

Photo by Twitter user @MrErrett

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Deer Causes Delays on the Silver Line

(Update at 7:55 a.m.: Service has resumed as normal). 

A deer on the tracks outside of McLean is causing some delays along the Silver Line this Thursday morning.

As of 7:40 a.m., Metro officials are advising customers to expect residual delays to Largo Town Center as a result.

The deer exited the Silver Line property at around 7:21 a.m. Trains to Wiehle-Reston East held for several minutes, driving slowly behind the deer.

Here’s more from social media:

File photo

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Friday Morning Notes

Budget to increase Reston Association’s assessment fee by $11 — After hashing out several drafts of the 2019 operating and capital budgets, next year’s assessment fee is proposed to include an $11 increase, setting the rate of $693. [Reston Today]

A big win for the governor — Roughly 400,000 newly eligible low-income adults in Virginia can start enrolling in Medicaid, scoring a major win for the state’s Democratic governor. [WTOP]

Get your absentee votes in — Tomorrow is the last day for in-person, absentee voting. Ten locations are available for voting. [Fairfax County Government]

Daylight savings and Metro — Time changes are likely to change how you do things this weekend and that applies to Metro service as well. [WTOP]

Photo by David Toms

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Monday Morning Notes

Where’d the money go — A report by the Office of Inspector General has found that Metro failed to properly track millions of dollars in spending. [WTOP]

Reston resident, others challenge local Airbnb regulations — “One month into Fairfax County’s new regulations on short-term lodging, a group of local citizens are suing to have the regulations voided. On July 31, the Board of Supervisors adopted the Short-Term Lodging (STL) Zoning Ordinance Amendment aimed at regulating home-sharing inside Fairfax, most commonly carried out through the websites Airbnb and VRBO.” [Tysons Reporter]

Make the call — County officials urge residents to make the call by stopping domestic violence. The event was in recognition of domestic violence awareness month. [The Connection]

Photo by Chip McCrea

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CVS Pharmacy to Open in Reston Station

CVS Pharmacy is the latest tenant to sign a lease with Comstock’s massive Reston Station project near the Wiehle-Reston Metro station. 

The healthcare giant will lease 8,451 square feet of plaza-level retail space in Reston Station’s third tower, which is currently under construction. The $95 million tower features 180,000 square feet of office space and completion is slated for January 2020.

The storefront is at the entrance of Metro’s north pedestrian bridge to the station. Christopher Clemente, CEO of Comstock Holding Companies, Inc., said the tenant, which signed a twenty-year lease with three five-year options, will bring “virtually every item one needs for daily living” to residents, tenants, and commuters in the area.

“Bringing CVS to the Reston Station neighborhood is another great step forward for the Reston Station neighborhood,” Clemente wrote in a statement.

The company joins other retailers like Starbucks, Founding Farmers and Sweet Leaf Café on Reston Station’s Metro Plaza.

The new urban neighborhood includes the BLVD, a 447-unit high-rise, a 350,000 square-foot office tower, and Bozzuto’s residential building, Aperture. Additional development is planned and approved in Reston Station.  

Photo via Comstock

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Thursday Morning Notes

No fare hikes — Metro doesn’t plan to raise fares next year, which it typically does every other year. But that also means there no immediate plans to increase service. [WTOP]

‘Midline’ reaches end of the line — Three big-name developers are partnering to build the mixed-use project near Wiehle-Reston East. The Fairfax County Planning Commission votes on the project tonight. [Fairfax County Government]

Creative response set for tonight –– Malgorzata J. Rymsza-Pawlowska, an assistant professor at American University, will lead the audience through a creative response on work currently on display at the Greater Reston Arts Center from 7-8 p.m. [Greater Reston Arts Center]

Photo by Elizabeth Bley

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Wednesday Morning Notes

Potential receiver to handle Kiddar Capital assets — “The Securities and Exchange Commission has asked the judge in the civil case against real estate developer Todd Hitt to appoint Richmond attorney Bruce Matson as receiver for Hitt’s development and investment operations, according to a new motion filed in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia.” [Washington Business Journal]

Are you listening — The third listening session with Reston Association’s Board of Directors is on for tonight. Caren Anton, the director of the Dogwood and Hunters Woods district, will listen to your questions and concerns. [Reston Association]

And Metro is too — bus passengers are encouraged to take part in a survey that will help determine funding allocations for different jurisdictions. [Washington Metropolitan Area Authority]

Photo by Caroline Rapking

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Fairfax Real Estate Developer Accused of Multimillion-Dollar Real Estate Fraud in Herndon

The CEO of Kiddar Capital, a Falls Church asset management firm, is accused of lying about the size and value of his company and defrauding investors about a $33 million office building in Herndon, according to charges filed in federal court. 

Todd Elliott Hitt, 53, was charged with securities fraud and surrendered to the FBI on Friday.

According to court documents, which were unsealed on Friday, Hitt raised nearly $11 million by falsely claiming to buy the building near a planned Herndon Metro stop. He spent around $9 million to purchase the 4.8-acre office building and relied on bank loans for the remaining balance on the purchase.

Prosecutors say Hitt was involved in an alleged $16 million scheme to defraud investors.

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission also found Kiddar claimed to be a global firm with $1.4 billion under management in London, Houston, and Florida, but in reality, the local company only had one office in Falls Church and managed far less than $1 billion.

They also noted that Hitt failed to disclose to investors his “extravagant spending,” which included leasing private jets and buying sports tickets and jewelry.

The complete release can be found online.

Photo via Kiddar Capital

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Thursday Morning Notes

Not so thrilled with Metro — Real estate development icon and attorney John Hazel, 87, thinks that Metro is a political failure. Hazel plays a leading role in developing Fairfax County and Northern Virginia. [Washington Business Journal]

Meet the artist event this afternoon —  Cabaret singer Beverly Cosham will perform selected songs from the Great American Songbook and other favorites. Cosham has won numerous awards for her musical performances. [Reston Community Center]

Reston Corner development under consideration — The Fairfax County Planning Commission will consider a proposal to rezone office property allow residential development on the southwest corner of Reston Parkway and Sunrise Valley Drive, along with more office space. [Fairfax County Government]

Lots to do at the library — Reston Regional Library has several events of note today, including a downsizing seminar planned for tonight and a book club for millennials.

Photo by Ray Copson

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Wednesday Morning Notes

Who represents Northern Virginians — “Loudoun County will join the Metro Compact when the Silver Line extension opens in about two years, but Loudoun, Alexandria and Arlington would frequently not have their own voting member on the panel. ” [WTOP]

Jewelry making at Reston Regional Library today — Learn the basics of jewelry making and create an original piece in this hands-on workshop for adults. Registration is required for this event and the library will provide materials. [Reston Regional Library]

Expect a notification at 2:18 p.m. — Your cell phone will go off (not on you, we hope) due to a test of the presidential emergency alert system. [U.S. Department of Homeland Security]

Nearby: Uprooted thanks to I-66 — “Nearly a dozen homeowners in Fairfax County are having their houses taken by the state in an eminent domain case. The residents being impacted live near Interstate 66 as the Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) plans to expand the highway and surrounding roadways.” [FOX 5]

Flickr pool photo by vantagehill

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Thursday Morning Notes

Weekend track work on Metro — Silver, Blue and Yellow Line trains are scheduled to run every 24 minutes on Saturday and Sunday. Largo Town Center Metro station will be closed. [WTOP]

Reston Association Board meets tonight — A vision for the future of Hidden Creek Country Club, one of two golf courses in Reston, will be unveiled by the owner. The developer plans to convert the golf course into a public park with residential development. [Reston Association]

Book sale begins for Reston friends — Members of the Friends of Reston Regional Library get first dibs on the Friend’s book sale today. The sale is open to the public on Friday and into the weekend. [Fairfax County Government]

Teen Advisory Board meeting tonight — The board will meet today to discuss how to make the library a wonderful place for teenagers. The board is open to volunteers between the age of 13 and 18. Volunteer hours are also offered for participation. [Reston Regional Library]

Flickr pool photo by vantagehill

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Wednesday Morning Notes

Scam and fraud awareness event today — At an event at Reston Association headquarters, today from 4-7 p.m., a local detective and community partners will discuss warning signs of fraud and provide information about common scams that frequently target the older adult community. [AARP Virginia]

Not betting the farm — “Key players in the joint bid for Amazon’s second headquarters say their community’s time has come, even if the Seattle-based company picks another location.” [Washington Business Journal]

A free (but not necessarily full) ride — Loudoun County Transit is offering free bus service from the park-and-ride in Purcellville to the Wiehle-Reston Metro Station beginning Oct. 1. [The Loudoun Tribune]

Photo by Charlotte Geary

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Private Contractors Likely to Operate Silver Line’s Second Phase

Private contractors are likely to operate and maintain the six new stations that are part of the Silver Line extension project that runs from Wiehle-Reston East into Loudoun County

In an announcement on Tuesday, the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority said it has issued a request for proposals in order to seek private contractors who can operate and maintain the new stations, trains, and facilities.

WMATA said the move was necessary in order to control operating and maintenance costs, including future pension costs, which it says have “grown to unsustainable levels.”

“We are leaving no stone unturned as we look for opportunities to maintain transit service for the region and protect jobs, all while living within our means in light of what our funding jurisdictions can afford,” said Metro General Manager and Chief Executive Officer Paul J. Wiedefeld. 

Bids are due on Jan. 15 and a contract will be awarded in the spring.

Officials said the move will not result in job losses for Metro’s current workforce. They also noted that transit agencies in Hong Kong, London, Melbourne, and Beijing have had success in contracting some or all rail services through public-private partnerships, resulting in “improved on-time performance, reliability, operating efficiencies and cost savings.’

The Silver Line extension project is tentatively scheduled to open in 2020.

Photo by Fatimah Waseem

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