Global consulting firm ICF International Inc. has inked a full-building lease at Comstock’s Reston Station, according to a company release.
The firm will occupy 1902 Reston Metro Plaza, an eight-story, 250,000-square-foot office building at the mixed-use development atop the Wiehle-Reston East Metro Station. The company plans to relocate its headquarters of three decades in Fairfax by the end of 2022.
The glass and steel building, which sits on top of parking and restaurant space, is expected to be complete by 2021.
“We are confident that Reston Station has everything we need to provide one of the best employee experiences in the Washington D.C. metro area,” said John Wasson, Chief Executive Officer of ICF. “Having our global headquarters in the heart of a rapidly expanding technology corridor directly supports our strategic growth plans and provides so many more conveniences to our employees.”
ICF is the latest tenant to join the development. Search engine giant Google has moved into Reston Station’s first office building and other companies like Neustar, Rolls-Royce North America, British Telecom and Spaces by Regus are also in the pipeline.
“We look forward to welcoming ICF and its entire team to the Reston Station neighborhood,” said Christopher Clemente, CEO of Comstock Companies. “Comstock is committed to creating a world-class development that provides world-class companies a remarkable neighborhood and an attractive platform for our tenants to recruit and retain talent needed to grow their business.”
ICF is a global consultancy and digital services provider that has more than 7,000 employees.
Photo via Comstock
As phase two of the Silver Line opens early next year, Fairfax County Public Schools are looking to secure funds to begin planning for a new elementary school near the Silver Line.
On Tuesday, Nov 5., voters will consider a bond referendum for $2 million in planning funds for the project.
A site for the new school has not been finalized. A spokesperson for FCPS also declined to release the pyramid the school would be located in until a location has been selected.
“Fairfax County Public Schools is collaborating closely with Fairfax County land use and government staff to identify sites,” said Lucy Caldwell, the school system’s director of news and information.
Developer Pomeroy/Clark LLC plans to dedicate six acres of land for the school — a condition of approval for the developer’s mixed-use project at the intersection of Sunrise Valley Drive and Frying Pan Road.
The Fairfax County Board of Supervisors approved the project in June, which includes 2 million square feet of residential uses and an elementary school in five separate land bays spread over 44 acres.
The plan depicts a five-story, 135,000-square-foot elementary school — details that are contingent on the future approvals of the final development plan for the school and pending discussions between the school system and land use staff.
“The applicant worked closely with Fairfax County Public Schools on the site design to ensure that adequate parking, bus circulation, and recreation space can be provided for the school,” according to the county.
School renovations and construction projects are financed through the approval of bonds.
The future of a wooded patch of land nesting between a childcare facility, Reston Regional Library, and Paramount Condominiums is uncertain.
Norton Scott is appealing the county’s rejection of its plan to develop the 0.8-acre site with a 13-story condominium building with 58 for-sale luxury units — adding a new mix of housing units to the Reston Town Center market.
County planners say the developer’s plan exceeds the allowed density in the area and does not provide a public street connection between north Reston, Reston Town Center, and the future Reston Metrorail Station.
Reston’s master plan, which was approved in 2013, calls for extending Library Street to the Reston Town Center North site — a connection that county planners say is necessary to improve the street network in the area.
But Norton Scott is seeking to exercise a by-right plan, which comes after the county rejected a plan from MRP and Norton Scott in May 2018 for a public-private partnership on blocks seven and eight of the area known as Reston Town Center North.
The county deemed the proposal for Reston Town Center North– which would have included a civic plaza, a new library, a pedestrian underpass, and a new shelter, and a new performing arts center — too expensive.
County officials said they only received one submission for the project after a request for proposals was issued in 2017 for the project.
After the rejection and seven years after purchasing the site from Trammel Crow Company, Norton Scott says it wants to move forward with a new project on the site, which it is calling Library Square.
“The county kind of closed the door on other possibilities,” Chelsea Rao, senior vice president of Norton Scott, said. “We are a company and we want to monetize our assets.”
She says the company is willing to work with the county to ensure the site extends well with the other areas in Reston Town Center north. But asking for a road to extend throughout the site interferes with the developer’s by-right plan.
In a Feb. 7 memo, county planners concluded the development plan could not reasonably accommodate a future extension of Library Street as a public street.
Access between the surrounding parcels does not align with the extension of the street, making the inter-parcel connection “futile,” according to the county’s planning department.
The county wants the developer to align its project with the existing Library Street and connect with the proposed connection associated with Library Street near Reston Town Center.
The Fairfax County Board of Supervisors deferred a decision on the appeal to Oct. 29.
Photos via handout/Fairfax County Government
One of Reston’s first office developments has officially been approved for major redevelopment.
A 32-acre piece of Isaac Newton Square — which is roughly a quarter-mile from the Wiehle-Reston East Development — will be transformed with 2.8 million square feet of new construction, including around 2,100 residential units.
The Fairfax County Board of Supervisors officially approved the project, which is a joint venture between MRP Realty and landowner Peter Lawrence. Cos., on Tuesday (Oct. 15).
Isaac Newton Square is currently developed with around 437,000 square feet of office and industrial space. The first industrial tenant in Reston came to Isaac Newton Square in November of 1964. Reston’s first residents came a month later.
The redevelopment plan includes 10 blocks of development, including 300 hotel rooms, 260,000 square feet of office space and around 69,000 square feet of retail.
An athletic field is proposed along the southern edge of the property. Parking garages throughout the site will provide 3,920 of the 4,063 total spaces on the site. The full-size athletic field, which would be located next to the Washington & Old Dominion Trail, is nearby a planned amphitheater and a public civic plaza.
The existing internal roads on the site — Isaac Newton Square North, East, South and West — form the basis of the grid-of-streets for the site. Isaac Newton South, a two-way roadway, is the only public road proposed on the property, providing a second access point from Wiehle Avenue. Southbound traffic turning right from Wiehle Avenue on westbound Isaac Newton Square will use a proposed 88-foot taper.
Subsequent development plans for specific blocks will go before local and county planning bodies as the project comes close to groundbreaking.
Photos via handout/Fairfax County Government
The Fairfax County Board of Supervisors unanimously approved Campus Commons on Tuesday — the first major redevelopment project in a transit-oriented area in Reston near established neighborhoods. Although community criticism pushed developer TF Cornerstone to amend its plan, citizens and resident groups remained concerned about the scale and impact of the 12-acre development.
TF Cornerstone plans to redevelop 1900-1902 Campus Commons Drive with two residential towers with 656 units, an office building, and seven public parks. Two office buildings will remain on the site.
The scale of the project — as well as a controversial proposed on-grade pedestrian crossing at Wiehle Avenue and the Dulles Toll Road — prompted the eruption of community consternation and the formation of Rescue Sunrise Valley, a community group that pushed the developer to scale back the site.
Last month, TF Cornerstone shifted roughly 86,550 square feet from an office building near Sunrise Valley Drive to a residential building and reduced its height from 12 to seven stories. The setback along the curb of Sunrise Valley Drive was also increased to a minimum of 50 feet.
The approval of the project highlights the challenge of transitioning the community to mass transit. Community planners rely on the hope that transit-oriented developments like Campus Commons will reduce the number of vehicles — a transition that will likely happen over time and raises questions about community impacts in the interim.
At Tuesday’s Board of Supervisors’ meeting, residents said the project adds additional congestion in an area that already has high traffic volumes.
Although the developer’s plans show an on-grade crossing at the intersection of Wiehle Avenue and the toll road, TF Cornerstone will work with the county to explore three options for a pedestrian bridge. The study group, which will also represent local residents, will work for up to three years to explore the best way forward. TF Cornerstone committed to constructing the bridge of contributing $1.5 million to help finance any alternative.
Michelle Kimmel, a member of the Coalition for a Planned Reston, said that while she supports transit-oriented communities, Campus Commons does not hit benchmarks for well-planned development, especially because it is not harmonious with existing residential areas.
“We got people ending up on a pork chop in the middle of the toll road,” Kimmel said. “It’s just beyond me how this project can succeed.”
Reston Association President Cathy Baum said the project illustrates the association’s longstanding concern about high densities planned for transit station areas and the inadequacy of transportation to keep up with development.
Baum also encouraged the board to remove the on-grade crossing at Wiehle Avenue from plans “as an assurance to our members that it is truly not an option.”
Hunter Mill District Supervisor Cathy Hudgins thanked residents for their involvement in the project and said she hopes the county will work diligently to ensure the developments like Campus Commons reduce traffic in the long-term. Hudgins also noted that the county’s planning documents call for redevelopment projects like Campus Commons in the corridor of Sunrise Valley Drive and Sunset. Hills Road.
Hudgins also said she hopes the developer will continue to work with residents as the project is built.
Photos via handout/Fairfax County Government
Hudgins Reflects on 20 Years as Supervisor — Hunter Mill District Supervisor Cathy Hudgins, who has been a supervisor for 20 years, fears Reston has lost its welcoming spirit for newcomers. [Washington Business Journal]
CoreSite Announces Opening of New Data Center — “With over 100MW of expected capacity for the Reston Campus Expansion, and the multi-cloud capabilities of the CoreSite platform, we are in a position to deliver the maximum degree of scale, operational flexibility and performance throughout the entire lifecycle of customers’ digital transformation journey,” writes Juan Font, CoreSite’s senior vice president of general management. [Data Economy]
County Offers Held to Prevent Opioid Overdoses — “According to the latest statistics from the Virginia Department of Health, there were 324 fatal overdoses caused by opioids in January-March of 2019 in the commonwealth. Unfortunately, those are the highest first-quarter numbers ever recorded. Twenty-two occurred in Fairfax County.” [Fairfax County Government]
Photo by Jay Westcott
New School Board Policy on Cannabis-Derived Oil in Schools — “The Fairfax County School Board has approved a policy on the storage, dispensing, and administration of cannabidiol oil and THC-A that aligns with Virginia law that became effective on July 1. The policy states that no school nurse or employee of a local health department who is assigned to a public school can be prosecuted for possessing, storing, or distributing cannabidiol (CBD) oil or tetrahydrocannabinol acid (THC-A) oil that has been prescribed via a valid, written certification by a medical professional.” [Fairfax County Public Schools]
Self-driving Shuttles in Suburbs Like Reston — “A Boston-based startup called Optimus Ride has launched a new self-driving vehicle service in the Washington, DC suburb of Reston, Virginia. On Monday, I traveled to the site, a 45-minute drive from my home in the nation’s capital, to see it first-hand. Since August, the company has been ferrying passengers between a Fannie Mae office building at the site and an overflow parking lot a few minutes’ walk away. But Optimus Ride has much larger ambitions for the site.” [Ars Technica]
Development Surges Along the Silver Line — “While acknowledging the need for housing and concerns about the area’s already high cost of living, Northern Virginia business leaders see the impending arrival of the Silver Line and its surrounding development as critical for the economic future of not just Fairfax and Loudoun, but the region as a whole.” [Fairfax County Times]
Photo via vantagehill/Flickr
A major mixed-use development near the Wiehle-Reston East Metro Station is barrelling its way towards the county’s approval.
In a unanimous vote last night (Thursday), the Fairfax County Planning Commission approved TF Cornerstone’s Campus Commons project, which would redevelop 12 acres of land into two residential towers with 656 units, an office buildings, and several parks. The plan preserves two office buildings currently on the site.
The proposal — which is the last major block of developable land near the Metro station that is in the books — has attracted community concerns for its scale, impacts on traffic, compatibility with adjacent neighborhoods, and pedestrian connectivity.
In response to feedback from the commission at a previous meeting and community criticism, TF Cornerstone removed roughly 86,550 square feet from an office building fronting Sunrise Valley Drive, reducing the massing of the building from 12 to seven stories. The developer shuffled most of the removed square footage to the residential towers, which sit deeper within the site. The setback along the curb of Sunrise Valley Drive was also increased to a minimum of 50 feet.
Preliminarily, TF Cornerstones is proposing to add an at-grade crosswalk at Wiehle Avenue near the off-ramps to the Dulles Toll Road — a component of the plan that residents warned poses safety concerns for pedestrians.
The developer also agreed to embark on an up-to-three-year study to explore options with the county and the Virginia Department of Transportation for a tunnel or a pedestrian bridge.
“This is the first applicant to take this on,” said Hunter Mill District Planning Commission John Carter.
Carter said the developer did a good job of amending its plans in response to feedback from the county and residents.
The plan heads to the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors for a vote on Tuesday (Oct. 15).
Image via Fairfax County Government/handout
New residential infill development could be coming to the end of Floris Lane in Herndon.
A Virginia-based property owner is seeking to develop roughly 13 acres of land with 25 single-family homes. The proposed development, which was accepted by the county for review last week, would include 40 percent open space.
Developer Christopher Land LLC notes that the development, which is called the Reserve at Spring Lake, would complete an “existing and established residential development pattern” in the area, according to a Sept. 27 application.
The project site is surrounded by other single-family homes, including the Borneham Woods and Spring Lakes Estate West communities. Asphalt trails are also proposed to connect sidewalks within the community and the community’s lake.
A public hearing before the Fairfax County Planning Commission is tentatively set for May 2020.
Photo via handout/Fairfax County Government
After recent community criticism and pushback from some residents, the developer of a proposed mixed-use development near the Wiehe-Reston East Metro Station is going back to the drawing board to revisit some aspects of the plan.
TFC Cornerstone, which is seeking to redevelop 12 acres of land into two residential towers and a new office building (1900-1902 Campus Commons), submitted amendments to its plans to the Fairfax County Planning Commission on Thursday (Oct. 3). The plan preserves two office buildings currently on the site.
The updated plans — which follow revisions made in late September — reduce the square footage of an office building by 86,550 square feet. The building, which is located at the edge of the property and near a neighborhood with single-family homes, drew criticism from neighboring residents for its scale, especially in contrast with the adjacent neighborhood.
Scaling back the building would result in a net reduction of 487 weekday vehicle trips, according to the developer.
TFC Cornerstones will shift most of the removed density to the residential building, increasing the total number of units from 630 to 656 units. The developer also reduced the design of the office building along Sunrise Valley drive to seven stories, two fewer stories compared to the previously amended plan. The portion of the building furthest away from the road will have 10 stories.
The developer also committed to creating a minimum 50-foot setback between the buildings along Sunrise Valley Drive, making space for a new 14,410 square foot linear park.
If approved, the amended plan would also extend the time period for a study group to examine the best way to get pedestrians across Wiehle Avenue and its intersection with the Dulles Toll Road.
The developer’s proposal — an on-grade crosswalk — has raised concerns for its lack of safety in an already busy intersection, according to residents who testified at a late September meeting.
TFC Cornerstone will work with a study group for up to two years to consider the best way to approach the pedestrian crossing.
Other amendments included:
- Addition of bicycle striping across Wiehle Avenue at the intersection wit Sunrise Valley Drive and across Campus Commons Drive
- A new proffer to provide bicycle. Stairway ramps on straits through the Sunrise Valley Drive pocket park and the corner park
- Limited hours for activities in the amphitheater
- A commitment to include 15 percent tree canopy, despite utility conflicts or other engineering considerations
The project heads to the Fairfax County Planning Commission for a vote on Oct. 10 and is docketed for Fairfax County Board of Supervisor later this month.
Photos via TFC Cornerstone
The Fairfax County Planning Commission will take on Campus Commons, a proposal to redevelop property near the Wiehe-Reston East Metro Station, later this month after nearly 50 residents voiced concerns about the controversial project at a meeting last month.
TF Cornerstone plans to bring 630 residential units spread across a mid-rise and high-rise building, an office building, and urban parks to the southeastern corner of Wiehle Avenue and the Dulles Toll Road.
The project is the last major mixed-use development in the pipeline immediately around he Wiehe-Reston East Metro Station.
In a Sept. 25 proposal for amendments, TFC Cornerstones reduced the height of a 14-story office building to 12 stories and the height of a 29-story residential tower to 25 stories. The developer also added an amphitheater to the development and added language to explore the possibility of a grade-separated pedestrian bridge.
But concerns about the project remain. The project heads to the commission for a vote on Oct. 10.
At a commission meeting in late September, planning commissioners stressed the need for the developer to ensure the project provided strong pedestrian and bicyclist connections to allow people to get to the Metro Station.
Others were unconvinced the project — and prior approvals — have done a good job maintaining synergy with other adjacent projects.
Planning Commissioner Mary Cortina said she was surprised the county’s overall process did not have a strong vision to get people to the station.
An on-grade crosswalk proposed at the intersection of Wiehle Avenue and the Dulles Toll Road has piqued major concerns in the community.
Cortina said she was unconvinced the proposed sidewalk was designed in a safe manner.
“This transition is not at a point where anyone will feel safe going across that many lanes of traffic with all the moving cars coming off [the] ramp,” Cortina said. “They’re going to take the shortest route.”
Residents say the proposed crosswalk, which takes pedestrians to a concrete island in the middle of the toll road’s western exit ramp, poses a major safety risk in an already busy intersection with frequent back-ups.
The project has prompted residents to launch a community grassroots campaign called “Rescue Sunrise Valley.”
Residents also raised concerns about a 25-story office tower on the corner of the site, among other issues. The building would be located immediately next to residential neighborhoods with single-family homes and low-rise townhouses — a mix of uses that residents say is incompatible with the area.
Planning commissioners also urged TF Cornerstones to preserve trees and ensure its renderings — which include significant tree canopy and greenery — will reflect reality. Hunter Mill District Planning Commissioner John Carter noted that greenery and trees depicted in renderings of recently approved projects disappeared when the projects were built. Instead of trees, developers left utility polls and a row of mud.
Brookfield Properties will launch its self-driving vehicles at its groundbreaking ceremony for Halley Rise, a new $1.4 billion mixed-use district in Reston that is set to break ground next week.
The developer plans to break ground on the first phase of the development, which is located off the Dulles Access Road and Reston Parkway, on Monday (Oct. 7).
The 36-acre redevelopment project includes 1,500 residential units, 1.5 million square feet of office space, and 250,000 square feet of retail. Wegmans grocery store is set to anchor the development and a “modern movie theater” is planned at the development.
The groundbreaking ceremony will also demonstrations of self-driving vehicles by autonomous vehicle technology company Optimus Ride. The vehicles are expected to be a central part of the development. The company has already begun deploying self-driving cars in the office park, which is known as the Reston Crescent, to move employees between office buildings to parking lots.
The first phase of the development is expected to be complete by 2022. The project is located at 12010 Sunrise Valley Drive.
Photos via handout/Fairfax County Government
The Fairfax County Board of Supervisors unanimously approved a plan to redevelop a three-story office building on Old Reston Avenue into two, three-story office buildings and a campus-style setting.
A 45,000-square-foot office building is planned on the north end of the property and a 94,000-square-foot office is planned on the southern end. Both structures will be connected by an underground parking garage and a shared conference facility. A 6,600-square-foot rooftop terrace will also run between the two buildings.
Hunter Mill District Supervisor Cathy Hudgins said the plan was a good balance of “old and new.” She also said the new buildings would complement the historic structures that are already on the site.
“I think it’s a great application,” Hudgins said at a board meeting earlier this week.
AAFMAA is working with DBI Architects to design the project. Modern-looking buildings will act a backdrop to the historic manor house, which was built in 1899 and is listed on the Fairfax County Inventory of Historic Sites.
It was originally constructed to be the Wiehle Town Hall and was used as a church, general store, and distillery.
AAFAA is a nonprofit organization that offers life insurance and survivors services to the U.S. Armed Forces communities.
Photos via handout/Fairfax County Government
The Fairfax County Planning Commission unanimously approved a plan to redevelop Isaac Newton Square Thursday night, green-lighting another major mixed-use development near the Wiehe-Reston East Metro Station.
APA Properties is seeking to rezone nearly 32 acres of land from industrial use in order to accommodate up to 2,100 units, including around 300 hotel rooms. Ten blocks of development are proposed, with 260,000 square feet of office and around 69,000 square feet of retail space.
Unlike other developments, an athletic field proposed along the southern edge of the property. Parking garages are planned throughout the development, but single-family units will have surface parking.
The project is located north of Sunset Hills Road and the Washington & Old Dominion Trail between Wiehle Avenue to the east and Hidden Creek Country Club to the west. Planning commissioners approved the project after ensuring it complied with current stormwater management guidelines — not old regulations the developer sought to retroactively apply to the current project.
Hunter Mill District Planning Commissioner John Carter also noted the athletic field will be composed of synthetic turf. Crumb rubber was dropped in favor of other materials.
APA Properties plans to construct a southbound, right-turn lane from Wiehle Avenue onto Isaac Newtown Square North. An eastbound right-turn lane is proposed exiting the property onto Wiehle Avenue. Isaac Newton South, a two-way roadway that runs across the southern portion of the property, is the only public. Road proposed on the property.
In a recent report, the county’s planning and zoning staff recommended approval of the project. The proposal heads to the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors for a vote on Oct. 15.
New York-based TF Cornerstone will return to receive the Reston Planning and Zoning Committee’s blessing for its plan to redevelop nearly 12 acres of land near the Wiehle-Reston East Metro Station with two residential buildings and a new office building.
The proposal, Campus Commons, has attracted criticism from nearby residents and led to the formation of a citizen-led advocacy group called Rescue Sunrise Valley.
Although the developer addressed several concerns, a representative of Rescue Sunrise Valley, said residents are not satisfied with the developer’s attempts to scale back the development and improve the safety of a planned crosswalk on Wiehle Avenue. The committee did not recommend the project for approval Monday night.
“They have not adequately engaged the community not have they adequately addressed the community’s concerns,” the representative told Reston Now. “We sincerely hope TF Cornerstone will defer further requests for approval and commit to working with the community properly.”
If approved, the proposal would redevelop two 1980s office buildings with two multi-family buildings with 629 units. A new 14-story office building with more than 26,000 square feet of retail is also planned on the site, which is located east of Wiehle Avenue, between Sunrise Valley Drive and the Dulles Toll Road.
Ken Houle, vice president of TF Cornerstone, said the company has made several changes in response to community feedback:
A specific proffer to construct a grade separated crossing of Wiehle Ave
A commitment to engage all stakeholders in a study to determine the preferred grade separated solution, coupled with a financial commitment of $1.5MM to implement that solution if it differed from our proposed solution
Significant modifications to the building heights, lowering both the residential tower on the Toll Road by 44′ and the office building at the corner of Wiehle and Sunrise Valley by 48′
Modified the building façade on Sunrise Valley Drive to respond to architectural preferences raised by the Upper Lakes residents
Increased the size of the community playground by 22% with a commitment to include accessible play equipment
Modified the design to incorporate a community amphitheater space in the 1 acre corner park
Committed to work with an independent arborist and Fairfax County to study trees for potential preservation, coupled with an existing commitment to provide 150% of the required tree canopy in the new development featuring native species trees.
Committed to work with the Upper Lakes residents to accelerate signal timings of existing traffic lights, install a new traffic light at Upper Lake, support Upper Lakes residents in the application of resident only street parking district, and to fund and implement a future traffic calming program for Upper Lakes
Given the fact that many residents remain concerned about the scale of the project, Houle said TF Cornerstone will continue a dialogue with stakeholders to “ensure this project delivers the future that Reston envisioned with the adoption of the Reston Comprehensive Plan.”
“The plan that is proposed is in conformance with the comprehensive plan and has been recommended for approval by the Fairfax County Planning staff.”
Houle added Campus Commons creates a “premium park” that breaks the “mold of development surrounding the metro station of high-rise towers on the prominent corners.”
In a Sept. 11 staff report, the Fairfax County Department of Planning and Zoning staff recommended approval of the proposal. The Fairfax County Planning Commission is set to take up the plan on Sept. 25, followed by a vote by the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors on Oct. 15.
Photo via handout/Fairfax County Government, photo via Rescue Sunrise Valley