Morning Notes

People stroll along path at Walker Nature Center (Photo by Marjorie Copson)

Herndon Police Believe Sexual Assault Suspect Had More Victims — Detectives with the Herndon Police Department believe other people may have been victimized by a man they charged with aggravated sexual battery on June 30, according to a tweet. At the time of his arrest, the victim in the case told police that Carlos Morales López, 55, gave her a massage in the 800 block of Sycamore Court when he sexually assaulted her. [Patch]

Police Investigate South Lakes Bank Robbery — Police officers were dispatched to BB&T in the South Lakes Village Shopping Center yesterday morning (Tuesday) after a man reportedly entered the bank, grabbed the manager, and demanded cash before leaving the area on foot. No injuries were reported, and detectives are continuing to investigate the incident, which is the second time the branch has been robbed this year. [FCPD]

Free COVID-19 Vaccine Clinic at Reston Station Tomorrow — Reston Station will host a second COVID-19 vaccination clinic next to Founding Farmers (1904 Reston Metro Plaza) from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. tomorrow (Thursday). Anyone who visits the clinic to get their first dose will receive $15 gift cards to Starbucks and Big Buns Damn Good Burgers. Second Pfizer doses will be administered on Sept. 14 and 16. [Reston Station/Twitter]

Reston Community Center Starts ESports League — Embracing a trend that is also coming to Fairfax County Public Schools, Reston Community Center is teaming up with the platform GGLeagues to launch an esports program this fall. Players will compete from home using their own consoles and can choose from a variety of games. Each league will run for six weeks starting on Oct. 4, and registration will be open until Sept. 22. [RCC]

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Similarweb attends the Web Summit 2016 in Lisbon, Portugal (via Web Summit/Flickr)

The online metrics firm Similarweb is expanding into Reston.

The company, which has its global headquarters in Tel Aviv, Israel, announced yesterday (Monday) that it is opening an office at the coworking site Spaces that launched in Reston Station (1900 Reston Metro Plaza) in December 2018.

Similarweb is adding around 10 employees and expects to keep hiring more here.

“Our office in Reston, VA is now open,” the company said on Twitter. “A big welcome to our amazing team members who will collaborate there.”

Despite the announcement, the office is scheduled to open Sept. 1, the company said in a statement to Reston Now.

Similarweb provides marketing and research data to businesses looking to measure the effectiveness of their websites and other digital platforms.

With economic development leaders seeking to make sure companies have the talent they need in the area, Similarweb’s hiring between local candidates and those outside the area will serve as yet another example for whether an employee pipeline is meeting needs.

The Reston office is the company’s fourth in the U.S. and its first opening since going public earlier this year. Donna Dror, Similarweb’s general manager for North America, says the technology industry’s growing presence in Reston made it an attractive location for expansion.

“We see the Dulles Tech Corridor as a great opportunity to bring in new talent, especially for our Marketing and Sales teams,” Dror said in the statement. “We’re excited to join the many great companies already based in Reston and surrounding areas.”

Dror told Technical.ly that the company has 200 open positions that are remote, and half of those will be based in the U.S. She said the company is still reviewing its return-to-work strategy and would like to see at least 25 roles filled locally, but the openings aren’t tied to the Reston area specifically.

“We are actively hiring and planning to add a number of new employees before the end of the year and beyond,” she told Reston Now. “In the U.S. alone, we have nearly 100 open roles today, and we hope that many of those can be based in Reston.”

The new office will be home for the company’s chief marketing officer, Kevin Spurway, along with other employees in the sales and marketing departments.

Similarweb launched its initial public offering in May and began trading on the New York Stock Exchange. Its clients have included DHL, Lego, and Lending Tree.

Photo via Web Summit/Flickr

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Morning Notes

Michael Delaney Found Dead in Sugarland Run — The remains of Reston resident Michael Delaney were found in the Sugarland Run area on Wednesday (July 21), 14 months after he went missing from Reston Hospital in May 2020. His step-daughter says the family is “heartbroken but feel relieved” to have closure on his disappearance. [Courtney Park-Jamborsky/Facebook]

Matchbox Pizza Opens at Reston Station Today — After a few delays, Matchbox will officially open its new restaurant at 1900 Reston Metro Plaza Drive today (Friday), as promised last month. Some opening activities have been planned, and the venue will serve happy hour specials during the work week with bottomless brunch on the weekends. [Matchbox]

Pickleball Tournament Coming to Reston — “We are excited to announce that the first annual Reston Paddle Battle Pickleball Tournament, on September 18 & 19. See the attached flyer for more info. Register today at pickleballtournaments.com, space is limited!” [Reston Association/Twitter]

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A lobster diavolo pizza with spicy lobster cream sauce, seasoned tomatoes, basil and mozzarella at Matchbox (photo via Matchbox/Facebook)

Matchbox at Reston Station is targeting a mid-summer date for opening.

The wood-fired pizza restaurant, now owned by Reston-based Thompson Hospitality, is looking to start serving in mid-July, a restaurant representative confirmed to Reston Now.

Matchbox has delayed the opening of its new venue at 1900 Reston Metro Plaza Drive near the Wiehle-Reston East Metro Station a number of times.

The lease was signed in June 2019, and the company announced then that it would open its doors in early 2020. But it was postponed as the COVID-19 pandemic hit the restaurant industry hard.

Then, representatives said this past February that it would open sometime in May, but that also didn’t happen.

A Matchbox spokesperson didn’t comment on why the opening was pushed back another two months.

When it does open, it will be located in 5,500-square-foot space within a building designed by famed German architect Helmut Jahn. Once called the “Flash Gordon of American architecture,” Jahn’s work includes the United Terminal at O’Hare Airport and the J. Edgar Hoover building (FBI headquarters) in D.C.

He was killed in a bike accident just last month.

Google will anchor the complex at 1900 Reston Metro Plaza Drive, taking up about five floors of the 16-story building. Matchbox will also be near Big Buns Damn Good Burger Co, which did open this spring.

Matchbox went through a Chapter 11 bankruptcy late last year before reorganizing and being bought by Thompson Hospitality. The Reston-based food service provider, which previously managed a number of Matchboxes, stated that they were planning on opening new locations.

Matchbox is currently hiring for a number of positions at the Reston Station restaurant, including a assistant general manager, servers, bartenders, hosts, bussers, and dishwashers.

via Matchbox/Facebook

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Morning Notes

Driving by Reston on the Dulles Toll Road (via vantagehill/Flickr)

Police Investigate Offensive KKK Flyers — Bigotry-filled flyers aimed at the Fairfax County School Board were found earlier this week in the Springfield and Sully Districts, apparently distributed by the Loyal White Knights of the Ku Klux Klan. School board members and local leaders, including Fairfax County Board of Supervisors Chairman Jeff McKay and the president of the county’s NAACP chapter, denounced the flyers, which are under investigation by county police and the FBI. [Patch]

Carjacking Reported in Reston Town Center — A man with a gun told a person in the passenger seat of a 2004 Toyota Corolla to get out and drove away in the car. The incident occurred at 5:25 a.m. on June 12 in the 1800 block of Presidents Street. The victim was not injured, police say. [FCPD]

A History of Slavery in Herndon — Ahead of Juneteenth, which commemorates the abolition of slavery in the U.S., Herndon Historical Society member Barbara Glakas delves into the lives of some past Herndon residents known to have held slaves. She notes that information about individual enslaved people is difficult to find due to the limited availability of written records. [Patch]

Reston Station Releases Showcase Video — Reston Station released a video yesterday (Thursday) showcasing the vision for the mixed-use development by the Wiehle-Reston East Metro station. The video breaks the area up into the Metro Plaza District, the Reston Row District that will be anchored by a JW Marriott hotel, the health-oriented West District, and the office-heavy Commerce District. [Reston Station/Facebook]

D.C. Area Sees More Hunger During Pandemic — “More families in Virginia and Maryland, and significantly more Latino families, were pushed into food insecurity during the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a new report on hunger in the D.C. area, which a nonprofit official called a ‘dramatic shift in the face of hunger.'” [WTOP]

Photo via vantagehill/Flickr

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Morning Notes

New Fairfax County Police Chief Sworn In — Kevin Davis was formally sworn in as Fairfax County’s new police chief yesterday morning (Monday). The former Baltimore police commissioner begins his tenure amid intense scrutiny of his past conduct and the county’s hiring process. [FCPD]

Republican Attorney General Candidate Calls for Recount — Former Virginia Beach Republican Party Chairman Chuck Smith is requesting a recount after he lost the party’s nomination for attorney general to Del. Jason Miyares (R-Virginia Beach) by a 52-48 margin on Sunday (May 9). The state’s Republican Party held a convention on Saturday to determine its nominees in statewide races for governor and lieutenant governor as well. [WTOP]

Reston Station Architect Killed in Car Crash — Architect Helmut Jahn, 81, died on Saturday (May 8) after he was struck by two separate cars while bicycling in the Chicago suburb of Campton Hills. Jahn’s work includes the plaza at Reston Station and the development’s first office building, where Google is planning to expand. [Patch]

Frying Pan Farm Park Ranks Second in RegionFrying Pan Farm Park was named the second-best park in Northern Virginia by Virginia Living readers in the magazine’s “Best of Virginia 2021” competition, coming behind only Burke Lake Park. The Herndon park features a carousel, equestrian facilities, and Kidwell Farm, a living interpretation of a 1930s-era working farm. [Fairfax County Park Authority]

Herndon Summer Camps and Classes Announced — The Herndon Parks and Recreation Department has released a brochure of summer camps and June classes, which will be tweaked due to COVID-19. Camps will run from mid-June to mid-August, and offerings could expand depending on community health conditions. Registration begins at 10 a.m. on Wednesday (May 12) for town residents and and at 10 a.m. on May 18 for non-town residents. [Herndon Recreation]

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Google is leasing up more space at Reston Station near the Wiehle-Reston East Metro Station.

The technology giant plans to lease an additional floor of space in the Helmut Jahn-designed building at 1900 Reston Metro Plaza, a company spokesperson tells Reston Now. Google already leases the top four floor of the 16-story building.

The new office, which brings Google’s total footprint to 115,000 square feet at Reston Station ,is expected to open sometime this year.

The news comes as the company announced plans to expand in Virginia, including new data centers in Loudoun County.

Here’s more from Google on the statewide expansion:

“I believe a lasting economic recovery will come from local communities, and the people and small businesses that give them life. Google wants to be a part of that recovery. That’s why we plan to invest over $7 billion in offices and data centers across the U.S. and create at least 10,000 new full-time Google jobs in the U.S. this year,” said Sundar Pichai, CEO, Google and Alphabet.

Google has proudly called Virginia home for more than 10 years and has more than 420 employees in the state. Google is continuing to invest in Virginia with the addition of a new floor at the Reston Station office, bringing the total footprint in the building to approximately 115,000 square feet. We’ll be opening the new Reston Station office building this year. The company is also expanding its data centers in Loudoun County. Since establishing a presence in Loudoun County in 2019, Google has worked with the public school district to help improve digital equity. In 2020, Google supported the purchase of hot spots and devices to ensure more students had access to virtual learning during the pandemic, and supported programs to provide teachers with best practices for remote classroom instruction.

“I’m thankful to Google for choosing to do business in Loudoun! Their investment is mutually beneficial as it helps keep taxes low for our residents while ensuring a high quality of life for their employees,” said Loudoun County Supervisor, Tony Buffington. ” We look forward to a long lasting partnership.”

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Reston Station is officially welcoming the opening of a new business today.

Big Buns Damn Good Burgers, a fast-casual restaurant that sells burgers, burger bowls, shakes, craft beer and booze, is located at 1908 Reston Metro Plaza in Suite C.

In order to celebrate the restaurant’s soft opening, Big Buns is offering a ‘buy a bag, give a bag’ promotion. When customers purchase a bag for 25.99, Big Buns will donate one bag to local hospital or front-line workers.

Only 250 bags are available for purchase online

The company has other locations in Ballston and Shirlington.

Photo via Big Buns

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Presidential Bank at its old location, 1675-N Reston Parkway (Photo via Google Maps)

Presidential Bank is moving its Reston branch to across the street from the Reston-Wiehle Metro Station.

The new location will open on Monday, March 29 at 11211 Reston Station Blvd.

“You will see the same familiar faces at this new location while enjoying more convenience in an upgraded environment,” notes the bank’s news release about the move.

Until then, the old branch about two and a half miles away at 1675-N Reston Parkway will remain open. That branch’s final day of service will be Friday, March 26 and will close at 4 p.m.

Reston Station Blvd., particularly near the Reston-Wiehle Metro Station, has had many new additions in recent months despite the pandemic.

Luxury apartments, an indoor baseball training facility, and a virtual shark tank are just a few of the recent comers.

Photo via Google Maps

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Plans to develop a new luxury brand hotel in Reston were revealed today.

Comstock Companies made the announcement that one of its managed companies, CRS Hotel, LC, entered a franchise agreement for the development and operation of a JW Marriott and Residences Reston.

The hotel is expected to be in Phase I of the Reston Row District at the Reston Station development. It will take up 8.4 acres of space at the intersection of Reston Station Boulevard and Wiehle Avenue near the Wiehle Reston-East Metrorail Station.

“We are excited to partner with Marriott to bring Virginia’s first JW Marriott to Reston,” Chris Clemente, CEO of CHCI, said in a press release.
“We look forward to adding this incredible brand to Reston Station and expect that the unrivaled amenities and meeting spaces will attract business and social functions from around the Washington, DC area, while meeting the needs of our corporate office clients, including Google, Rolls Royce of North America, Neustar, ICF Global, and others.”

In addition to an expected 250 guestrooms, the proposed 26-story tower will provide 90 luxury branded residences. The residences will include a separate residential lobby entrance and will be located on the upper floors of the JW Marriott tower. The residences will also have dedicated spaces and amenities such as an owner’s lounge, fitness center, outdoor area and dog park.

Two restaurants on the site are also included in the current plans for the hotel.

“We are thrilled Comstock Companies has chosen to bring the JW Marriott brand to Reston, in the heart of the Dulles Technology Corridor,” Noah Silverman, Chief Development Officer, North America Full-Service Hotels at Marriott International said in a press release. “This project will serve as a signature component of the exciting Reston Row development, offering both guests and owners a welcoming luxury experience.”

The expected timetable for the hotel’s opening is in 2024. The Comstock press release lists the project’s price tag at approximately $250 million.

In addition to the proposed hotel, the Reston Row District at Reston Station will eventually include various mixed-use buildings, two office towers and a 350-unit multi-family building. It will also include more than 65,000 square feet of retail, service and fitness spaces that will surround a 1.2-acre park.

Images courtesy Comstock

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A new indoor baseball training facility has opened at Reston Station.

The 6,000-square-foot facility, known as Reston Bullpen, is a training facility for local little league and high school teams. It’s located at 1901 Reston Metro Plaza.

Comstock, the developer of Reston Station, worked with Bradley Baseball Academia, a baseball training school, to design the facility. Local teams can schedule practice times for individual and team practice, conditioning clinics and skill drills for free.

The facility includes several pitching and batting tunnels as well as a weight and aerobics gym.

“Playing youth baseball and softball teaches some of life’s greatest lessons to young people,” said Timothy J. Steffan, executive vice president of Development and Asset Management at Comstock, wrote in a statement. “Providing a facility of this quality to youth house league and public school players that typically do not have access to such facilities, not only allows them an opportunity to improve their game, but also advance their understanding of teamwork and how to set and achieve goals.”

For now, teams can make reservations in 60-to-90-minute intervals. Bradley Baseball Academia has moved its offices to the property and will host free coaching clinics for teams.

“My staff and I are excited to be a part of this community endeavor and look forward to running our headquarters and programming out of the facility,”  said Andy Bradley, Founder and Executive Director of Bradley Baseball Academia. 

Masks and social distancing are required. The facility is also requiring temperature checks and health screenings.

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A 31-foot tall, digital three-dimensional gigantic aquarium filled with sharks now hangs at Reston Metro Plaza.

The digital LED screen was installed late last year by the developer Comstock Holdings and shows a illuminated shark tank on a twenty minute loop.

Additional digital art being featured on the screen on the loop are daily Google doodles and cityscape flyovers. Commuter information is also displayed.

Outdoor movies and concert performances on the screen are being planned for the spring and summer.

The screen is 31-feet in height and 55-feet wide and hangs at the center of the Reston Metro Plaza at Reston Station.

This isn’t the only art that’s been put on display at the Metro station in recent years.

Several former D.C. public art pieces have found forever homes at Reston Station, including three that were once part of the D.C. Commission on the Arts and Humanities 2002 “Party Animal” street sculpture collection.

Additionally, two pandas that were previously among the more than 150 panda sculptures that dotted D.C. in 2004 are also now at Reston Station.

In 2018, Italian sculptor Lorenzo Quinn’s bronze work The Force of Nature was installed at the station. Another Quinn art piece can also be viewed in the lobby of 1900 Reston Metro Plaza, which is the office building above the Metro station.

Last year, a new mosaic art installation was added outside of the apartment building near the Metro station.

And, in January, Virginia’s iconic “LOVE” letters were installed at Reston Station. The nearly 8,000 pound sculpture will remain there as part of its permanent art collection.

“We believe public art strengthens a community’s identity and sense of place and bolsters the reputation as a stimulating place to live, work, and visit,” said Christopher Clemente, CEO of Comstock, wrote in a press release. “Comstock believes the inclusion of art in development projects serves the common good in a manner that enhances architectural designs, landscaping and streetscapes.”

Photo courtesy of Comstock/Carolina Skelly

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The COVID-19 pandemic has hit the restaurant industry hard, including many establishments in Reston and Herndon.

Two restaurants — which have delayed their openings by more than a year — are now firming up plans to open at Reston Station near the Wiehle-Reston East Metro Station by May.

Big Buns Damn Good Burger Co.,  a DC-based burger and craft beer restaurant, is expected to open sometime in March, according to a company spokesperson for Comstock, the developer of Reston Station.

The business will take up roughly 3,000-square-feet at the BLVD, Reston Station’s first apartment tower. It was originally expected to open in late 2019 or early 2020.

Matchbox, DC-based wood fire pizza restaurant, plans to open sometime in May, but so far, there’s no set date, according to company spokeswoman Victoria Thornton. The 5,500-square-foot space was originally set to open in early 2020 at 1900 Reston Metro Plaza Drive, the building designed by Helmut Jahn that Google currently anchors.

‘Our Reston location is having some minor delays,’ she tells Reston Now.

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Virginia’s iconic “LOVE” letters have descended at Reston Station near the Wiehle-Reston East Metro Station.

The letters, which were installed in late January, will remain at Reston Station as part of its permanent art collection, according to the Virginia Tourism Corp.

The 7,676-pound display was designed by artist Dylan Myers with glass fiber reinforced concrete and carbon fiber rebar. The colors of the letters were created with glass pieces.  The sign is located on Wiehle Avenue in front of Google’s offices.

Here’s more from the state’s tourism website on the display.

Each letter is supported 18″ from the top of the base with stainless steel all-thread rods in order to achieve the ” floating” effect. Bases were cast with a board form technique, creating depth and character. This is how concrete was cast before the days of plywood forms like you see now. In order to give the exact degregrated look, every single exposed rock was time intensively hand placed prior to casting. After the concrete had cured, the rocks were sheared off by hand with a hatchet. No machines were used for this process. This achieved the true look of a wall that underwent an enormous force.

It’s not the first time Virginia’s LOVE letters have made an appearance in the area. The letters are one of more than 250 installations in towns and cities across the state in order to model the state’s slogan, “Virginia is for Lovers.”

Comstock, the developer of Reston Station, says the inclusion of the installation affirms the company’s commitment to public art.

“Comstock believes the inclusion of art in development projects serves the common good in a manner that enhances architectural designs, landscaping and streetscapes,” says Christopher Clemente, CEO of Comstock.

Photo via Virginia Tourism Corp. 

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Lincoln at Reston Station, a 260-unit apartment community near the Wiehe-Reston East Metro Station, officially has a new name.

The community, which was recently acquired by Snell Properties, an Arlington-based company, has rebranded itself to Russell at Reston Station.

Peter Colarulli, Vice President of the company, said the name change was inspired by the design of the building, which he says has  “a bold, contemporary, energetic feel with red pops of color.

 “The name ‘Russell’ taps into the community’s vibe, and we felt the full name ‘Russell at Reston Station’ is clear to the sense of place and catchy with its alliteration.”

The residential community, which is located at 11500 Commerce Park Drive, includes a mix of studio, one-bedroom, two-bedroom and three-bedroom plans. Rents range from $2,110 to $2,380.

Snell purchased Russell at Reston Station in December. The building was constructed at the end of 2019 and includes a courtyard with a pool, a clubroom, a fitness center, a pet spa, bike room and a package concierge system.

Image via handout/Fairfax County Government

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