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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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Tuesday Morning Notes

Google eyes Reston Station — Google is considering leasing a block of office space near the Wiehle-Reston East Metro station. The Mountain View, a California-based company, is in talks to lease about 100,000 square feet from Comstock Cos. at 1900 Reston Metro Plaza, the building designed by architect Helmut Jahn. [Washington Business Journal]

If you’re coming to the football game — At South Lakes High School’s football game, don’t forget to bring a donation for the school’s food pantry. They’re looking for cereal, toothpaste, deodorant, canned veggies, applesauce, and/or beans. [SLHS Food Pantry via Twitter]

An artful run and a run in the arts — Three runners who also happen to be artists will show off their work beginning today at Reston Community Center. The exhibit ends on Nov. 5. [Reston Community Center]

Photo by Bako Glonti

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Tonight: ‘Art Reveal’ at Founding Farmers in Reston Station

Artists behind the artwork of Founding Farmers in Reston Station will offer explanations of their work at an “Art Reveal” tonight from 6-8 p.m.

The interior of the restaurant includes work by local and regional artists, all centered around the theme of Thomas Jefferson and Monticello. Featured artwork includes a North Dakota Farmers  Union Laundry line, which hangs from the restaurant’s ceiling.

The piece was made from pieces of cloth from farm owners that were hardened into place with glue and paint.

Other pieces include colorful farm animals dispersed on the wall of the restaurant and an image of Sally Hemings, an enslaved women who had a relationship with Jefferson.

Co-owner Dan Simons and creative director Leah Frankl will be on-site to answer questions about the art in the restaurant. Tickets are available online.

Photos via Gina Carroll

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Development Plan Seeks to Build 2,100 Residential Units in Isaac Newtown Square

A redevelopment plan before the county could transform Isaac Newton Square, the aging office park at Sunset Hills Road and Wiehle Avenue, into a residential neighborhood with around 2,100 residential units.

Peter Lawrence Cos. and MRP Realty submitted plans in late August to redevelop two-thirds of the office park with 2.8 million feet of development, nearly 90 percent of which would be residential. The development would be spread across roughly 32 acres that Peter Lawrence Cos. controls.

“We spent a lot of time developing the project vision, and we’re proud of it,” said Andrew Painter, the development team’s legal representative. The plan is in line with the county’s comprehensive plan, which has long envisioned the office park’s future as entirely residential. The project is north of the Wiehle-Reston East Metro Station.

Painter told Reston Now that the development team intentionally designed the project to serve as a transition between the higher density areas close to the Metro Station and established residential communities towards the north and east of the property. The site is bounded by Hidden Creek Country Club, a gas station and a fire station, which will be rebuilt.

Building heights will generally taper down as one moves from south to north, and our planned “Nature’s Edge” area rings the proposed neighborhood, which provides a landscaped buffer and path along our northern and western edges adjacent to Hidden Creek,” Painter said.

Residential units will be a mix of apartments, condominiums, flats and townhouses, which 14 percent of the total number of units being set aside as affordable units.

The proposed neighborhood will contain up to 10 development blocks with a mix of residential, retail and office uses. The heights of buildings and the intensity of the development will taper off near the existing woodlands near the southern edge of the property.

The developer plans to preserve the property’s row of mature Willow Oak trees, by creating a new “Willow Oak Park.” The 1.45-acre park will serve as the “heart of the neighborhood’s public realm,” according to the proposal.

A full-size athletic field open for active recreation activities will also be included in the plan. Roughly 25 parking spaces will be reserved for field visitors during designated times. A neighborhood green, just under half an acre, will sit next to the athletic field.

A 0.75-acre east-west pedestrian walkway, called the “community mews,” will serve as a mid-block crossing connecting Wiehle Avenue and parcels to the west. Unlike the athletic field and community green, this “mews” will be reserved for residents only. The plan also calls for “The Commons,” the neighborhood’s commercial center.

The developer will create a connection to the Washington & Old Dominion Trail. Infrastructure on the property will also support cycling.

Although an overwhelming majority of the development is residential, 260,000 square feet of office uses will be present nearest to the Wiehle-Reston East Metro Station. Roughly 68,884 square feet of retail uses are also proposed.

The plan hasn’t been accepted for review by the county yet, according to Brian Worthy, a spokesperson for the county.

Photos via Google Maps and Andrew Painter

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Tuesday Morning Notes

Building worlds on display — An art exhibit that mixes scientific fact and fantasy is on display through September 15. Several artists’ work is featured in the gallery at the Greater Reston Arts Center. [Greater Reston Arts Center]

Nearby: Springfield man faces charges after threats against mosque — A 22-year-old man faces nine charges after being arrested at Masjid Noor in Springfield. Police believe Zulqarnain Khan threatened to kill everyone the encountered at the mosque. [Fairfax County Police Department]

The biggest of them all — The Washington Business Journal has listed Reston Station as the second largest ongoing construction project in the Greater D.C. area. Projects are ranked based on their construction cost. The project is expected to cost $690 million. [The Washington Business Journal]

Discussion on book themes tonight — Dive into a discussion about why books matter, why we’re drawn to specific themes and what these themes tell us about ourselves. The event is part of PBS’s The Great American Read. [Reston Regional Library]

Flickr pool photo by vantagehill 

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Construction on New Office Building in Reston Station Begins

Comstock has begun construction on the next office building in Reston Station, located on the southwest corner of the plaza. The eight-story structure, which has not yet been named, is a Class A office building with 180,000 square feet of office space and 8,300 square feet of retail space on the plaza.

The building is designed by HKS Architects with steel and glass structures. The company’s portfolio includes the design of Urumqi International Airport in Xinjiang, China and the King Hussein Cancer Center in Amman, Jordan.

Office space will be restricted to six floors, which sit atop an eight-story, above-grave concrete parking deck. It will also include a private patio with a sky garden and gym.

Construction prompted Comstock to close four of eight kiosks on the plaza. According to Maggie Parker, vice president of communications and community outreach for Comstock, the kiosks were intentionally designed to be temporary. Some vendors will relocate into vacant kiosks.

“They’ve given many budding entrepreneurs an opportunity to test their business models and have added a lot of vitality to our emerging development,” Comstock wrote in a statement.

Photo via Comstock

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Dance Instruction Added to ‘Summerbration’ Concerts

The “Summerbration” concert series at Reston Station Plaza will feature a new addition on Friday summer nights.

Professional dance instructors will offer lessons during select concert performances hosted by Reston Station. Lessons vary from swing dancing to African dance.

Reston Community Center’s executive director Leila Gordon said the center is “thrilled” to add professionals to the lineup. She said Reston Station Plaza is “becoming a destination experience for people.”

Dance instruction begins with Friday’s King Teddy Concert.  Each concert runs from 7-9 p.m. and parking is free from 6:30-9:30 p.m. during the concerts.

The complete lineup, which includes dancers and instructors, is below:

June 15
King Teddy
Swing dancers – dancing and instruction

June 22
Cedar Creek
Country line dance instruction

June 29
Elikeh
African dancers – dancing and instruction

July 6
Four Star Combo
Sock hop dancers – dancing and instruction

July 27
Alfredo Mojica & Friends
Latin dancers – dancing and instruction

August 10
Scott Kurt & Memphis 59
Country dancers – dancing and instruction

August 24
The Swingin’ Swamis
Swing dancers – dancing and instruction

Photo via Reston Community Center

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Happening Tonight: Screening of Washington Capitals Game at Reston Station Plaza

Looking for a big screen to watch the Washington Capitals play in game five of the Stanley Cup finals?  A free screening will be held tonight at Reston Station’s plaza (1904 Reston Metro Plaza) from 8-10 p.m.

Parking is $4.75 daily.

Here’s a previous video of a viewing on May 28:

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Some Metro Users Scramble for Parking Space at the Wiehle-Reston East Garage

Some Metro users say the Wiehle-Reston East garage is becoming increasingly difficult to navigate. Limited spaces are available during weekday morning hours as construction continues in the area.

Beginning at 9 a.m., few non-reserved parking spots are available in the 2,300-space garage, Metro users said. The garage (11389 Reston Station Boulevard) includes reserved spaces, which open up to the public at 10 a.m. if they are unused.

Garage users said some drivers park their cars in reserved spots not assigned to them due to the challenge of finding space. Jude J. said police often issue tickets to those individuals ten minutes before the parking space opens up to the public.

“You’re lucky if when you enter the ‘lot full’ light is on, otherwise you’re stuck in a dangerous situation with cars going every direction trying to find a spot,” said Jude. She has been commuting for past year and a half from Leesburg to Washington D.C..

County and transit officials pointed to several possible explanations for the scramble for space. County data indicate the average paid utilization rate in March was 88 percent. The rate for reserved parking is $65 a month and $4.95 on weekdays, except Thursday when the rate is $3.

Robin Geiger, head of communications for the Fairfax County Department of Communications said temporary construction in the garage may explain why spaces are limited. Construction is expected to end next month, Geiger said.

In response to space constraints, the county is promoting other alternatives like the Reston South Park and Ride, as well as Fairfax Connector Routes 553, 557, 559 or 585 to Wiehle.

Comstock, the developer behind Reston Station which sits above the garage, built the garage through a public-private partnership with Fairfax County. The county retains garage ownership while the Washington Metropolitan Area Authority operates the facility.

Maggie Parker, a spokesperson for Comstock, said space may also be limited due to “increased activity” with events like the cherry blossoms in the District. WMATA indicated they have seen an increase in parking demand as a result.

Signs in the garage are programmed to display “lot full” when 15 spaces or less are available.

Parker also said it is possible that people are not driving down far enough into the garage, especially three levels down in the ParkX parking area.

The situation has some hoping for other parking alternatives, especially as summer swings in and the recent opening of restaurants like Founding Farmers and Sweet Leaf attracts more customers.

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Fairfax County Board Approves Expanded Reston Station Project

Major redevelopment is underway as Comstock Partners continue to complete the massive Reston Station development on the northe side of the Wiehle-Reston East Metro Station.

On Tuesday (April 11), the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors unanimously approved an expanded version of the project, which calls for a further 1.7 million square feet of development, including a mix of residential units, a hotel and office towers.

The project is part of a public-private partnership with the county, which owns seven acres of the roughly 12-acre development. Changes include the addition of 362,450 square feet of development for the buildings on the Reston Station Plaza, increases in the heights of building, and the addition of a hotel to respond to “industry feedback,” said Cooley LLP’s Mark Looney.

The Promenade, an extension of Reston Station, would redevelop a Bank of America, medical buildings and 30 office condominiums on the corner of Sunset Hills Road and Wiehle Avenue into high rise buildings with up to 540 units, a 14-story office and a 23-story, 280-room hotel with 80 private residences.

Under amended plans, the county’s 1.3-acre portion of the project, previously designated for Reston Station, will be included in The Promenade in order to better unify the block.

Around 17 percent of the units will be affordable at levels of affordability ranging from 70 to 100 percent of the area median income. Comstock also plans to provide $1.9 million to the county’s affordable housing trust fund.

Comstock’s plans also include a woonerf, a shared street system that is used by pedestrians, bicyclists and cars, but does not contain sidewalks, curbs and traffic lights.

The county’s land use plan for the area north of the station includes 2.4 million square feet of development and roughly 1,900 housing units.

“Lots of trees gave up their lives for this application,” said Sharon Bulova, chairwoman of the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors.

Comstock plans to begin construction on its next office building at 1906 Reston Metro Plaza this spring. Plans for another 180,000-square-foot office are under county review.

Photos via Comstock

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Now Open: Founding Farmers at Reston Station

Founding Farmers, a 13,000-square-foot restaurant, is now open at 1904 Reston Metro Plaza.

The restaurant by Farmers Restaurant Group is open seven days a week for breakfast, lunch, dinner and brunch.

Founding Farmers also offers on-the-go breakfast for customers at the “First Bake Cafe.” Reservations are available online. Validated parking is available in the Wiehle-Reston East parking garage, as well as valet parking for customers who pull up their vehicles to the plaza.

Here’s more from the restaurant:

Founding Farmers Reston will have many guest favorites, such as house-made pastas and our Southern Fried Chicken & Donut. Our chefs are also particularly excited to share a nice range of cuts from our Steak House, such as our classic 48-Hour Salt-Cured Prime Rib. Some of us can’t wait for the comforting and wholesome grain and protein bowls, or the decadence of our homemade desserts and hand-churned ice cream. Of course, we will be serving our large selection of craft cocktails made with spirits from our own distillery in DC, Founding Spirits.

The restaurant has been is built with the same sustainably-minded practices we use across Farmers Restaurant Group, pursuing LEED and Green Restaurant Association certifications. We also have amazing artwork from a great group of original artists to share with our guests and to help tell our story.

Sweet Leaf, a cafe adjacent to the new restaurant, also recently opened at Reston Station Plaza.

Photo via Founding Farmers Reston

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Tuesday Morning Notes

The hunt for HQ2  The Fairfax-Loudoun bid could become one of the hottest tickets in town if Amazon becomes its anchor tenant. [Washington Business Journal]

All aboard Reston Station — Changes proposed to Comstock’s massive Reston Station project head to the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors for consideration today. [Reston Now]

A job for you — A free teen job fair and resume building workshop is set forSaturday, April 21 at South Lakes High School. [The Connection]

Photo by Bako Glonti

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Comstock’s Expanded Reston Station Project Heads to County Board for Final Consideration

Expanded plans for Comstock’s massive Reston Station development were approved by the Fairfax County Planning Commission Thursday night.

The latest plans add an additional 362,450 square feet to the mixed used development, bringing the total to 1.7 million square feet and adding 155 additional residential units.

Reston Station (1866 Metro Center Drive) includes a mix of residential buildings, retail, restaurants and hotels. The project is located on the south side of Reston Station boulevard, west of Wiehle Avenue.

The commission also approved plans to increase the height of building four from 205 to 225 feet and building seven from 140 to 280 feet. A hotel option was added to building seven.

The amended plans head to the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors on Tuesday (April 10) for final consideration.

A map of the buildings is below.

Rendering via Comstock

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Sweet Leaf Café to Open at Reston Station’s BLVD This Week

Locally owned café chain Sweet Leaf will hold its official grand opening on Wednesday (March 28) at Reston Station from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.

The restaurant will open at 1908 Reston Metro Plaza as part of Comstock’s BLVD development. Founding Farmers, Sweet Leaf’s neighbor, is set to open on April 11.

Sweet Leaf was originally set to open late last year, but co-owner Andre Matini said they delayed the opening to match the timing of Founding Farmers’ launch day.

“We’re basically trying to open up when the entire plaza is ready. It’s a better time to open as the weather turns warmer, as more people are out, and the plaza is activated,” Matini told Reston Now.

A soft opening will be held tomorrow from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Around 300 people are registered for the booked event, which will include free lunch.

Sweet Leaf was founded in McLean in 1991 and has other locations in Tysons, Vienna, McLean and three in Arlington.

The menu includes sandwiches, salads, grain bowls and breakfast options. Vegan, vegetarian and gluten-free options are also available.

Customers can park in Reston Station’s garage. Two-hour parking will be validated at the store’s register. Two garage spaces will also be designated for customers who place online orders, Matini said.

Photos courtesy of Andre Matini 

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After Delays, Founding Farmers at Reston Station to Open Next Month

Founding Farmers, a restaurant owned by Farmers Restaurant Group, will open on April 11 at Reston Station, a major mixed-use development by Comstock.

The restaurant, which pushed back its opening date several times since 2016, will take up a two-level, 10,000 square foot location at 1904 Reston Metro Plaza.

The location features a private dining space to seat 40-50 people, a large mezzanine, and a bar with cocktails from their D.C.-based distillery. Their First Bake Cafe will offer freshly-baked goods, sweets and a Compass Coffee blend. The cafe is designed for Metro users and others who looking for a quick bite.

The second floor is dedicated to the kitchen, requiring staff to speed up and down stairs to serve orders.

The build out was complicated by a lengthy permitting process and the unique design of the restaurant, which requires an elevator due to limited space for loading fresh deliveries, staff said.

Founding Farmers relies on daily fresh deliveries and has limited kitchen space for freezing products. It serves weekday breakfast, lunch and dinner and a weekend buffet brunch. According to promotional material, the restaurant’s dishes are made with “pure ingredients honoring the farmers and their hard-earned bounty.”

Parking, which is not free at Reston Station, will be validated. Valet parking will be offered for $3, allowing guests to pull up their vehicles at the plaza.

No word yet on when Sweet Leaf, a community cafe near the Founding Farmers location, will open.

The restaurant has other locations in the District, Tysons Corner, Montgomery County, Md., and King of Prussia, Pa.

Photos by Fatimah Waseem

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