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Residents Worry Upgraded Plaza in South Lakes Village Center Will Attract Teens, Noise

To the dismay of some area residents, a series of upgrades — including an amphitheater, fire pit and ping pong tables — are being considered for South Lakes Village Center (11120 South Lakes Drive).

The project by village center owner Chevy Chase Land Company is intended to activate space at the edge of Lake Thoreau between Cafesano and Red’s Table.

But residents near the center and merchants worry the new space will become a magnet for youth from Langston Hughes Middle School and South Lakes High School. The project would also increase noise — a concern that already rattles some residents as sound travels down the lake.

Reston Association’s Design Review Board deferred a decision on the project Tuesday night to allow the development team, which includes engineering firm Kimley-Horn, to revise the plan. The DRB could consider updated plans at its next meeting.

Mary Sapp, president of the Lakeport Cluster Association, said the project would increase noise levels, raise safety concerns due to unsupervised teens, and increase the chance of vandalism of the plaza’s “very attractive features.” Sapp said three of the cluster’s 11 bollard lights were destroyed, three were knocked over and two Safeway carts were thrown into the lake from the dock over the last 15 months.

We assure you that Lakeport Cluster is not ‘anti-students’; a number of our residents have children (or grandchildren who visit often), and several are actively involved with South Lakes High School,” Sapp wrote in a statement to the DRB.

Charles Foster, a Lakeport Cluster resident, called the project an “unprecedented experiment in Reston” that would attract 3,400 young adults within walking distance, creating an environment that “ allows anyone at any time to engage in any type of activity.”

Upgrades include an amphitheater, new lighting, a chalkboard wall, outdoor ping pong, lounge and plaza seating area and outdoor ping pong. A new, back-lit sign is also proposed for the center.

Gil Blankespoor, a resident in the Lakeport Cluster, questioned how the property owner will maintain the upgraded site.

“We know Chevy Chase Land’s heart is in the right place. They did a fabulous job last year with the new landscaping, and their plan is to build community activities. But what they propose is in the wrong place — far too close to residential developments,” Blankespoor said.

The development team said they were open to removing the gaming features of the site, including ping pong tables, in order to allay community concerns. DRB members also suggested removing outdoor cushions, which could end up in the lake, and adding more shaded trees.

In response to concerns about attracting area teens, Michael Casey of Kimley-Horn said the plaza was open to “all generations” and should not exclude any demographic. By design, the commercial plaza is placed next to residential development, he said.

“This is what community is,” he said.

Given the “brutal reality” of the retail world, activating the space is necessary to ensure the long-term viability of the center, said Tom Regnell, president of Chevy Chase Land Company.

“We are interested in that very long-term view,” Regnell said.

Photos via handout

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Reston’s Ninth Starbucks Nearly Ready To Open at RTC West

UPDATE: The Starbucks location opened Monday, Oct. 9.

Another new Starbucks will soon open in Reston.

Signs inside the future coffee shop at 12130A Sunset Hills Road, within the RTC West development, indicate that the new Starbucks will be ready soon. The storefront is attached to Cooper’s Hawk Winery and Restaurant, which opened in August.

A spokesperson for RTC West developer JBG Smith said she could not provide an exact opening date for the Starbucks. An “opening soon” sign hangs inside, visible through the front windows. Several “Now Open” sandwich boards are also stacked inside, ready for deployment.

This will be the ninth Starbucks in Reston, joining locations at North Point Village Center, South Lakes Village Center, Hunters Woods Village Center, Reston Town Center, the Spectrum shopping plaza, Plaza America, Reston Station and inside Target.

Six additional restaurants are also planned for the development. Significant work has been done at the sites of the future Nando’s and Mezeh restaurants, which have been in the plans since April 2016. Other coming restaurants, which were announced earlier this year, include BGR The Burger Joint, Punjabi by Nature, The Black Squirrel and Honeygrow.

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Now Open: Starbucks at Reston Station

Starbucks at Reston Station

Reston has a new coffee spot and Reston Station has its first full-time retailer.

The Reston Station Starbucks opened on Friday in the ground floor of Comstock’s BLVD apartments.

While Reston Station has Urban Pop, a series of pop-up shops along the plaza at Wiehle-Reston East, this is the first permanent retailer there.

This Starbucks location (there are seven in Reston, not counting inside Target and Safeway) is quite large, with counter seating overlooking the plaza, a meeting nook, couch space and other work areas.

Founding Farmers is still on track to open a restaurant in the space in the next building. Founding Farmers signed a lease last fall, and the sign in the window says “coming late 2016.” However, no interior work has started, so it likely won’t meet that deadline.

Meanwhile, there will be validated parking for Starbucks customers. Visitors who park in the ParkX Garage (first left off of Reston Station Boulevard), then park in retail spaces (take a right up the ramp, take parking ticket and go straight ahead) will get two hours free, Comstock says.

 

 

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Reston Town Center Starbucks Closed Until Sept. 26

Starbucks at Reston Town CenterReston Town Center’s Starbucks closed more than a week ago, but officials say it is just temporary as the store does some remodeling.

Town Center reps said in a tweet Monday that the store — one of a half-dozen in Reston — will remain closed through Sept. 26.

There is no shortage of places to get coffee at RTC. Among other nearby spots: Panera, Community Canteen, Pitango Gelato and Cosi, as well as the many full service restaurants.

Meanwhile, Reston’s newest Starbucks store is slated to open at Reston Station by the end of September.

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Starbucks is Serving Wine & Beer – But Not Yet in Reston

South Lakes StarbucksSeveral Virginia Starbucks locations recently began serving beer, wine and savory snacks as part of the new “Starbucks Evenings” program, but two Reston stores slated for the rollout are not yet participating.

Starbucks stores at South Lakes and North Point Village Centers in Reston have had Alcoholic Beverage (beer and wine) license applications with the Virginia Alcoholic Beverage Control Board that are still listed as “pending.”

Starbucks announced last summer it would add the Evenings program, which was tested in New York City, for a nationwide audience. The two Reston stores, along with one in Great Falls, have been in the works since then, but a Starbucks spokeswoman said the addition is a “long and thoughtful process.”

The first DC-area stores started serving wine and beer a few weeks ago. Among them — stores at Tysons (Pike 7 Shopping Center), Chantilly (Chantilly Crossing) and Fairfax (Fairfax Boulevard).

Some of the highlights of the Evenings menu:

A secletion of craft beer

About a dozen wine selections (by the glass or bottle), including Alamos Malbec (Argentina), Erath Pinot Gris (Oregon), Columbia Crest H3 Cabernet Sauvignon (Washington),  and Villia Sandi Orisecco (Italy).

Small plates include truffle mac and cheese; spinach and artichoke dip; chicken skewers; truffle popcorn; and a cheese plate.

South Lakes Starbucks/file photo

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Whatever Happened to Plans for Wine at Reston Starbucks?

South Lakes StarbucksTwo Reston Startbucks stores are still in the mix to take part in the new “Starbucks Evenings” program, but the process is going to take a while, a Starbucks spokeswoman said.

In August, it was announced that Starbucks stores at South Lakes Village Center and North Point Village Center were among those nationwide selected to participate in the program, which offers beer, wine and “savory small plates” for customers.

Both Reston stores have liquor (beer and wine) license applications pending with the Virginia Alcoholic Beverage Control board.

“We’re in the very early stages of considering Reston for the Evenings menu,” a Starbucks spokeswoman said in an email. “It’s a long and thoughtful process and the permit filing is just one of many steps we take.”

Other Northern Virginia Starbucks seeking to add beer and wine service are in Arlington, Purcellville, Chantilly, Sterling and Great Falls.

The Starbucks Evenings program rolled out in August in New York City, Denver, Miami, Orlando and Northern California. It now has several hundred alcohol license applications filed nationwide.

Some of the highlights of the Evenings menu:

A secletion of craft beer

About a dozen wine selections (by the glass or bottle), including Alamos Malbec (Argentina), Erath Pinot Gris (Oregon), Columbia Crest H3 Cabernet Sauvignon (Washington),  and Villia Sandi Orisecco (Italy).

Small plates include truffle mac and cheese; spinach and artichoke dip; chicken skewers; truffle popcorn; and a cheese plate.

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South Lakes Starbucks May Begin Selling Beer, Wine

South Lakes Starbucks

The South Lakes Village Center Starbucks may soon become a place for a glass of wine and small plates in the evenings.

The South Lakes location, at 11170 South Lakes Dr., is one of several Virginia locations seeking a license to sell wine and beer. The application was filed last week, according to Virginia Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control permit records. Other Northern Virginia Starbucks also seeking to add beer and wine service are in Arlington, Purcellville, Chantilly, Sterling and Great Falls.

The effort is part of the Starbucks Evenings program, which rolled out in August. The company began testing it in New York City, Denver, Miami, Orlando and Northern California. It has filed alcohol license applications for several hundred locations nationwide.

“We learned resoundingly that our customers want to come to Starbucks and have a glass of wine or a craft beer,” Rachel Antalek, Starbucks vice president of concept innovations, told USA Today in August. “There aren’t that many places to go in the evening where you can go very relaxed, very casual. It’s not loud. You can actually have a small group and hear yourself talk.”

On the Evenings menu: cheese plates, bacon-wrapped dates, spinach and artichoke dip, and truffle popcorn. There are about 10 wines on the wine list (available by the glass or bottle), as well as craft beer.

The coffee menu is also available during evening hours, Starbucks said.

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