(Updated, 3:50 p.m.) Work to tie-in Silver Line Phase 2 to Phase 1 was completed this past weekend, a Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority (MWAA) spokesperson tells Reston Now.
“The tie-in was a success and the Automatic Train Control System has been connected,” says spokesperson Marcia McAllister.
The work nessicated a shutdown of the Wiehle-Reston East Metro station.
One of the main goals was to finish the automatic train control system and it was completed, says McAllister. Additionally, signal infrastructure tests were done and those are still being reviewed.
There remains one or items that need to be finished, but those items can be completed without service outages, says McAllister.
However, MWAA is not committing to a date or specific timeframe for substantial completion and for when the $2.8 billion public transportation project could be handed over to Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (WMATA).
“We are now following procedures set forth in the contract so we can move forward with what needs to be done to keep this project moving forward,” wrote McAllister when asked about a specific timetable.
In September, WMATA scheduled a weekend shutdown of Wiehle-Reston East Metro station in order to allow MWAA and the contractor Capital Rail Contractors (CRC) to connect the first and second phase of the Silver Line as well as perform tests related to signal infrastructure.
This work was crucial to keeping the opening of Silver Line Phase 2 on track and originally was supposed to be finished in June, but that didn’t happen as expected and necessitated a second shutdown.
All of this comes at a particularly fraught time for Metro as service has been drastically reduced to at least mid-November due to ongoing investigations into 7000-series cars related to the Blue Line train derailment in Arlington earlier this month.
“The Airports Authority, WMATA and lead contractor Capital Rail Constructors worked together to make this a success,” reiterated McAllister.
Reston Now has reached to CRC about how the tie-in work this past weekend may impact their own assessment of a timeline for substantial completion, but have to yet to hear back as of publication.
Early last month, WMATA officials noted that it could be done and handed over to them in November.
However, there now seems to be some hedging on this timeline. At the Fairfax County Transportation Committee meeting at the end of September, it was announced that MWAA was “holding, at the moment, to the fourth quarter of 2021.”
A clearly-frustrated Hunter Mill District Supervisor Walter Alcorn responded at the meeting that it better be done prior to the Christmas holiday.
“Our next meeting of the transportation committee is December 14,” he said. “We better have substantial completion by then.”
The developer of a 300-unit apartment building near the Wiehle-Reston East Metro Station and along Hidden Creek Country Club plans to scale back parking at the site.
The Fairfax County Board of Supervisors unanimously approved the request by the developer at a meeting on Monday. The property is located on the west edge of Isaac Newton Square and next to Hidden Creek Country Club.
In a memo, staff noted that the special exception to reduce parking was justified because the property is within one-third of a mile of the Wiehle-Reston East Metro Station.
“The expectation is that residents adjacent to public transportation will require less parking,” the memo states. “While residents may not give up vehicle ownership entirely, they are more likely to own less vehicles than residents in lower-density areas not well served by transit, thereby reducing parking demand.”
According to plans submitted to the county, 215 of the units have one bedroom while the remaining units have two bedrooms.
The developer plans to reduce the number of residential parking units from 407 to 356. The county first approved the rezoning of the property in September 2019.
Roughly 3,4000 square feet of commercial space is also planned on the site, along with the nine-story apartment building. Commercial parking will be unaffected by the proposed change.
All of Golf Course Plaza’s tenants have vacated and the developer plans to begin demolition this year, Reston Now previously reported.
Metro Cuts Back Service for the Week — Expect reduced Metrorail service through at least the ned of this week as officials continue their investigation of last week’s derailment. Silver Line trains will operate between Wiehle-Reston East and Federal Center SW only. [Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority]
Southgate Community Center Gets New Name — The center was renamed after former Hunter Mill District Supervisor Cathy Hudgins, who helped transform the old county property into a new community center. [Reston Patch]
Appraisal Roadshow Returns — Reston Association’s annual appraisal roadshow returns on Saturday, Nov. 6. Attendees get to take part in a treasure hunt. [RA]
Photo via vantagehill/Flickr
Construction on a new pedestrian bridge over Wiehle Avenue is set to begin sometime next summer.
The bridge, which would connect to the Washington & Old Dominion Trail, is intended to improve access for pedestrians and bicyclists near the Wiehle-Reston East Metro Station.
Once built, the bridge would begin on the trail and extend over Wiehle Avenue, replacing an existing at-grade crossing. The project — which is part of the Reston Metrorail Access Group‘s plan to improve pedestrian and bicyclist connectivity near the metro station – is expected to cost around $12 million.
So far, the county has secured land rights on four of seven properties affected by the project. The Fairfax County Board of Supervisors is expected to hold a public hearing on Nov. 9 at 4 p.m. on the acquisition process.
In a memo, county staff said that the board may have to use eminent domain powers to seize some property.
“Negotiations are in progress with the affected property owners; however, because resolution of these acquisitions is not imminent, it may be necessary for the board to utilize quick-take eminent domain powers to commence construction of this project on schedule,” the memo states.
Minor roadway, sidewalk, and median tweaks are planned to make the bridge possible. The bridge would accommodate the gravel path and the asphalt trail, providing full access to and from Wiehle Avenue. In the future, Wiehle Avenue from Sunset Hills Road to the Reston Fire Station entrance and the entrance to Pupatella would also be widened.
Dominion Energy Virginia recently completed plans to relocate overhead electrical transmission lines. Utility work includes removing existing monopoles and installing new ones, as well as relocating overhead transmission lines.
Construction is expected to begin next summer and last for roughly a year.
The Fairfax County Board of Supervisors is expected to discuss the issue at an Oct. 19 meeting.
Photo via handout/Fairfax County Government
Wiehle-Reston East Outage Set for Next Week — A planned shutdown at the Wiehe-Reston East Metro station is on track, a spokesperson for the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority tells Reston Now. The closure is intended to allow crews to connect the first and second phase of the Silver Line. [WMATA]
Reston Association Has Another Key Departure — Human resources director Melissa Kelley is leaving on Oct. 20 for another opportunity. “She will be greatly missed,” president of the board of directors, Caren Anton, said Wednesday. Other recent departures have included the association’s CEO and technology director. [Reston Association]
Reston-based Company Offers Flexible Workweek Policy — IT services firm Science Applications International Corp. is allowing its workers to take part in a flexible, four-day workweek. Employees can work a few extra hours each day to get an extra day off per week. [Technical.ly]
Photo via vantagehill/Flickr
As Silver Line Phase 2 slowly pulls into the station of completion, local officials are expressing their frustration at constant delays and missed deadlines.
In a brief update at yesterday’s (Sept. 28) Fairfax County Transportation Committee meeting, it was reiterated that Silver Line Phase 2 is expected to be substantially completed by the end of the year.
“In our discussions with [Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority], they are holding, at the moment, to the fourth quarter of 2021,” said Martha Elena Coello, special projects division chief for the Fairfax County Department of Transportation.
There are currently only two unresolved issues, according to a slideshow presented at the meeting, both of which are at the railyard and do not need to be resolved for substantial completion.
Hunter Mill District Supervisor Walter Alcorn said he was hopeful that meant MWAA would be handing over the project to Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority [WMATA] in late October, after the planned outage at Wiehle-East Reston Metro Station to tie-in the two lines. That work was supposed to be completed in June.
Alcorn and others at the meeting showed their frustration at how Silver Line Phase 2 has been besieged by constant delays.
“This is four years overdue from the original date,” said Fairfax County Board of Supervisors Chairman Jeff McKay. “To not express some frustration here… would be a mistake. I think all of us are very frustrated.”
Alcorn also was noticeably exasperated at the pace of the project.
“Our next meeting of the transportation committee is December 14. We better have substantial completion by then,” he said.
In response, MWAA acknowledges the disappointment that many have about the delays.
“We understand the frustrations of everybody, elected officials and public alike,” MWAA spokesperson Marcia McAllister told Reston Now. “Our goal is to proceed with the [October] outage, evaluate the work that is done that weekend, and make decisions as soon as possible.”
McAllister also reiterated that MWAA is “holding on to fourth quarter 2021” as a timeline for substantial completion.
While MWAA said it would be completed by the end of the year, CRC said spring 2022.
But now, CRC seems to be backing off their timeline, noting that increased collaboration with the authorities have quickened the pace.
“We are working together with MWAA and WMATA on coordinating and finalizing testing to target substantial completion of the Silver Line Phase 2A in Q4,” CRC project executive Keith Couch wrote in a statement to Reston Now.
Even if Silver Line Phase 2 is substantially completed by late October, as noted in the presentation provided to the committee, WMATA will still need approximately six months to complete testing, pre-revenue preparations, and to open the system to riders.
That could mean an opening date of April or May 2022.
The $2.8 billion public transportation project will include six new stations, extending Metro from Reston to Loudoun County.
It remains a potential game changer for the region, though many with financial investment connected to the project have grown understandably impatient.
“A lot of folks have contributed substianal money to making this happen,” said McKay at the transportation committee meeting. “And they are sitting here, waiting for service.”
TransUnion to Buy Reston-based Company — TransUnion will acquire most of Neustar Inc., an information services and technology company based in Reston. The company has agreed to sell its marketing, fraud and communications businesses for $3.1 billion in cash. But the deal excludes the its cybersecurity business. [Washington Business Journal]
Local Apartment Community Has New Owner — J Harbor Park at North Point, a 190-unit apartment community in Reston, was acquired by Jefferson Apartment Group, a multifamily developer and operator.The development is expected to undergo renovations in the coming months. [Commercial Observer]
Local Vaccine Clinic Today at Wiehle-Reston East — The county’s health department is hosting a vaccine clinic at the Wiehle-Reston Metro Station for most of the day today. Can’t make it today? Another clinic is planned for Thursday. Walk-ins and appointments are available. [Reston Association]
Deer Management Program Underway — The county’s annual deer management archery program is underway through Feb. 19. It’s part of a longstanding effort to reduce the white-tailed deer population in the county. The county notes that only approved members of the its program can hunt in designated parks. [Fairfax County Government]
The Wiehle-Reston East Metro station will be closed during the weekend of Oct. 23 and 24 so crews can work to connect the first and second phase of the Silver Line.
This will be the second time in six months that the station has been shut down so the two phases can be tied together after work and tests related to signal infrastructure were not completed in June as expected, necessitating another shutdown.
If the work is completed as hoped this time, it will be a major milestone for the $2.8 billion Silver Line Phase 2 project, potentially putting it on track for substantial completion by November.
The scheduled shutdown was added to Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority’s (WMATA) track work page shortly after officials delivered an update on the project to the WMATA board yesterday (Thursday).
Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority (MWAA) spokesperson Marcia McAllister said in an email to Reston Now that the scheduling of the shutdown for late October is “great news.”
“Now that a date has been set for the service outage needed to allow completion of the tie-in between Phase 1 and Phase 2 of the Silver Line, the Airports Authority and our contractors can get this essential work done in October and move the project toward substantial completion,” McAllister wrote.
Substantial completion refers to the point when MWAA will be ready to hand the project to WMATA. The authority previously set Labor Day weekend as the deadline but acknowledged in July that it wouldn’t meet that timeline.
At the board meeting, WMATA officials said they were comfortable with MWAA setting a new substantial completion deadline for the end of this year, stating that the work will most likely be finished in November.
If that is the case, Metro will still need another five to six months of operational readiness testing and pre-revenue activities, but that could mean the Silver Line Phase 2 will open to riders by May 2022.
However, in MWAA’s most recent monthly report, the project’s contractor Capital Rail Constructors proposed a substantial date of May 19, 2022, which could push the opening all the way to late 2022. It wasn’t the first time that the two parties disagreed on the project’s schedule.
Shortly after the report was released, though, CRC project executive Keith Couth told Reston Now that there were “opportunities through collaboration” to improve on that date and get it completed much sooner.
When reached for comment, Couch reiterated that they are working to finish by the end of this year.
“We are in the testing phase of the project which is very dependent on coordinating and finalizing testing with MWAA and WMATA, including scheduling of the next outage at Wiehle Avenue and the review of test reports,” Couch said. “In collaboration with MWAA and WMATA, we are working together to improve on the schedule, targeting a substantial completion in Q4.”
With the Wiehle shutdown now scheduled and the contractor supportive of a hoped-for 2021 substantial completion date, Silver Line Phase 2 is seemingly back on track after years of delays that have frustrated local officials, residents, and businesses alike.
“Level F” testing — meaning testing with actual trains — also began late last month and is going well, according to WMATA officials.
The nearly $3 billion project will extend Metro’s Silver Line from the Wiehle-Reston East station west to Ashburn in Loudoun County. In total, six new stations will be added, including one at Reston Town Center and two in Herndon.
Construction began back in 2014 and was originally supposed to finish in 2018.
Photo via Fairfax Connector
(Updated at 9:05 a.m. on 8/5/21) A new report reveals that there’s significant disagreement between the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority (MWAA) and its contractor, Capital Rail Constructors (CRC), about when Silver Line Phase 2 is expected to be completed.
Released publicly yesterday (Aug 3), MWAA’s June monthly report on the project says that CRC is forecasting a substantial completion date of April 21, 2022 for the second phase of Metro’s Silver Line extension.
However, in its monthly report, MWAA says it “disagrees” with the timeline laid out by CRC and believes the remaining work that needs to be completed “can be accomplished in significantly less time.”
The airports authority believes the work can be finished “within Q4 2021,” according to the report.
About six months is needed between substantial completion and for the system to open to complete testing and “pre-revenue activities,” according to a Metro presentation from last month.
This means that, if the project follows CRC’s timeline, Silver Line Phase 2 won’t officially open until late October 2022 at the earliest, a year-long delay compared to what was announced earlier in 2021.
Even MWAA’s preferred timeline would still push the start of service back to May or June 2022.
MWAA spokesperson Marcia McAllister says the authority remains “hopeful” that the contractor can complete the necessary work by the end of this year. She explained that both the contractor and MWAA make timeline estimates based on “their own knowledge base, but just come up with different results.”
“We will continue to work with them, talk to them, and encourage them to speed up the work they are doing,” McAllister said.
Keith Couch, project executive for Capital Rail Constructors, told Reston Now that the contractor group is open to discussing with MWAA about how to move the project quicker and get it done by late this year.
“We are in the testing phase of the project which is very dependent on coordinating and finalizing testing with MWAA and WMATA, including scheduling of the next outage at Wiehle Avenue and the review of test reports,” Couch wrote in a statement. “While based on the information available at this time our schedule shows an April 2022 substantial completion date, there are opportunities through collaboration with MWAA and WMATA to improve on that date and complete the project by later this year.”
One of the tasks that still needs to be completed is the full connection of Phase 2 to Silver Line Phase 1, which opened in 2014. The Wiehle-Reston East Metro station was shut down for a weekend in June so crews could work on the linkage, but the task wasn’t completed.
MWAA has said that an additional shutdown is needed to complete that work. Dates for that shutdown have yet to be announced.
McAllister says MWAA is working with the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority to find dates that work for all, but the two agencies have yet to make a determination on when the second Wiehle station shutdown might happen.
According to MWAA’s monthly report, CRC has proposed a timeline where the Phase I integration work will be completed in October.
The timeline disagreement is another wrinkle in the long-running saga of the $2.8 billion public transportation project to extend Metro from Reston into Loudoun County with six new stations.
“We really, really want to get this project done as soon as possible,” McAllister said. “We understand the community’s needs to have Silver Line Phase 2 open.”
(Updated 12:20 p.m.) A new restaurant and day spa are opening nearby the Wiehle-Reston East Metro station around the holiday season.
Eve’s Garden Lounge & Bar and Emiline’s Day Spa are opening next to each other at the new Faraday Park development at 1831 Michael Faraday Drive, about a 10-minute walk from the Metro station. Both businesses are from the same ownership group, which also own Alo Vietnam in Herndon.
The businesses will open sometime between Thanksgiving and Christmas this year, co-owner Don Lee confirmed to Reston Now. They will occupy two 1,746 square-foot spaces — about 3,600 square feet in total — and operate next to each other.
“We were supposed to have construction late last year, but that was delayed because of COVID. So, we just started construction,” Lee said in June.
The day spa will offer services for both men and women like pedicures, facial treatments, hair salon, and massages.
The restaurant has yet to reveal its menu, but Lee says it will be similar to Herndon’s Alo Vietnam, which offers modernized Vietnamese fare like pho, banh mi, and rice vermicelli. The difference, Lee says, is that Eva’s will be “more Asian fusion and focus more on presentation and will be higher end.”
Lee told Reston Now in June that the ownership group’s ultimate goal is to have a business located within walking distance of all the Silver Line stations, extending out to Dulles Airport.
Alo Vietnam opened within a five-minute walk of the future Innovation Center Metro station in late 2019 in anticipation of Silver Line Phase 2’s opening. Of course, the line has yet to open, leaving businesses like Alo Vietnam in the lurch.
Lee hoped that, by being near a Metro station, the business would be buoyed by commuters, office workers, and tourists.
“We did invest in 2019…thinking that we will carry the load the first year until the Metro opens,” Lee said in June. “Then, we will have a good location with a lot of foot traffic with tourists and from all the businesses around.”
But between the long-delayed $2.8 billion public transportation project and the pandemic, that dream has yet to be realized for Lee and Alo Vietnam. Now, Silver Line Phase 2 is looking like it may not open until mid-2022.
When Eva’s Garden Lounge & Bar and Emiline’s Day Spa opens in Reston by the end of the year, they will be the first of Lee’s businesses to be open near a currently operating Metro station.
The businesses are two of four confirmed retailers coming to Faraday Park, which opened one residential tower for move-ins in April with a second tower expected to be completed in the next few months. The gym F45 and the salon A+ Nails are the others.
One of the two residential towers planned for the Faraday Park development near the Wiehle-Reston East Metro station is now open to residents.
Move-ins for 242-unit Faraday West tower officially began on April 17, a spokesperson for the property confirmed to Reston Now. Reston Skylines reported in June that the building had opened to its first residents.
Delivery of Faraday East, however, is taking a little longer than anticipated. Developer Rooney Properties previously projected that construction on both towers would finish in May, but two months later, work is still going on the eastern tower, which will consist of 166 apartments.
“No exact completion date to share at the moment beyond being in the next few months,” the Faraday Park spokesperson said by email.
When completed, the seven-story towers will have more than 400 residential units and a total of about 10,000 square feet of retail space. On-site amenities include a maker’s workshop, a rooftop pool and sundeck, a fitness center, coworking spaces, dining room, commercial and baking kitchens, and a bike repair space.
The towers are accompanied by 13 four-story townhomes, according to Rooney Properties.
“The Rooney team is proud that Reston residents are officially calling Faraday Park home!” Rooney Properties senior associate Jake Ballard said in a statement. “The development is one of the fastest-leasing properties in Reston, and was designed with community in mind and meant to be a hub for active and amenity-filled living.”
Redevelopment of the 3.85-acre site at 11201 Reston Station Boulevard has been in the works since 2017, when the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors approved conceptual plans for mixed-use development to replace an existing office building.
Faraday Park is part of a larger boom in development along Sunset Hills Road spurred by the arrival of the Wiehle-Reston East Metro station, which opened in July 2014.
That same month, EYA broke ground on its Townhomes at Reston Station, the first step forward in the Reston Midline development that the company is working on with JBG Smith and The Chevy Chase Land Company. That project will eventually bring 1.8 million square feet of new development south of Sunset Hills Road and east of Wiehle Avenue.
Those prospective tenants were first announced in December 2019, but the Faraday Park spokesperson says it’s still too early to give a timeline for when they will move in.
F45, which added a site at Reston Town Center in February, told Reston Now then that they expect to open at Faraday Park this summer. Alo Vietnam opened a location near the future Innovation Center Metro station in January, though they’re still waiting to get the anticipated boost from the long-delayed Silver Line Phase 2 opening.
The Labor Day deadline for “substantial completion” of Silver Line Phase 2 won’t be met, Metro staff acknowledged at a Board of Directors safety and operations committee meeting today (Thursday).
The presentation confirmed what the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority (MWAA) told Fairfax County earlier this month.
At this point, it remains unknown when the project will be substantially completed and able to be turned over to the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (WMATA). The expected delay will likely push the opening date even further back.
“There hasn’t been a new substantial completion day published [by MWAA],” said Andy Off, Metro’s vice president of project implementation and construction. “But we are confident it’s going to get moved past Labor Day.”
The latest delay of the $2.8 billion public transportation project stems from the need for more testing and work to tie Silver Line’s first and second phases together. That will require another shutdown of Wiehle-Reston East Metro station, much like the one that happened late last month.
“There are specific tests that were not completed over that weekend that necessitated a further shutdown,” Off said. “We are currently working with MWAA to schedule that.”
Reston Now reached out to MWAA about when that station shutdown will happen but has to hear back as of publication.
Off assured committee members that the delay has nothing to do with concrete issues or any other major safety concern.
“Right now, it’s really an IT project as it relates to our signal infrastructure,” Off said.
Once the Wiehle-Reston East outage gets scheduled and the work is completed, Off said there will be a better idea of a substantial completion date, with “fall” being as specific as he can get at this juncture.
Metro will need about six months from substantial completion to complete testing and “pre-revenue activities,” including trainings and further testing, which is contractually obligated to take no longer than 90 days, according to a presentation to Fairfax County Board of Supervisors transportation committee last month.
A Labor Day hand-off would have put Silver Line Phase 2 on track to open in the first quarter of 2022, but now, operations likely won’t begin until later that year. The project will extend Metro from Reston into Loudoun County with six new stations.
At the WMATA board committee meeting, officials emphasized that this delay is unrelated to any problem. There’s simply a need for more testing time.
“It’s not unusual to have several tests planned and just not have the amount of time as you need,” rail safety expert Devin Rouse, who’s on the Metro board, said. “If anything significant does come up, that’s a discussion we really need to have. At this point, this is normal for these types of projects.”
While officials have downplayed this particular delay, it follows a long line of Silver Line Phase 2 holdups that have frustrated residents and businesses waiting for the multi-billion-dollar public transporation project, which was initially set to open in 2018.
(Updated at 3:30 p.m.) The Wiehle-Reston East Metro station will be closed this weekend (June 25-26) so workers can connect the first and second phases of the Silver Line.
Most of the work being done this weekend is electrical and technological, as opposed to construction, says Marcia McAllister, spokesperson for the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority.
“The work to be done this week by MWAA and CRC (our contractor) will make the permanent power connections between Phase 2 and the existing WMATA system,” wrote McAllister in an email to Reston Now. “This connection is at the Wiehle-Reston station which is the current end of the Silver Line.”
Additional testing will also be done this weekend.
Metro will provide free shuttle buses throughout the weekend to transport passengers between Wiehle-Reston East and the Spring Hill station in Tysons, the closest stop on the Silver Line, MWAA says.
The Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority has called the task of connecting the two phases of its Silver Line rail a major benchmark and potential challenge of the project.
McAllister noted that this closure is an expected part of the process as MWAA prepares to hand over the project to WMATA in September.
Another outage — meaning potential additional closures — will be needed prior to that fall turnover, writes McAllister, but a date for that has yet to be determined.
“At this time, this weekend’s shutdown at Wiehle-Reston East is the only closure scheduled during the next 8 weeks with regard to Silver Line Phase 2,” Metro spokesperson Sherri Ly told Reston Now.
Silver Line Phase 2 appears to be still on track to open in the first quarter of 2022, though officials previously cautioned that the timeline is subject to change.
The long-delayed $2.8 billion project originally had a completion date of 2018. But design changes, defective panels, contractor issues, flawed rail ties, and bad concrete all contributed to the nearly four-year delay, which has tested the patience of some local businesses in Herndon and Reston.
Silver Line Phase 2 remains on track to open in the first quarter of 2022, the Metropolitan Washington Airport Authority says.
In an update on the Dulles Corridor Metrorail Project issued on Monday (May 17), the agency says it is “confident” that construction will be finished “around Labor Day,” at which point the long-delayed $2.8 billion project will finally be handed off to the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority.
If that happens as planned, WMATA will begin conducting “operational readiness testing.” That step includes more inspections, trainings, delivery of spare parts, certifications, and the correction of any issues.
That process should take two months if there are no outstanding issues, according to a Metro presentation on Silver Line Phase 2’s progress from March.
After that, there will be “pre-revenue activities,” including more trainings, testings, and the issuing of safety certifications. That step could take up to 90 days.
Putting all of that together, that leaves five months between when WMATA receives the project and when Silver Line Phase 2 and its six stations — Reston Town Center, Herndon, Innovation Center, Dulles Airport, Loudoun Gateway, and Ashburn — would officially open.
If WMATA does receive the project on Labor Day from MWAA, that puts a potential opening for revenue services and operation in early February 2022.
Of course, not all of this is guaranteed. MWAA says the timeline is “subject to change depending on the Airports Authority’s final completion date and the results of complex testing that are needed for Metro operations.”
What’s more, MWAA notes that the contractors building the tracks and the Phase 2 rail yard and maintenance facility have both missed deadlines.
“Each contractor missed its respective contract completion date but is striving to be ready for a September turnover,” the update says.
The contractors “knows what needs to be done,” says project head Charles Stark, who is retiring in July.
One of the major challenges of the project right now is connecting Phase 2 with Silver Line Phase 1, particularly west of the Wiehle-Reston East Metrorail station. Doing this will require shutting down service at the station for a period of time that could come as soon as early summer.
Reston Now reached out to WMATA to learn more about the timeline and duration of this shutdown, but has yet to hear back as of publication.
A number of elements of the project have been completed in recent months.
The complex stormwater control system, which delayed the project more than a full year, is now finished, along with the 300-plus glass panel windscreen at the Dulles Airport Metro station.
Dulles Airport station’s pedestrian tunnel now has moving existing sidewalks as well as an exhibit showing the history of the Dulles area.
Last month, Metro approved a $4.7 billion budget that officially delayed Silver Line Phase 2 to 2022 but prevented potential very consequential service cuts.
Photo courtesy Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority
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.”