Autumn on Lake Audobon

Autumn on Lake Audobon
Autumn on Lake Audubon, Photo by Alison Kamat

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Independent Progressive/Master Plan for Transit Station Areas — Outgunned, Reston Connection, January 21, 2014

Reston commentator John Lovaas reports on how Reston's civic groups have been "outgunned," but not outworked, on the Reston Task Force.  Here is how he begins:
It never looked like a fair fight. In the fall of 2009, when Hunter Mill Supervisor Cathy Hudgins assembled her Task Force of 25 or so to prepare a Comprehensive (Master) Plan for the Dulles rail corridor, it was clear the community was at a disadvantage. A handful of Reston volunteers faced a phalanx of hired gun slingers, men (100 percent men!) representing commercial developers and their lawyers. The gunslingers were pros doing their jobs, unified in a clear sense of purpose — to maximize profit. Most had worked “community” task force gigs before and knew the county staff advising the Task Force. None lived in Reston.
The civilians, volunteers representing community organizations including the Reston Citizens Association (RCA) and Reston Association (RA), had only a vague sense of mission — to plan development consistent with their Reston values. They would do the right thing for their community, but they were new to the game. The Task Force was to complete the Plan in one year. It took four years. It was approved by the County Planning Commission just last week.
It goes to the Board of Supervisors for a likely rubber stamp public review on Jan. 28. The product bears the gunslingers’ heavy imprint, but is not as terrible as I expected. . . .
Click here to read the rest of his commentary.

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