Reston Spring

Reston Spring
Reston Spring

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Critical Upcoming Reston Task Force Meetings on Transit-Oriented Development and Transportation

The Reston Master Plan Special Study Task Force is having two very important meetings this coming week on Transit-Oriented Development (TOD), transportation, and the Herndon-Monroe Metro station TOD, the first of the three Reston area TODs the task force will address. The key drivers for the creation of TODs is that officials and planners believe that building these high-rise, high-density, mixed-use development around transit stations can ease the impacts on energy and the environment--a controversial position in some quarters--while raising tax revenues without increasing taxes.

The meetings are important because:

* The population growth in the three Reston area TODs alone could add anywhere from 20,000 to more than 60,000 people living in Reston depending on assumptions about family sizes and the number of high-rise dwelling units. Obviously, this kind of growth has implications for school rolls, transportation, and a number of other factors and is largely in addition to the increased density authorized for the Reston Planned Residential Community (PRC), which could also add some 30,000 people over time.

* The number of jobs in high-rise office buildings could rise by some 80,000 to well over 100,000 from the TOD development. This, too, could have serious implications for traffic congestion even with Metrorail.

* These identified TOD areas--a 1/2 mile ring around the station platform--also include already established and stable residential neighborhoods as well as some parks and natural areas. It remains unclear how they may be affected by TOD development, including that at Herndon-Monroe Metrorail station.

It is important to attend both meetings:

* Tuesday, February 23, 7PM, at the RCC-Lake Anne: This will be an informational meeting on transportation, TOD, and the Herndon-Monroe Station area. Speakers from the County as well as Montgomery and Arlington Counties and the Reston Metro Advisory Group (RMAG) will be making presentations. This meeting should provide important background information for concerned citizens about TOD and its application in the Reston area. The complete agenda is here.
* Saturday, February 27, 9AM, location to be determined (probably SLHS or LHIS): This will be a community meeting on the Herndon-Monroe Station according to the latest available schedule. In general, this will be an opportunity for people to present their ideas, interests, and concerns, probably through some mediated processes. No agenda has been posted yet, but the meeting may also speak to general TOD and transportation issues. I will update this post when the County provides additional information.

An easy way to access information on this blog about TOD and Transportation is to look at the "Labels" section of the sidebar, basically a topical index of the items on the blog with links to the related blog posts. You may also want to go to the County's webpage on the Reston planning effort to check for information on these important topics.

And please be sure to tell your friends and family in the Reston area about these meetings. Reston is our community and we need to shape its future so it serves us all well. I look forward to seeing you at these two important task force meetings.

Terry Maynard
Reston 2020

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