In the day the cattle-ranchers’ land was separated by such things as mountain ranges, rivers, and fences. When the grass fattened the cows, the roundup began and headed towards the canyon. The Injuns knew this was coming and took positions on ledges and behind boulders and took out the cowboys and then stole the cows and herded them to market, selling them back to the cowboys. I know this because I grew up near the canyons connecting the San-Fernando Valley’s fertile farmland with the harbor et al. I then took a job with the movie studio, specializing in the westerns, which permanent sets in the back lot with mixed use. Hotel rooms were above the cowboy gathering places.
This issue came to my focus when the traffic backup over the Reston Parkway Canyon caused my daughter to be late for her aerobic swim class at Hunter’s Woods Community Center; I thought a cowboy story might catch the task force members’ attention. There has been talk of a Palatiello Tunnel; another idea was a toll bridge connecting a road through Hidden Creek to align with Soapstone Drive. A previous owner of Hidden Creek realized this would open some under-utilized land at the edge of the golf course to his benefit.
This idea was generated in my planning for the reinvestment of the Sheraton Inn and Conference Center. This planning also included an air-rights deck between the Sheraton and Plaza America, which could accommodate a number of toll road crossings (bus, bike, pedestrian, special permit vehicles, and the Central Reston Metro Station). This would also be an appropriate connector point to Reston’s largest employers, USDS, Sprint, and the community’s lower-cost housing neighborhoods, the town center, and all of south Reston. As proposed in the approved development plan amendment, which is creating Reston Heights and includes a .5 million dollar proffer to connect this quadrant with a metrorail station. The Youtube on the Wiehle Outlet describes another approach to a canyon.
Patrick F. Kane 5-6-2010