Reston Spring

Reston Spring
Reston Spring

Wednesday, August 22, 2018

CPR Letter to County: Not-at-Grade Pedestrian Crossings, August 21, 2018

                                                                                           August 21, 2018

Dear Fred (Selden, C/DPZ):  

In our recent meeting on Parks, Open Space and Athletic Fields, the issue of not-at-grade pedestrian and bike crossings was discussed.  As you are aware, both the Reston Master Plan and County policy place a high priority on facilitating bike and pedestrian traffic.   In addition to increased connectivity, improved traffic flow and a healthy alternative to vehicular travel, tunnels and bridges protect our citizens and their children.  Although some actually state that mixing pedestrians and automobiles is a good thing, the reality is very different.  No pedestrian has been killed by a car or truck while crossing through a tunnel or over a bridge.     

Reston has suffered from a failure to adhere to its founding principles about connectivity in recent decades, and we realize it is difficult to retro design needed tunnels and bridges in established and stable neighborhoods.  New development or redevelopment, however, is very different and a return to long established guidelines is both necessary and in everyone's interest.  There are multiple examples all over Reston as to how tunnels and bridges can fit seamlessly into our neighborhoods and along our pathways.  We are confident the County and developers are as safety-minded and creative as their predecessors of 40 and 50 years ago.   

The following non-exhaustive list identifies a number of priority locations for not-at-grade crossings.    All of these provide significantly safer crossings over major, high speed roadways.   The time to institute a comprehensive policy of requiring not-at-grade crossings is now, not after disaster strikes.  

Wiehle at Sunrise Valley:  A tunnel from the lower elevation of the USAA campus on the east side of Wiehle could connect with the lower elevation of the Vornado property on the west side.  

Wiehle at Entrance to Metro:   It is difficult to understand why this wasn't put in place with the initial development, but it must be included in any further development of area.  Once built, the lengthy walk signal can be eliminated.  

Sunset Hills at Wiehle:  The need for this is obvious and also should have been included in the initial development of the Metro Station.   This could tie in with the already approved bridge over Wiehle on the W&OD.  

Reston Parkway at Sunrise Valley:  As part of Reston Crescent development.  Crossings of Sunrise Valley and perhaps just south of the Toll Road are also needed.  

Reston Parkway at Sunset Hills:   This intersection is extremely dangerous and difficult to cross.  There are multiple lanes in all directions and dedicated right turn lanes at all four corners make pedestrian crossings a life threatening experience.   

Baron Cameron at Bennington Woods/Town Center Parkway:  Must be part of any development of Reston Town Center North

Baron Cameron at Village Road:  As part of any Lake Anne redevelopment.  The nearby tunnel under Baron Cameron doesn't serve Lake Anne. 

Dulles Toll Road at Town Center Metro Station:  A dedicated bike/pedestrian lane separate from Metro commuter traffic.

Wiehle at Isaac Newton Square:  As part of any redevelopment of Isaac Newton.  

If you would like to experience crossing any of these intersections on foot at rush hour to get a sense of the need for non-at-grade crossings, please let me know.  

The County plans to permit a massive increase in population in the TSA zones.  County officials also have repeatedly stated they believe this population will be predominantly disposed to travel on foot or bike or use mass transit.  It is thus imperative a network of safe pathways be developed, including not at grade crossings of major roads.  Anything less violates the County's own directives.  

Many thanks, we greatly appreciate your work on these issues and your dedication to keeping Reston a unique and valued part of Fairfax County.  

Best regards,  Dennis

Dennis Hays
Parks, Open Space & Athletic Fields
CPR Discussion Leader
Supervisor Cathy Hudgins
Goldie Harrison, Hunter Mill District Staff
Leslie Johnson, DC/DPZ, Zoning
John Carter, Fairfax County Planning Commission

Monday, August 20, 2018

CPR/RA Letter to County Staff: The Road from Nowhere, August 17, 2018

August 17, 2018

Dear Tom (Biesiadny, Chief, FCDOT):

Trust all is well your way.  

In several of our recent meetings the "Road from Nowhere" has come up.  We have asked who decided to draw the road on a map buried in the appendix of the then draft Master Plan, why this wasn't presented to the community and justified before it was added, and how such a road could be proposed that impinges on designated open space.  We haven't yet gotten answers to any of these questions, but we have been told this is just a "conceptual" road and thus we shouldn't worry about it.

It would be helpful, however, to understand exactly what this "concept" would look like in reality.  If you or your staff could provide the following information it would be most appreciated.  

Is this conceived as a two lane or four lane road?  

What is the distance between the edges of either road, including curbs, gutters, set backs, bike paths and a sidewalk on at least one side?  

How will the road compensate for the large discrepancy between the level of the ground along the conceptual road and level of the road at American Dream Way?  

Who owns all the land the road will traverse?  

Why is the County unable to identify who drew the road on the map in the first place?  Is it common for the County to be unable to say how or why official documents are drafted and approved?  

An alternative to all of the above would be to simply remove the Road from Nowhere from all maps and planning documents.  Easier and better for everyone.  

Very best regards,  Dennis 

Dennis Hays
Parks, Open Space and Athletic Fields
Discussion Leader

Fred Selden, Chief, DPZ
Leslie Johnson, DC/DPZ, Zoning
Goldie Harrison, Hunter Mill District Supervisors Office

Tuesday, August 7, 2018

CPR Asks Supervisor Hudgins to Keep Proposed Zoning Amendment Off County Calendars as Actions Agreed Upon in Small Group Meetings with Reston Residents Move Forward

On Monday July 30, Coalition for a Planned Reston (CPR), Reston Association and Fairfax County staff completed the initial round of four small group public meetings to discuss concerns with the County’s proposal to increase the overall person per acre limitation for the Reston Planned Residential Community (PRC) from 13 to16 persons per acre. The meeting was streamed by Reston Association and may be viewed by clicking here or going to

On Wednesday, August 1, CPR sent a letter to Supervisor Cathy Hudgins identifying areas of agreement and mutually approved actions to be taken:

In numerous instances the small group discussions have yielded agreement on next steps, including:
  • Clarification and correction of the Reston Master Plan (RMP),
  • Identification of additional information that the County intends to share with the public, and
  • Acknowledgement of areas that require further dialogue. 
For example, at the planning small group meeting, the County and citizens confirmed agreement that a population cap or target for all of Reston (“One Reston”) based on census numbers should be reintroduced into the RMP, but time did not allow for discussion of the details.

Recognizing the positive results achieved on concerns that CPR believes will eliminate the perceived need for the County’s proposed amendments to the zoning ordinance to raise the density cap, CPR asked Supervisor Hudgins to continue to support collaboration with the community:

In order to maintain the momentum achieved thus far in the small group sessions, we trust that you will continue to support suspension of any further action on a zoning amendment to increase the Reston density cap, including any efforts to schedule the proposed zoning amendment for consideration by the Planning Commission and the Board of Supervisors. We look forward to continuing to work collaboratively to help assure that Reston remains a vibrant, welcoming, planned community for decades to come.

CPR will hold a community-wide meeting after Labor Day to review the results of the four small group sessions with the County and to solicit additional community recommendations.