Reston Development Update

By Kevin Burke

As reported in the summer issue of Ripples, the major mixed-use development located on about 12 acres between the Dulles Toll Road and Sunrise Valley Drive just east of Wiehle Avenue was awaiting final zoning review by Fairfax County Planning and Zoning Commission and then approval by the county’s Board of Supervisors. The developer, TF Cornerstone of New York, is proposing three new buildings and retaining the current two office buildings at Campus Commons. After the developer made several requested changes, the county’s Planning and Zoning Commission staff recommended approval of the development on September 11, and the Commission subsequently unanimously agreed. Then, on October 15, the Board of Supervisors also unanimously approved the revised application.

(Current and Proposed Campus Commons)

In its initial review of the zoning application, the County requested, among other changes, a reduction in the number of housing units and the height of the office building. As a result, TF Cornerstone, the New York-based developer, lopped off 48 feet from the office tower and lowered the height of the residential tower by 44 feet. The current capacity of 629 multifamily units in the two residential buildings is down from the original request of 1,097 units. The development includes five public parks and a community amphitheater. The developer agreed to pay for a new traffic light at Upper Lakes Drive.

However, the major concern of the Reston Association and the Reston Community Association was inadequate pedestrian access across Wiehle Avenue to the Metro Station. The proposed at-grade crossing was deemed dangerous for pedestrians and likely to slow considerably the vehicular traffic on Wiehle Avenue crossing the Dulles Access Road, with extensive back-ups on Sunrise Valley Drive. In response, TF Cornerstone offered to study designs for a pedestrian bridge over Wiehle Avenue, or if that is not feasible it will review building a pedestrian tunnel to the Metro station. In either case, the company will provide $1.5 million for the construction of a suitable access route.

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