Lakeport continues to modify our Architectural Standards to reduce the number of situations in which owners are required to submit applications to Reston Association’s Design Review Board (DRB) and to expand approved options for major home repairs. This fall, the DRB approved updates to four standards, which are now posted on Lakeport’s web site. Two of these were appealed (one is still pending a decision), and two additional updates to standards are in the process of being reviewed.
Lights: Most of the changes in the standard for decorative and security lights are finalized. The original builder decorative lights and colors (what most of us still have) are now considered compliant, and the list of products for replacement lights was expanded to include black and gray (in addition to bronze in the prior standard). Furthermore, new standards for security lights were added that specify LED, 1000 lumens, 3000 Kelvin, shielded, and pointed down. An appeal relating to whether security lights can be located on the front of a home as well as the back and side has been scheduled for the DRB meeting later this week. Regardless of the outcome, existing security lights will not need to be brought into conformance until they are replaced or the home is sold.
Decks: After the DRB failed to approve our original request for wider latitude in deck colors, Lakeport appealed, with the result that no DRB application is needed if a new deck uses pressure-treated wood or any composite (including a composite not previously approved) that is a very close match to one of the eight approved colors in the current table in Lakeport’s standard. Although this decision means owners already are less likely to have to file an application, we recently submitted a request to expand the number of approved colors, making it even easier for owners to find a match for the composite or paint color they like. As before, no application is needed if the deck is just being repaired. The recently approved standard also added color guidelines for horizontal fascia boards and posts for balconies and decks (trim boards painted to match trim are recommended).
Windows: A DRB application is being scheduled for review that, if approved, would add three new brands/materials and over four times as many pre-approved window options as the current standard has, meaning owners would be more likely to find a window that fits their need and price range without having to submit a DRB application.
Gutters, downspouts, and downspout extensions: This approved new standard allows downspout extensions currently in use at many homes that would otherwise have been a violation of RA guidelines. In particular, the new standard allows corrugated pipe on driveways and does not require that it be buried in the back if it is screened by landscaping or a fence. It also permits metal gutter extensions that match the existing downspout exactly, white PVC connected to an underground drain, splash blocks that are kept clean, and rain barrels. Important: No new white gutters are allowed (although existing ones do not need to be painted to match the trim), and when gutters are replaced they cannot be attached to a party wall shared with the neighboring home.
Finally, anyone purchasing an electric car should read RA’s newly created Guideline for Electric Vehicle Charging Stations that the DRB just approved. It requires owners to submit a DRB application prior to installing a charging station, even on their own property.