News and notes from Reston (tm).

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

'Is the Reston dream dying?'

That's the question Tom Grubisich asked in Sunday's Washington Post. According to him, the answer is yes.

* Lake Anne Center -- Simon's crown jewel -- has deteriorated because of weak and fractured local leadership and a county government that moves as fast as a three-legged tortoise.

* The nature center that Simon promised shortly before he was ousted has finally progressed to the drawing board, albeit stripped of its "green" construction features.

* The regional library that was built 25 years ago is insufficient to serve Reston's digital generation.

* Reston's extensive network of stream valleys -- the centerpiece of its thousand acres of open space -- has been ravaged by pollution and runoff.

* Thousands of homes hastily built during the early years of the post-Simon construction boom are headed toward dilapidation.
Living in a ca. 1970 home in which few surfaces still meet at 90-degree angles, we'd say there was plenty of shoddy building during the Simon era as well. But all we need to do is airlift some more hilarious statuary into Lake Anne Center, hook up a couple of computers in the library to those Internet tubes, and fill up a Hefty bag or two of Lake Thoreau trash, and we'll be right as rain. It's not like we need some sort of new system of governance or anything, right?
Last year, the Reston Citizens Association, frustrated by the powerlessness of its own and other community organizations, launched a petition drive to make Reston a town. As a town, Reston would have the power to jump-start the long-stalled revitalization of Lake Anne and undertake other overdue initiatives. Governance would also permit Reston to use its strengths as the pioneer smart-growth community to find community-based answers to issues such as climate change and health care.
Sure, the Res-TOWN initiative hasn't gotten the warmest of receptions to date. But no one's mentioned the climate change/health care angle before! Just think -- the Design Review Board could operate as a HMO, approving medical procedures based on their aesthetic appeal! (Implants and liposuctions would go way up, but artificial limbs would have to be one of only three approved flesh tones.) Each cluster could choose its own way of fighting global warming by reducing their "carbon footprints," from installing solar panels on their swank carports in the summer to ripping the aforementioned carports down and burning them for heat in the winter!

With those kinds of benefits, who wouldn't mind paying extra town taxes for the giant shark-filled moat and mauve city limits signs? Certainly not Mssr. Grubisich, right?
The author... lived in Reston from 1967 to 2003.
Oh. Guess he doesn't have to worry about that.

1 comment:

  1. Meathead

    The plan is to eliminate/greatly reduce non-deductible RA dues and substitute much lower and tax deductible r/e taxes to do the same stuff w/ r/e taxes also being collected from office & commercial land owners who get the amenities of Reston and pay no RA assessment now.


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