News and notes from Reston (tm).

Friday, August 10, 2012

Design Hawtness: Another Look at Reston Station's Future Field of Parallelograms

Reston Station.jpeg

A Confidential Restonian Operative alerted us to this hawtt new (to us) series of renderings of Reston Station, the wonderland of parallelograms that will soon rise atop the parking garage for the Wiehle Avenue Metro Station. We'll stick with our earlier, highly informed assessment from our years playing SimCity studying contemporary urban architecture -- they're actually pretty nice. At worse, they're a lot better than most off-the-shelf office dreck. Of course, dramatic clouds make just about anything look nice, or at least uncannily like an excessively earnest progressive rock album cover.

Civic plaza.jpeg
Here's a new look at the fancy "civic plaza" in the middle of the project. Initially criticized for its small size and lack of sunlight due to the tall buildings, it seems nice and light-filled here; maybe they added three suns to AutoCad to ensure proper lighting in this rendering. More encouraging is the lack of cars, since there was originally talk about how pedestrians will have to dodge harried commuters on their way to the Cheesecake Factory share the space with auto traffic at least part of the time.

Here's an aerial view and AW HELL YES A HELIPAD! We know where we'll be relocating Restonian World Headquarters come 2014.

But something seems... missing. Wonder what it could be?

Screen shot 2010-05-11 at 10.06.29 AM.jpg
That's it. Much better.


  1. We should all be so lucky as to live in an architectural rendering. Clean, uncluttered sweetness and light -- and it's never crowded.

  2. Is "Navy Ship Metal Grey" a DRB-approved color?

  3. The architectural rendering of the "civic plaza" creates a false illusion of what will be there.

    Imagine the plaza at Lake Anne with two lanes of traffic down the middle. The Reston Station plaza is the same length and width as the Lake Anne plaza. In addition to the two lanes of traffic, imagine a loop turn-around at one end (where the fountain is at Lake Anne) and one turn-around in front of the church. Oh, and yes, there are numerous parking spaces planned alongside the roadway in the "civic plaza." None of those things are depicted in the illustration.

    Traffic to the plaza at Reston Station will be restricted during morning and evening rush hours for the safety of pedestrians needing to get through to the train station, but during the rest of the day, the "civic plaza" will be a busy roadway.

    I, myself, would hate to be the architect whose name will be forever associated with this project. When it is eventually built, there will be photographs taken of it. The plaza will be dark and full of auto fumes trapped by the tall buildings. There won't be enough sunlight to support the trees portrayed in the drawing. The trees on the left side of the drawing won't be there at all because the building is in the way. As I said, the drawing creates an illusion.

    The planning commission and the board of supervisors should be ashamed of themselves for approving this project.

  4. The H inside a circle symbol on top of one of the structures is not a helipad. That H symbol designates the building known as The Cathy Hudgins Center for Perpetual Charretes Devoted to Neverending Public Input on Half-Ass Redevelopment Activities. The center has a scheduled opening date of 2112, which is mere days before the Lake Anne redevelopment project finally breaks ground on the first stage of this long anticipated project - that first stage being the redevelopment of the Crescent Apartments, which will actually open for business in 2718. The center feature a large H in a circle on top of the building, since future charretes on redevelopment activities in Reston will be held aboard a NASA experimental anti-gravity conference room that by law will be required to hover directly above the center. What's not shown in the architectural rendering is the giant 120 foot Michelin Man-inspired statue of Cathy Hudgins that will be programmed to rotate and point to any Reston-based site under consideration for redevelopment.

  5. It's interesting to see the design morph from rectangular blocks to parallelograms, although the overall massive effect is really out of character even for station area development. Also, the "Reston Station" name is a misnomer and self-glorification.

    Who knows, maybe before this thing is built it may morph again into octagons (as in "death fights") or even spheres.

    ...I can hardly wait...

  6. Mad Max: The Toll Road WarriorAugust 11, 2012 at 2:47 PM

    'Who knows, maybe before this thing is built it may morph again into octagons (as in "death fights") or even spheres.'

    Reston Station: combine death fights and spheres, and what do you get? Our very own version of Thunderdome.

    "Two developers enter, one developer leaves."

  7. Great idea, Mad Max, but how do we get rid of the "last developer standing"?

  8. The next round of Reston develpment activities, with Cathy Hudgins and her developer friends firmly in the cat bird seat, will be the Beginning of the End of the community "Reston" that most of its residents know, or once knew. The current slate of new development activities from Reston Station to the Town Center "completion" to the Spectrum --and the possible rezoning of Reston National Golf Course--represents a binge of speculative activity that will clog the local real estate market for years. The new commercial densities along the toll road and Reston Parkway, the new residential densities, and the ensuing traffic jams, are of course, viewed as Progress by the Board Of Supervisors.
    And wither RA? Yes, it is little more than a marketing hook, at exorbitant prices for the current residents, no less.

  9. Another upside-down building? In my dream I saw the developer and architect at the ribbon-cutting for the Center for Innovative Technology. As the champagne is poured they take one last look at the blueprints, pale, flip them over and cry, "Oh crap!"

  10. Interesting. They show shadows for the people in the "plaza." In fact, direct sunlight will reach the plaza so infrequently because of the high surrounding buildings (whatever shape) as to be cause for celebration bordering ancient Celtic celebrations of the summer solstice.


(If you don't see comments for some reason, click here).