News and notes from Reston (tm).

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Reston Master Plan and Tall Oaks: Stick With a Winner, Win With a Sticker

Good jobSo much for fancy degrees in Urban Planning or Strategic Bollard Alignment or whatever. During last weekend's open house on the village center-focused phase of the Reston Master Plan, any common slob with a sticker could share their hopes and dreams for Reston's future -- or at least a couple of the more tired, worn out bits of it.

As our BFFs at Reston 2020 point out, the meeting primarily discussed Baron Cameron retail and Tall Oaks Village Center. Confidential Restonian Operative "Joel" shared some photos of all the hawtt sticker-on-flipchart action, as more than 70 people affixed stickers in a rainbow of DRB-affronting colors to a series of charts. Although we're not sure what's going on with this one about Baron Cameron retail -- is that a line of people waiting for Home Depot to open the day before a snowstorm?

Baron Cameron
Attendees were asked to "think out of the box" about the Tall Oaks Stucco Wasteland Shopping Center, which seems appropriate given the alarming number of vacant boxes within its off-white masonry.

Out of the box
Earlier, the RA had provided written comments to county planners saying, in not so many words, that it might not be a bad thing to blow it up, replace it with a smaller "convenience center" (think the Soapstone retail complex nestled in the woods) and more housing, particularly senior housing.

Our BFFs at Reston 2020 detailed a few of the "out of the box" suggestions thrown out during Saturday's meeting, including a cooking school, a shared commercial kitchen, a pop-up food truck day, and independent restaurants (which are pretty much the only thing left standing in Tall Oaks these days). But when it came to breaking out the stickers, people got a lot more predictable:

Sigh. Apparently, folks simply can't let go of the memories of "Susie de los Santos", even though our BFFs at Reston Now recently concisely described the odds of a Wegman's setting up shop at Tall Oaks (Cliff's notes: never.)

Who knows though? Maybe a convenience store would work in a newly reconfigured Tall Oaks Smaller Stucco Wasteland. Perhaps one of those 7-11s -- those things can stay in business anywhere! Oh, wait -- maybe not. Perhaps a Burger King, then -- they're pretty much recession-proof, right? Or a Curves?

We think we're going to need a bigger set of stickers, the end.


  1. One word: Park.

    Why do Restonians keep saying that they want Green Space out of one corner of their mouth and then keep asking for more Retail out of the other? This space has been begging to return to its original configuration, pre-1964.

  2. Can't be just a park. It will be "dogs playing bocce... SQUIRREL!!!" park.

  3. Tall Oaks will likely remain vacant until the current owners decide to develop it into residential apartments or condos ,that would be my guess.
    Personally I think it should be a bollard farm, so that we will always have a supply of traffic and pedestrian obstructing objects readily available for any taste and situation.

  4. I think a bowling alley would work in that space.

  5. Dave & Busters, please


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