Reston took a major step in becoming a transit-oriented community with the a windy and rainy groundbreaking for the 2,300-space parking garage at Reston Station on Tuesday.
The seven-level, 1.5-million-square-foot underground garage – one of the largest of its type on the East Coast – will be the foundation for Reston Station, Comstock Partner’s mixed-use development that will be located at the Reston-Wiehle Avenue Silver Line stop. The garage, which will cost $91.3 million to construct, is a public-private partnership between Fairfax County and Comstock.
“This partnership is the first of its kind between the county and Comstock,” said Comstock CEO Christopher Clemente. “A partnership of this nature can only come about from commitment. We are here today because of the commitment of community leaders. This highlights what can be achieved.”
The Wiehle Avenue stop will be the end of the line for Phase I of the Metro Silver Line when it opens in late 2013. By 2016, the Reston Town Center stop is scheduled to open as part of Phase II, which will extend to Dulles International Airport.
“This is a very exciting day,” said Sharon Bulova, chair of the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors. “This is a real example of transit-oriented, mixed-use development. So far, it is all good news – the project is on time and in budget.”
Reston Station will also have 10 bus bays, storage for 150 bicycles and a kiss and ride. Comstock’s plans for the mixed-use development include 850 residential units, 550,000 square feet of office space and 120,000 square feet of retail and restaurant. There are also plans for open space and public art.
Stephen Fuller, director of the Center for Regional Analysis at George Mason University, said this kind of development “is the future” of Fairfax County.
“I think it will be really exciting to see how this plays out over the next 20 years,” he said."
Hunter Mill Supervisor Cathy Hudgins, who is also Chair of the Board of Directors of the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority, said Reston Station could be considered “Reston’s sixth village center,” alluding to Reston founder Robert E. Simon’s original vision that Reston be built as a walkable community centered around village centers.
“I hope we will measure up to the standards of Robert Simon for people to live, work and play here,” Hudgins said, “This is truly a significant part of Reston’s history, the [Dulles] corridor’s history and Fairfax County’s history. This changes Fairfax County from a bedroom community to a transit-oriented community.”
Residents interested in watching the construction in action can click a live webcam at www.restonstation.com, Clemente said.