Reston Association Settling Into New Home
Lots of space for staff, RA members, homeowner files.
Reston Association is an organization that has expanded and changed along with the community over the past four decades.
Its offices now reflect the changes. After 40 years at the Isaac Newton Square location, RA moved into its new home at 12001 Sunrise Valley Dr. in late July.
Staffers are settling into the bright, spacious locale. However, it is the community that will feel the biggest impact.
"What's different in this building - and what we couldn't do in the other building - is we have space for the community," says Amelia Townsend, RA's director of communications. "Clusters can now have meetings here. When we have board meetings, there is plenty of room for citizens. We will be able to host Newcomer's Night and Volunteer Appreciation Night at the same time, right here in the building. In past years, we had to rent space to host 1,000 people."
On a day-to-day basis, members will also feel less cramped when they come in to sign up for a class or purchase pool passes. The member services area is much larger, and will feature a kids' area with interactive nature-themed activities so children can stay busy while their parents conduct business. There will also be walk-up kiosks for efficient self-service transactions.
Residents will also find more privacy here. In the past, if a homeowner needed to talk to a Covenants Administrator, for instance, the meeting might have taken place out in the open or in a hallway. Now homeowners can discuss personal business behind closed doors.
There is also much-improved space for records. Reston's property files and plats are now centralized and organized in one spot in a secure area.
Accessibility is part of the new plan, too. The building is ADA compliant and completely handicapped accessible, says Townsend.
Outfitting the new building cost RA $1.8 million. RA has a 12-year lease for the new space, said Cate Fulkerson, the RA director of administration and member services.
The decor of the new building reflects Reston's image as an organization that appreciates the environment.
RA will be seeking silver certification from the Green Building Council, says Fulkerson. The new office space uses environmentally friendly carpet, paint and lighting, as well as recycled materials.
Lights are on automatic switches, but almost all offices have large windows to maximize natural light.
"There are many rooms where I am not sure anyone will turn on a light," Fulkerson says. "There are also outdoor areas with ponds, trees and landscaping. It really speaks to the nature of what RA says and does."
"This is the first place people come when they move to Reston," said Fulkerson. "Previously,we did not look like one of the biggest residents' associations in the country. Now we do."