Will SLHS Pyramid See 2,914 New Students?

Using "Scenario G" estimates, Reston population growth could squeeze schools.

If the Reston Master Plan Task Force uses Scenario G to project future population growth in Reston, South Lakes High School will have close to 3,000 students in it by 2018, a Reston 20/20 blog post says.

The Reston Citizens Association advocacy group cites a December Fairfax County Public Schools' memo that uses the assumptions of 82 new single-family homes, 649 townhouses, 3,748 low-rise units and 20,000 high-rise units built in Reston in the next several years.

The development is expected to occur in relation to the late 2013 opening of Metro's Silver Line, which is expected to add high-density housing in many spots close to stations at Wiehle-Reston East and Reston Parkway.

The memo estimates an impact of 2,914 new students to the South Lakes pyramid. It adds that under this scenario, Reston would need two new elementary schools, a new middle school and one high school in or nearby Reston.

To see the full memo, click here.

Similar information was also reported in FCPS' Capital Improvement Plan, released in January. That outlook projected SLHS would be 40 percent over capacity by 2017-18. Read the Patch story here.

Read a Patch Blog by Reston Citizens Association President Colin Mills about Scenario G here.

Hunter Mill School Board Rep Pat Hynes said the school system is considering both an addition to South Lakes as well as an additional school in western Fairfax. Both will face challenges, though.

"South Lakes is over-enrolled now and projected to continue growing," Hynes said. "The same is true for other high schools in the western end of the county. One proposal is to build a new high school to absorb to growth. The challenges of that plan are cost, time and the availability of land. The school system is also considering an addition to South Lakes, which could save time and money."

The result of an addition,of course, would be that South Lakes would become a bigger school than we're used to. I would like to hear feedback on that. "


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The BSD Guy April 11, 2013 at 06:17 PM
Gosh...could it be we have a developer on board???? "Might as well get on board the growth train because it isn't stopping for anyone." Translation: We've got the politicians in our pockets and kissing our butts so you might as well give up all hope of ever stopping us. DEATH TO DEMOCRACY !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! SPECIAL INTEREST POLITICS FOREVER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Java Master April 13, 2013 at 03:06 PM
Have to agree with Jeremy. The notion of not building additional housing units--be they townhomes, apartments, condos, whatever--is anathema to the future of Reston and NoVa. (Now some of this development leaves me shaking my head, frankly. Do you really want a beautiful view of the toll road and its environs? That's not the sort of place I would choose to live, after all. Different strokes for different folks. And a fair amount of the planned commercial and residential building may, in fact, never occur. The future is notoriously fickle.) But it is clear that the "Reston Way "as one ex-neighbor put it, is changing,and we are all going to get some new neighbors.
Terry Maynard April 13, 2013 at 04:48 PM
Interesting dialogue here on population growth and its impact on schools. Separately, I have posted a letter here on Patch regarding growth--jobs & population--and its adverse impact on local traffic. And we haven't yet talked about parks and recreation or other civic requirements. The point is that we need to manage Reston's growth--its quantity and characteristics--in a way that needed public infrastructure (roads, schools, open space, culture, environment, etc.) can keep up with it and sustain our quality of life. That has not yet been accomplished in the planning efforts of the Reston Task Force. After three and one-half years, we are on our seventh scenario (Scenario G) and what we're finding is that the ambitions of developers continue to outstrip the ability of the community to absorb the proposed changes.
Terry Maynard April 13, 2013 at 04:49 PM
Unfortunately, the County staff insists--despite repeated challenges from community members of the RTF--to generate scenarios without simultaneously looking at implementation consequences. Implementation issues are not to be addressed until after a scenario becomes a plan approved by the County and turned into an irrevocable level of minimum development codified in the zoning ordinance. Then suddenly the County discovers it has to add special taxes and other measures to achieve a semblance of sustainable growth and quality of life for current and future residents--although the latter will certainly suffer. Tysons is an excellent example of this absurdity. It is impossibly frustrating--and utterly illogical--for those of us who try to keep planning in line with the ability of the County to provide needed infrastructure and the community to absorb change.
Joe Heflin April 13, 2013 at 06:24 PM
"...20,000 high-rise units built in Reston in the next several years." @300 units per building this is approximately 65 high rise buildings. Where are 65 going? @2 per unit that's 40,000 people. Where are these 40,000 going? (and how fast will they move on existing streets?) And, how many of these are projected to be built on all or part of Reston National Golf Course?


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