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Old 05-21-2009, 10:59 AM
 
1 posts, read 1,192 times
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Greetings to Everyone!
I have been perusing the board and am very impressed with the amount of information and offers of assistance I have seen.

I am mulling over a possible move to the NOVA area for employment, specifically in the Reston/Herndon area and I have some questions around the different areas I might choose to live.
I have been to Reston a few times in the past and was able to do a little bit of driving around (made it to DC, Old Town etc) but don't have a real good feel for what the different communities offer. I enjoyed Reston just fine but for my taste, it is too suburban for me. I am a single male with no children so things like schools etc are not a concern for me. I am coming from a diverse city with lots of greenspace, culture and food and I am hoping to find some places that might offer a similar dynamic environment.

1. Are there any more "Urban" communities in the Reston general area? 1a. How far would I need to go to find that?
2. Are there any area that are more dog friendly? 2a. Any apartment buildings that have their own dog park?
3. What kind of options am I going to find for recreational kayaking/canoeing?
4. Are there any communities that are known for a thriving and diverse restaurant climate? (Reston is very Chain dominated and that is not ideal in my mind)

Any insight or advice is greatly appreciated!
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Old 05-21-2009, 11:14 AM
 
Location: Polish Hill, Pittsburgh, PA
30,237 posts, read 67,399,655 times
Reputation: 15881
I am pretty much your mirror image, but I was constrained to this community due to my relatively low starting salary and my desire to live on my own instead of sharing a small space with a roommate/roommates. I, too, will be working in a territory covering Herndon, Reston, and other nearby communities, and I'm a single young professional male who craves the urban lifestyle and "pulse" of being near a hub for other younger people. Contrary to what some on this forum who are not familiarized with TRUE walkable mixed-use communities in older, more established parts of the nation will tell you, that exact environment is nearly impossible to find in NoVA outside of Arlington or Alexandria unless you are willing to spend an arm and a leg. I chose to settle in an apartment complex that is under a half-mile's walk to the Reston Town Center, which was the closest thing to "urban" I could find (even though the dominance of higher-end chains catering to yuppies instead of reasonably-priced mom-and-pops catering to everyone is distressing).

There are no sidewalks in my part of Reston, which means I'll have to either walk in the street or drive to many of the conveniences I want to access. There is limited mass transit thus far in Reston, but thankfully in about five years there should FINALLY be Metrorail access via the Silver Line (that SHOULD have been planned out long before the area grew as large as it did, but I digress). It's very apparent that Reston is a community dominated by the automobile, as even the Reston Town Center was designed to cater to people driving in and out of the community with its ample parking garages. I can and do drive, but after growing up in an environment where I needed to use my car for everything it's saddening to move into a similar environment because I'm "priced out" of the more walkable and sustainable areas.

Most complexes here, including my own Archstone community, ARE "dog-friendly," but I'm unaware of any dog parks, per se, in my particular part of Reston. Outdoor recreation is very plentiful throughout NoVA, so you'll be in heaven in that regard. As an avid runner I'm already licking my chops at the prospect of running the various trails in the area, including the Washington & Old Dominion (W&OD) Trail that runs right near my home. The outdoor opportunities here are endless, and you'll truly enjoy all there is to offer.

It sucks that leaders here have no long-range planning foresight, but otherwise it's a great area with plenty to do and see. Welcome in advance to Fairfax County!
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