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Old 01-04-2012, 08:20 AM
 
5,125 posts, read 10,104,365 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BMOCCC View Post
This is a great point. Speaking for myself, I'd like to add that when forced together, the rougher element is going to win. People like myself would rather stay away from the area than have to fight over space.

Reston was built on the idea of having spaces that bring people together. This idea has been pretty much abandoned by our society in favor of strip mall, big box stores, etc. It appears to be failing in Reston too. Nowadays people travel from home to safe destinations (playgroup, children's class, grocery store, etc.) then go back home. Even an area celebrates the old town square idea like Reston is being destroyed by, for lack of a better term, multiculturalism.
I think Simon had mulitculturalism in mind when he designed Lake Anne Plaza in the 1960s, even if he may not have fully anticipated the subsequent population changes in NoVa.

Plenty of people gravitate towards Reston Town Center and, on occasions, to Lake Anne Plaza as well. As BBD is fond of reminding us, there's a healthy demand now for additional, walkable areas in both cities and suburbs as well. Perhaps you won't be one of those who seek out Reston in the future, but plenty of others will.

FYI - the Reston Zoo reopens in March, in case you're interested. Not sure if feeding the animals is permitted, but still fun for tots.

Last edited by JD984; 01-04-2012 at 08:48 AM..

 
Old 01-04-2012, 08:46 AM
 
Location: New-Dentist Colony
5,759 posts, read 10,740,453 times
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I think it's a huge stretch to say an area is being "destroyed by multiculturalism" because a few Latino guys are smoking at a concrete square that is also the world's weirdest playground.

We have a vaguely similar sitauation at a park near us--similar only in that the people in question are also Latino. In this case, it's large Latino families having picnics (which is allowed--there are shepherd stoves and picnic tables there) but sometimes leaving litter. The thing is, not all of them leave litter. The kids running around have caused some serious erosion along the creek, and that bothers me--but then I keep thinking that these kids probably don't have yards, and it's nice that they get to enjoy something in childhood that they wouldn't otherwise have.

In this case, what we need is for Arlington to be more proactive in asking them to stay away from the creek and to pick up their litter.

The other big problem at this park is unleashed dogs, and the dog owners are all white.

But my park experience is far from ruined by these annoyances.

Last edited by Carlingtonian; 01-04-2012 at 09:04 AM..
 
Old 01-04-2012, 09:39 AM
 
Location: The Port City is rising.
8,868 posts, read 12,582,878 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JEB77 View Post
I think Simon had mulitculturalism in mind when he designed Lake Anne Plaza in the 1960s, even if he may not have fully anticipated the subsequent population changes in NoVa.

Plenty of people gravitate towards Reston Town Center and, on occasions, to Lake Anne Plaza as well. As BBD is fond of reminding us, there's a healthy demand now for additional, walkable areas in both cities and suburbs as well. Perhaps you won't be one of those who seek out Reston in the future, but plenty of others will.

FYI - the Reston Zoo reopens in March, in case you're interested. Not sure if feeding the animals is permitted, but still fun for tots.

I think reston is gonna be fine (not sure what the fate of the tower at Lake Anne will be - I might think of it as one of those failed towers in the park, but I get a hint its different. Do people like its design? are its bones good enough to renovate?)

I do think that, for all the genuine love of lawns and the genuine Fahrvergnügen, SOME of what made non restonish suburbia what it was WAS safety concerns - lack of safety is a deterrent to walking, and to higher density living in general . I do not think getting high degrees of safety from crime is at all impossible in areas with any particular mix of ethnicities, but clearly successful high density living requires not only addressing crime, but insofar as possible addressing other incivilities (you may consider this a neocon riff on urbanism if you will - probably not a viewpoint you will find much of outside of NYC) - again, I think thats a matter of civic will more than cultural mix.
 
Old 01-04-2012, 10:11 AM
 
165 posts, read 202,833 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JEB77 View Post
I think Simon had mulitculturalism in mind when he designed Lake Anne Plaza in the 1960s, even if he may not have fully anticipated the subsequent population changes in NoVa.
I don't claim to be a Robert Simon expert but from what I have heard him say, I would very much agree with this comment. At the time, it was more of a civil rights issue but the concept was the same. However, there can be such a thing as a culture clash, such as the "white flight" era of the '60s and '70s despite all good intentions. I hope that a light version of that is not occurring at Lake Anne right now.

I am not predicting the destruction of Lake Anne. It's just than an income drop is almost a proxy for neighborhood degradation and theirs has dropped significantly. Part of the reason for my posting is to bring attention to the problem before it gets worse. My home value is tied to Reston too, but I'd rather face the issue than be a booster for the place.

My opinion has changed since the start of this tread from advocating enforcement of the rules to viewing these men as undesirables who should be somehow cajoled out. It is worth pointing out that they are not your typical Hispanic per se.

On our way out to see the village center and walk down the path, my children played at the structure for a long time. There was a little Hispanic girl there that our youngest one played with for quite a while. Although she was in her pajamas and I never saw a parent, she was very nice and it was a very cute scene.

We actually were not interested in the structure on the way back but you have to walk right past it, and our children just ran on to it. These were not Hispanic parents or couples, they were single men hanging out. It's is not a stretch to imagine that they may have come up to the U.S. alone just to work.

I completely agree that there are plenty of horrible white people. That's why we're in this mess. They can try to kill you on the streets with their Beamers, and don't get me started on the dogs either. It is just that if I go to Lake Anne again, my children will jump right on the pyramid and if the men are there again, I will be in the thick of it again.

It's not like when you're an adult alone and you can just walk past something. You have these wiggling, running creatures that will bring you into a situation against your will. So for me the place is ruined. I won't go back.
 
Old 01-04-2012, 10:22 AM
 
165 posts, read 202,833 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Carlingtonian View Post
The other big problem at this park is unleashed dogs, and the dog owners are all white.
This is a must-read for you. It's classic (and kind of funny).

Signs point to neighborhood’s decline » Mississippi Business Journal
 
Old 01-04-2012, 10:48 AM
 
Location: New-Dentist Colony
5,759 posts, read 10,740,453 times
Reputation: 3956
Quote:
Originally Posted by BMOCCC View Post
This is a must-read for you. It's classic (and kind of funny).

Signs point to neighborhood’s decline » Mississippi Business Journal
Interesting. Thanks. Fortunately, our problem is nowhere near that bad; people aren't letting their dogs loose to run around the neighborhood (other than the slobs next door to us, who have fortunately stopped) but are instead letting them off leash in a large park nearby and on the adjoining walking/cycling trails.
 
Old 01-04-2012, 11:22 AM
 
165 posts, read 202,833 times
Reputation: 92
Quote:
Originally Posted by Carlingtonian View Post
Interesting. Thanks. Fortunately, our problem is nowhere near that bad; people aren't letting their dogs loose to run around the neighborhood (other than the slobs next door to us, who have fortunately stopped) but are instead letting them off leash in a large park nearby and on the adjoining walking/cycling trails.
I just have an off-lease issue with growling and the chance of a biting attack that seems to get more likely. Another issue with the potential for police involvement/violence just because an owner can't follow the rules. Grrrr.
 
Old 01-04-2012, 11:29 AM
 
Location: New-Dentist Colony
5,759 posts, read 10,740,453 times
Reputation: 3956
Quote:
Originally Posted by BMOCCC View Post
I just have an off-lease issue with growling and the chance of a biting attack that seems to get more likely. Another issue with the potential for police involvement/violence just because an owner can't follow the rules. Grrrr.
Yeah, you're not alone there: https://www.city-data.com/forum/north...nfronting.html
 
Old 01-04-2012, 01:19 PM
 
219 posts, read 472,845 times
Reputation: 154
I take our kids to play in the plaza and have occasionally seen groups of loitering smoking men hanging around the pyramid, BMOCCC. As a woman, loitering groups of guys, or shady looking men, of any description, always are on my radar and raise my 'alert' level.

One tip is - I do keep the police non-emergency number on my cell phone. If I see something sufficiently dodgy - like the time I saw a middle aged man hanging around a playground by himself, talking and laughing to himself and looking really strange and possibly drunk - then I call.

Likewise, over at the boat structure, which has a clearly posted 'no skateboarding' sign, the entire structure was recently taken over by a group of teen boys doing skateboard tricks. It does seem like a great structure for skateboard tricks, but you can't really mix skateboarding teens with the toddlers who like to climb around on the boat structure thing. But you know, for that I wouldn't call. They played around on it and then moved on. If they were there every day, at all hours, I would call, out of annoyance rather than personal safety.

If people feel personally unsafe or that their children are unsafe of course they will avoid the area just as BMOCCC plans to do. It is definitely in the interest of the community to make sure public spaces are safe and welcoming, and I think that is down to the behavior of everybody. I've interacted with people from all walks at Lake Anne, but the only ones who raise a concern for me are the ones who behave in ways that appear antisocial or potentially so.

Children like to climb and jump from the pyramid and go inside it through to the other side. When my kids do that, and solo guys are loitering around generally kind of watching, yes I get unhappy when my kid goes inside the pyramid and around the other side and I can't see them. Or if my foolhardy kid appears to be readying a jump from the pyramid and I have to continually go near/past loitering adult men who check me out.

I don't think it is helpful for people who do not frequent the area to cast aspersion on the OP for relating their experience. OP, you've represented your POV really well and I appreciated the point you have raised.
 
Old 01-04-2012, 02:28 PM
 
429 posts, read 1,163,817 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BMOCCC View Post
I was at Lake Anne today and came up to the cement play area that you see on the left when you walk in. My children started playing on the structure (that what it is there for). There was one man sitting on the it smoking a cigarette. A group of about five other men were standing around and some were also smoking. A sign on the play area states that it is for children and that loitering is not allowed.

When I asked the younger man who was sitting on to move, he acted as if he did not understand English. I tried to say vamoose in Spanish but maybe he didn't understand that either. Somewhere in the mix, he seemed to get the idea that I was displeased, and got up but never said anything. He looked like he was about to punch me and he stood in up and stared in my face for a long while before he left. Next, I went over the the other group of men and I asked them to please move off of the play area. They were more cooperative but still lingered around me after they got off the the direct play area boundaries. (Is it too much to ask for them to move a few feet away from where children play to smoke their cigarettes?) The second group also had very limited English.

My concern is that no one is telling these folks what is acceptable. I don't know how long they had been in the country but they need to understand that this is not appropriate. I blame this on the Reston HOA. One person with children should not have to deal with this. The main thing for me is that will just stay away from Lake Anne and discourage people with children from buying in that area.

The larger context of the issue is that Reston is a fringe area. It took a big hit about four years ago when a large portion was redistricted from the Oakton high school pyramid to South Lakes. There is a large low-income immigrant faction in the areas to the south and west. To the north and east, the areas are very affluent (i.e. Great Falls). The question for Reston is how is it going to weather this. Will it remain a high-value area, or is it going to the dogs?
There are two sides to every story. We're only seeing one of them here. In the interest of fairness, I'll say the following:

There's probably a post on a hispanic community bulletin board entitled "Lake Anne/Reston going to the dogs" where some guy says:

"Some of my friends and I were at Lake Anne today and came up to the cement public art area that you see on the left when you walk in. We were standing around minding our own business, and a few of us were smoking when some kids started playing on the pyramid and this crazy guy came up and started acting weird and aggressive. This crazy guy, who seemed to have very limited english, started getting in my face and speaking some sort of strange pseudo-spanglish and saying things like "Vamoose." I don't know what vamoose means. It isn't Spanish, and I don't think it is English, either. Of course, "Vamos" means "let's go" or "let's" do something in Spanish, and for a minute I thought he might be propositioning me or offering to sell me his children. I was so stunned that I just stared at him. I was pretty tense, because I was worried he might attack me. Then he went and confronted the other five guys I was with. He seemed to think he owned the place and was demanding that they leave. They didn't want to confront a crazy man either, so they stepped back a little so he could see that they weren't being threatening or anything. Later we went into a local store to see if they could call social services or the police to see if this crazy guy needs some help or if his kids are going to be ok.

Anyway, I'm glad I didn't confront him, because a lot of those anglos belong to the Aryan Brotherhood or other white supremacist groups. I'm not racist or anything, and I'm not saying all anglos are that way, just that some of them are and you can never be sure which. Why take a chance of getting shot or stabbed?

My concern is that nobody is telling these people what is acceptable. I don't know what is problem is, but he needs to understand that courtesy is important and that aggressively confronting people is not appropriate. I blame this on the Reston HOA. Sane people shouldn't have to deal with this. Will Reston remain a high value area, or is it going to the dogs?
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