Introducing Braddock’s Best - Canterbury Woods trash petition hearing set for October - Chopt coming to Pickett Shopping Center
Lake Accotink dewatering site options narrowed to four - FCPS to require masking - Supervisors schedule hearing on plastic bag tax
Welcome to Braddock Buzz, where we’d like to congratulate University Mall Theaters, which celebrated its 30th anniversary last week. A shoutout, as well, to the Great Zucchini, who had our children (and many others) mesmerized with his hilarious magic show Saturday at the “Arts in the Parks” event outside the Audrey Moore RECenter.
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Realtor Jennifer Mack, whose column this week answers a reader question about whether landscaping can turn off potential buyers who might be worried about maintenance. Reach out to Jennifer with column ideas or real estate questions at firstname.lastname@example.org
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Introducing Braddock’s Best!
Nominations open for our inaugural reader survey of best eateries
We’re thrilled to introduce the inaugural edition of our annual reader survey, Braddock’s Best. This is your chance to spread the word about your favorite restaurants, coffee shops, and breweries—and discover hidden gems you’ve been missing.
How it works: The first step is to nominate your favorite eateries across six categories. Nominations are open through Aug. 27. After that, Braddock Buzz readers will vote to decide the best of the best.
You can access the nominations form here.
Categories: We’ve chosen six categories for the inaugural survey:
Best Date Night
Best Family Friendly Restaurant
Best Coffee Shop/Bakery
Geographic limits: Our goal is to bring attention to some of our readers’ most beloved drinking and dining destinations—and we recognize these could be outside the Braddock District. So, there are no strict geographic limits, except to say that any business you nominate should be within a 15 minute’s drive from your home.
The fine print: We reserve the right to disqualify nominations that don’t fit their category or don’t seem like an easy drive for Braddock District residents—or for other reasons we haven’t thought of yet.
So what are you waiting for?
Canterbury Woods trash petition hearing set for October: After a long delay, the Board of Supervisors last week authorized a public hearing in October to consider last year’s petition in the Canterbury Woods neighborhood to move from private to county trash collection. And, in a reversal, the effort now has the support of county public works officials, whose previous opposition had been a major obstacle to moving forward with the Canterbury Woods petition and petitions in several other neighborhoods outside the Braddock District.
“After a thorough review of resources and the seven petitions that were placed on hold during the pandemic, our operations team has decided to recommend approval for these petitions,” said Lainie Shifflett, an official with the county’s Solid Waste Management Program. “Although there are still major challenges for waste collection service providers due to a national labor shortage and pandemic impacts, we are confident that we can provide quality service to the Canterbury Woods neighborhood.”
Other neighborhoods, including Truro, are watching the process closely and may consider petitions of their own because of frustrations with the two private trash collectors, American Disposal Services and Republic Services.
Canterbury Woods completed its petition in June 2020, reaching the required 55% of “yes” votes. Of the neighborhood’s 517 homes, 292 were in favor, 141 were opposed, and 84 were non-responsive. But the process ended up being put on hold because of the pandemic and the truck driver shortage referenced in Shifflett’s statement.
In an email, petition organizer Dale Johnson, president of the Canterbury Woods Civic Association, said he was “grateful that our petition finally has the opportunity to be presented to the government for a vote.” He added: “An overwhelming majority of our residents voted in favor of creating a sanitary district and receiving trash and recycling services from the county, and for this reason I sincerely hope that our voices are heard and that the petition is approved.”
Ultimately, it will be up to the Board of Supervisors. And in a statement, Braddock District Supervisor James Walkinshaw said he was optimistic it will be approved.
“Throughout this process, I've said that I will support the community's desire to have county waste collection as long as I am confident that the county has the capacity and workforce to provide the high-quality service our residents deserve,” Walkinshaw explained. “I look forward to hearing from the community during the public hearing and am optimistic that the board will approve the creation of the new district.”
The hearing has been scheduled for Oct. 5 at 3:30 p.m. If approved, county waste pickup would begin Jan. 1, 2022.
Lake Accotink Dredging
County narrows dewatering site options to four: If you’ve noticed the “No Mud” signs cropping up near Lake Accotink, it’s because the county is planning a three-year dredging project that could impact those who use the lake, Wakefield Park, Braddock Road, and several major running and biking trails. The biggest point of contention is where to pump the sediment for dewatering before it’s hauled away by truck. At an in-person forum last week, project manager Charles Smith announced that the county has narrowed its list of potential dewatering sites to four. Each option has pros and cons, as detailed in a new study by the engineering contractor, Arcadis:
Wakefield Park maintenance facility
-Pros: avoids closure of park facilities and minimizes impacts to trails and residential areas
-Cons: would require tree clearing and a pipeline to carry the sediment from the lake
Dominion right-of-way within Wakefield Park
-Pros: minimal tree clearing
-Cons: would require a pipeline and trail closures, is located within the floodplain, and trucks would have to drive through the park
Lake Accotink upper settling basin:
-Pros: proximity minimizes the need for piping and would make it easy to return water to the lake
-Cons: truck access would require trail closures, there would be noise impacts for nearby neighborhoods, and it’s unknown if the current basin is stable enough to handle truck traffic
Lake Accotink island (possibly with an expanded footprint):
-Pros: no permanent pipeline required, and it would be easy to return water to the lake
-Cons: located within the floodplain, limited space for dewatering equipment, and would require truck traffic through residential areas
The county has eliminated several sites from consideration, including Howrey Field Park, as we reported in a July 20 news alert. For now, project leaders want to keep the four remaining options open to give them maximum flexibility as they continue firming up design and construction plans.
Lake Accotink has been dredged three times since the 1960s, most recently in 2008. For this dredge, set to begin in 2023, the county wants to install permanent infrastructure to enable more frequent future dredges. That’s because the lake is filling with sediment faster than it used to, due at least in part to climate change. Without the dredge, the lake would eventually turn into a wetland area unusable for recreational activities like boating and fishing.
Public comments are being accepted through the project website, and a second community forum—this one virtual—is slated for Thursday at 7 p.m. You can register here.
WorkAway Solutions offers flexible coworking space in Ravensworth
Book a tour with WorkAway Solutions today, or contact owner Susan King Glosby with any questions you might have about coworking at email@example.com
News in Brief
A Chopt restaurant is coming to the Pickett Shopping Center at 9424 Main Street, near the Orangetheory and Chuck E. Cheese, according to a building permit posted on the door.
The Board of Supervisors will hold a public hearing Sept. 14 to consider a 5-cent tax on plastic bags. The measure was put forward by Braddock District Supervisor Walkinshaw.
The board voted last week to mandate COVID-19 vaccines for Fairfax County employees, with religious and medical exceptions, reports NBC4 Washington. The decision will ultimately be made by County Executive Bryan Hill.
FCPS will require students and teachers to wear masks inside school buildings this fall, regardless of vaccination status, according to Tysons Reporter.
The School Age Child Care (SACC) program will return this fall to 142 locations throughout FCPS, Patch reports.
Shared e-scooters will soon be coming to the streets and sidewalks of Fairfax County, with two vendors—Link and Bird—approved for 300 scooters each, the Annandale Blog reports.
Jennifer Mack column: Can landscaping turn off potential buyers?
I received a great question from a reader regarding landscaping and whether buyers might be turned off by a heavily landscaped yard.
If you enjoy gardening, I wouldn’t hold back on doing what you want with your yard. After all, you live in your home and should enjoy all aspects of it, including the yard. Of course, there could be one or two potential buyers who rule it out because they’re worried about maintenance, but, as I always say, you only need one strong buyer!
I have had many sellers offer to give the buyer a tour of the yard before closing to explain the plantings and give tips on how to care for everything properly. Some sellers prefer to leave a note or video.
Universal aspects that most every buyer will appreciate include added trees and bushes for privacy, a fence for kids and pets, and outdoor entertaining areas. I encourage buyers to plant trees and bushes as soon as they realistically can after purchasing their home so they can benefit from the privacy and beauty during their time of ownership and also when they sell.
Hardscaping is currently very expensive, and if you plan to sell soon, I would not spend too much money on a fancy patio—a basic one that is well done is usually just fine. Shade is always appreciated, and there are many reasonably priced shade covers available online to make the hottest months more bearable outside. Outdoor lighting is another item that makes almost every patio look more inviting. We offer twilight photo shoots to show off the lighting to potential buyers and encourage them to tour the property in person. We also offer advance photo shoots to capture the yard when it’s in full bloom that can be saved for a later listing.
Jennifer Mack has more than 16 years of experience in the real estate industry, with her team servicing Virginia, Maryland, and D.C. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 703-672-0038.
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