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RA Flags Shopping Center for Violations

Soapstone Convenience Center subject of a long list of appearance and covenants violations.

Amid the tidy shopping centers that dot Reston, there seems to be a forgotten one on Soapstone Road near Glade.

That would be the Soapstone Convenience Center, home to a 7-Eleven, House of Mandarin and other basics, but also home to a host of covenants violations.

Reston Association has been trying to get the owners of the Soapstone Convenience Center to abide by RA covenants for several months now.

In July, it flagged the center, owned by C and R in Reston, LLC, for a long list of violations. Among them:

*Dead trees, soil erosion, refuse and debris exposed to view on the property consisting of, but not limited to: "Barrels, wood, plastic bags, plastic bottles, chairs, PVC pipe."

*The entire asphalt parking area is faded, cracked, and has holes and must be repaired or replaced; the asphalt pad to the right side elevation of “2303” building is weathered, cracked, disintegrating and must be repaired.

*The asphalt pad on the right side elevation of the “2335” building is cracked, disintegrating and must be repaired; the entire sidewalk areas located at “2303” and “2335’ buildings are discolored, cracked in several places and must be cleaned and repaired or replaced.

*Faded and cracked stucco on several buildings; fascia and trim that is faded, weathered, discolored warped, rotted and must be cleaned, repaired or replaced and painted.

*The pergola, screening and trash enclosure on “2335” building is faded, weathered, discolored, rotted, warped and must be cleaned, repaired or replaced and painted.

*Chimney flues that are faded, weathered, discolored, rusted,leaning and must be cleaned, repaired or replaced and painted; skylights full of debris; cracked landscape timbers and stucco planters; a cracked slate walkway and graffiti on the “2303” building.

RA directed the shopping center owners to clean up the violations by the end of August. At last check, the violations had not been remedied, and, in fact, neighbors complained when trees were removed from the property last weekend but most of the other violations remained.

The issue has since gone to the RA legal committee. Legal committee proceeds are private.

The shopping center's owners could not be reached for comment.

John Farrell December 19, 2012 at 07:58 PM
So the slumlords of the Soapstone Convenience Center went before a DRB panel last night and got slammed. Their drawings were so incomplete (no drawings of the dry cleaners building) and lacking in detail (like the color of the roof shingles, current & proposed) that the panel deferred the case so that they could make a complete submission. Why did RA staff even let this pathetically incomplete case get on a DRB panel agenda? Then the panel took up the two trees that were illegally cut down. The number of inaccurate statements by the slumlords representatives were so numerous as to defy repetition. In the end the panel voted to deny the ex post facto application and let the matter proceed to the Legal Committee for action. This landowner has shown such disrespect for the standards and expectations of Reston that any reasonable person must be left in shock as to why the RA staff has allowed violations issued in July to not already be the subject of an enforcement lawsuit. I've watch in revulsion as hours are devoted by the RA Convenants staff berate homeowners for green mold accumulating on fences and aluminium siding but this eyesore gets the kid glove treatment. What gives?
jaclyn benton December 20, 2012 at 05:31 AM
Believe me, I would love to not park there! But Shadowood charges ten dollars PER CAR PER NIGHT for cars without a tag, and each apartment only gets two. Otherwise the tow trucks that roam the parking lots three times a night will get you after eleven o'clock. I agree its awful, nothing better than walking to my apartment that faces south lakes alone at 1 in the morning from all the way near glade pool... Heard someone new got elected to the board in Shadowood though so hopefully after a while that will change and we can clean that part of Soapstone up
cheryl carrier December 20, 2012 at 11:35 PM
The covenants are enforced (or not) in such an arbitrary manner as to make them useless. I really don't know if the covenants would stand up to a legal challenge.
Connie Hartke December 22, 2012 at 05:14 PM
Tammi, yes, your dismay about Hunters Woods Shopping Center is shared by many! It's too bad they didn't use the opportunity to bring it up a notch.
Connie Hartke December 22, 2012 at 05:20 PM
Jacyln, thanks for your comment. It is helpful to understand the parking situation and good to put a real "face" to the situation.

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