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New Buildings Change the Local Look

2005: The Year in Review

With the local area's ever-increasing population, lots of new homes, businesses and services sprung up here in 2005. Below is a sampling:

* Cub Run Rec Center: The $19.2 million, Cub Run Recreation Center in Chantilly opened its doors to the public on Sunday, May 22. It's the Sully District's first-ever rec center, so it's a most-welcome addition to the community.

"Today, we're opening the doors to 65,000 square feet of fun and recreational enjoyment convenient to the people of western Fairfax County, said county Park Authority Chairman Hal Strickland to the cheering crowd at the ribbon-cutting ceremony. "This is a wonderful and much-anticipated occasion."

Situated on 37.3 acres next to Westfield High, the rec center is at 4630 Stonecroft Blvd. in Chantilly. It contains a 9,600-square foot weight-training and cardiovascular-fitness area, 25-meter competitive pool, separate leisure pool with slides and play areas, whirlpool/spa, locker rooms, multipurpose rooms and offices.

It also offers a mix of recreational and group-fitness classes, plus "parent and me" classes for moms and dads to enjoy together with their preschoolers. And because Sully Woodlands — nearly 2,300 acres of parkland — is right outside the door, Cub Run also has a naturalist so the public may take advantage of its environmental and ecological activities.

* Trader Joe's: Providing area residents with a whole, new shopping experience, Trader Joe's opened in November in the Newgate Shopping Center at Routes 28/29 in Centreville. This 10,000-square-foot store carries a wide variety of foods and beverages ranging from the basic to the exotic.

It searches the world for great values and distinctive products, offering competitive prices, as well as many items with no preservatives or artificial colors and ingredients. Clerks wear brightly colored, Hawaiian shirts and the store has a friendly, lighthearted atmosphere.

* Commerce Bank: This bank broke ground in August for its recently opened branch in the Marketplace at Centre Ridge Shopping Center. And Senior Vice President Brian Monday said residents will especially appreciate the bank's long hours.

It's open Monday-Friday, 7:30 a.m.-8 p.m.; Saturday, 7:30 a.m.-6 p.m.; and Sunday, 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Commerce bills itself as "America's most convenient bank" and, said Monday, "We know that so many people here have tremendous commute times, so having a bank open at convenient times is important."

The 3,700-square-foot bank in Centreville is at the corner of Multiplex Drive and Machen Road. Full banking services and drive-throughs are available, plus an ATM inside the bank in a lighted, glass foyer. Two entrances lead from Multiplex.

Compared with the usual, six or seven full-time employees in banks, Monday says Commerce has 20-25 in each branch. And, he added, "On rainy days, we have greeters with umbrellas. And your dog is welcome — we'll have dog biscuits."

* Wegmans Food Market: This upscale, gourmet supermarket burst onto the scene here in February and was an instant hit. It's in the Fairfax Center area at Route 29 and Monument Drive and includes take-out or in-store dining.

* East Market: Part retail, part residential, East Market at Fair Lakes is coming to fruition on 34 acres between Dick's Sporting Goods and West Ox Road, in the southwest corner of the Fair Lakes Parkway and West Ox. Developing it is The Peterson Cos. of Fair Lakes. It's a three-part project consisting of:

* A retail center; near the I-66 side of the property will be a Whole Foods grocery store and smaller shops — such as a couple restaurants and a coffee shop, plus a plaza. And across the street and fronting on a new street called East Market Drive — connecting from the front of Dick's to the Fair Lakes Parkway — will be a pedestrian-oriented area with a Main Street feel.

* An eight-story, residential condo building with elevators and underground parking. The approximately 200 units will come with one, two or three bedrooms.

* Some 200 "stacked townhouses" — two-story condos built above other two-story condos. Also part of the project will be 13 affordable dwelling units (ADUs).

Peterson will also add a second, left-turn lane on the Fair Lakes Parkway, eastbound, for motorists going north on West Ox. At the same location, it will lengthen the right-turn lane. And a traffic light will be installed at the project's entrance from the Fair Lakes Parkway.

* Sully Manor: Developed by Ratcliffe Associates, Sully Manor has been rapidly arising on some 26 acres between Route 29 and the Fair Crest community in Centreville. Some 178 single-family homes — 84 detached houses and 94 attached are being built along Shreve Street, and many already have residents.

The houses are on 4,500-square-foot lots and are upscale-looking with brick fronts. Engle Homes of Sterling is the builder. The neighborhood

also features street lights, benches and sidewalks on both sides of the street, as well as a tot lot plus a two-acre open area in the center for a park.

Access to Sully Manor is from Pickwick Road to Johnson Avenue and also from Shreve. There's no access from Route 29, but the presence of this new community has definitely changed the way this section of Centreville looks, bringing a more residential feel to this area along Route 29.

* Westfields Restaurant Plaza: Six, upscale new restaurants and a day spa are being built along Westfields Boulevard and Route 28. When done, there'll be three buildings totaling 20,000 square feet, plus a freestanding Applebee's Restaurant. Access is off Stonecroft Boulevard through Westone Plaza.

The southernmost of the three buildings will house an Eggspectations, a Canadian franchise that's a full-service, sit-down restaurant. The middle building will contain a dry cleaners, a day spa and a Camille's Sidewalk Cafe. Based in Chicago, it's similar to Panera.

Planned for the northernmost building are Scotto's Italian Grill, Mo's Southwestern Grill (similar to Chipotle's), Quiznos subs and a Cingular Wireless store. And next door to this retail complex, near the existing Texas Roadhouse restaurant, will be Applebee's.

* Grand Plaza: A sign of the times — and a reflection of the local area's growing Korean population — Grand Plaza opened this summer in Centreville. Attracted by Centreville's relatively affordable housing — and spurred by favorable reports from other Koreans already living here — more and more Koreans are becoming residents.

So naturally, commercial businesses offering goods and services geared to them are opening here, too. Grand Plaza is in the Old Centreville Crossing Shopping Center on Braddock Road, and several of the nearly two dozen shops in this indoor mall are branches of businesses based in Annandale or Fairfax that see a reason to expand to customers in Centreville.