Letter: Fellowship House: Preserving Reston’s Principles

Letter: Fellowship House: Preserving Reston’s Principles

To the Editor

To the Editor:

I am writing this letter in response to an article titled “Lake Anne Fellowship House Revitalization Halted” (Reston Connection, Sept. 17-23, 2014) to correct and clarify the comments attributed to me. I would also like to describe my position in greater detail with regards to the Lake Anne Fellowship House issue.

Maybe what I said did not come through clearly on the phone, but I never said or implied or used the expression that there is a “lack of support at the county level (for the preservation of 240 affordable low income senior housing units that currently exist at the Lake Anne Fellowship House)” and that “it is against Reston’s principles …” as it was attributed to me in the print edition.

On the contrary, the Hunter Mill District Supervisor, Cathy Hudgins, had assured me during a scheduled meeting the previous week that the county and she personally desired that any revitalization proposal for Lake Anne Fellowship House should contain the same number of units as now in the same location at Lake Anne in Reston. And I appreciated and supported her position.

I would also like to correct and clarify another comment attributed to me that Fellowship House residents "may not be able to live elsewhere without vouchers." My position is that the current residents should not be displaced, they should not be forced to look for low-income housing elsewhere and should instead be accommodated under any construct in the same Lake Anne location with access to similar kinds of rental assistance to make it affordable for them to live.

RCA as well as I strongly believe that revitalization/refinancing options may be available that could preserve the 240 units at Lake Anne Fellowship House and we urge the Fellowship Square Foundation to explore them vigorously.

Given that Reston is becoming more expensive to live in, if anything we should expand the number of low-income senior housing units available so that we continue to stay true to one of Reston’s core planning principles that Reston should provide housing for all ages and income levels.

Sridhar Ganesan

President, Reston Citizens Association