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Future Reston Development

:
A First Look at Some Implications for Quality of Life
Terrill D. Maynard
Reston, Virginia

November 13, 2006

Executive Summary

Plans under consideration by Fairfax County call for changing county zoning
ordinances to enable the “filling out” of Reston to achieve its master plan population
density maximum of 13 people per acre or 80,900 people. Virtually all this development
would be high-density multi-family construction in the Town Center and along the Dulles
corridor, especially at the planned Wiehle Avenue Metro station. County estimates under
proposed changes in household size factor calculations would put Reston’s current
density at about 10.3 persons per acre. The proposed changes fail to consider the likely
impacts on quality of life of increasing Reston’s population and density by some 25
percent, a change that would make it among the most densely populated communities in
Fairfax County.

A first look at published research and preliminary examination of federal and
county census data on northern Virginia suggests the following types of effects from
increased population density:

• Economic wellbeing. A comparison with the economic effects of the creation of
“urban villages” in Arlington County, whose blighted neighborhoods gained from the
transformation, suggests mixed-use development as proposed would not have the
same positive economic effect in an already prosperous Reston. To the contrary,
Census 2000 data of Fairfax County’s 36 towns and places suggests that there is a
strong negative correlation between high density and median household income and
a positive correlation with poverty rates even when other factors are controlled.
These county-wide data suggest that Reston’s real median household income would
drop while the poverty rate would increase if population density grew to 13 people
per acre.

• Violent crime. A large volume of research, including a major National Academy of
Sciences study, shows a strong correlation between higher population densities and
higher rates of violent crime. In fact, these studies show the correlation of population

Terrill D. Maynard 1 November 13, 2006
density is high across a variety of socially deviant behaviors even when they are
controlled for other influences. An examination of Bureau of Justice Statistics data
for 2004 of northern Virginia counties and towns shows the same to be true, and
suggests that Reston’s violent crime would rise sharply as its density increases.

• Traffic congestion. A simple model drawn from the Arlington Metro-focused “urban
villages” suggests that similar development at the prospective Wiehle Avenue Metro
station area would add at least 9,000-10,000 vehicles there daily, especially at peak
hours, clogging both cross-town traffic and the Dulles Toll Road.

• Public Safety Costs. A comprehensive 1992 research study of public service costs in
274 US counties using multi-variate analysis, including a specific analysis of public
safety costs, and population density concluded that per capita costs grow as density
increases. The result is the same in contemporary northern Virginia counties and
towns where Reston’s prospective 25 percent increase in density is likely to produce a
substantial increase in per capita public safety costs—and county taxes.

This limited survey of a few key economic, criminal, transportation, and
government cost variables consistently points to the adverse quality of life effects of
increasing Reston’s population density. There are numerous other variables that also
should be examined—Hartford, Connecticut, looked at 56 variables in a 2001
benchmarking study to help guide its development planning—and these four need to be
examined in greater detail. Only then, with a comprehensive understanding of the
consequences of higher population densities, should the County proceed with new
development policies or zoning ordinances that could have substantial and irrevocable
negative consequences on the quality of life in Reston or other Fairfax County
communities.

In examining all the appropriate variables and the impact of increased density on
the community—for better and worse—it is equally important to understand who would
be most affected by proceeding on a particular course of action. In general, policy
priorities ought to be given to maximizing the benefit of the greater community—the
county first, the local area (e.g.--Reston) next, and so forth down to narrow private sector
interests. With that firm prioritization in mind and to the extent the County then values
increasing density in Reston or any other county location, such a decision can be
tempered by specific stipulations—including ordinances and codes—to mitigate or
eliminate the potentially adverse consequences while maximizing the opportunities that
increased density may create.

This balanced and systematic approach reverses the narrow tack now being taken,
which largely serves the interests of a few developers and, on the margin, some local
businesses. For the balance of the Reston, the rush to allow increased density by
changing zoning laws will almost certainly have a negative impact across a wide variety
of important quality of life factors that, until now, have made Reston an attractive,
relatively economical, safe, and accessible place to live and work.

Terrill D. Maynard 2 November 13, 2006
Future Reston Development:
A First Look at Some Implications for Quality of Life

Introduction

In the last few months, the Reston community has been actively engaged with
Fairfax County planning executives in considering what, if any, adjustments ought to be
made to the current ordinance guiding the development of Planned Residential
Community (PRC) districts such as Reston. Discussion in two meetings led by the
County Planning Director has focused, in particular, on whether to revise downward the
household size factor calculation across several dwelling classes while keeping the
overall population density maximum for Reston (and the other county PRCs) at 13 people
per acre. (See the Appendix for more on Reston’s housing and household
demographics.) This and other proposed procedural and factor changes are discussed in a
staff paper prepared by the department. 1

Acceptance of the proposed household factor changes would allow Reston’s
population to grow from its currently estimated 64,227 population to its 80,900 maximum
population at 13 people per acre, an increase of more than 25 percent. While Reston
currently is in the mid-range of population density within Fairfax County as reflected in
the 2000 census, development to achieve its currently allowable maximum population
density (13 people per acre) would make Reston, at 8,300 people per square mile, one of
the most densely populated communities in the County (see Graph 1 below) and
comparable to Arlington County and Alexandria in population density (7,800 and 8,400
per square mile in 2000).

As a result, the immediate policy issue confronting Reston and Fairfax County is
not household density factors for Fairfax County’s PRCs, but the impact of increased
population density on the community and the county, especially at the high levels
projected for PRCs. This paper takes a look at a few of the likely impacts of increasing
density on Reston and the county that would affect the quality of life of their citizenry.
Four dimensions of community quality of life are examined using well-documented
research and published demographic material: economic wellbeing, traffic congestion,
violent crime, and police service costs. They shed some light on the implications of
higher density and point to the need for further study and then an informed course of
action.

Terrill D. Maynard 3 November 13, 2006
Table 1 Fairfax County Towns and Places: Population Density 2000
Fairfax County Towns & Places: Population Density, Census 2000

Seven Corners CDP 19.96
Bailey's Crossroads CDP 17.62
Huntington CDP 16.67
Idylwood CDP 8.78
Hybla Valley CDP 8.57
Jefferson CDP 8.48
Lincolnia CDP 8.39
Herndon town 8.02
Burke CDP 7.83
Centreville CDP 7.81
Franconia CDP 6.98
West Springfield CDP 6.50
Pimmit Hills CDP 6.49
Merrifield CDP 6.42
Annandale CDP 6.23
Dunn Loring CDP 6.02
Tysons Corner CDP 5.91
North Springfield CDP 5.88
Mount Vernon CDP 5.87
Lake Barcroft CDP 5.63
Chantilly CDP 5.50
Groveton CDP 5.41
Estimated Reston PRC
Reston CDP 5.14 Reston PRC Maximum Density
Rose Hill CDP 5.12 Density 2006 Limit (13/acre)
Vienna town 5.08
Belle Haven CDP 4.97
Springfield CDP 4.87
Mantua CDP 4.83
Oakton CDP 4.73
Newington CDP 4.65
Fort Hunt CDP 3.97
McLean CDP 3.29
Wolf Trap CDP 2.36
Lorton CDP 2.24
Clifton town 1.13
Great Falls CDP 0.75

0 4 8 12 16 20
People per Acre
Source: US Census 2000
Note: "CDP" is "Census Designated Place." For Reston, the area of the CDP is nearly twice the area
of Reston PRC; hence, the comparatively low population density.

Terrill D. Maynard 4 November 13, 2006
Economic Wellbeing

Increasing population density in Reston will be, at best, a mixed economic
blessing for the community. Proponents of increased population density usually highlight
the job growth that accompanies development. One can reasonably expect the addition
of thousands of jobs to accompany the thousands of new residential units in the mixed-
used neighborhoods being considered for Reston. The outstanding current example in
Reston is the re-development plans for the Spectrum Center portion of Reston Town
Center to include more retail and office space as well as multi-family high-rise
residences. Similar efforts may be expected along the Dulles corridor with the
construction of Metrorail, especially at Wiehle Avenue.

A better understanding of the implications of those jobs for the wellbeing of Reston
can be gained by looking at the areas around Arlington’s Metro stations along the Orange
Line corridor that passes beneath Wilson, Fairfax, and Clarendon avenues in Arlington.
As a preamble reflecting this writer’s 35 years of residence in the northern Virginia area,
it is fair to say that the development along that corridor has substantially improved the
economy of these “urban villages”—Arlington’s terminology for the roughly half-mile
area around the stations—several of which were once rather blighted. A look at the four
western urban villages (excluding the mostly commercial/office Rosslyn area) (see Table
2 below.) shows that:
• On average, they have a higher median household income at $68,000 than the
Arlington County as a whole.
• From an employment perspective, these urban villages have nearly 80% of
their population in the workforce and more than twice as many jobs as
workers living there, reflecting a net inflow of workers daily.
• Their unemployment rates are lower than the county’s at a whole.
In short, these four areas have been an economic boon to their neighborhoods and to
Arlington County.

Graph 1 Arlington Court House
Metro Station Urban Village

Terrill D. Maynard 5 November 13, 2006
Table 2
Arlington County Orange Line Corridor
Urban Village Demographic & Economic Data, 2000
Virginia Court Selected Arlington Arlington
Ballston Clarendon
Square House Orange Line Areas County
Average Percent Number Percent
TOTAL POPULATION 10,944 2,688 1,693 9,643 6,242 189,453

TOTAL HOUSEHOLDS 6,162 1,304 674 5,572 3,428 86,352

HOUSEHOLD SIZE
1-Person Households 3271 589 179 3,214 1,813 52.9% 35,216 40.8%
Average Household Size 2.1 2.3 2.4 2.0 2.2 2.2
Lived in Arlington 5 years 4,448 1,363 817 3,309 2,484 39.8% 101,247 56.5%

TOTAL HOUSING UNITS 6,612 1,432 697 5,940 3,670 90,426
Occupied Housing Units 6,162 1,304 674 5,572 3,428 86,352
Owner-Occupied 1,670 654 400 1,282 1,002 29.2% 37,370 41.3%
Renter-Occupied 4,492 650 274 4,290 2,427 70.8% 48,982 54.2%
Vacant Housing Units 450 128 23 368 242 6.6% 4,074 4.5%

Estimated Median Household
$68,938 $67,469 $75,983 $61,300 $68,423 $63,001
Income (1999)

Total Employed Civilian
10,038 1,850 1,186 6628 4,926 114,040
Population
Percent of Total Population 92% 68.8% 70.1% 68.7% 78.9% 60.2%

AT-PLACE EMPLOY-MENT
20,200 4,000 2,800 14,600 10,400 201,700
(2000 Est.)

Source: http://www.arlingtonva.us/Departments/CPHD/planning/data_maps/Census/metro/CensusMetroMain.aspx

Despite the success Arlington County has achieved with its urban village
development, it is not clear that similar development would advantage Reston’s economic
wellbeing. Most importantly, both Reston and Fairfax County already have a
substantially higher household income and less poverty and unemployment than
Arlington or these urban villages. It is unlikely that adding jobs in Reston would increase
average median household income. With the exception of luxury high-rise
condominiums such as those built in Reston Town Center, much of the new housing
would probably be apartments and mid-priced (by northern Virginia standards)
condominiums that households with middle incomes ($50,000-$80,000) could afford.

A more systematic examination of Fairfax County towns and places reinforces the
notion that increased population density correlates negatively with a community’s
economic wellbeing. Census 2000 data for the county’s 36 towns and places shows this
relationship unequivocally. 2 What the two graphics below show is that as density

Terrill D. Maynard 6 November 13, 2006
increases, median household income decreases and poverty rates increase across Fairfax
County. The correlation between population density and median household income and
poverty are a strong -.69 and .61 respectively. At the proposed level of population
density for Reston—13 people per acre—these graphs suggest that median household
income could decrease by as much as 25 percent and poverty rates could nearly double.
Although this almost certainly would not happen—even with inflation-adjusted data—the
strong correlation noted above indicates the negative directionality of the trend is equally
certain.

Graph 2
Median Household Income by Population Density
for Fairfax County Towns and Places, 2000

$180,000 Current
Maximum
Great Falls CDP Reston Density
$160,000 Reston Density

$140,000
Reston CDP
Household Income

$120,000
Median

$100,000 Burke CDP

$80,000
Herndon

Huntington CDP
$60,000 Lorton CDP
Baileys Crossroads CDP
$40,000
Seven Corners CDP

$20,000

$0
0 4 8 12 16 20 24
People per Acre

Terrill D. Maynard 7 November 13, 2006
Graph 3
Poverty Rate and Population Density
in Fairfax County Towns and Places, 2000

20.0
Current Maximum
18.0 Reston Density Reston Density
16.0
Percent of Households
Below the Poverty Level

14.0

12.0

10.0

8.0

6.0
Reston CDP
4.0

2.0

0.0
0 5 10 15 20
People per Acre

Violent Crime

Probably no single element of quality of life is more important than personal
security. One way to measure the level of security in a community is to understand the
threat of crime, especially violent crime, it faces. Violent crime—including murder, rape,
robbery, and aggravated assault—not only violates individual security, it can also disrupt
community social integration when it occurs excessively.

Volumes of detailed academic and government research have been conducted
over decades on the relationship between population density and deviant social behavior
of all kinds, including violent crime. In wrapping up the multitude of judgments about
the link between population density and violent crime, a 1994 National Academy of
Sciences report stated:

“Finally, several studies report a significant and large association
between population density and violent crime. The average correlation
across neighborhoods between population density and violent crime rates
is .68 in the studies of Beasley and Antunes (1974), Mladenka and Hill
(1976), and Smith and Jarjoura (1988). In the latter multivariate study,
density also had one of the strongest effects on violent crime, despite
controlling for a host of social and economic variables.” 3

Terrill D. Maynard 8 November 13, 2006
This National Academy report captures the consensus view of the importance of
population density in determining rates of violent crime despite differences in economic,
social, or other conditions. It suggests that, despite Reston’s and Fairfax County’s
wealth and other strengths, they will not be immune to increasing violent crime rates as
population becomes denser.

A look at U.S. Bureau of Justice Statistics for all northern Virginia police
agencies in 2004 indicates that, as the National Academy study states, violent crime rates
increase with population density—except for rural localities. (See Graph 4 below.) The
correlation between density and violent crime rates in this northern Virginia sample is
.64, close to the rates recorded in the much larger studies noted by the National Academy.
Fairfax County, with some 59.3 violent crimes per 100,000 population in 2004, is right
on the trend line. 4 Data on the Reston Police District, which includes the Great Falls area
as well, recorded 81 violent crimes in 2004, which is above the county average unless the
police district’s population then exceeded 136,000 people. Although Reston’s violent
crime rate is clearly not as high as its current density suggests it should be, it could
skyrocket if Reston’s population density increases by the projected 25 percent.

Graph 4
Northern Virginia Counties/Cities: Violent Crime Rate
by Population Density, 2004
350

300 Alexandria
Violent Crimes per 100,000 People

250

Arlington County

200
Prince WilliamCounty
Spotsylvania County
150

Stafford County
100
Current Proposed
Loudon County Reston Reston
Fairfax County Density Density
50
Fairfax City

0
0 2 4 6 8 10 12 14
People per Acre

Terrill D. Maynard 9 November 13, 2006
Traffic Congestion

Like the Orange Line corridor in Arlington County, the addition of mixed-use
neighborhoods near prospective Metro stations would substantially increase the daily
influx of workers to Reston, already a major county employment center, adding to its
traffic congestion especially around and across the Dulles corridor. Some of these
workers would arrive via Metro and either walk to nearby office buildings or, in the case
of Reston Town Center, take shuttle buses from Metro to their office complex. Others
without easy access to Metro rail near their homes—the vast majority of workers—would
almost certainly drive to work. One recent presentation to the county’s Transit-Oriented
Development Committee shows that only about 40% of commuters will walk more than
1,000 feet to take Metro rail. 5 Given the metro-DC area scope of employment among the
region’s high technology companies and the miniscule percentage of those workers who
live and work near Metro stations, the vast majority of the new workers coming to Reston
would probably drive, adding congestion to both the toll road and Reston’s streets.

More precise traffic projections may be made by planners and traffic engineers,
but a simple and conservative estimate of the impact on traffic of creating an urban
village environment at the Wiehle Avenue Metro station may be calculated using the
following model:
• Urban village residents: About 35% of the working residents at an urban
village (80% of its population using Arlington as a model) would either
walk to work (Cw) in the village (10%) or walk or bus to the Metro station
(Cm) to commute elsewhere (25%). This suggests that, for every 1,000
new people residing in the urban village, more than 410 vehicles (with
1.25 passengers each) would be added to nearby streets during rush hour.
• Commuters to the urban village: Only about 10% of workers who lived
elsewhere and worked in an urban village business would commute using
public transportation, given its limited accessibility and their reluctance to
walk significant distances to use it. As a result, every 1,000 new jobs in
the urban village would add more than 720 cars to local streets.
• Employment: The number of new employees in a Metro station urban
village increases jobs five-fold.

The following equation captures this model:

dT = {(dR x WF) x [1 – (Cw + Cm] + (dJ x Cv)} / Pv

where:

dT = the change in vehicle traffic volume
dR = the number of new residents in the urban village (5,000)
WF = the percent of village residents (R) in the work force (80%)
Cw = the percent of the work force that works in the village (10%)

Terrill D. Maynard 10 November 13, 2006
Cm = the percent of the work force that walks to the village Metro station
to commute to work elsewhere (25%) 6
dJ = the number of new jobs created in the urban village (8,000)
Cv = the percent of new urban village employees (dJ) who use a car to go
to work (90%)
Pv = the average number of passengers per vehicle (1.25).

If these projections are close to accurate, the addition of a Ballston-like urban
village of 10,000 jobs—8,000 of them new—and 5,000 new residents at Wiehle Avenue
would add some 7,800 vehicles to the streets there each working day, particularly at rush
hour. Moreover, this estimate does not take into account the impact of Reston-area
driving to the Wiehle urban village to shop, pursue other purposes at the village, or take
the Metro elsewhere. This could add another 1,000-2,000 vehicles per day at the Wiehle
urban village, generating a total of nearly 9,000-10,000 added vehicles to this small area.
The impact on traffic at the Wiehle Avenue Dulles Toll Road crossover would be severe,
creating a rush hour gridlock and adding substantial driving time to local traffic between
north and south Reston. Much of this traffic would also probably being using the already
congested Dulles Toll Road. Similar impacts could be expected along Reston Parkway
and the toll road access there as high-density mixed-use development proceeds in Reston
Town Center.

Public Safety Costs

Although there is little doubt that public service costs go up as population density
increases, it is less obvious that they actually increase disproportionately. Some argue
there are efficiencies of scale, others say increasing marginal costs overwhelm the
marginal gains. In a 1992, Dr. Helen Ladd reported the findings of her study of 1985
data on 247 large counties examining the fiscal pressures the population growth imposes
on local governments. 7 The abstract notes:

“Based on a regression model that controls for other determinants of per
capita spending, this study provides careful estimates of the nonlinear
impacts of population growth and population density on three types of
local government spending: current account spending, capital outlays and
spending on public safety. The study balances the engineering and
planning view that greater population density lowers the costs of
providing public services by documenting a U-shaped relationship
between spending and density; except in sparsely populated areas, higher
density typically increases public sector spending. In addition, the results
suggest that rapid population growth imposes fiscal burdens on
established residents in the form of lower service levels.”

As part of her study, Dr. Ladd took a specific look at the effects of population density on
public safety spending. As with her broader research, her results (see Table 3 below)

Terrill D. Maynard 11 November 13, 2006
show public safety costs grow faster than population density except at very low densities
(less than 250 people per square mile).

Table 3
Public Safety: Predicted Effects of Density
on Per Capita Spending

Population Density
Predicted Spending Relative to Base
Per Square Mile
125 1.17
250 1.00 (Base)
500 1.07
750 1.23
1250 1.38
1750 1.26
2400 1.52
Source: Ladd 1992, p.291

A look at Bureau of Justice Statistics on 2004 public safety cost data for northern
Virginia counties and cities suggests that per capita public safety costs here reinforces
the conclusion that per capita public safety costs increase with density. (See Graph 5
below.) The declining rate of increase of the curve at higher densities suggests that, as
per capita costs increase, there is increasing local government (and taxpayer) resistance
to spending further dollar increments on public safety. With its per capita public safety
cost significantly below the trend line in 2004, the graph suggests that Fairfax County as
a whole was particularly cost-effective in public safety spending for its population
density; at the same time, Fairfax City was not. Nonetheless, the prospective 25 percent
increase in Reston’s density is likely to drive inflation-adjusted per capita pubic safety
costs in Reston up some 10-15 percent based on a least-squares regression, adding to
public spending and county tax bills.

Terrill D. Maynard 12 November 13, 2006
Graph
Graph5 5

Per Capita Public Safety Cost by Population Density,
Northern Virginia Counties & Cities, 2004
$800

Fairfax City
$700
Alexandria

$600 Arlington County
Per Capita Cost

$500
Prince William County
Fairfax County
$400 Current Maximum
Reston Reston
Density Density
Loudon County
$300
Stafford County
Spotsylvania County
$200

$100

$0
0 2 4 6 8 10 12 14
Persons per Acre

Implications

This limited survey of a few key economic, criminal, transportation, and
government variables consistently points to the adverse quality of life effects of
increasing Reston’s population density, especially by as much as 25 percent. There are
numerous other variables that also should be examined—Hartford, Connecticut, looked at
56 variables in 2001 to help guide its development planning 8—and these four need to be
examined in greater detail. Only then, with a comprehensive understanding of the
consequences of higher population densities, should the County proceed with new
development policies or zoning ordinances that could have substantial and irrevocable
negative consequences on the quality of life in Reston or other Fairfax County
communities.

In examining all the appropriate variables and the impact of increased density on
the community—for better and worse—it is equally important to understand who would
be most affected by proceeding on a particular course of action. In general, policy
priorities ought to be given to maximizing the benefit of the greater community—the
county first, the local area (e.g.--Reston) next, and so forth down to narrow interests and
consequences. With that firm prioritization in mind and to the extent the County then

Terrill D. Maynard 13 November 13, 2006
values increasing density in Reston or any other county location, such a decision can be
tempered by specific stipulations—including ordinances and codes—to mitigate or
eliminate the potentially adverse consequences and maximize the opportunities that
increased density may create.

This balanced and systematic approach reverses the extremely narrow tack now
being pursued by the County, which largely serves the interests of a few developers and,
on the margin, some local businesses. For the balance of the Reston, the rush to allow
increased density by changing zoning laws will almost certainly have a negative impact
across a wide variety of important quality of life factors that, until now, have made
Reston an attractive, relatively economical, safe, and accessible place to live and work.

Terrill D. Maynard 14 November 13, 2006
Appendix

Reston Housing & Household Demographics

Except for its housing and household demographics, Reston closely resembled
Fairfax County as a whole in 2000, and both are substantially better than the nation as a
whole on all measures of economic wellbeing. (See the Attachment for details.) In
particular, the median household income and median home value for Fairfax and Reston
were virtually the same, and nearly twice the national average. The poverty rate in
Fairfax and Reston were identical and one-third that of the nation as a whole. In part
because Reston has a slightly higher proportion of residents with bachelor degrees,
population in the workforce, and smaller households, its per capita income level was
significantly higher than the county’s--$43,000 vs. $37,000. Both, however, approached
twice the average per capita income of the United States which stood at $22,000. In
short, Reston is a wealthy community within one of the wealthiest counties in the
country.

Where Reston differed significantly from the county in 2000 is in its significantly
lower average household size, 2.40 persons vs. 2.72 persons per household. This is
driven by two factors: a higher proportion of smaller-household multi-family dwellings,
and a substantially higher proportion of single-person households. As of the 2000
Census:
• Reston had 48% more multi-family units—condominiums and apartments—than
the county as a whole.
• Reston had 37% more single-person households than the county as a whole.
Both factors are almost certainly a function of Reston’s master plan to more townhouses
and multi-family housing near village centers—often within easy walking distance—to
facilitate the growth of neighborhoods and the ease of basic shopping. This interest in
higher density housing also facilitates Reston’s ability to preserve about one-fifth of its
land for nature areas.

Table 4
Fairfax County: Average Household Size and
Current & Proposed Density Planning Factors

Fairfax County Household Density Reston PRC
Avg. Household Planning Factor Estd. Avg. HH
Dwelling Unit Type Size (2004) 9 Current Proposed Size (2004) 10 .
Single-family Detached 3.04 3.5 3.0 2.84
Single-family Attached 2.70 3.0 2.7 2.52
Garden 2.5
2.13 2.1 1.99
Elevator 2.0 .
Source: Fairfax County Demographics Reports 2004

Terrill D. Maynard 15 November 13, 2006
Attachment
Census 2000 Demographic Profile Highlights:
Fairfax County, Reston CDP, and the United States
United
Fairfax County Reston CDP States
Number Percent Number Percent Percent
Total population 969,749 969,749 56,407 56,407
Gender
Male 481,373 49.6 27,565 48.9 49.1
Female 488,376 50.4 28,842 51.1 50.9
Age
Median age (years) 35.9 (X) 36.2 (X) 35.3
Under 5 years 67,781 7.0 3932.0 7.0 6.8
18 years and over 723,485 74.6 43,713 77.5 74.3
65 years and over 76,818 7.9 4,123 7.3 12.4

Race/Ethnicity
One race: 934,311 96.3 54,586 96.8 97.6
White 677,904 69.9 41,528 73.6 75.1
Black or African American 83,098 8.6 5,145 9.1 12.3
American Indian/Alaska Native 2,561 0.3 141 0.2 0.9
Asian 126,038 13.0 5,427 9.6 3.6
Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander 691 0.1 22 0 0.1
Some other race 44,019 4.5 2,323 4.1 5.5
Two or more races 35,438 3.7 1,821 3.2 2.4

Hispanic or Latino (of any race) 106,958 11.0 5,699 10.1 12.5

Households
Household population 959,452 98.9 55,882 99.1 9.7
Group quarters population 10,297 1.1 525 0.9 2.8

Average household size 2.74 (X) 2.40 (X) 2.59
Average family size 3.20 (X) 2.99 (X) 3.10

Housing

Total housing units 359,411 24,210
Occupied housing units 350,714 97.6 23,320 96.3 91.0

Owner-occupied housing units 248,820 70.9 15,557 66.7 66.2

Renter-occupied housing units 101,894 29.1 7,763 33.3 33.8
Vacant housing units 8,697 2.4 890 3.7 9.0

Terrill D. Maynard 16 November 13, 2006
United
Fairfax County Reston CDP States
Social Characteristics Number Percent Number Percent Percent
Population 25 years and over 653,237 39,922

High school graduate or higher 592,760 90.7 37,220 93.2 80.4

Bachelor's degree or higher 357,861 54.8 25,085 62.8 24.4
Civilian veterans (civilian population 18
years and over) 96,389 13.5 5,046 11.6 12.7

Disability status (population 5 years and over) 108,589 12.3 6,162 11.8 19.3

Foreign born 237,677 24.5 12,413 22.0 11.1
Male, Now married, except separated
(population 15 years and over) 231,119 61.8 12,872 58.5 56.7

Female, Now married, except separated
(population 15 years and over) 227,268 58.4 12,831 54.2 52.1

Speak a language other than English at home
(population 5 years and over) 270,421 30.0 12,544 23.9 17.9

Economic Characteristics
In labor force (population 16 years and over) 548,812 73.1 34,760 77.3 63.9
Mean travel time to work in minutes (workers
16 years and over) 30.7 (X) 26.7 (X) 25.5

Median household income in 1999
(dollars) 81,050 (X) 80,018 (X) 41,994

Median family income in 1999 (dollars) 92,146 (X) 94,061 (X) 50,046

Per capita income in 1999 (dollars) 36,888 (X) 42,747 (X) 21,587

Families below poverty level 7,507 3 466 3.2 9.2

Individuals below poverty level 43,396 4.5 2,527 4.5 12.4

Housing Characteristics
Single-family owner-occupied homes 218,779 12,570
Median value (dollars) 233,300 (X) 238,700 (X) 119,600

(X) Not applicable.
Source: U.S. Census Bureau, Summary
File 1 (SF 1) and Summary File 3 (SF 3)

Terrill D. Maynard 17 November 13, 2006
Endnotes:
1
Planned Residential Community (PRC) Districts (Reston, Burke Centre, and Cardinal Forest), Staff Paper,
Department of Planning and Zoning, Fairfax County, September 8, 2006. See also Fairfax Demographics
Reports 2004: A Report of the Urban Development Information System, Department of Systems
Management for Human Services, Fairfax County, p. IV-1.
2
This survey includes all Fairfax County towns and places except the miniscule portion of the Occuquan
CDP that is in the County and Fort Belvoir, a US military reservation not controlled by County planning or
zoning.
3
Robert J. Sampson and Janet L. Lauritsen, “Violent Victimization and Offending: Individual-,
Situational-, and Community-level Risk Factors,” Understanding and Preventing Violence, Volume 3:
Social Influences, Albert J. Reiss, Jr., and Jeffrey A. Roth, eds., National Academy Press, Washington,
DC, 1994, p. 55.
4
Data from the Fairfax County Police Department available on the County website indicates that the
County had a much higher violent crime rate in 2004—99.77 violent crimes per 100,000 people. The BJS
data is used here to ensure comparability across multiple jurisdictions that may have different reporting
standards and policies.
5
“Walking Distance Research,” Presentation to Fairfax County Transit-Oriented Development Committee,
Sept. 7, 2006, http://www.fairfaxcounty.gov/planning/tod_docs/walking_distance_research_slides.pdf, p. 4.
6
Ibid. The data presented in this overview of research on commuter walking distances suggests a virtually
linear relationship between walking distance and Metro rail use with an imputed value of about 70% of
residents at the Metro station (0 distance) using it while data shows that virtually no one who lives more
than 2,300 ft. (a short half-mile) from the station would walk there—a distance that closely correlates with
a typical urban village radius. At the mid-point—a quarter-mile radius—and assuming an even distribution
of the population across the village area—one-quarter living inside the quarter-mile radius and three-
quarters outside—about 35% of residents would walk to the Metro station if their work location were
similarly close to a Metro station. At the jobs end of this commute, both the Council of Governments and
RealityCheck—a service of the University of Maryland research center on “smart” growth—suggest that
about 25% of work locations in the Washington area are within a half-mile of transit access (buses and rail)
according to a Brookings Institute presentation earlier this year (Alice M. Rivlin, An Overview of the
Washington, DC, Region, The Potomac Conference, February 2006, p. 17).
If one assumes that people will not use Metro if their walk on either end of their commute is more
than a half mile (as both the Brookings and Walking Distance presentations suggest) and the rate of usage
is a linear function of distance from the station, fewer Wiehle urban village residents would travel by Metro
rail than projected here (i.e.—25% x 35% ~ less than 9% at the minimum). Because people can more
freely choose the location of where they live than the their work location (i.e.—close to Metro), the actual
percentage of people using Metro rail would lie between 9-35 percent. This model assumes substantial
Metro utilization at 25% and, hence, suggests a lower traffic impact than is likely.
7
Helen F. Ladd, “Population Growth, Density and Costs of Providing Public Services,” Urban Studies,
Vol. 29, No. 2, 1992, pp. 273-295.
8
A Tale of Eight Metro Areas: Comparative Policy Analysis of MetroHarford and Similar MSAs, Fred
Carstensen, Murat Arik, & Stan McMillen, Connecticut Center for Economic Analysis, University of
Connecticut, Storrs, Connecticut, April 27, 2001.
9
Fairfax Demographics Reports 2004, p. III-2.
10
This estimate is based on a regression of the Reston area population and housing stock against the
proposed county-wide household size factors for different types of dwellings. This intermediary result
suggests the average household size in Reston is 2.57. This average is prorated across the types of
dwellings by the officially estimated 2.40 persons per household in Reston to achieve the estimate of the
size of Reston households in various dwelling types. The Reston data is County subcensus tract data for
2004 for the twelve tracts that include Reston PRC except for one tract south of Lawyers Road, which is
predominately outside the Reston PRC, according to Fairfax County Demographics Reports 2004. A
comparison with other data indicates that the area included is about 49% larger than the Reston PRC, but
includes only about a two percent additional population. An implication of this estimate is that Reston’s
2004 population was probably closer to 60,000 than the 64,000 population estimated using proposed
county-wide household size factors.

Terrill D. Maynard 18 November 13, 2006