Brookshire Cluster Special Assessment General
Assembly Minutes June 2011
June 23rd 2011 7:30 PM held at 1558 Brookshire Ct. This was a
special assembly for Brookshire Cluster home owners to review, discuss and vote
on large scale projects for the cluster such as the Drainage Project and Extra
Street lights. The objective of the meeting was to approve plans for both
projects and approve of the recommended special assessments required to
complete both projects.
15 of 26 (58%) houses present, Quorum of 40%
achieved. Cluster President Mike called the meeting to order at 7:42PM.
began our meeting at 7:42PM once the 40% quota requirement had been clearly
achieved, Mike welcomed all Brookshire Cluster members and outlined the agenda
for the meeting which was to present the following material and vote on the
special assessment to cover costs:
Discuss Drainage Solutions Aaron/Doc
Present Special Assessment structure and timeframe Ann
Vote on Special Assessment structure and
Discuss Long-term renovation concepts
For over two years, the cluster has discussed the lack of
drainage at the top of the cluster between 1540 and 1550. The lack of
drainage causes water and mud to cascade and pool over the walk way often,
making it very slippy and dangerous in colder weather conditions. At the
last General Assembly in Feb 2011, a special committee was assembled to address
the issues, gather proposals to correct the issues and decide on the best
approach for the community both in terms of a full drainage solution and
Aaron represented the special Drainage committee and presented
the optimal drainage solution to the cluster members. He noted that the
more expensive options including re-grading the sidewalks but there would be no
more guarantee that it would solve the drainage issue.
Aaron had an arial chart of the houses 1540-50 and topography
around the drainage area (attached as a separate PDF file to you) and explained
the optimal Proposal which outlined the following corrections and repairs:
The two worst areas for non-drainage are in front of German and
AnnMarie’ s house (1544) and in front of Mike & Cathy’s house (1552).
Water flows from the downspouts on the row of houses and has nowhere to go,
water and mud run off the slope between the two sets of stairs at an alarming
rate. The drains don’t seem to work correctly along the pathway and do not
correctly flow the water away from the area, so it pools on the sidewalk as a
mass of water, mud and slippery ice in the winter.
or replace the existing PVC drainage pipe that runs from 1550 (Burke’s) to 1540
(Doc’s). As the repair team won’t know the state of the existing drain until manual
digging begins, the crew will replace the 6” diameter PVC pipe only if
needed. If a replacement is necessary, it will run parallel to the
existing pipe right beside the pathway on cluster terrain.
exit pipe to daylight downslope towards the creek by Doc and Ann Marie’s
house. It will exit under the bushes and out of the main green area.
new drainage collection points along the path in three spots: 1554, 1552
and 1540. These drainage boxes will be 8” to 12” square and are inset
into the ground. They will be inset enough to collect the roof water run-off
and the surface run off from the slopes. They will be installed right by
the grassy corner where the private house pathways and main pathway converges.
The Drainage box is open to the top, ground level and connects to the 6”
re-used or repaired PVC drainage pipes. The top grate is NDS square Polyolefin
w’ UV inhibitor/ Cast iron/ Galvanized steel grate. Underneath will be crushed
stone for extra drainage. The surrounding soil will be compacted and will slope
downwards towards the drain. More detail
on the drain outline: http://www.ndspro.com/images/stories/pdfs/technical-drawings/square-grate-with-square-catch-basin.pdf
View of collection drain.
4. Up by
Doc and AnneMarie’s house (1540) on the corner of the grassy area, remove extra
grass and lower the elevation of the soil to facilitate overland drainage from
the sidewalk and surrounding areas. The area will be re-finished with new sod
to seamlessly merge with the rest of the grassy area.
new and deeper edging of the landscape that comes in contact with the pathway
between 1540 and 1550. Creating a mini trough just one or two inches wide and
deep can completely help drain water away from the path and alleviate the
mud-run-off. This mini trough or moat will need to be maintained by our
the larger crab apple tree for extra light on the affected area and for
installation of the new street light.
the sloping areas between the stairs. Currently grass does not survive on
the slope so the goal is to remove the larger crab apple tree, expand the
mulched area and plant shade-tolerant grasses or ground cover to stabilize the
entire slope strip. Pachysandra as a ground cover is an option but takes
approximately 3 years to take hold so it may be a mix of ground cover or
sod which looks good immediately. The sod may also survive for longer with the
crab apple tree-shade gone and more natural sunlight on the slope. With
this, there will also be proper edging (mini trough) to facilitate proper
the gradient of 1544 (Martinez) yard to flow water away from the house and
towards the new drainage collection drains. This would include re-sodding
and/or replanting. Currently only one house is included in the
re-grading. All houses on the row may take advantage of the project and labor
to re-grade front yards, please check with Aaron on the options available.
flower bed at the top of the slope and excavate/trim by the pathway.
Estimated costs for the project are $4,580 but may run to $7,000
if the PVC drain pipes need to be replaced and run parallel to the older pipes.
This part could not be evaluated and assessed until the area is dug up and the
current pipe functionality exposed. From a proposed budget
estimate, we based the special assessment on the higher value of $7k. If
the costs come in lower, the assessment will be reduced to reflect the actual
price paid for the project.
Mike put the proposed drainage solution to the members present
at the General assembly for a vote and all 15 houses unanimously voted YES and
approved the planned drainage solutions. The members also thanked the special
committee for their work and Aaron for his thorough and informative
presentation of the steps involved in the drainage correction project.
Brookshire Cluster has long been a safe community, and our goal
is to maintain and improve safety levels wherever possible. Recently with the
light outages, we had a mugging in the neighborhood and realized that our
cluster is fairly dark overall. With kids growing up and with metro/Lake Anne
renovation, it behooves us to add more lights to brighten pathways and our
parking lot for increased safety of the neighborhood. Deirdre presented the
plan is to install 2 new lights to illuminate houses deep into the
cluster. Both lights will be black colonial lights similar to the lights
we have and in accordance with Brookshire’s overall architecture.
The main density of houses in the cluster (1528-1538, 1540-1550,
1551-1554 rely on one single light source in the cluster. The light does
not provide enough coverage for the parking lot or for the common pathways along
the rows of houses. Recently while the light was out, a cluster member was
mugged, held in a chokehold and her bag stolen. This clearly identified a
need for improved lighting conditions in the neighborhood.
Install two new lights in the cluster. The planned locations for
the lights are:
In the back corner of the Brookshire lot where the crab apple
tree is being removed. It is on the curb of the parking lot between two
sets of stairs, near the steps between Amanda and Sherry’s houses. This will
light up the pathways along 1542 to 1550 and along 1538-1534. It
will also illuminate the parking lot in the area.
The second light will be on the opposite corner of the parking
area deep into the cluster. This light will be in the midst of the bushes
between the pathway and the parking lot in front of Julie & Watt’s
house. This will light up 1528-1538 and 1551, as well as the parking lot
lights to be installed are standard black colonial lantern 12’ from the ground
with 100 watt bulbs. To reduce glare into the nearby houses, one side of
the four glass panels will be frosted while the rest are clear for better
illumination to the traffic areas. The lights will be run and managed by
Virginia Dominion Power.
The Colonial style luminaire is frequently used in
residential areas, pedestrian lighting applications, and in parks and small
- Decorative cast aluminum
housing with a matte black paint finish.
- Top mounted horizontal lamping
with clear refractive acrylic panels with a Type III distribution.
- Vertical base down lamping with
clear refractive acrylic panels with a Type V distribution.
- High pressure sodium lamping in
70, 100, and 150 watts.
TYPE 3 POST TOP FIXTURE WITH PRISMATIC TYPE 2 & 3 PANELS AND VERTICAL LAMP
ED23.5 COATED HIGH PRESSURE SODIUM
Foot-candles Scale: 1 Inch = 12 Ft.
Factor = 0.80
Per Luminaire = 9500
Height = 12.00 Ft
Calculated Value = 2.44 Fc
Toolbox Professional Edition (c) copyright 1995-2007 by Lighting Analysts, Inc.
based on published IES Methods and recommendations.
Results derived from content of manufacturers photometric file.
Estimated costs for installing the two new lights are in two
Initial installation is $6,724.71 with Dominion Virginia
Ongoing monthly maintenance and usage cost per light is
$4.25 per light, this increases our annual electric budget by $102. This fee
includes all usage, maintenance and repairs to the light structure, bulb
reduce costs, we evaluated a couple of options:
the lights separately over time but with that, we lose the cost efficiencies of
installing both lights together and it increased the cost factor by $1,300.
Hence we disregarded this option.
the lights with a private vendor and save installation costs. Kolb
Electric quoted $6,100 for the installation. Repair and maintenance would be
separate charges @ 50% of current residential rates. In addition to
repair and maintenance costs (unknown), this option drove the annual electric
budget up by $15 per light meter + usage = $432 increase per annum so we
discounted this option also.
discounted rates with Dominion VA. Dominion said the rates for the work are
tariffed and as such, remain stable and consistent. Dominion Virginia
Power did agree to look into subsidizing the costs involved in installing the
light. With a subsidy, the installation costs would be reduced somewhat.
Cathy T asked if we are replacing the crab-apple tree with a
lower ornamental tree. We responded that we currently do not plan to
replace the tree so we can maximize the light footprint of the new lights. We
noted that the light from the existing center light is blocked to Bill/Jessica
and Diane’s houses because of the beautiful dog wood tree in the way. We don’t
want to recreate a scenario of diminished light because of a newly planted
Deirdre presented the single vendor – Dominion Virginia Power –
installation and maintenance option of $6,724.71 to the cluster as the best
lighting option for the cluster with a caveat that the final price may be less
if we received a subsidy from Dominion Virginia Power. From a proposed
budget estimate, we based the special assessment on the higher value. If
the costs come in lower, the assessment will be reduced to reflect the actual
price paid for the project.
Mike put the proposed 2 new light installation solution to the
members present at the General assembly for a vote and all 15 houses unanimously
voted YES and approved the installation of the two new street lights. The
members also thanked Deirdre and the board for its work on the project, and
commiserated with Amanda as the victim that enabled this project.
Ann presented the sum total of both projects as $7000 for
drainage and $6720 for the lights which totals as $13,720 worth of work. This
netted at $527.7 cost per house to complete the two projects. Ann
reiterated that should actual costs be lower, the special assessment charged
would also be lower. Ann presented the option to add $75 special
assessment per house for 7 consecutive quarters ($525) to cover the
costs. Starting 3Q2011, this would raise the quarterly dues per house
from $250 to $325 through 1Q2013.
Mike put the 7 quarters @ $75 per quarter special assessment to
the members present at the General assembly for a vote and all 15 houses
unanimously voted YES and approved the special assessment for drainage and new
Ann noted that any house could pay the full amount of $525 up
front and retain the quarterly dues of $250 as an option. Ann noted that
her invoice to each homeowner for the 3Q2011 dues would reflect $325 to include
the special assessment.
Ann explained that the current
Brookshire budget covers planned repair/maintenance of the asphalt and concrete
throughout the cluster. The budget currently does not cover other
projects that would enhance the neighborhood such as fixing the retaining
walls, fixing the swing, getting a snow-blower, renovating the front garden,
renovating side gardens, doing serious tree planting, building a sturdier
barrier along Moorings and our green space, and other projects yet
to be defined.
Mike proposed that we extend the special assessment for another
quarter (or more) of $75 per house to cover such renovation projects. He noted
that we would get and present detailed plans with work quotes for each project
to the entire cluster members before we commence work.
Mike put the proposed special assessment extension for
renovation projects to the members present at the General assembly for a vote
and all 15 houses unanimously voted YES and approved the extension of the $75
assessment for additional months as needed and defined by approved projects.
a great idea:
Chris C noted that the extra dues for cluster enhancement is an excellent
idea and is very welcome. He noted how much he and Irene love being in the
cluster and fully approve of any project designed to enhance the environment
and increase our property values. He also noted that our dues are
classically lower than average for any homeowner’s association. Many attendees
nodded their approval and murmured their agreement with Chris’ positive
Leann and multiple members of the cluster mentioned the front
garden renovation as a hot priority. Deirdre inevitably mentioned the front
entrance sign otherwise known as ‘monument’ but recognized this may be a lower
priority than other projects.
(food for thought)
noted that her concrete path and back yard were in need of repair and asked if
anyone else in the cluster wanted to combine concrete/pavement work for a better
combined price. If you are interested in redoing your yard or pathway, please
contact Jackie to combine projects and reduce costs.
seems to be some confusion about who ‘owns’ repair costs from a service vendor
– the home owner or the cluster. The board wants to clearly outline
who owns costs for installation, repair and maintenance of any service like
water, electric, phone, fios or gas:
the homeowner is using the service –the home owner pays all related repair,
maintenance and installation charges – even if it goes through cluster
property. The cluster is just a conduit for your service. Simply
put, you use the service – you pay the cost.
the cluster is using the service – like electricity for the lights, the cluster
pays the installation, repair and maintenance charges. Simply put,
cluster uses – cluster pays. Homeowner uses – homeowner pays.
outlined the need for a safety committee in the neighborhood where any neighbor
could call on a list of neighbors for help when needed. Amanda would
gather a list of volunteers to help and circulate the contact information to
the cluster members.
addition, Amanda proposes we re-instate the neighborhood watch program within
the cluster. All those interested in joining the neighborhood watch for
increased safety, please contact Amanda.
information on the Neighborhood watch program can be found at: http://www.fairfaxcounty.gov/police/stations/reston/
The Neighborhood Watch Coordinators Meeting is held prior
to the Citizens' Advisory Committee meeting at 6:30 p.m. All Neighborhood
Watch Coordinators are welcome to attend. If your neighborhood is
interested in starting a Neighborhood Watch, please contact the Reston Crime
Prevention Office at 703-478-0799 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
12000 Bowman Towne Drive, Reston, VA 20190
number for Reston Police: 703-478-0904
Fax number: 703-318-9872
thanked all members for attending. Meeting terminated at 8:43PM.
24th: Tysons Tree quoted a group project amount for the removal of a
number of trees including the crab apple tree – which is covered by the
Landscape maintenance portion of the 2011 budget.
27th: Design Review of Reston approved the removal of the crab apple
27th: Design Review of Reston approved the installation of 2 new
lights in Brookshire Cluster.
27th: Design Review of Reston approved the house lights’ standards
for the cluster. Details to be published online.
27th: Dominion Virginia Power offered a subsidy of 50% of the cost
of installation ($3,362.55 reduction in cost) to Brookshire as a sign of good
will and as a mission to improving the safety of the neighborhood.