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A new crafters’ playground is set to open tomorrow (Saturday) in Chantilly.

Craftspace will hold a grand opening for its maker space, studio and store at 3675 Concorde Parkway in Suite 1500.

The ribbon cutting is slated to take place at 11:30 a.m., although the event starts at 10 a.m. and ends at 2 p.m. The event includes prizes, giveaways, craft souvenirs, and refreshments.

The business offers supplies for scrapbooking, jewelry making, sewing, and stamping. Crafting classes are catered towards children and adults.

The idea came from owner and CEO Amy Robinson. Manager Sarah Christensen assisted in the effort, bringing a team of two local entrepreneurs together in the venture.

“After two years of careful planning, tools and material acquisitions, and space renovations, it is amazing to see the business finally come to life,” Robinson said, adding that her team has fully embraced the underlying business concept that “if you can think it, we can help you make it here.”

Here’s more from the company on the launch:

Crafters of all experience levels are invited to experience Craftspace. Basic tools and supplies are included in the hourly rate for using the space. Premium tools are available for an additional charge. Classes are priced by the event. Memberships are available for those who plan to use the space for several hours each month. The convenient location is perfect for gathering with friends, working on your favorite project or trying a new craft or tool without investing in the needed supplies upfront.

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Fairfax County Police Department Capt. Rachel Levy at an October press conference on Troy Reynolds’ arrest following a school bus crash (via ABC7)

A bus driver was indicted by a grand jury yesterday (Tuesday) for allegedly driving drunk while transporting D.C. kindergarten students home from a trip to Cox Farms in Centreville.

Troy Reynolds, 48, faces nine felony charges of child endangerment and three misdemeanor charges, including a second offense of driving while intoxicated, driving with a disqualified commercial license, and driving a bus without a commercial driver’s license, Fairfax County Commonwealth’s Attorney Steve Descano announced today.

“My office takes crimes that endanger children very seriously,” Descano said in the press release. “We’re grateful to our partners at the Fairfax County Police Department for their collaboration on this case.”

Reynolds was arrested on Oct. 27 after he reportedly drove a school bus carrying 44 students and four adults from Murch Elementary School off the road, hitting a rock and flattening a tire. Nine kids were injured, according to Descano’s office.

At the insistence of staff on board, the bus stopped in the 1500 block of Conference Center Drive in Chantilly, and the kids were transferred to the Fairfax Criminal Justice Academy, where two buses provided by Fairfax County Public Schools took them to D.C.

The FCPD said at the time that a test revealed that Reynolds had a blood alcohol content of .20. Officers also found that his commercial driver’s license had been revoked in Virginia due to a prior DWI and suspended in Maryland.

The case will go to trial tomorrow (Thursday), according to the Commonwealth’s Attorney’s Office.

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The Target in the Chantilly Crossing shopping center (via Google Maps)

(Updated at 4:35 p.m.) A Fairfax County Public Schools instructional assistant has been arrested after allegedly stealing thousands of dollars worth of cash and goods from a Target in Chantilly.

Fairfax County police arrested Denise Pitkin-Tilson, 55, of Chantilly yesterday and charged her with felony embezzlement for taking more than $10,000 in cash, gift cards and merchandise, the department announced today.

Pitkin-Tilson works as an instructional assistant at Eagle View Elementary School in the Fairfax Corner area. She’s also employed as a cashier by the Target at 4391 Chantilly Crossing Lane, according to the FCPD.

Police say they were contacted at 7:52 p.m. Monday by a Target loss prevention officer who was alerted by the retail company’s headquarters that money was missing after Pitkin-Tilson’s shift.

“Pitkin-Tilson worked as a part-time cashier and was recorded for more than a month,” the FCPD said. “She was seen embezzling money from registers as well as stealing gift cards and merchandise.”

After being questioned at the Sully District Station, Pitkin-Tilson was transported to the Fairfax County Adult Detention Center. The police department says she has been released on a $2,000 unsecured bond, though no record appears yet in the general district court’s online information system.

“This individual is currently on administrative leave,” FCPS said in a statement.

Here’s more from FCPD on how to contact detectives with any additional information about the case:

Anyone with information about this case, or others possibly related, is asked to contact detectives at 703-246-7800. Tips can also be submitted anonymously through Crime Solvers by phone – 1-866-411-TIPS (866-411-8477) and by web  - Click HERE. Download the ‘P3 Tips’ App and follow the steps to “Fairfax Co Crime Solvers.” Anonymous tipsters are eligible for cash rewards of $100 to $1,000 dollars. Please leave contact information if you wish for a detective to follow up with you.

Photo via Google Maps

TOUS les JOURS, a French-Asian bakery café chain, opened its second location in Virginia late last week.

The business launched at 14452 Chantilly Crossing Lane on Oct. 27. It’s managed by franchisee Sung Shin, a Fairfax resident who also owns a location in Ellicott City, Maryland.

Shin said he was drawn to Chantilly because of its proximity to his home in Fairfax and the overall community.

“TOUS les JOURS’ superior quality is what initially drew me to the brand, while the bakery’s diverse range of options made the franchise opportunity particularly attractive,” said Shin.

The cafe serves cake, pastries, and other desserts. Among the more unique menu items is a Cloud Cake, which is made with a fluffy sponge and whipping loud cream flavors. Other items include milk bread, macarons, croissants and loaves.

Started in 2004, the business has more than 80 stores in the U.S. and hundreds of locations around the world.

It opened its first Virginia location in Annandale on Aug. 16.

The Chantilly location is open 7 a.m. through 10:30 p.m. on Sunday through Thursday, and from 7 a.m. to 12 a.m. on Friday and Saturday.

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A D.C. Public Schools bus driver was arrested for driving while intoxicated and child endangerment after going off-road with a bus full of 44 children and four adults.

The incident occurred as the children were returning from a trip to Cox Farms in Centreville. In a press conference last night, streamed by ABC7, Fairfax County Police Department (FCPD) Captain Rachel Levy said the driver drove off the road, hit a rock, and flattened the rear tire.

“It’s obviously a very concerning situation,” Levy said. “We expect our children to go to school and come home safe every day, to include if they’re on a field trip. So this is very concerning and I believe this is something that Dc public schools will be taking very seriously.”

Levy said staff members were eventually able to get the driver to stop in a parking lot in the 1500 block of Conference Center Drive in Chantilly.

The children were transferred to the Fairfax Criminal Justice Academy in Chantilly.

Levy said officers who responded quickly realized Reynolds was intoxicated and he later tested with a blood alcohol content of .20. The legal limit is .08.

He noted the other bus on the field trip was placed out of service for safety violations and the driver was also cited for not having a valid commercial driver’s license. A replacement bus that showed up also had a similar safety violation and the bus driver did not have a valid commercial driver’s license.

Fairfax County Public Schools eventually provided two buses that transported the students back into D.C.

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The senior living and daycare facility targets low-income individuals (via Fairfax County)

A vacant 3.8-acre portion of land in Chantilly could soon be the home for a new affordable housing development for seniors.

Agape Property Management is seeking Fairfax County’s permission to build Agape House Chantilly, a 232-unit development with an adult day care facility, on the southeast side of Thunderbolt Place and west of Centerview Drive.

Mike Van Atta, a land use planner with McGuire Woods, said Agape is excited to develop a fully affordable senior living complex in the Dulles Suburban Center.

“This important project includes high quality building and site design and will serve as a benchmark for the crucial goal of providing new senior and affordable housing options in the western Fairfax County,” Atta wrote.

Approval of the plan would require rezoning the property, which is currently planned for hotel uses that have not been constructed. The applicant is also seeking a special exception to allow for an independent living facility and adult day care facility on the site.

The independent living facility will house up to 300 residents, catering to those making 60% of the area median income or below. Roughly 200 participants are planned for the adult day care facility.

The five-story building will include a pharmacy, therapy room, fitness and recreational areas, and a common kitchen and dining room. The business will also include services like transportation and meal service. Up to 42 employees will likely be present.

The plan assumes that most residents and adult day care participants will “rely on shuttle services provided by Agape House Chantilly,” the application says.

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The Dulles Toll Road exit to Trap Road (via Google Maps)

Two people died in a moped crash on the Dulles Toll Road near the exit to Trap Road last night (Wednesday).

Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority police responded to a report of a single-vehicle crash with multiple injuries in the toll road’s westbound lanes at 9:40 p.m., MWAA said in a statement to FFXnow.

The arriving officers found a moped and one person who was dead in the roadway. A second person was transported to a hospital with critical injuries and later died, according to MWAA.

Police have identified the man found dead at the scene as 23-year-old Nyjell Dae Quan Lewis from D.C. The person who died at the hospital was 20-year-old Kia Renee Hobbs from Suitland, Maryland, according to the authority, which says she is “presumed to be a passenger on the moped.”

“The Dulles Toll Road was closed during the crash reconstruction,” MWAA said. “The case is still under investigation, and no charges have been filed. With the investigation ongoing, we can’t answer any further questions at this time.”

Though MWAA has characterized the incident as a single-vehicle crash, scanner watchers told FFXnow that a car was reportedly involved. An MWAA spokesperson said they “can’t confirm additional details.”

The Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department also responded to the crash but deferred to MWAA police when asked for information.

The Dulles Toll Road crash was one of two fatal incidents reported in Fairfax County yesterday.

At 11:24 a.m., Fairfax County police and fire personnel were dispatched to the Route 50/Sully Road interchange in Chantilly after a car drove into a light pole. The driver — identified as Arjen Weiss, 62, of Chantilly — was transported to Reston Hospital, where he died.

“Detectives from our Crash Reconstruction Unit determined Weiss was driving westbound on Lee Jackson Memorial Highway on the ramp to northbound Sully Road,” the Fairfax County Police Department said. “His vehicle left the roadway for an unknown reason and struck a light pole. Detectives believe alcohol and speed were not factors in the crash.”

There have now been eight traffic fatalities reported in Fairfax County this month, including four pedestrians and two people who died in a one-car crash on Route 7 in Tysons last week.

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A data center or warehouse is proposed for Lee-Jackson Memorial Highway, now known as Route 50 (via Fairfax County)

One of two options — a data center or a warehouse — is proposed for a nearly 79-acre parcel in Chantilly on what used to be called Lee-Jackson Memorial Highway.

The property owner is seeking Fairfax County’s permission to rezone a nearly 5.4-acre portion of the property for a data center or warehouse, according to an Oct. 3 application. The project is coined Chantilly Premier.

“The proposed development would encourage business and commercial endeavors in the area and add to the diverse industrial and commercial tax base surrounding Dulles Airport,” the application says.

Identified as PDCREF2 Chantilly LLC, the applicant says it’s open to dedicating the unused portion of the massive, undeveloped property — known as parcel six — to the county for preservation.

The site is currently zoned for two uses: highway commercial and general industrial. It’s located outside of the floodplain area roughly 1,200 feet west of Route 50’s intersection with Stonecroft Blvd.

The proposal would rezone most of the area that is not a floodplain for industrial uses in order to develop a 402,000-square-foot data center or a 150,000-square-foot warehouse.

Roughly 92% of parcel six will remain undisturbed.

The data center would include 50 parking spaces and two loading spaces. The building would be mostly screened from view from the highway and neighboring properties, according to the application.

The warehouse option is less intense, allowing 164 parking spaces and 30 loading spaces. It would also be screened mostly from view.

The application does not favor one option of the other, saying either use would “add to the diversity of industrial uses in the area and complement the automobile oriented uses to the east.”

The county has not yet accepted the application for review. It is in the initial planning phases.

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A grand opening for the new Sully Community Center is set for Sept. 17 at noon, celebrating the conclusion of a nearly $22 million project by Fairfax County. 

County board members and county officials will celebrate the opening of the nearly 36,000-square-foot center, which is located on five acres at the intersection of Wall Road and the Air and Space Museum Parkway in Chantilly. 

The facility is the new home for the Sully Senior Center, which formerly operated in leased space in Chantilly. It also includes a 4,000-square-foot healthcare suite managed by HealthWorks for Northern Virginia. 

“I am pleased the new Sully Community Center will be opening to provide a wide array of accessible programs and services for the surrounding communities,” Sully District Supervisor Kathy Smith said in a statement to FFXnow. “The exciting addition of the healthcare suite will provide closer accessibility to primary healthcare for those who have faced barriers in healthcare access.”

Programs include after school classes, facility rentals, fitness classes, gym sports, and meeting spaces. The Fairfax County Park Authority is also offering specialty camps, garden plots, school-aged child care, youth camps and recreation services.

Smith noted that the county’s partnership with the park authority also resulted in additional gym space and pickleball courts. 

The center cost roughly $22 million to construct. Overall costs are pending because the project is still being finalized, a county spokesperson told FFXnow.

Construction on the project began in October 2020.

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Rajdhani Mandir is seeking to build a community center (via Rajdhani Mandir/Facebook)

A Hindu temple in Chantilly is seeking the county’s permission to build a community center across the street from its main religious temple.

The team behind the Rajdhani Mandir has filed an application with the county to construct a community building on a 10-acre site across the road from the existing temple building at 4525 Pleasant Valley Road.

The 13,600-square-foot building will include a hall for 300 occupants, a kitchen, two guest suites, an outdoor terrace and a caretaker apartment. 

“Once constructed, the community center site will retain significant open space left in its natural state,” attorney William Lawson, Jr. wrote in the Aug. 14 application.

Intended to serve Hindu residents of Fairfax, Prince William, and western Loudoun counties, the center is expected to host weddings, funeral, celebrations and other gatherings, with only one to two events per month, according to preliminary application materials submitted to the county.

Most of the events will be on off-peak hours, with an estimated 100 daily trips generated on weekdays and 373 trips on Sundays, according to the application. 

The temple was founded on its current 8 acres of lane in March 2000. 

So far, the design is intended to minimize impacts to the neighboring area. The back of the building will remain largely undisturbed to act as a buffer from the adjacent properties, according to the application.

Most of the surrounding area is developed with residential neighborhoods and houses of worship, including a Catholic Church that is currently in the approval process.

Photo via Rajdghani Mandor/Facebook

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