But what set the Ridings at Blue Spring apart was the value of the new homes there compared with neighboring South Riding, a much larger community to the west.
“Many of the homes we looked at in South Riding were pre-owned and would need a little work — and they were more expensive than the one we were able to purchase,” Meg Phillips said. “We found a model we liked, and we loved the idea of being in a brand-new community, with easy access right onto Route 50.”
A community of 311 single-family homes, the Ridings at Blue Spring was developed on farmland by Brookfield Homes and Pulte Homes from 2002 to 2006. Many of the older homes, close to Route 50, are on lots of a half-acre or more. Some of the homes on and around Rawley Springs Drive in the southern part of the community are on quarter-acre lots.
Getting more home for the money also appealed to Jody Donaldson, who moved with his family in 2005 to the Ridings at Blue Spring — known by many residents as “RBS” — after looking at homes in western Fairfax.
“When we built that Brookfield model, there was a new subdivision in Centreville that also had [that] model,” Donaldson said. “That same home was $100,000 more in Fairfax.”
Donaldson, a real estate professional with Century 21 New Millennium, said many home buyers are attracted to RBS because all the residences are detached, single-family houses. Its location is another plus, he said.
“It’s the closest single-family home subdivision to the Fairfax County line,” said Donaldson, who has been selling homes in the area since 2004.
“Pre-covid, people wanted to be in Loudoun because . . . of the school system, [and] this neighborhood put them right there,” he said. “And people could cut their commute time down significantly [compared to] going farther west down the 50 corridor.”
Fishing and birdwatching: The community also has natural appeal, Donaldson said. Protected areas with open space and tall trees are scattered throughout the neighborhood. A large marshy pond along Middlesex Drive, created to manage storm water, has walking trails that attract nature-lovers who come for fishing or birdwatching, and neighbors regularly gather there to admire sunsets, he said.
Linda Truskey, who moved to RBS in 2003, said she likes being close enough to walk to the East Gate Marketplace.
“From where I am, I can walk to Starbucks and Harris Teeter,” she said, adding that living in a compact community has been conducive to meeting people.
“With the covid, we certainly have met even more neighbors than we ever thought we would,” she said. “Everybody is very friendly, people out riding their bikes or walking to get exercise.”
“You really get to know your neighbors,” Meg Phillips said. “We’re not as large as South Riding or Stone Ridge or Kirkpatrick Farms, and so we have one community pool and one community playground, where some of these other communities have multiple pools and multiple playgrounds.”
“RBS just has a great community feel and it has been a happy place to raise our family,” she said.
Living there: The community is bordered by Paramount Place on the north, Pleasant Valley Road and Churchill Glen Drive on the east, Poland Road on the south and west, and Tall Cedars Parkway on the west and north.
The Ridings at Blue Spring HOA, managed by FirstService Residential, oversees trash removal, recycling and maintenance of the community clubhouse, pool, fitness room, tennis courts, basketball court, playground and other amenities. Loudoun Water provides water and sewer. Quarterly HOA fees are $330.
The community is adjacent to the East Gate Marketplace, which has a Harris Teeter, Walgreens, Starbucks and other shops and restaurants.
According to data provided by Donaldson, four homes sold in the Ridings at Blue Spring over the past year, with a median price of $860,000. Prices ranged from $760,000 for a house with five bedrooms and five bathrooms to $999,999 for a single-family house with five bedrooms and seven baths.
There is one property on the market, a house with four bedrooms and five bathrooms priced at $875,000.
Schools: Cardinal Ridge Elementary, J. Michael Lunsford Middle and Freedom High School.
Transit: The Ridings at Blue Spring is just south of Route 50, the main commuting corridor, and about two miles west of Route 28. Loudoun County Transit commuter buses and Metro Connection buses stop at a park-and-ride lot across Tall Cedars Parkway. The Vienna Metro station is about 14 miles away.