In February 2020, the couple toured a four-bedroom Colonial in the Foxvale Farm neighborhood of Great Falls, Va. They knew immediately that house, with a big backyard that backs up to 55 acres of parkland, was for them, but it already had an offer on it. Wasting no time, the couple, who had lost out on two other houses, submitted a contract the same afternoon. This time, the house was theirs. They moved into the house in March 2020, and despite pandemic restrictions, met lots of neighbors because everyone was home and frequently outside.
Today they share their home with a puppy named Popcorn who loves gamboling about the green space.
“Our backyard extends forever,” said Do, an aerospace engineer. “My boys wander all over the area. It feels safe, they know which streets they can cross, and we can hear them from the house.”
Do’s house is one of 115 in Foxvale Farm, a community at the southwest corner of Georgetown Pike and Springvale Road. The neighborhood was built between 1978 and 1980 by Pulte Homes on a former horse farm. Residents say they appreciate the proximity to the common areas, walkable sidewalks, friendly neighbors and, in the case of Brian Kainec, a tricked-out garage that has led to an informal pandemic fitness club.
Kainec, a sales enablement manager for a tech company and a certified CrossFit trainer, said he leads CrossFit-style workouts three to four times per week for about 15 neighbors. Neighbors also run together on a 2½-mile loop around the neighborhood. As the months of the pandemic wore on, more neighbors started lending their equipment to his garage gym. At least two in the group have lost more than 30 pounds, he said.
Kainec and his wife, Ann, moved to Foxvale Farm eight years ago, with one child and one on the way.
“As soon as we pulled into the neighborhood, we said this is the kind of place we want to raise our kids,” he said. “It’s the quintessential American neighborhood.”
Foxvale Farm lots are at least a half-acre, and all have septic systems, with water service provided by Fairfax County.
“Houses are more than adequate, with all the space you need, most of the features you want, without a lot of unused spaces,” Kainec said.
Ninety-five of the houses in the neighborhood either back up to or face one of the three common areas.
Yearly events include a homeowners association-sponsored fall chili cook-off and a spring festival. It’s also a neighborhood with a sense of humor. The prize for the chili cook-off winner is a “coveted golden toilet” trophy that gets passed around to the winners from year to year, Kainec said.
Tom Hixon, an original owner, is a now-retired father of four grown sons and president of the homeowners association.
“We bought here young and raised our kids here,” he said. “It’s a great neighborhood.”
He admits that at times over the past 42 years, he and his wife had thought about moving closer to McLean, where they both grew up. But they appreciated the schools, the neighbors and the security of the close neighborhood, and decided it would be disruptive to move.
The homeowners association has architectural guidelines, he said, that have allowed Foxvale Farm to maintain its character.
“We’ve tried to stick with the original Colonial style so we don’t end up with weirdly remade houses,” he said.
Living there: Foxvale Farm is bordered by Georgetown Pike to the north, Springvale Road to the east, green space belonging to adjacent neighborhoods to the west and Lockmeade Park to the south. Leesburg Pike intersects with Georgetown Pike not far from Foxvale Farm, providing easy access to two major thoroughfares. The neighborhood is across Springvale Road from Turner Farm, a former dairy farm with an observatory and equestrian facilities. Riverbend Park, Great Falls Park and Seneca Regional Park are nearby. Residents pay a yearly fee of $500 to the Foxvale Farm Homeowners Association, which covers lawn and tree maintenance in common spaces.
In the past 12 months, six homes have sold, with four over list price. The average price was $1,122,417, according to real estate broker Eileen Summers of Long & Foster. The lowest price was $999,000 for a five-bedroom, four-bedroom house built in 1978. The highest price was a $1,275,000 for a four-bedroom, three-bathroom home built in 1980. There are no houses on the market.
Schools: Forestville Elementary, Cooper Middle, Langley High.
Transit: Foxvale Farm is 5.2 miles from the nearest Metro station at Wiehle-Reston East, on the Silver Line. Buses run along Leesburg Pike, with the closest stop at Springvale Road and Leesburg Pike.
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