While Sterling is roughly 30 miles out from Washington, D.C., many residents choose to commute into the city for work. The task is made somewhat easier by the amount of highways that run through the area. Route 28, Route 7 (or Leesburg Pike), and the Algonkian Parkway are all nearby and provide reliable access to major thoroughfares like Route 66. Bus service is available in the area, and used by those who work in Sterling proper, but, as is common in most of northern Virginia, the primary—not to mention most practical—means of transportation remains your car. The D.C. Metro is developing plans to extend its current rail system all the way to Dulles Airport, a project they hope to finish by 2018 and which will allow Sterling residents unprecedented ease of access to D.C.
The great thing about Sterling is that, more so than many of the surrounding areas like Ashburn and Great Falls, it still remains one of the more affordable options for recent northern Virginia transplants. You can comfortably rent a three bedroom townhouse for under $1,600 a month and find yourself spending the weekends picnicking and playing soccer in the gorgeous Algonkian Regional Park. Of course, moving into some of the town’s newer housing developments, like Lowes Island (a segment of the Cascades neighborhood which is half private golf course) may cost a little more, but even as you approach the water, a neighborhood like Sugarland Run can offer two bedroom townhomes for just under $2,000 a month, many of which are pet friendly.
Sterling manages to straddle its history and its modernity quite comfortably, proving itself to be a place where a major international airport and the Heritage Farm Museum can peaceably coexist. Since the 1960s, the town has made it a point to integrate new and compelling businesses into its community and in doing so has created countless thousands of jobs. That, coupled with its proximity to Washington D.C., is enough to persuade most people.