News and notes from Reston (tm).

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Behold the Promise of Transit-Oriented Development: A Wal-Mart


So as part of the grand plan to remake Tysons Corner into a high-end urban nirvana worthy of the sobriquet "Fairfax County's downtown," we've learned that the first significant new project, being developed by the same people who are bringing us Reston Heights and Fairway Apartments closer to home, will feature as its signature anchor... a Wal-Mart. No, seriously:
Wal-Mart plans to open a store in Tysons Corner on the site of the former Moore Cadillac dealership as part of a mixed-use development that will probably be one of the first to accompany Metrorail’s arrival to the area.

The 79,000-square-foot store would join new offices, a gym, parking lots and other stores as part of a project by developer JBG Cos. on Leesburg Pike between Ashgrove Lane and Westwood Center Drive. JBG and Wal-Mart are in final negotiations on a lease agreement, company officials said. Construction is to begin this summer and would finish in 2013, when the Tysons West Metro station is scheduled to open on Spring Hill Road, a quarter-mile south.
All snark aside, this is actually good in some ways. It would be a smaller, more grocery-focused sort of Wal-Mart, and we had been wondering if there were plans for any kind of grocery store in an area where the residential population is slated to explode. And the project itself actually looks pretty nice, as these things go. See?


Of course, this speaks again to the importance of maintaining a realistic perspective about future development. Consider Fair Lakes -- when it was first put on the drawing boards a quarter-century ago, planners envisioned broad avenues of the highest-end stores -- Gucci, Cartiers, and the like. What they got was an endless field of big box dreck, including... a Wal-Mart.

At the same time, we're wondering what kind of people would put down some serious cash to live in a high-end condo overlooking a Wal-Mart. Probably those who put a premium on convenience:



  1. I know I shouldn't but I can't seem to resist...

  2. Oh, Jeezus Krust. Just what we need. The anchor of Fairfax County's newest concrete and asphalt abomination is a bottom-end retailer that specializes in off-brand Chinese schlock, which is ruining our economy.

    And so what kind of space is going above Sam W's Retail Blasphemy? Could it be High-Rise Double Wides?

  3. So if the "best" Tysons can do is a Wal-Mart, what does that mean for not-as-dense Reston? An Ames or a Peebles?

  4. Harris Teeter - Westpark. Just sayin'.

  5. All the hullabaloo about smart growth in Tysons and the first thing they slap down is a Walmart???

  6. Bob's Metallic Alter Ego:

    What makes you think Reston will be not as dense as Tysons? It will probably be denser.

  7. Oh, "Fairfax County's downtown" doesn't have anything on Dulles World. That place is gonna rock! Seriously! I will want to be like it! Or so I'm told.

  8. Do ya remember when Sam Walton was all about "Made in America?" yeah. that was awesome.


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