The Great Desprawling Experiment

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  1. Michaelangelica

    Michaelangelica Junior Member

    May 2, 2006
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    The Great Desprawling Experiment
    A Virginia town’s transformation from commercial zone to livable community​

    by Jebediah Reed, from GOOD - November-December 2010

    “A textbook case of suburban sprawl”—that’s what local officials call the northern Virginia town of Tysons Corner, a place best known for its gargantuan shopping mall.

    Situated on the outer edge of the Washington, D.C., Beltway in Fairfax County, Tysons is the kind of place that’s good for gassing up, grabbing a Cinnabon, and maybe browsing the wares at dime-a-dozen chains like Kay Jewelers and the Gap. But it’s not the kind of place where you would want to live—unless you happen to be a car, in which case it’s paradise. Of the town’s nearly 1,700 acres, nearly half are set aside for parking and wide suburban roads without sidewalks. The remaining land is occupied by drab, isolated office parks and shopping centers.

    Little wonder that while 105,000 people work in Tysons Corner, only 17,000 choose to live there.

    It’s hard to conceive of a less likely poster child for the livable-communities movement, which prizes dense urban-style neighborhoods where residents can live without cars.
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