Fairfax County Receives Daniel Burnham Award for Plan to Transform Tysons Corner


Jan. 11, 2011

Fairfax County will receive The Daniel Burnham Award for a Comprehensive Plan for its blueprint to transform Tysons Corner. The American Planning Association grants this prestigious award to only one urban plan in the nation each year for advancing the science and art of planning. 

“This award is an incredible honor and shows what can be achieved when an experienced, dedicated staff works with an actively engaged citizenry to create a vision for their community,” said Fairfax County Chairman Sharon Bulova. “The comprehensive plan will result in the transformation of Tysons Corner from a sprawling office park into a sustainable, walkable, transit-oriented second downtown for the D.C. Metro region that also will serve as an economic engine and premier employment center for Fairfax County.”

Today, Tysons Corner is the 12th largest employment center in the nation, the largest outside of a traditional downtown. The Comprehensive Plan for Tysons envisions up to 100,000 residents and 200,000 jobs by the year 2050, twice the jobs and five times the number of residents today. It will become a 24-hour urban center where people live, work, shop, and play— an unprecedented change for an area that has developed as an “edge city,” an employment center with regional shopping malls and few options for transportation other than driving.

Highlights of the plan include:

  • A tiered approach to density that is focused around four Metro stations.
  • A long-term goal of balancing the number of jobs and residents and incentives to reserve 20 percent of new housing units for moderate-income households.
  • Innovative stormwater management facilities designed to retain at least the first inch of rainfall on-site.
  • An urban grid of streets, with facilities for pedestrians, bicyclists and cars.
  • Circulator routes linking residential neighborhoods to the new Metro stations, and other transit service linking Tysons to communities outside its borders.
  • A “green network” of urban parks and open space linking to existing stream valley parks.

APA's national awards program, the profession's highest honor, was established more than 50 years ago to recognize outstanding community plans, planning programs, and initiatives, public education efforts, and individuals for their leadership on planning issues.

The Burnham Award is named after America’s most famous planner, Daniel Burnham, recognizing his contributions to the planning profession and to a greater awareness of the benefits of good planning.

Although he is often remembered as an author of the first master plan for Chicago, Burnham also shaped the McMillan Plan that created the National Mall and Union Station in Washington, D.C.

Fairfax County and other national award recipients will be recognized during a special luncheon on April 11, 2011, during APA's National Planning Conference in Boston. The recipients also will be featured in an upcoming issue of Planning magazine.

For more information about the county’s transformation plan, approved development applications in Tysons and more, visit the Tysons Web pages.


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