Citizens Campaign for a Green and Sustainable Urban Future for Tysons Corner

CITIZENS FOR A SUSTAINABLE TYSONS

MEDIA RELEASE

For Immediate Release:
September 8, 2008

Contact:
John Byrne, Co-Chair CST, 703-938-6650
Roger Diedrich, Co-Chair CST and Virginia Chapter -Sierra Club, 703-352-2410
Stewart Schwartz, Coalition for Smarter Growth 703-599-6437 (c)

Citizens Campaign for a Green and Sustainable Urban Future for Tysons Corner

Petition Signed by More Than 240 People
Effort Endorsed by Local Groups and National Leader in Conservation

FAIRFAX CO., VA – A group of citizens and conservation groups launched a campaign today in support of a green and sustainable urban future for Tysons Corner.  Coordinated by John Byrne, a long-time Fairfax conservation leader, the group has crafted a platform laying out a vision and detailed goals for a sustainable Tysons Corner.  The platform is designed to influence the crafting of the new comprehensive plan by the Tysons Corner Task Force, Planning Commission, and Fairfax Board of Supervisors.  The release is timed before a key meeting of the official Task Force (LINK:  http://www.fairfaxcounty.gov/dpz/tysonscorner/) tonight at 7 pm at George Marshall HS (Cafeteria), 7731 Leesburg Pike in Falls Church.

In just a week, over 240 people and 11 groups have signed an online petition endorsing the Vision and Goals (PDF of full document linked at bottom of webpage).  Additional signatures will be collected over the next few weeks.

“We support a higher density future for Tysons Corner because of the environmental benefits gained from reducing land consumption, vehicle miles traveled, air pollution, and energy use,” said Byrne. “This is a 50 year plan, and it is imperative that the plan address both the energy and climate change challenges that we face.”

“Tysons Corner has the opportunity to set the global standard for green development and a carbon free urban center,” said Roger Diedrich of the Sierra Club.  In return for higher density development, the private landowners have indicated strong support for creating a vibrant community with an interconnected network of pedestrian and bicycle friendly streets and transit circulators, along with energy efficient buildings, parks and other community and environmental benefits.

The effort was also endorsed by Mark Van Putten, Conservation Committee Chair of the Audubon Naturalist Society and Past President of the National Wildlife Federation.  According to Van Putten:  “We believe that over the course of the next few decades Fairfax County will not only create a well-designed urban center, but one that meets the highest standards of energy efficiency and greenhouse gas reductions, with an ultimate goal of zero emissions.”
The groups created a comprehensive list of goals for energy efficiency, greenhouse gas emission reductions, good parking management, transit/bike/pedestrian facilities, parks, affordable housing, tree cover, and stormwater management.  The groups also called for involvement of a broad range of residents and businesses in a new Tysons Community Association to ensure effective implementation of community goals for Tysons Corner.

“We stand ready to support a new, higher density Tysons Corner plan that commits to goals we have set forth today,” concluded Byrne.

Citizens for a Sustainable Tysons is a coalition of Northern Virginians and environmental groups including the Virginia Chapter of the Sierra Club, Coalition for Smarter Growth, and Audubon Naturalist Society.

The Vision set forth by the group states:  “Tysons Corner development sets the global standard for transforming auto-dependent sprawl into desirable, sustainable, urban communities, which eliminate greenhouse gas emissions.”