President’s Remarks: Jones Branch Connector Groundbreaking
The event was streamed via Facebook Live on January 26,2017. View the original broadcast below or on Tysons Partnership’s official Facebook page.
Jones Branch Connector Groundbreaking
Posted by Tysons Partnership on Thursday, January 26, 2017
Full transcript of Tysons Partnership Acting President Sol Glasner‘s remarks
Chairman Bulova, Supervisor Foust, Supervisor Smyth, Director Tom Biesiadny, and other honored guests. It is currently my privilege and honor to serve as the interim President of the Tysons Partnership while we complete our executive search for someone to fill the very large shoes left by Michael Caplin, who recently retired after five years of service.
Tysons Partnership is a stakeholder organization, formed a little more than five years ago with its stated purpose to help make Tysons “America’s Next Great City.” We call it “AudaCity” and, yes, it is truly an audacious – some would say perhaps even presumptuous – goal. But, our Partnership members, representing all the major stakeholder interests, including employers, retailers, hoteliers, residential associations, developers, and landowners, are true believers in Tysons and are absolutely dedicated to our mission.
Working together in partnership with the County – which holds a seat on our governing board – we are tackling the substantial and many challenges facing this community: our country’s largest scale suburban to urban transformation ever. We know it will take time, foresight and persistence to make it all happen – but happen it will.
The event we are about to witness addresses head-on two of the most important and formidable challenges facing the Tysons community as we seek to translate the dream of the Fairfax Comprehensive Plan into reality: Transportation and Walkability. Time and time again, automobile gridlock and the absence of a pedestrian and bicycle friendly infrastructure are cited as nearly insurmountable impediments to the realization of our great city aspirations. But today, we are breaking ground on a project that, together with Silver Line, goes a long way to create real connectivity among the neighborhoods that make up our Tysons community.
This direct link between East and Central Tysons will serve several of our major employers, existing residents and the nearly 9,000 new residential units (over 2 million square feet) which we expect will hit the market in the coming years. By providing alternative links for crosstown and Beltway commuters, the Jones Branch Connector is expected to relieve congestion and increase traffic flow at some of our busiest Tysons intersections.
The project wisely incorporates dedicated bike lanes and lighted sidewalks, which establishes a vital path for pedestrians and cyclists, and will also catalyze the delivery to Tysons of additional safe and convenient transportation options. This is a major step toward establishing a Tysons-wide grid of streets and opens the door to the expansion of our recently launched Capital Bikeshare network.
Pun intended: The Jones Branch Connector will pave the way for enhanced bus and shuttle coverage. It will also serve commuters by providing the first direct link from the Beltway HOT lanes to Tysons East.
We are excited. Congratulations and thanks to all who enabled us to get to this day. I looking forward to completion of this important step in the Tysons story; the evolution of our AudaCity.
Sol Glasner is currently serving as Acting President and Executive Director of Tysons Partnership. He has been associated with the Partnership from its inception, serving as Chairman of the Board of Directors from 2012 – 2014.