Tysons Corner, VA

Convenience store 7-Eleven plans to open in Tysons Corner Center this fall — a move that is part of the Japanese-owned chain’s plans to break out of its familiar facade.

Gary Bowman, a senior real estate representative for 7-Eleven, told Tysons Reporter the company is looking to venture into “nontraditional sites.”

“We’re such a large brand,” Bowman said, adding that 7-Eleven wants to provide its services in more than just the standalone buildings customers are used to seeing. The new concept for the stores includes eyeing malls with high traffic counts, he said.

Calling Tysons Corner Center “a fantastic mall,” Bowman said that its set-up and diversity of offerings appealed to 7-Eleven.

The convenience store will occupy roughly a 1,600 square-foot-space on the first level of the mall and expects a fall opening, he said. “The permitting process is moving along, but not like we’re used to seeing it.”

Right now, the spot is getting ready for construction, he said. Once finished, the new 7-Eleven store plans to have tables set up outside for people who want to stop to enjoy a sandwich or drink before heading back into the mall.

The 7-Eleven website lists 724 locations in Virginia, with four in McLean and six in Vienna. If you don’t want to wait until the fall to sip Slurpees, the closest one to the mall is at 1931 Old Gallows Road.

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Editor’s note: Over the next several weeks, Tysons Reporter is profiling the eight districts of Tysons. This is the seventh article in that series.

If Tysons Central 123 is Tysons’ Fifth Avenue, Tysons Central 7 is its Wall Street.

Anchored on the original “Tyson’s Corner” and the Greensboro Metrorail station, Tysons Central 7 is one of Tysons’ four downtown districts. It is the most similar to a conventional “Central Business District” elsewhere in the United States.

Northeast of Leesburg Pike, the district “will continue to have one of the highest concentrations of office space in Tysons.” Southwest of Leesburg Pike, planners intend a “Civic Commons” to be the heart of the Tysons community — but change might be slower here than in other downtown districts.

An Urban Downtown

Tysons Central 7, named for the highway number of Leesburg Pike, is home to towers like 8100 and 8200 Greensboro Drive — modernist offices surrounded by lots of surface parking. It is also home to The Boro, a development opening later this year that consists of mixed-use high-rises surrounded by urban plazas and a new street grid. If the former represents Tysons’ past, and the latter represents Tysons’ present, both will leave their marks on Tysons’ future.

Predictions are that Tysons will grow to 200,000 jobs and 100,000 residents by 2050. Whether you think those predictions are conservative or generous, it is inevitable that the imbalance between jobs and residents will continue to be a major factor shaping Tysons’ development. Many of the new residences will be located in the districts like Old Courthouse that lie a little farther from the Metro, leaving the office pressure on the downtown.

Even as it diversifies with some retail, residences, and hotels to “become a vibrant 24-hour area,” Tysons Central 7 will continue to be defined by offices of all kinds, old and new.

Tysons Central 7 lies on what is naturally the most elevated land in Fairfax County, making it perfect for ambitious builders hoping to leave their mark on Tysons’ emerging skyline.

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As Tysons works its way towards being a fully fledged city, The Iconic tower is being designed to be one of the area’s first real landmark buildings.

At over 600 feet tall, the planned Iconic tower in Tysons West is the most visible of the Clemente Development Company’s plans for Tysons West, an area surrounding the Spring Hill Metro station. The tower had originally been planned for mixed residential-commercial, but in August was transformed into an almost-entirely office development.

The tower is just one part of the developer’s sprawling 3 million-square-foot redevelopment plans.

The first building planned for development is a hotel and a condominium building on the north end of the site, to be followed by an office building just south near the Metro kiss-and-ride. Juliann Clemente, President of Clemente Development, said while the development could do nothing to affect the Metro exit, the Fairfax County-owned kiss-and-ride and property just east of the station exit is being transformed into an open plaza.

A street is planned to bisect the property, with a residential, retail and arts district located just to the west of the offices. Unlike the nearby Boro project, Clemente noted that the project is entirely tightly clustered around the Metro station and on a flat elevation. While The Boro project is designed to be a day-to-day retail experience to compete with the Tysons Corner Center mall, Clemente said the View project is designed to be a one-stop-shop for everything someone would need in a retail, residential or office experience.

The project also includes plans for a 199-seat black box theater at the project, replacing a 500-seat theater that had been in earlier plans. Kevin MacWhorter, a lawyer working on the project, said the theater was the result of a negotiation with Fairfax County.

“Capital One has a 200-seat performing arts center,” MacWhorter said. “We wanted something more intimate and flexible. This is the heartbeat of the project.”

As part of the proffers for the development — incentives offered by a developer to allow for exceptions to zoning ordinances — the Clemente Development Company is currently looking funding construction of a new community center behind the nearby fire station at 1560 Spring Hill Road, with four to five levels of the building set aside for affordable housing. The developer is also planning to make renovations to the nearby Raglan Park.

The project is still in the early stages of land use approval. MacWhorter said the item is docketed to go to the Fairfax County Planning Commission and Board of Supervisors in October. If the project receives approval, Clemente said construction could break ground on the first building as early as next spring.

“We’ve been watching Tysons grow since 1983,” Clemente said at the developer’s headquarters at 8500 Leesburg Pike. “When Metro came through, we knew the time was right to do this development.”

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The Weekly Planner is a roundup of the most interesting events coming up over the next week in the Tysons area.

We’ve scoured the web for events of note in Tysons, Vienna, Merrifield, McLean and Falls Church. Know of any we’ve missed? Tell us!

Monday (April 22)

  • Game of Thrones Trivia Night8-10:30 p.m. at Blackfinn Ameripub (2750 Gallows Road) — The Blackfinn Ameripub is hosting a trivia night themed around the popular HBO show Game of Thrones. There is no entry fee, but top teams can win special Game of Thrones-related prizes. Food and drinks themed around the show will also be available.

Wednesday (April 24)

  • 2019 Green Expo — 7-9 p.m. at the Vienna Community Center (120 Cherry Street SE.) — The event hosted by the town’s Community Enhancement Commission helps locals learn about sustainability, home energy efficiency, recycling and more. Activities at the Expo include a raffle to win a rain barrel and lessons on how to make a yard a habitat for local wildlife. Green Expo is free and open to the public.

Thursday (April 25)

  • Rosé All Day Event5-7 p.m. at Tysons Corner Center — As part of series of events coming to BrandBox, Winky Lux’s Roseé themed event will feature all-day pampering with hair touch-ups and creative consultation. Entrance is $20, which also comes with a $20 WinkyLux gift card, a makeover and rosé tasting. RSVPs can be made by emailing becca.willcox[email protected]
  • Claude Moore Farm Public Meeting6-8 p.m. at Madison Community Center (3829 N Stafford Street, Arlington) — The National Park Service is launching its planning effort for McLean’s Claude Moore Farm, which closed last fall, with an open house. Concepts for the park are planned to be shared at the meeting with the public given a chance to offer feedback.

Saturday (April 27)

  • 8th Annual Taste of Vienna11 a.m.-8 p.m. at the Vienna Volunteer Fire Department (400 Center Street) — The annual fundraiser for the Vienna Volunteer Fire Department is coming back, rain or shine. The event showcases food and beer from around Vienna. For adults, beer tickets are $15. All-day moon bounce admission for children is $2.50.
  • Caboose Brewing Company’s Springfest 201912-7 p.m. at Caboose Commons (2918 Eskridge Road) — Caboose Commons is hosting its first craft brewery festival, with eight other breweries planned to attend the event in Merrifield. Live music, smoked barbecue, and authentic German beer are planned for the celebration. Tickets are $25.
  • Pints for Parkinson’s — 1-5 p.m. at Tysons Biergarten (8346 Leesburg Pike) — At a special fundraiser, all donations and a percentage of sales at Tysons Biergarten will be given to local non-profit Parkinson Social Network — a group dedicated to bringing the Parkinson’s community together to inform and encourage those living with Parkinson’s.

Sunday (April 28)

  • 2019 Walk on the Hill2-5 p.m. at the Windover Avenue — The annual tradition dating back to 1971 takes visitors on a self-guided tour through a historic Vienna neighborhood. Approximately 50 yards and gardens are planned to participate in the tours, and live entertainment is also planned for the celebration.

Photo via Facebook

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(Updated at 3:25 p.m.) More bubble tea is headed to Tysons Corner Center.

Moge Tee has a “coming soon” sign outside of a vacant store between the Pandora and Steinway stores on the first level near Nordstrom. Renaud Consulting announced in March that Moge Tee signed a lease for a 1,000 square foot space in the mall.

Currently based in New York City, Moge Tee’s menu serves up parfaits, coffee, cheese tea, milk tea, fruit tea and Uji matcha — a type of green tea. The teas and fresh cheese used are imported from Australia, according to Moge Tee’s website.

The bubble tea spot will soon join a few other recent newcomers at the mall.

In March, shorts chain Chubbies opened as a tenant of BrandBox, a collection of pop-up stores in the mall.

Bubbles Salon, which specializes in hair color, shaping, and styling services, held a grand opening on April 4 for its new location on the first level by Nordstrom. The salon is near the temporarily closed Aveda salon, which is currently undergoing a renovation, according to signs.

On the second level near the Barnes and Noble, All Star Sports opened on April 1 in the former spot of A Christmas to Remember, a holiday decorations store, according to a spokesman for the mall operator Macerich.

Until Moge Tee opens, shoppers at Tysons Corner Center can currently get their bubble tea fix at Kung Fu Tea.

First photo via Facebook 

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Laura Schwartz is a licensed Realtor in VA, D.C. and MD with McEnearney Associates in McLean. Reach the office at 703-790-9090.

On May 4 and 5, from 11 a.m.-4 p.m. each day, you have the opportunity to join the Northern Virginia Parade of Homes tour of the areas most popular builders and remodeling contractors.

Admission is free and they have a great interactive map of the homes on the route. They’re listed alphabetically or you can focus on a city. Below I’ve highlighted some questions to ask them if you’re thinking of building.

Make sure you click the “add to my tour” button when looking at builders. Some of the addresses listed are their offices and not the model home they’re using for the tour.

Some of the homes listed are actually for sale, some are not.

Questions to ask:

  • If you like some of the features of the home and hate others — ask if the house was a custom build for someone (i.e. it’s someone else’s taste and not necessarily representative of what the builder normally does).
  • Ask about lot acquisition. If you’re looking for a specific lot size, location/school zone, type of home (i.e. 3-car garage), talk to the builders about how they find lots, what they do if they get a call with one that might match your needs.
  • Look for personality — building a home is a highly personal transaction, way more than buying/selling normally. You want to make sure you actually like the person you’ll be dealing with almost daily for a year.
  • Ask all the questions you’ve heard rumors about (does a pool count a lot coverage? How about a deck?) These guys will know the answer.
  • Do they have floor plans they’re able to reuse if you like a specific one (check their websites, most have full photos and floor plans for the home they’ve built previously)? Find out if they have architects they’d recommend if you want to do something truly custom.

Ask about financing options. They’ll happily give you the names of local banks they like working with and give you options.

  • When you’re walking through these houses, really get a feel for the space. How does 5,000 sq. ft. feel? Compare that to 4,000 or 6,000. You’ll see so many models on the parade of homes, you should be able to get a good feel of what you need, don’t really care about, size/space, etc.

The homes are beautiful! Enjoy the tour!

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MOD Pizza — a pizza restaurant chain — is coming to the Pike 7 Plaza shopping center in Tysons.

The new restaurant is under construction at 8405 Leesburg Pike, between the Cava and the Honeygrow that both opened last fall.

The new MOD Pizza location isn’t the first in the area — there’s another at 168 Maple Avenue W. in Vienna that opened in 2016 — but the chain has been undergoing a widespread growth in the D.C. region.

It is unknown when the location plans to open, but the company is currently looking for a general manager for the Tysons location with a base salary of $68,100.

Construction is also ongoing at an enclosed JP Morgan Chase kiosk between MOD Pizza and Honeygrow.

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Tysons Reporter has a new local editor, but its former editor is not going far.

Catherine Douglas Moran is taking the reins as the local editor for Tysons Reporter, covering Tysons, McLean, Vienna and Falls Church. A Master’s candidate at George Washington University, which is also her alma mater, Moran most recently served as the interim editor for our sister site Reston Now, while its local editor was on leave.

“I am excited to cover the changes in Tysons and how they will impact the people who live and work in this developing city — from housing to transportation, from the food scene to nightlife,” said Moran. “I am especially looking forward to talking with members of the Tysons, McLean, Vienna and Falls Church communities to hear more about their experiences, visions and concerns.”

Outgoing Tysons Reporter editor Vernon Miles helped to build the site from scratch following its launch last fall to, most recently, nearly 150,000 pageviews and more than 65,000 readers per month. Miles, who’s noted for his detailed civic coverage and penchant for witty headlines, is not going far: he will now serve as senior reporter for Tysons Reporter and our other sister site, ARLnow in Arlington.

“Wait, Scott, am I being demoted?” Miles said in a brief statement. “But no, Scott, I’m covering Tysons. Is this on the record? Please tell everyone that I…”

Please join us in welcoming Catherine!

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Free Bike Rides on Earth Day — In celebration of Earth Day today (April 22), Capital Bikeshare wants to encourage more carbon-free transportation by offering a free 24 Hour Pass, which gives cyclists a full day of unlimited 30-minute rides. [Capital Bikeshare]

Restaurant Site Faces Redevelopment — “D.C.-based Northfield Investment and Development has acquired the former Marco Polo restaurant site in Vienna with plans to develop 44 condominium townhouses and 8,200 square feet of retail. The former Marco Polo restaurant at 245 Maple Ave. had already closed when it was heavily damaged by fire in October and later demolished.” [Washingtom Business Journal]

Virginia Tops Distracted Driving List — “April is Distracted Driving Awareness Month and this year, a new study ranked Virginia as the worst state for texting and driving… In 2019, Zendrive found that Virginia drivers use their phone an average of 9 percent of the time, which is a 3 percent increase from last year.” [Inside NoVa]

Pop-Up Fitness Class at Caboose Commons — People can lift, tone and drink brews at a free pop-up class by Falls Church Pure Barre at Caboose Commons tonight at 4 p.m. Happy hour will take place from 3:30-6 p.m. [Caboose Brewing]

Vienna Students Win National Merit Scholarships — “The National Merit Scholarship Corporation announced the first 1,000 corporate-sponsored scholarships Wednesday, April 17… Chloe E. Martin of Paul VI Catholic High School received a scholarship from the PwC Charitable Foundation. Martin plans to study business in college. The other winner, Richard H. Wang of Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology, got a scholarship from Northrop Grumman. Wang will likely study engineering.” [Vienna Patch]

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It’s been a long time coming, but Vienna’s two existing Starbucks are closing down as the chain readies to open a drive-thru location a few blocks away at 367 Maple Ave E.

On Sunday, April 28, both of the Starbucks along Maple Avenue will be permanently closing.

“We would like to thank you for being a part of our store community,” Store Manager Jesus Torres said in a sign posted on the store’s front door. “You are the heart of who we are at Starbucks. It has been a great pleasure to connect with you every day. We are very thankful to have played a role in your daily routine and that you have shared these moments of your life with us.”

The new Starbucks location is planned to open Thursday, May 2.

If you absolutely, positively, cannot go four days without Starbucks, the closest nearby locations are one at 2930 Chain Bridge Road in Oakton and one at 8381 Leesburg Pike in Tysons.

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