Fairfax County E-Bird for September 17, 2019

Better together: A truth in life, as well as in business, is that one can succeed faster as part of a team than alone. Yesterday, 10 Northern Virginia jurisdictions announced they have done just that. Instead of only working independently to attract the companies and talent need throughout the region, these jurisdictions will work together to market themselves as a whole. The Northern Virginia Economic Development Alliance (NoVA EDA), of which FCEDA is a part, will function so that each jurisdiction can still act individually. However, this partnership allows for a unified voice when competing for talent against larger metropolitan areas such as New York City or Silicon Valley. The Washington Post has the full story.

Thumbs up: The next big development for the Wiehle-Reston East Metro area has earned a thumbs up from Fairfax County planners ahead of a public hearing. New York-based TF Cornerstone filed plans more than two years ago to redevelop an 11.6-acre site located immediately east of Wiehle Avenue, between Sunrise Valley Drive and the Dulles Toll Road. The applicant and the county worked through issues related to the mix of uses, design, connectivity, and transportation improvements, coming to a plan that “now balances a mix of residential and non-residential uses that are appropriately located in conformance with the Comprehensive Plan.” The Washington Business Journal has the full story.

No car needed: A new development in Tysons called “The Boro” is betting on getting people to ditch their cars and live in a space where they can live, work and play — all within a short distance to the Metro. NBC News4‘s Adam Tuss reports the development includes apartments, the largest Whole Foods on the East Coast, a movie theater, shops, and restaurants.

Change is in the air: A proposal to turn a pair of deteriorating houses on Richmond Highway into a small shopping center will go before the Fairfax County Planning Commission this week. The shopping center would consist of two 4,600-square-foot buildings, with a driveway that intersects with Richmond Highway separating the two buildings. Covering the Corridor reports that two lots were last used as a rental car facility and a title loan business, respectively.

The road less traveled: According to new data from the Virginia Tourism Corp., U.S. visitors to Fairfax County spent about $3.3 billion in 2018. Inside NoVA reports that tourism spending in Fairfax County is up from 2017, but the gap between Fairfax and front-runner Arlington ($3.4 billion) rose from $95 million that year to about $100 million in 2018. According to the report, every $110,210 in domestic-tourism spending supports one job in the commonwealth’s tourism industry.


Life to the fullest: USA Today released its list of the 50 counties with the highest life expectancy and Fairfax County ranks at number 8 with a life expectancy of 83.73 years—five years above the national average of 78.6, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Neighboring counties also appear on the list: Arlington comes in at number 28 with an average life expectancy of 82.76 and Loudoun County comes in at number 16, with an average life expectancy of 83.16.

A change of plans: With the continued urbanization of Merrifield and Falls Church, Tysons Reporter is sharing that an office park east of I-495 may transform into a mixed-use development. Last July, the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors approved considering changes to parts of the Merrifield Suburban Center, which aims for two high-density, “core areas” located between I-66 and Woodburn Road. Now, a proposed change to the plan would have an area surrounded by I-495, Lee Highway and Route 50 become “an amenity-rich office park and mixed-use neighborhood.” This area would become “an amenity-rich office park and mixed-use neighborhood.”

A whole different animal: Reston-based Buffalo Groupe  has acquired golf-centric communications firm, 54 Brands. Founded in 1985, 54 Brands is a marketing and communications company with experience in several categories including golf, furniture, higher education, professional services, franchising and finance. The Washington Business Journal states that 54 Brands will now be known as 54 Brands, a Buffalo Groupe company, with President Jack Burris continuing in his role and concurrently holding the title of managing director with Buffalo Groupe.

Charting a new course: The Fairfax County Planning Commission voted last week to approve the application by Golf Course Overlook LLC to rezone Golf Course Plaza — which is on the west edge of Isaac Newton Square and next to Hidden Creek Country Club. Reston Now says the proposal includes replacing an office building with 300 residential units.

At your service: Ms.Medicine, an Ohio concierge medicine practice with a focus on women’s health, will expand its practice to Fairfax County, come November. Eileen West, MD, & Associates will lead the concierge practice. It is the first extension of the brand, which was created by Dr. Lisa Larkin at her Mariemont, Ohio, practice outside of Cincinnati. The Washington Business Journal shared that West will see female patients, as well as their spouses and adult children, including men.

Featured business events

  • September 19 — The Blueprint to Business Success In Europe. A webinar on how to expand your business reach, generate leads and sales while remaining compliant with GDPR (General Data Protection Rules). Presented by the Dulles Regional Chamber International Business Council and US2Europe. Click here.
  • September 20 – Shaping the Future of Fairfax County Together. Special update on the county’s first-ever strategic planning process especially for members of the business community, philanthropic and higher-education partners. Click here.
  • October 3 — How Business Gets Done between India and the U.S. A webinar presented in Herndon and in Hyderabad, India, by the Dulles Regional Chamber and the Indo-American Chamber of Commerce as part of a series on opportunities and obstacles in doing business globally. This forum will feature subject matter experts from the U.S. and India. Click here.
  • November 14 — BL Small Business Expo. Visit with about 70 different exhibitors presenting a wide range of products and services that could help you enhance your business and/or life. Keynote speaker will be Victor Hoskins, president and CEO of the FCEDA. Click here.

Click here for the FCEDA business event calendar.