About Reston


About Reston

Reston is a Fairfax County community approaching 60,000 residents. It is in the Washington, DC metropolitan area and has post World War II goals that include revolutionizing land use, corporate and residential spaces. This planned community boasts international acclaim since its inception in 1964.

Robert E. Simon purchased the land in 1961 with the intention of building a community, the first modern post war planned community in America. The Simon family sold Carnegie Hall and made use of the profits to create this community. Sixty acres remain within the community to accommodate on-going activity in a distillery.
Simon’s vision was to incorporate high-density housing, which would help to conserve open space and create areas for industry, business, recreation and education. The initial development, Lake Anne Plaza was a recreation of the Italian town of Portofino including modern architectural types for the elementary school, two churches and a gas station. The Plaza has an art gallery, restaurants, a few shops and a senior center.

City Overview

Other areas of the city came later and include cube-like townhouses, neighborhood shopping center and the supermarket. Two of its elementary schools carry the name of Apollo 11 astronauts. This town grew into an “edge” city complete with traffic congestion making it necessary to construct several highways to alleviate these jams.

The city includes several parks, wooded areas with creeks and streams, wildflower meadows, two golf courses, numerous public swimming pools, bike paths and hiking trails. The pathways serve to isolate pedestrians from vehicles by use of bridges and tunnels.

Attractions and Transportation

One major goal was to provide a choice of activities that promote leisure time opportunities. The community theatre group presents four plays annually and visitors can drive to places like the Reston Zoo, 1811 Colvin Run Mill or the 1820 Dranesville Tavern, which rents out for special occasions.

Visitors can tour the local Nature Education Center, two art galleries and the Reston Historic Museum. Most residents use the Internal Bus System consisting of five routes passing through the city neighborhoods with a transfer point at the Town Center. The city is ten miles from the Capital Beltway (east) and Dulles International Airport (west).

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