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Tysons Corner, Virginia

Tysons Corner, Virginia
Census-designated place
Tysons Corner with Washington Metro Silver Line construction in 2010
Tysons Corner with Washington Metro Silver Line construction in 2010
Location of Tysons Corner in Fairfax County, Virginia
Location of Tysons Corner in Fairfax County, Virginia
Boundaries of the Tysons Corner CDP as of 2003[//articles/eng/Tysons_Corner,_Virginia?action=edit [update]]
Boundaries of the Tysons Corner CDP as of 2003
Country United States
State Virginia
County Fairfax
 • Total 4.27 sq mi (11.1 km2)
 • Land 4.26 sq mi (11.0 km2)
 • Water 0.01 sq mi (0.026 km2)
Elevation 486 ft (148 m)
Population (2010)[1]
 • Total 19,627
 • Estimate (2012) 21,799
 • Density 4,600/sq mi (1,800/km2)
Time zone Eastern (EST) (UTC-5)
 • Summer (DST) EDT (UTC-4)
FIPS code 51-79952[2]
GNIS feature ID 1496341[3]

Tysons Corner or Tysons[4] is a census-designated place (CDP) and unincorporated community in Fairfax County, Virginia, United States.[1] Located in Northern Virginia between the community of McLean and the town of Vienna along the Capital Beltway (I-495), it lies within the Washington Metropolitan Area.[5][6] Home to two super-regional shopping malls—Tysons Corner Center and Tysons Galleria—and the corporate headquarters of numerous companies, Tysons is Fairfax County's central business district and a regional commercial center.[7] It has been characterized as a quintessential example of an edge city.[8] The population was 19,627 as of the 2010 census.[1]


  • History 1
  • Geography 2
    • Climate 2.1
  • Demographics 3
    • 2010 census 3.1
  • Economy 4
  • Government 5
  • Education 6
    • Primary and secondary education 6.1
    • Libraries 6.2
  • Transportation 7
  • References 8
  • External links 9


Tysons Corner in May 2001.

Known originally as Peach Grove, the area received the designation Tysons Crossroads after the Civil War. William Tyson, from Cecil County, Maryland, purchased a tract of land from A. Lawrence Foster. Tyson, a Maryland native, served as postmaster of the now discontinued Peach Grove Post Office 1854–1866. The Peach Grove Post office was established Tuesday, April 22, 1851.[9]

As recently as the 1950s, Tysons Corner was a quiet rural intersection flanked by a few small stores. Big changes came in 1963 when the Tysons area moved from a country crossroads to a giant commercial urban area with the awarding of contracts at the interchange of Route 7 and Route 123.

The Fairfax County Board of Supervisors in 1962 approved the Tysons Corner Shopping Center (now Tysons Corner Center), which was planned to be 88.13 acres (356,600 m2) within a 150 acres (0.61 km2) triangle bordered by Chain Bridge Road, Leesburg Pike, and the Capital Beltway. Developers proclaimed it as the largest enclosed mall in the world when it opened July 25, 1968.[10]

In recent years, the influx of technology companies into Northern Virginia has brought many new office buildings and hotels to the landscape. The rapid growth of Tysons Corner (in comparison to other locations near the Capital Beltway) has been the topic of numerous studies.[11] One factor was the aggressive promotion of Tysons Corner by Earle Williams, for many years the CEO of the defense contracting firm Braddock Dunn & McDonald.[11] Tysons Corner serves as a "downtown" of Fairfax County, with one quarter of all office space and one eighth of all retail in the county. It is an auto-oriented edge city with severe traffic congestion, and it faces competition from the urban areas of Arlington and newer suburban edge cities such as Dulles.

In 2008, the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors unanimously voted to begin a 40-year plan to urbanize Tysons Corner around the coming four stops of Washington Metro's Silver Line in the vein of neighboring Arlington County's Rosslyn-Ballston corridor.[12] A preliminary estimate from the Fairfax County Department of Transportation suggested that $7.83 billion in transportation infrastructure projects will be necessary to transform Tysons Corner into a high-density urban center from 2010 to 2050, most of which will be allocated to both construction phases of the Silver Line. Existing plans call for construction of a grid layout for streets around the rail stations, projected to cost $742 million. An additional $1 billion will be spent on further transit and street grid projects from 2030 to 2050.[13]

In November 2012, the county approved Arbor Row, a 2,500,000 ft (762,000 m) mixed-used development containing office and residential highrises, ground-floor retail, and underground parking near the pending Tysons Corner Station.[14] In April 2013, the county approved Scotts Run South, a 6,700,000 ft (2,042,160 m) development containing 17 buildings, including six office and residential buildings, one hotel, and ground-floor retail near the pending McLean Station. This development alone will be larger than Reston Town Center.[15][16]

Ahead of the Washington Metro Silver Line opening in mid-2014, the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors and the Tysons Partnership, a nonprofit association that represents the area's stakeholders, began rebranding the area as simply "Tysons", dropping "Corner" from the name. The change started as a matter of convenience, but then later took hold to market the change in the area's character, according to members of the board. The change is unofficial, and either "Tysons" or "Tysons Corner" can be used in addresses.[4]


The Tysons Corner skyline at night (2012)

Tysons Corner is located at (38.918485, −77.229833) at an elevation of 486 feet (148 m).[3][17] Located in Northern Virginia at the intersection of Virginia State Route 123 and State Route 7, Tysons Corner is 11 miles (18 km) west of downtown Washington, D.C. and 6 miles (9.7 km) northeast of Fairfax, the county seat.[18]

The community lies in the Piedmont upland approximately 3.7 miles (6.0 km) south-southwest of the Potomac River.[5][19] The highest natural point in Fairfax County, at 520 feet (160 m) above sea level, is located in Tysons Corner.[20] Wolftrap Creek, a tributary of nearby Difficult Run, forms the northwestern border of the community. Two of the creek's tributaries, Moomac Creek and the Old Courthouse Spring Branch, flow north through northwest Tysons Corner. Scott Run, a tributary of the Potomac, flows north through eastern Tysons Corner.[5]

According to the United States Census Bureau, the community has a total area of 4.27 square miles (11.1 km2) of which 4.26 square miles (11.0 km2) is land and 0.01 square miles (0.026 km2) is water.[6]

As a suburb of Washington, D.C., Tysons Corner is a part of both the Washington Metropolitan Area and the larger Baltimore-Washington Metropolitan Area. It is bordered on all sides by other Washington suburbs, including: McLean to the north, Pimmit Hills to the east, Idylwood to the southeast, Dunn Loring to the south, Vienna to the southwest, and Wolf Trap to the west.[6]


The climate in this area is characterized by hot, humid summers and generally mild to cool winters. According to the Köppen Climate Classification system, Tysons Corner has a humid subtropical climate, abbreviated "Cfa" on climate maps.[21]


Tysons Corner was one of the inspirations for, and figures prominently in, Joel Garreau's pioneering study of the edge city phenomenon.[8] Among the reasons for calling Tysons Corner an edge city is that, in contrast to typical "bedroom" suburbs, people commute into it in the morning and away from it at night, with a daytime population greater than 100,000 and a nighttime population of fewer than 20,000.[22] Planners envision up to 200,000 jobs and 100,000 residents in coming decades.[12]

2010 census

As of the 2010 census, there were 19,627 people, 9,481 households, and 4,754 families residing in the community. The population density was 4,607.3 people per square mile (1,784.3/km²). There were 10,637 housing units at an average density of 2,496.9/sq mi (967.0/km²). The racial makeup of the community was 60.9% White, 27.5% Asian, 4.9% African American, 0.2% American Indian, 0.1% Pacific Islander, 1.9% from other races, and 4.5% from two or more races. Hispanics and Latinos of any race were 8.1% of the population.[1]

There were 9,481 households out of which 23.5% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 39.8% were married couples living together, 2.9% had a male householder with no wife present, 7.4% had a female householder with no husband present, and 49.9% were non-families. 40.7% of all households were made up of individuals, and 18.4% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.07, and the average family size was 2.87.[1]

The age distribution of the community was 18.4% under the age of 18, 6.6% from 18 to 24, 40.4% from 25 to 44, 23.5% from 45 to 64, and 11.1% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 35.8 years. The gender makeup of the community was 47.7% male and 52.3% female.[1]

The median income for a household in the community was $94,083, and the median income for a family was $131,717. Males had a median income of $85,645 versus $66,019 for females. The community's per capita income was $64,294. About 2.8% of families and 4.2% of the population were below the poverty line, including 1.3% of those under age 18 and 14.3% of those age 65 or over.[1]


USA Today and Gannett headquarters in Tysons Corner

Tysons Corner is Fairfax County's central business district with the largest concentration of office space in Northern Virginia.[7] Tysons had 46 million sq ft (4.3 million m²) of office and retail space as of 2008, making it the classic example of an edge city.[12] As of 2013, Tysons Corner had 14 million sq ft (1.3 million m²) of office and retail space approved or under construction, approximately one-third of a 45 million sq ft backlog of projected urban development in close proximity to the area's four Metro Silver Line stations.[23]

The corporate headquarters of Booz Allen Hamilton, MITRE Corporation, Capital One, Freddie Mac, Gannett Company, Hilton Worldwide, Exelis, MicroStrategy, Octagon, Primus Telecom, SAIC, Space Adventures, Spacenet, Sunrise Senior Living, and USA Today are located in Tysons Corner, though most use a McLean or Vienna address.[24][25][26] The Fairfax County Economic Development Authority is also headquartered in the CDP.[7] In 1995, AOL was headquartered in the Tysons Corner CDP,[24][27] near the town of Vienna.[28] Qatar Airways operated its North American headquarters office in Tysons Corner,[24][29] although it later moved to Washington, D.C.[30] Other firms with offices in Tysons Corner include BAE Systems,[31] Compuware,[32] Palantir Technologies, Ernst & Young,[33] Northrop Grumman,[34] PricewaterhouseCoopers.[35] Xerox,[36] and Vie de France.[37]

The area is home to Tysons Corner Center – the largest shopping mall in the state and in the Baltimore-Washington area – and two upscale shopping centers, Tysons Galleria (also one of the largest malls in the region) and Fairfax Square, which neighbor it to the north and south respectively. The average household income within a 5-mile (8 km) radius of Tysons Corner Center is $174,809.[38] Every weekday, Tysons Corner draws 55,000 shoppers from around the region.[39]

The Tysons II development area, home to the Tysons Galleria mall, itself sometimes referred to as 'Tysons II'

The CDP includes a technology industry base and network infrastructure. In 2007, roughly 1,200 technology companies were operating in Tysons Corner. 31.6% of the jobs in the Tysons Corner submarket and 20.2% of the companies in the submarket were in the technology sector.[7]

Tysons Corner is the 12th largest employment center in the United States.[40] As of 2012, 75.6% of the population over the age of 16 was in the labor force. 0.6% was in the armed forces, and 75.0% was in the civilian labor force with 70.4% employed and 4.5% unemployed. The occupational composition of the employed civilian labor force was: 66.4% in management, business, science, and arts; 20.3% in sales and office occupations; 10.5% in service occupations; 2.1% in natural resources, construction, and maintenance; 0.7% in production, transportation, and material moving. The three industries employing the largest percentages of the working civilian labor force were: professional, scientific, and management, and administrative and waste management services (28.8%); educational services, health care, and social assistance (13.3%); and public administration (12.8%).[1]

The cost of living in Tysons Corner is very high; compared to a U.S. average of 100, the cost of living index for the community is 140.4.[41] As of 2012, the median home value in the community was $464,000, the median selected monthly owner cost was $2,649 for housing units with a mortgage and $906 for those without, and the median gross rent was $1,734.[1]


As it is unincorporated, Tysons Corner has no municipal government. The Fairfax County Government provides local government services directly.[42] For the purposes of representation on the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors, Tysons is located in the Board's Hunter Mill and Providence Districts.[43]

Companies in Tysons Corner typically use McLean or Vienna addresses; however, in April 2011, the United States Postal Service approved the use of Tysons Corner as a postal address for the 22102 and 22182 ZIP codes of McLean and Vienna, respectively.[44]

Tysons Corner lies within Virginia's 8th and 11th U.S. Congressional Districts. For the purposes of representation in the Virginia General Assembly, the community is located in the 32nd district of the Virginia Senate and the 34th and 35th districts of the Virginia House of Delegates.[45]


Primary and secondary education

James Madison High School, or McLean High School.[46][48]


Fairfax County Public Library operates the Tysons-Pimmit Regional Library in nearby Pimmit Hills.[49][50]


Interstate 495, the Capital Beltway, runs generally north-south through eastern Tysons Corner. Virginia State Route 267, the east-west Dulles Toll Road, runs along the community's northern border. The I-495/VA 267 interchange is located in the northeastern part of the community. Virginia State Route 7 runs southeast-northwest through Tysons Corner, intersecting Virginia State Route 123, which runs northeast-southwest, in the community's center.[47]

Due to its large daytime population, Tysons experiences a high level of traffic congestion. This has led to plans for denser development, including additional rail infrastructure.[12] On July 26, 2014, the Washington Metro started offering rapid transit rail service in Tysons Corner via its Silver Line.[51][52] Metro operates four stations on the line in Tysons; from east to west, these are: McLean, Tysons Corner, Greensboro, and Spring Hill. The Silver Line connects Tysons by rail with Reston to the west and Arlington and Washington, D.C. to the east. Further extension of the line west to Washington Dulles International Airport is projected for completion in 2018.[51]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i "American FactFinder 2".  
  2. ^ "American FactFinder".  
  3. ^ a b "US Board on Geographic Names".  
  4. ^ a b Reilly, Corinne; Victor Zapana (October 4, 2012). "Tysons Corner is unofficially dropping the ‘corner’ from its name". The Washington Post. 
  5. ^ a b c "Fairfax County Transportation Plan" (PDF). Fairfax County Department of Transportation. Oct 2006. Retrieved 2011-07-23. 
  6. ^ a b c "Virginia: 2010 – Population and Housing Counts" (PDF).  
  7. ^ a b c d "Area Business Report." Fairfax County Economic Development Authority. Retrieved on May 12, 2009.
  8. ^ a b Joel Garreau, Edge City: Life on the New Frontier, (New York: Random House 1992)
  9. ^ Timeline of Fairfax County History
  10. ^ Historians Tackled History of Tysons Corner Great Falls Historical Society
  11. ^ a b  
  12. ^ a b c d Tysons plan looks at success, pitfalls of Rosslyn, Ballston
  13. ^ Tysons will need $15 billion – 'with a B' The Washington Post
  14. ^ Arbor Row
  15. ^ Fairfax County board approves Scotts Run development in Tysons
  16. ^ Scotts Run Station
  17. ^ "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990".  
  18. ^ "Virginia Official State Transportation Map – Cities in Detail".  
  19. ^ "Piedmont province". The Geology of Virginia.  
  20. ^ "Water Quality Factors" (PDF). Fairfax County Comprehensive Plan, 2011 edition. County of Fairfax, Virginia. p. 23. Retrieved 2011-07-23. 
  21. ^ Climate Summary for Tysons Corner, Virginia
  22. ^ Estimated Daytime Population and Employment-Residence Ratios 2000
  23. ^ Jonathan O'Connell. "Despite Silver Line delays, developers plot 45 million square feet of development in Tysons".  
  24. ^ a b c "Tysons Corner CDP, Virginia." United States Census Bureau. Retrieved on May 7, 2009.
  25. ^ "Contact Us." Spacenet. Retrieved on May 12, 2009.
  26. ^ "Contact Us." Hilton Worldwide. Retrieved on October 14, 2009.
  27. ^ "AMERICA ONLINE INC." The Washington Post. April 17, 2005. Retrieved on May 7, 2009.
  28. ^ Sugawara, Sandra. "America Online to Reduce Rates; Firm Faces Subscriber Boycott, Pressure From Competitors." The Washington Post. October 13, 1994. Financial B09. Retrieved on May 7, 2009.
  29. ^ "Washington." Qatar Airways. November 21, 2007. Retrieved on May 7, 2009.
  30. ^ "Washington." Qatar Airways. Retrieved on May 7, 2009.
  31. ^ "CS Information Technology, McLean, VA." BAE Systems. Retrieved on May 12, 2009.
  32. ^ "Compuware Around the World." Compuware. Retrieved on January 7, 2010.
  33. ^ "Our Locations." Ernst & Young. Retrieved on May 12, 2009.
  34. ^ "Company Locations." Northrop Grumman. Retrieved on May 12, 2009.
  35. ^ "Below is a list of offices for United States of America." PricewaterhouseCoopers. Retrieved on May 12, 2009.
  37. ^ "Contact Vie de France." Vie de France. Retrieved on May 12, 2009.
  38. ^ "Macerich Tysons Corner Center Market Profile" (PDF). 
  39. ^ Virginia Business Online: Virginia’s 800-pound gorilla
  40. ^ A Shopping Nexus Outside Washington Plots a Future as an Urban Center
  41. ^ "Tysons Corner, Virginia". Retrieved 2013-12-05. 
  42. ^ "Our Government". County of Fairfax, Virginia. Retrieved 2013-12-05. 
  43. ^ "Supervisor Districts in Fairfax County" (PDF). County of Fairfax, Virginia. Retrieved 2013-12-05. 
  44. ^ Washington Post: Tysons Corner gets its own postal address. Retrieved on April 19, 2011
  45. ^ "Redistricting Plans – Map". Redistricting 2010. Commonwealth of Virginia Division of Legislative Services. Retrieved 2013-12-05. 
  46. ^ a b "Schools and Centers Directory – Cluster 2".  
  47. ^ a b  
  48. ^ "Schools and Centers Directory – Cluster 1".  
  49. ^ "Library Branches." Fairfax County Public Library. Retrieved on October 21, 2009.
  50. ^ "Pimmit Hills CDP, Virginia." U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved on October 21, 2009.
  51. ^ a b "About". Silver Line Metro.  
  52. ^ Gibson, Kendis (2013-12-03). "Metro Silver line opening pushed back again, likely to March".  

External links

  • Tysons Corner, from the Fairfax County Economic Development Authority
  • Why Is It Named Tysons Corner?
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