The View at Tysons, a redevelopment proposed by Clemente Development Co. Inc., would have a 48-story “Iconic Tower” reaching 615 feet – 60 feet higher than the region’s tallest building, the Washington Monument.
But company president Jacqueline Cheshire focuses on the multi-level attractions that would be built below the skyscraper.
“The spectacular architecture of the vertically mixed-use iconic tower surrounded by large, ground-level civic plazas rich with gardens, fine art and a performing art venue is something this region really needs,” she said.
Clemente Development designed the proposal and Gensler is the architect; Tysons Development LLC is the applicant.
The project, which is still in its early stages and will need to be reviewed by the Fairfax County Planning Commission and Board of Supervisors, would transform 7.4 acres at Leesburg Pike and Spring Hill Road, just north of the Spring Hill Metro station. The property now has one low-rise office building, plus car dealerships and their service areas.
Most of the site is located within one-eighth of a mile of the station and under the Tysons Comprehensive Plan has no limitations on its floor-area ratio (FAR), which contrasts a development’s overall square footage with that of its site. If the project were developed to its proposed maximum of nearly 2.82 million square feet, its FAR would be a hefty 8.72.
The site would include 61 percent residential space, 19 percent office, 14 percent hotel, 5 percent retail and service uses, and about 1 percent public and arts facilities.
Tysons developers must supply 20 percent of their residential units as affordable or workforce dwellings. Clemente wants to do this at another site on Leesburg Pike, but if that were unfeasible, would provide the units on-site.
The project would anchor a new arts district in West Tysons, wrote Michelle Rosati, an attorney for the applicant, in a statement to the county’s Department of Planning and Zoning.
The site’s buildings would increase in height going clockwise around the property’s periphery and peak with the signature skyscraper. Rather than a town-center concept, where visitors must venture inside a cluster of buildings to discover the site’s amenities, The View would entice people with retail, sculptures and striking architecture on its exterior, company officials said.
Among the project’s highlights:
• The “Iconic Tower” would have a base with landmark entrance leading to an open-air retail hall. The building would have a five-star hotel topped by luxury condominiums. Vistas from the condos would be arresting and priced accordingly, likely in the millions of dollars, Rosati wrote.
While the project’s non-residential buildings would be constructed to receive Silver certification under the U.S. Green Building Council’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) standards, the tower would aim for LEED Gold status.
• Several other high-rise buildings would grace the site. Building C-1-A, located on Route 7, would be up to 310.5 feet tall and feature office and retail space. Building C-1-B would be attached to that structure, offer retail and office uses, house a new kiss-and-ride area for the Metro station and rise up to 335.5 feet. Buildings C-2-A (388.5 feet tall) and C-2-B (420 feet) would have residential and retail space.
• A central “Civic Plaza” would be peppered with artworks and feature sweeping staircases up to a elevated promenade.
“There is a true civic plaza at ground level, which in and of itself is something Tysons really doesn’t have right now,” Rosati said. “When you add the richness of all of the arts programming with the elevated public open-air spaces, it’s going to create an incredible asset for the community.”
• The developer would add two roads, Merchant Street and Boyd Pointe Way, which would link up with roadways in surrounding developments and contribute to county officials’ desired grid of streets in Tysons. The new roads would feature pavers designed to alert motorists visually and aurally that they are within the development and should slow down.
• A 23,000-square-foot performing-arts center would be built on the Civic Plaza next to Building C-2-B. It would have a “Sky Park” on its roof with bocce courts in the summer and ice rink in the winter, plus a large media screen on its exterior. Unlike the future Capital One Center in Tysons, which will be about five times larger, The View’s performance space will be intended purely for the arts and not shared with a corporation, developers said.
• Clemente long has supported accessible facilities, including Clemyjontri Park in McLean, and is designing the View at Tysons to be welcoming to people of various physical abilities. One accessible feature will be a glassed-in elevator that appears to ascend and descend from a fountain.
“This element is not just a beautiful and practical access mechanism; it is a symbol of the central concept – that art and beauty are accessible to all,” Rosati wrote.
• There will be a “Skygarden” rooftop terrace located six stories above ground level and a “Public Gallery” with artworks and landscaping situated 310 feet high on the roof of Building C-1-A.
“I think the way we have woven art throughout all of these spaces will make people stop in their tracks,” Cheshire said “What I keep hearing from people I share these plans with is ‘Wow!’”