On Tuesday, we heard how a group of influential women are leading the transformation of Tysons into a vibrant, walkable community and toured through new developments underway throughout The Boro. Our program featured a panel presentation moderated by Meghan Trossen of Tysons Partnership, and panelists Cathy Moy (Kettler), Caroline Flax (The Meridian Group) and Elizabeth Baker (Walsh Colucci Lubeley & Walsh). Prior to our tour of The Boro, Vicki Davis, Managing Director of Urban Atlantic, described how her development team is transforming the 65-acre Walter Reed Hospital site across the river into a new mixed income community featuring a medical center, schools, and arts, cultural and recreation uses. Members of the LandDesign team then toured us through the chain of open space and walkways that they have designed to create gathering places and connect to the Metro. We finished our evening over a delicious dinner with inspiring conversations about these developments and others led by women.
On Wednesday morning, we gathered to share ideas about how to advance women in development across the globe. Our leadership conversations continued over wine and cheese on Friday evening at the elegant and historic Cosmos Club. We heard firsthand from CEO Jodie McLean about how EDENS is developing retail centers across the US to strengthen community and how they have carefully curated La Cosecha at Union Market. She talked about the inspiration for EDENS corporate mission to bring people together and create spaces where people feel part of something bigger than themselves.
We completed our WDC program on Saturday morning at the offices of LandDesign, a creative collection of designers, engineers and visionaries who work with their clients to build value in every place they help create. Christina Mindrup, Executive Director of the Alexandria Economic Development Partnership, shared the inside story about how Alexandria and its neighboring cities have come together to leverage their new location as Amazon’s HQ2. We launched our inaugural WDC Project Forum that featured a presentation of a development challenge by WDC member, Jessica Newhouse who founded Hall+Haven. She received real-time feedback from a specially-selected panel of development advisors, Amy Erixon (Avison Young), Madelyne Kirsch (SMMC), Eve Picker (Small Change), moderated by Eileen Marrinan, (Eigen10) and facilitated by Adrienne Teleki (Willdan). We ended our program with a walking tour along King Street to the Alexandria waterfront and Torpedo Factory Art Center where we visited its 82 working artist studios and 7 galleries.
We want to extend a special thanks to LandDesign for leading coordination of our WDC program and to Juanita Hardy for her hospitality at the Cosmos Club and for introducing us to inspiring women developers.