Bob Simon, 99, Looks Ahead in Reston
Robert E. Simon entered his 100th year this month , and the town he founded that carries an adaptation of his name turns 49 this weekend. If you think it's finished developing, listen to Bob.
The man who became president of Carnegie Hall at age 21 in 1935, and then with the help of Isaac Stern sold it to the city of New York in 1960,knows a thing or two about successful communities.Like they needplazas for gathering.He hashigh hopes for the newMetro line, a 500-seattheater, and extending Reston Town Center. He also has some thoughts about redeveloping Lake Anne.His secret to longevity? A daily pre-dinner gin martini-- and not the fruity drinks trendy restaurants call martinis.
Bob points to an empty space next to Reston Town Center where he'd like to see the theater, a long-time dream that's finally looking real; architectural studies are under way. Other wishes: Make sure the Silver line Metro stop on Wiehle includes a robust bus service to alleviate traffic and increase ridership. Increase Reston Town Center's footprint beyond Baron Cameron Ave with that theater and a plaza.
We snapped Bob during our stroll around Lake Anne Plaza, where he's lived for 20 years with his wife, Cheryl Terio-Simon. He's kept up with progress on the Lake Anne Village Center redevelopment that's been in the works since 2006. Having looked at the proposals submitted, he likes one based on its architecture and inclusion of the village concept. Negotiations are set to begin in the next few weeks. What'd he do to celebrate his 99th? Why, dinner with the family at L'Auberge Chez Francois.