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Robert E. Simon

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Title: Robert E. Simon  
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Subject: Reston, Virginia, Elizabeth Fox-Genovese, Reston Town Center, Settlement movement, Simon (surname)
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Robert E. Simon

Robert E. Simon
Born (1914-04-10)April 10, 1914
New York City, New York, U.S.
Died September 21, 2015(2015-09-21) (aged 101)
Reston, Virginia, U.S.
Residence Reston, Virginia
Alma mater Harvard University

Robert E. "Bob" Simon, Jr. (April 10, 1914 – September 21, 2015) was an American real estate entrepreneur, most known for founding the community of Reston, Virginia.[1][2][3] He was the maternal uncle of feminist historian and writer Elizabeth Fox-Genovese.[4]


  • Early life 1
  • Reston 2
    • Goals of Reston 2.1
  • References 3
  • External links 4

Early life

Simon was born in New York City in 1914[5] to a family that immigrated from Germany.[6][7]


After graduating from Harvard University, Simon took over the family real estate management and development business. In 1961, with the proceeds from the sale of a family property, Carnegie Hall, Simon purchased 6,750 acres (27 km²) of land in Fairfax County, Virginia and hired Conklin + Rossant[8] to develop a master plan for the new town of Reston, Virginia, a planned community well known on the national level. (The town's name was derived from Simon's initials and the word "town".)[3][9] Simon's new town concept emphasized quality of life for the individual and provided a community where people could live, work, and play without driving long distances.

Simon returned to live in Reston in 1993[9] and helped celebrate Reston's 40th birthday in 2004.[10] In that same year a bronze statue of Simon was placed on a park bench in Washington Plaza on Lake Anne, the original heart of the community he built.[3][10]

Goals of Reston

Simon wrote in 1962 that:


  1. ^ McFadden, Robert D. (September 21, 2015). "Robert E. Simon Jr., Who Created a Town, Reston, Va., Dies at 101".  
  2. ^ Morello, Carol (March 25, 2004). "At Home With His Creation". Washington Post. p. T8. 
  3. ^ a b c d "A Brief History of Reston". Reston Historic Trust. Retrieved 2013-06-30.  Original work: Gulf Reston, Inc (1970). A Brief History of Reston, Virginia. 
  4. ^ Fox and Simon Family Papers, 1862–1991, UNC .
  5. ^ "House Joint Resolution No. 1009, Commending Robert E. Simon". Commonwealth of Virginia. February 28, 2009. Retrieved 2013-06-30. 
  6. ^ "Douglas Ambrose", Christendom review 1 (2) .
  7. ^ "Fox‐Genovese, Elizabeth Ann", Encycloedia, J rank .
  8. ^ "James Rossant - Architect". December 17, 2005. Retrieved December 17, 2009. 
  9. ^ a b McKeon, Nancy (August 16, 1999). "A Town Grows in Fairfax". Washington Post. p. A1. Retrieved 2013-06-30. 
  10. ^ a b "Reston Celebrates 40 Years!". Myers Public Relations. April 14, 2004. Retrieved 2013-06-30. 

External links

  • Reston Concept: The New Town
  • Genesis of Reston - R.E.Simon 1966
  • Guide to the Robert E. Simon, Jr. papers, 1960-2006
  • James Rossant, master planner of Reston

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