National Planning Conference Legacy Business Panel

Excited that my panel proposal has been accepted for the 2020 National Planning Conference. On April 27, 2020 we’ll be sharing the results of a study of legacy business initiatives across the US and sharing experiences of leaders in the field.

Legacy Business Initiatives: Emerging Directions NPC208088

Learn about three new legacy business initiatives that seek to document and promote the independent, quirky, long-standing enterprises so essential to neighborhood character and community identity. Hear the results of the first national study of legacy business programs across North America.


April 27, 8 a.m. to 9:15 a.m.
Location: 361
Pardis Saffari | Shanon Miller, AICP | Wesley Regan | Elizabeth Morton

Share Your Legacy Business Story!

Graduate students and faculty from Virginia Tech’s Urban Affairs and Planning Program are documenting the history of longstanding, or “legacy”, businesses in Arlington County. Our study to date has focused on businesses established at least 25 years ago in two areas: the Lee Highway corridor and the Green Valley neighborhood.

The website for our pilot project includes an interactive map of 13 businesses and a collection of oral histories of business owners in both areas. These stories are also the basis for the “The Local Shop” radio series produced by VT graduate student Valeria Gelman, available from WERA 96.7. Finally, the oral histories will be permanently housed in Arlington’s Center for Local History.

We are continuing to broaden our collection of oral histories. If you would like to SHARE YOUR STORY of a longstanding business, please contact us. Interviews typically take about 45 minutes and can be conducted at a site of your choice, such as a library, community center or your local business.