The highlight of the festivities was a life-size bronze sculpture of [Robert E. Simon], which was placed on a bench facing the plaza and unveiled at the end of the ceremony. Simon clasped his hands together and his face filled with glee when a white blanket atop the gift was whisked off.
Residents only slowly came to Reston over the next decade. Simon spurred growth by encouraging builders to offer a diversity in housing types and prices. When parts of Virginia were still segregated, Simon openly invited African Americans to live in his town.
Judith Forst, who in 1968 joined the first wave of residents, added: "Reston is different from most other communities in that most of those places exist because it's where [developers] can make the most money. But Reston was all about where can we have the most livable community possible."
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