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by Ethan Rothstein — April 24, 2015 at 3:45 pm 0

Washington-Lee High School (photo via Google Maps)Washington-Lee High School will expand by 300 seats by the start of the next school year.

The Arlington School Board approved the design and construction schedule of the school’s capacity expansion at its meeting last night, paving the way for the $5 million project to begin work this summer.

The exterior of the building will, for the most part, remain unchanged. Much of the work will go to re-outfitting classrooms to expand their capacity, adding lockers, shifting around offices and ensuring each room is being used to accommodate the greatest capacity possible. When completed, the school’s capacity will grow to 2,200 from its current 1,900-seat capacity.

“I think it’s a great use of our resources, and I know we’re looking forward to doing the same thing at the high schools as well as the other secondary schools, and to the extent possible, all of the schools in Arlington so we could maximize every space,” School Board member Nancy Van Doren said. “And I know there are a lot of people very excited about this design and this renovation.”

So far, there is no timeline in the Capital Improvements Plan for the capacity measures to begin at the other high schools.

The modification will add a science lab on the second floor of the building, install room dividers to create more flexible space, add teacher workrooms and expand lunchtime capacity in the school’s concourse and courtyard.

In addition to the measures to increase capacity, the school’s technological capability is getting a boost. The project aims to strengthen the school’s WiFi signal, install charging stations for devices, and install electronic pads outside rooms that will display each room’s schedule.

Arlington Public Schools will put the project out to bid at the beginning of May. June 22, when the school year ends, is when construction is expected to start. While the interior of the schools is getting its multimillion facelift, the artificial turf on the outside will be getting one of its own.

Photo via Google Maps

by Ethan Rothstein — April 24, 2015 at 3:00 pm 0

Shirlington Spring Beer Festival Event FlyerTomorrow, Campbell Avenue Shirlington will close down while dozens of breweries will open up tents and booths for the second annual Spring Beer Festival.

From 4:30 a.m. to about 8:00 p.m., Campbell Avenue will be shut down between S. Randolph and Quincy Streets, according to the Arlington County Police Department, to allow the more than 35 breweries in attendance to set up their tents.

The actual event begins at noon, when festival-goers can purchase a $30 booklet of 10 tickets for tastings from the breweries, which are largely from the mid-Atlantic region. The taps will turn off at 6:00 p.m.

In addition to vehicular traffic, parking will also be restricted in the area. Residents and visitors should look for “no parking” signs in the area before leaving their car parked overnight.

by Ethan Rothstein — April 24, 2015 at 1:50 pm 0

Peter FallonDemocratic County Board candidates Peter Fallon and Andrew Schneider have the fundraising edge so far for the party’s two-seat primary in June.

Fallon raised $49,911 by the March 31 disclosure deadline, according to the Virginia Public Access Project, a nonpartisan organization that tracks fundraising in elections across the state. Fallon, who has received endorsements from Dels. Rip Sullivan and Patrick Hope, has $14,815 in cash-on-hand.

Schneider is second in fundraising, with $32,095 raised to this point, but by the end of last month had spent just $4,634, leaving him with the most money to spend of any candidate, $27,640.

Here are the reported fundraising totals for each County Board candidate:

  • Peter Fallon (D): $49,911
  • Andrew Schneider (D): $32,095
  • Audrey Clement (I): $29,203
  • Katie Cristol (D): $25,906
  • Christian Dorsey (D): $13,880
  • James Lander (D): $8,320
  • Bruce Wiljanen (D): $1,400

Andrew SchneiderFallon’s biggest donor has been himself — he’s given $6,725 in cash and reported $11,476 in in-kind contributions. Self-donations are common in local elections. Schneider has donated $390 his own campaign.

Audrey Clement, the perennial Green Party local election candidate is running as an independent this year and has raised more than any candidate besides Fallon and Schneider. As of March 31, Clement has brought in $29,203. However, Clement has already spent the bulk of that money, reporting $528 in cash-on-hand at the end of the reporting period.

by Ethan Rothstein — April 24, 2015 at 12:40 pm 0

Leslie Fender and Angel have traveled almost 1,500 miles over three years to get to Arlington, and they’re not stopping now.

Fender is a Vietnam War veteran and Angel is his horse. Right now, and through the weekend, Fender and Angel will be camped out at American Legion Post 139 at 3445 Washington Blvd in Virginia Square. Fender and Angel started their journey from his hometown of Stephenville, Texas, three years ago, raising awareness for stroke prevention and research.

Fender is tall, wears a cowboy hat and his American Legion nametag, speaks in a Texas twang and says he started his ride to benefit the National Stroke Association and American Stroke Foundation, which helped pay for his own stroke surgery and recovery in 2004.

This morning, an Arlington resident called 911 after seeing Angel grazing in front of Post 139 and Fender relaxing in his tent on the front lawn. Arlington County Police Department Dustin Sternbeck said the man from the 17,000-person “Cowboy Capital of the World” is doing nothing illegal.

“The horse is not being housed here, so therefore it’s just a mode of transportation,” he said. “When the horse is in the road, cars need to yield to it.”

Fender is staying the weekend to visit the U.S. Marine Corps Memorial in Rosslyn and the Vietnam War Memorial in Washington, D.C., he said. And what if some new neighbors want to come see Angel?

“They can come and see her, definitely,” Fender said. “But they should donate to the stroke foundation if they do.”

After this weekend, Fender said he and Angel will mosey north, visiting Veterans Affairs hospitals, American Legion posts and V.F.W. posts, raising awareness for stroke research, camping out and stopping traffic as they go.

by Ethan Rothstein — April 24, 2015 at 11:15 am 0

Another April week, another weekend with a yearly high in the number of houses on the market. There is plenty of real estate to choose from.

See our real estate section for a full listing of open houses. Here are a few highlights:

5353-columbia-pike5353 Columbia Pike
1 BD / 1 1/2 BA condominium
Agent: Jacqueline Inman, Portfolio Realty Solutions
Listed: $193,000
Open: Sunday, April 26, noon to 3:00 p.m.

1816-s-monroe-street1816 S. Monroe Street
3 BD / 1 1/2 BA single family detached
Agent: David Lloyd, Weichert, Realtors
Listed: $489,000
Open: Sunday, April 26, 1:00 to 4:00 p.m.

1924-n-woodley-street1924 N. Woodley Street*
3 BD / 2 full, 2 half BA townhouse
Agent: Keri Shull, Optime Realty
Listed: $724,900
Open: Sunday, April 26, 2:00 to 4:00 p.m.

553-n-piedmont-street553 N. Piedmont Street*
2 BD / 2 BA single family detached
Agent: Natalie Roy, Keller Williams Realty
Listed: $750,000
Open: Saturday, April 25, 4:30-6:00 p.m.

5511-24th-street-n5511 24th Street N.*
4 BD / 3 1/2 BA single family detached
Agent: Keri Shull, Optime Realty
Listed: $1,199,999
Open: Sunday, April 26, 2:00 to 4:00 p.m.

4108-lee-highway4108 Lee Highway*
4 BD / 4 1/2 BA single family detached
Agent: John Mentis, Long & Foster Real Estate
Listed: $1,399,000
Open: Saturday, April 25, 1:00-4:00 p.m.; Sunday, April 26, 1:00-4:00 p.m.

3413-n-randolph-street3413 N. Randolph Street*
6 BD / 5 1/2 BA single family detached
Agent: Keri Shull, Optime Realty
Listed: $1,999,900
Open: Sunday, April 26, 2:00 to 4:00 p.m.

*Denotes featured (sponsored) listing

by ARLnow.com — April 24, 2015 at 10:00 am 0

Sign at the Rosslyn ChipotleIt was revealed this week that Chipotle has begun offering an officially-sanctioned delivery service.

The food deliveries are being offered in a number of U.S. metro areas, including the D.C. area, through online delivery service Postmates.

While the idea of an on-demand burrito may sound appetizing, the cost of the service is less so. USA Today reported that the cost starts at $5, on top of the cost of the food. Re/code, which broke the story, was being asked for $12 in delivery and service fees, bringing the cost of an $8 order to $20 delivered.

ARLnow.com tested the ordering process using the Chipotle in the Pentagon City mall and was asked for $7.16 in fees for delivery to an address a couple of blocks from the mall, nearly doubling the cost of a steak burrito.

Can you see yourself ever using this delivery service for your Chipotle meal?

by ARLnow.com — April 24, 2015 at 8:45 am 0

Dark clouds over Rosslyn (Flickr pool photo by John Sonderman)

ACPD Patrolling Trails — Auxiliary officers with the Arlington County Police Department will be increasingly patrolling trails around the county this spring, to help keep pedestrians and bicyclists safe. [InsideNova]

Arlington Transit Survey — Arlington County is conducting an online survey of residents as part of its update of Arlington’s Transit Development Plan. The 10-year-plan is intended to identify transit goals and prioritize improvements. This latest update will include recommendations for future transit on Columbia Pike. [SurveyMonkey]

Blue Goose Mostly Torn DownDemolition of the above-ground portion of the Blue Goose building in Ballston in nearly complete. [Twitter]

Forums Shut Down — Due to an influx of uncontrollable spam and an unresolvable technical glitch with the latest version of WordPress, ARLnow.com has made the decision to shut down our message board indefinitely. Thank you to our forum participants for four years of vigorous community discussion.

Flickr pool photo by John Sonderman

Just Listed in Arlington

by ARLnow.com Sponsor — April 24, 2015 at 5:00 am 0

Just Listed banner

Just Listed highlights Arlington properties that just came on the market within the past week. This feature is written and sponsored by Team Cathell, “Your Orange Line Specialists.”

Arlington’s hot real estate market set another 2015 record for the most ratified contracts in a week with 88 properties going under contract, beating out last week’s previous record of 83. The average days on market dropped to only 30, approaching the hottest markets in the U.S. at 24 and 26 in San Francisco and San Jose, Calif., respectively.

Fresh new inventory helped motivate buyers to make offers this week. Some 95 new listings came on the market ranging in price from $75,000 to $2.9 million. About 65 percent of those are condos and townhomes. Agents report this week that bidding wars have become common again, especially for new listings priced under $1 million.

Meanwhile, interest rates remain stable with the 30-year fixed rate at about 3.75 percent.

You can access all active listings in Arlington on the Cathell Team website.

by Ethan Rothstein — April 23, 2015 at 4:30 pm 0

Monarch butterfly on swamp milkweedArlington naturalists want to see more Monarch butterflies in the county, and they are hoping residents with green thumbs can help make it happen.

In an email to the Arlington Neighborhood News Exchange, Long Branch Nature Center Naturalist Rachael Tolman wrote that the best way to ensure the butterflies’ presence in the area is to plant milkweed.

“Milkweed provides a critical link in the life cycle of monarch butterflies; they cannot survive without it,” Tolman wrote. “Monarchs lay their eggs on milkweed because it is the only food their caterpillars can eat. Unfortunately, the numbers of milkweed plants across vast areas of North America have been declining for decades due to increased land use for crops and widespread herbicide use.”

According to National Geographic, Monarchs east of the Rocky Mountains are threatened because where they migrate in the winter in Mexico has been hurt by natural disasters.

Long Branch Nature Center (625 S. Carlin Springs Road) offers milkweed seeds for free. In addition to the seeds, those interested in planting the flower — there are eight species native to Arlington — will need “a seed starter kit, soil, water, a heat mat (optional) and a grow light or sunny spot,” Tolman said.

For more information on planting milkweed and attracting butterflies, email Tolman at Rtolman@arlingtonva.us.

Photo by Derek Ramsey via Wikimedia

by ARLnow.com Sponsor — April 23, 2015 at 2:30 pm 0

Editor’s Note: Healthy Paws is a new column sponsored and written by the owners of Clarendon Animal Care, a full-service, general practice veterinary clinic. The clinic is located 3000 10th Street N.,…

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