The first break occurred around 7:30 this morning at South Courthouse Road and 2nd Street. Water from the break flooded the intersection and nearby Washington Boulevard, snarling rush hour traffic.
Arlington County crews just finished repairing the break and patching up the road. Now, they’re beginning to work on a second break that occurred at South Wayne Street and 2nd Street. Drivers should expect road and lane closures in the area. The repairs should wrap up around 10:00 tonight.
We’re told the second break happened during the repair of the first break. Both breaks, a county employee said, were the result of blown valves.
The water main is thought to date back to the 1960s.
Residents in the area should expect reduced water pressure and possible sediment in the water. To be safe, those with low water pressure should either boil the water or wait for repairs to be completed.
In addition to voting on outdoor seating proposals for American Flatbread and Screwtop Wine Bar, the County Board will considering some proposals with far-reaching consequences.
The board will vote on an initial framework for the East Falls Church development plan, which has attracted quite a bit of controversy. The plan could pave the way for the construction of apartment buildings, retail spaces and other dense, pedestrian-friendly development in what is now a much more single-family-home-oriented area.
Another item under consideration would result in the construction of a new entrance to the Rosslyn Metro station . The $32-35 million dollar project was originally meant to take place concurrent to the construction of the Rosslyn Central Place development, but the development has stalled due to financial complications.
A $159 million bond referendum is also under consideration. The board will decide whether to put the bond issue on the ballot in November. The bonds would fund construction of a new Wakefield High School as well as various Metro, transportation, park and infrastructure projects.
Other items of interest include votes on $249,077 in arts grants, more than $750,000 in equipment for the new Artisphere, and whether to schedule a hearing on a proposal to protect six trees from removal on private property.
As of 1:45, the HOV lanes and two lanes northbound and southbound I-395 are blocked between Seminary Road and King Street.
First responders from Arlington and Alexandria are on scene, along with Virginia State Police.
As of 2:15, major delays on southbound I-395 were forming just past the Pentagon. The driver appears to have been freed from the vehicle.
Technically, representation in Congress did not come immediately after the vote. It would take another year for the Virginia legislature to accept the retrocession. And not everybody was well-represented. Virginia was a slave state and Arlington would not benefit from the Compromise of 1850, which outlawed the slave trade in the District.
Amid a fascinating history lesson, our friends at We Love DC pose a thought-provoking question: Was the retrocession a good idea? For the District, the answer seems to be no.
In one corner are the supporters and management of American Flatbread, the wood-fired pizza restaurant that bills itself as a “community hearth” and is best known for its locally-sourced, organic ingredients. In the other corner are county planners and a majority of local homeowners (others support Flatbread), who don’t want the restaurant to open an outdoor patio on their relatively quiet section of North 11th Street in Clarendon.
At stake for neighbors is the tranquility of the neighborhood and, possibly, the area’s steep property values. At stake for Flatbread is its viability as a business in Clarendon.
Restaurant owner Scott Vasko, who also owns the popular American Flatbread location in Ashburn, has been trying to get county approval for since he signed the lease last year. He says he has tried to find a compromise with the two main sources of opposition, the Clarendon-Courthouse Civic Association and the homeowner’s association president for the townhouses across the street, to no avail.
Vasko says he has offered to close the patio at 9:00 p.m. on weekdays and 10:00 p.m. on weekends. He would limit the space to 24 seats and not allow larger parties to combine tables. He would pay to extend an adjacent wall and to erect a gate in front of the patio. And there would be no music.
Civic association president Rich Dumas says the group wouldn’t have a problem with Flatbread and another restaurant in the same building, Screwtop Wine Bar, setting up sidewalk seating on the Fillmore Street. He also said that he personally wouldn’t mind the addition of seating that wraps around for 15 to 25 feet on 11th Street, which is one option the county board will be considering on Saturday.
Planning department staff will recommend the option that disallows patio seating but allows seating on Fillmore Street and 25 feet of 11th Street. That will provide outdoor seating for about four tables of two, a county planner told ARLnow.com
But Vasko says the patio seating was a major component of his business plan when he decided to come to Clarendon and without it, “we would honestly have to take a look at whether we could still be a viable entity.”
American Flatbread employs 24 people in Clarendon and pays nearly $40,000 in meals tax revenue to the county, he noted.
The few tables the restaurant would be able to set up on the sidewalk, Vasko said, would be helpful but, perhaps, too little too late. He says he was misled by the building owner, who reportedly recruited American Flatbread to be a tenant with the promise of an outdoor patio.
“We’re just trying to get what was originally offered to us by the building owner as an enticement to come in here,” he said.