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New Boundaries Approved as County Board Considers Ashlawn Addition

by ARLnow.com | May 17, 2013 at 4:05 pm | 1,789 views | No Comments

"Variation B" newly-approved Arlington elementary school boundaries(Updated at 5:00 p.m.) The Arlington School Board approved new elementary school boundaries Thursday night, wrapping up an eight month community process.

The School Board unanimously adopted “Variation B” of Superintendent Dr. Patrick Murphy’s recommended boundaries (left). The new boundaries will help distribute students to a new elementary school on the Williamsburg Middle School campus (see below) as well as to additions at Ashlawn and McKinley elementary schools.

The new schools and additions (there will also be a new choice elementary school near Kenmore Middle School and an addition to Arlington Traditional School) are being undertaken to provide an additional 1,875 seats of capacity by 2017 for Arlington burgeoning student population.

“Variation B” will shift elementary school boundaries and result in the reassignment of 900 students. The changes will take effect for the 2015-2016 school year.

  • Reassign 67 students from McKinley to Ashlawn
  • Reassign 56 students from Glebe to McKinley
  • Reassign 164 students from Jamestown to the new school at Williamsburg
  • Reassign 71 students from Taylor to Jamestown
  • Reassign 347 students from Nottigham to the new school at Williamsburg
  • Reassign 146 students from Tuckahoe to Nottingham
  • Reassign 49 students from Taylor to the new school at Williamsburg

The School Board also approved the following grandfathering provisions:

  • “Rising 5th graders and concurrently enrolled younger siblings (grades K-4 as of June 2015) may choose to remain at their current school for the 2015-16 school year only. Transportation will be provided for these students who remain at their school and who are eligible for bus transportation as of September 2015.”
  • “Because the effective date of students moving to McKinley is September 2016, grandfathering for rising 5th graders and concurrently enrolled younger siblings (grades K-4 as of June 2016) will be in effect for the 2016-17 school year and will follow the procedures in paragraph a.”
  • “A student currently attending Claremont or Key Immersion School, in grades K-4 as of June 2015, who resides in a planning unit being moved from one Immersion School group to another Immersion School group, may remain at his or her current Immersion School through 5th grade with transportation provided by APS.”
  • “A student currently attending Arlington Science Focus in grades K-4 as of June 2015, who resides in a planning unit being moved to the New Elementary School #1, may remain at ASFS through 5th grade with transportation provided by APS.”

The School Board also directed Dr. Murphy “to recommend whether rising K-4 students residing in planning units reassigned to existing schools will be eligible to enroll in their newly assigned elementary school prior to School Year 2015 if seating space is available.”

Ashlawn Elementary School addition site planOn Saturday, the County Board will consider a use permit for a 26,160 square foot addition to Ashlawn Elementary School.

Construction on the addition is expected to begin this summer and wrap up by the summer of 2014. It will add 12 rooms, including 9 classrooms, at a cost of about $12 million, according to a project web page.

County staff is recommending approval of the use permit, as well as a use permit for temporary construction parking at the adjacent Dominion Hills pool.

Meanwhile, at its Thursday meeting, the School Board unanimously approved a schematic design for the new elementary school on the Williamsburg Middle School campus.

The new school will cost just over $43 million, according to an APS press release, with construction slated to start in January 2014 and wrap up in time for the start of the school year in the summer of 2015.

Approved schematic design of the new elementary school on the Williamsburg Middle School campus Approved schematic design of the new elementary school on the Williamsburg Middle School campus

Open Houses in Arlington This Weekend

by ARLnow.com | May 17, 2013 at 2:30 pm | 1,007 views | No Comments

Whether you’re looking for a Colonial with a backyard patio for summer grilling or a cozy condo near the pool, check out these weekend open houses in Arlington as May heats up.

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

2606 Arlington Mill Drive South2606 Arlington Mill Drive South
2 BD | 1 BA condominium
Herbert Riggs, Re/max 100
Listed: $355,000
Open: Saturday, May 18 from 1:00 to 4:00 p.m.

3343 Wakefield Street South3343 Wakefield Street South
2 BD | 2 BA condominium
Shaun Murphy, Re/max Allegiance
Listed: $459,900
Open: Sunday, May 19 from 1:00 to 4:00 p.m.

5728 25th Street North5728 25th Street North
3 BD | 2 BA single family detached
Patricia Harris, Keller Williams Realty
Listed: $668,000
Open: Sunday, May 19 from 1:00 to 4:00 p.m.

2350 Queen Street South2350 Queen Street South
3 BD | 2 Full BA, 2 Half BA townhouse
Barbara Wood, Long & Foster Real Estate, Inc.
Listed: $725,000
Open: Sunday, May 19 from 1:00 to 4:00 p.m.

4710 Old Dominion Drive North4710 Old Dominion Drive North
3 BD | 2 Full BA, 2 Half BA single family detached
Ann Wilson, Keller Williams Realty
Listed: $929,000
Open: Sunday, May 19 from 1:00 to 4:00 p.m.

5139-9th-st5139 9th Street North
4 BD | 6 BA single family detached
Laura Biederman, Long & Foster Real Estate, Inc.
Listed: $1,099,000
Open: Sunday, May 19 from 1:00 to 4:00 p.m.

SUV Overturns at S. Glebe and 2nd Street

by ARLnow.com | May 17, 2013 at 1:55 pm | 2,029 views | No Comments

Overturned SUV near the intersection of S. Glebe Road and 2nd Street (photo courtesy @SeidelAgency) Overturned SUV near the intersection of S. Glebe Road and 2nd Street (photo courtesy @lucerojay)

An SUV overturned on 2nd Street S. near the intersection of S. Glebe Road this afternoon.

The crash, reported as a single-vehicle accident, happened around lunchtime today. The SUV overturned and came to rest on its roof.

One person was pulled out of the wreck and transported to the hospital, according to an Arlington County dispatcher. We’re told the vehicle has been towed away and the road has since reopened.

Photos courtesy @SeidelAgency (left) and @lucerojay (right)

Your Beermonger: Cheese Pairing and Tasting Notes

by ARLnow.com | May 17, 2013 at 1:30 pm | 382 views | No Comments

Your Beermonger logo

Editor’s Note: This sponsored column is written by Nick Anderson, beermonger at Arrowine (4508 Lee Highway).

Last week I sat down with some of the Arrowine staff (including Katie, a.k.a. Your Cheesemonger, who has some amazing insights regarding the cutting of your cheese — you guys should ask her to tell you about it) to try out some beer and cheese pairings.

In the name of experimentation, we were slightly haphazard in the selection of cheeses and beers — we were looking to be surprised one way or the other by the results we had. Not that we weren’t looking for beers that would pair well but as you’ll see, a couple selections fell into the “I wonder what would happen if…?” category. First, a quick rundown of the cheeses we had to work with:

La Tur: An old favorite of mine and popular at Arrowine, La Tur is a three-milk (cow, goat, and sheep) soft cheese from Bosia in the Piedmont region of Italy. While its aromatics are a little funky (especially as it warms up), on the palate La Tur is very mild with the tang of the goat’s milk keeping it from feeling too rich.

Manchego Artequeso: Classic Spanish sheep’s milk cheese aged for about nine months. This sharp, dry, mild, relatively young Manchego can make for a tricky pairing subject.

Challerhocker: A popular cheese at Arrowine, Challerhocker is a washed-rind cow’s milk cheese that is semi-firm in texture. I find Challerhocker to be salty with bold, earthy flavors but not so salty that it isn’t a good ‘base’ to play other flavors off of it.

Valdeon: An intense Spanish blue cheese, Valdeon was the one I was looking forward to the most. I’m a big bleu cheese fan, and Valdeon pack a big punch for those who enjoy it like I do. The vein of the Valdeon is hot, with a strong, spicy presence on the palate.

Here are the beers we tried with them, with notes on how they were on their own as well as with the cheeses:

Boulevard Tank 7 Farmhouse Ale: This Saison-style beer from Kansas City is hoppier than a traditional Saison, but manages to be crisp and flavorful without losing its balance. The spicy finish would lead you to think it’d be a great choice for a pairing—and you’d be right. Tank 7 matched with La Tur was the group’s pick for best pairing of the night; with the beer and cheese allowing each other’s best characteristics to shine. It seemed like Tank 7 went well with all of the cheeses — even the Manchego, which proved to be the most difficult cheese of the night.

Leipziger Gose: Gose is a style of Wheat Ale made using coriander and salt. With an alcohol level usually clocking in somewhere in the 4-5% range, think of Gose as a precursor to Belgian Witbier. I thought the citrus character, spiciness, and subtle salinity of Gose would work well with the Manchego, and cut through the richer La Tur and earthy Challerhocker — and boy, was I wrong. Pairing the Manchego with the Gose just brought out the salt in the beer and the intense sharpness of the cheese. The Leipziger played a bit better with the Challerhocker, but in the end this was the one beer that really didn’t go over well with any of the cheese selections. I still love it on its own, however, and think with the right seafood or even a salad with fruit and crumbled goat cheese it would be right at home.

(more…)

New Listing: Becky’s Pet Care

by ARLnow.com | May 17, 2013 at 1:00 pm | 328 views | No Comments

BPC-LOGOEditor’s Note: ARLnow.com will be highlighting the companies that join our Arlington Service Directory this summer. The Service Directory is a place where Arlington residents can discover quality local companies that provide necessary and useful services for people, properties, pets and possessions.

Becky’s Pet Care, named among the area’s best pet care providers by Washingtonian and Northern Virginia Magazine, offers professional dog walking and pet sitting services.

From the company’s Service Directory listing:

Started by Becky as a one-woman show, we are now proud to have grown to almost 100 walkers and sitters in our 14 years in the business. Serving all of Northern Virginia, from Alexandria to Arlington our comprehensive, flexible, in-home pet care programs are delivered by trained employees – pet care professionals providing peace-of-mind for clients and pets.

Arlington’s Envirocab Service to Be Sold

by ARLnow.com | May 17, 2013 at 11:45 am | 991 views | No Comments

EnvirocabArlington’s Envirocab service is being sold to a large transportation conglomerate.

Owners Hans Hess and Cord Thomas, Hess’ nephew, are planning to sell the 50-cab fleet to Veolia Transportation, which operates more than 2,400 taxicabs around the country. Among Veolia’s local holdings are the SuperShuttle airport transportation service and a third of the Washington Flyer cab fleet.  Hess also owns the Ballston-based Elevation Burger restaurant chain.

The Arlington County Board must first approve the ownership transfer, per a condition of Envirocab’s taxi licenses. County staff is recommending that the Board approve the sale at its meeting on Tuesday.

The sale has been in the works since at least February. In March, Veolia’s SuperTaxi subsidiary, which will operate Envirocab, told county staff that it plans to offer the following benefits for Envirocab employees and the cab-riding public:

  • “SuperTaxi will maintain operations and key personnel as well as stand dues at current levels.”
  • “SuperTaxi will provide consumers with new smartphone apps to reserve a taxicab along with a 24 hour, 7 days per week call center with customer-service trained staff.”
  • “SuperTaxi will hold regular meetings with drivers to improve service and safety and provide driver award programs.”
  • “SuperTaxi will use incentives to provide service during peak demand periods.”
  • “SuperTaxi will add at least one wheelchair-accessible taxicab to the fleet (while still keeping its fleet size at 50 taxicabs as authorized under the existing certificate issued to Envirocab).”

Earlier this month the Arlington Transportation Commission unanimously voted to support the ownership transfer. In a report, county staff concluded that the sale “will not adversely affect the health, safety and welfare of the traveling public nor will it adversely affect the Arlington County taxicab industry.”

In December, the County Board denied Envirocab’s request for additional taxi licenses, despite a recommendation from County Manager Barbara Donnellan that the company receive 10 additional licenses.

Coming Soon: Two New Pentagon City Metro Entrances

by ARLnow.com | May 17, 2013 at 10:25 am | No Comments

Pentagon City Metro station southwest entranceArlington County is planning to award contracts this year that will result in two new ways to get into the busy Pentagon City Metro station.

In September, the county is expected to award a design/build contract for a new elevator that will run directly into the station from the southwestern corner of S. Hayes Street and 12th Street, near the Pentagon City mall.

The elevator will complement an existing elevator on the southeast corner of the intersection.

About 95 percent of the $5 million project will be funded with state and federal funds. The county is hoping that the elevator will be open by Nov. 2014.

Entrance to an abandoned pedestrian tunnel at the Pentagon City Metro statoinAlso this year, the county is hoping to award a contract to refurbish and reopen an abandoned pedestrian tunnel that connects the northeast corner of the Hayes/12th intersection to the Metro station’s mezzanine.

The county is hoping to finalize the design of the refurbished tunnel — the design process has been on-going for nearly a decade — and to put the project out for bid by the end of the year.

The tunnel could reopen by the winter of 2014.

Entrance to an abandoned pedestrian tunnel at the Pentagon City Metro statoinArlington County Transportation Director Dennis Leach suggested that the project has been made more complicated thanks to the tunnel’s proximity to the headquarters of the Transportation Security Administration and the Drug Enforcement Administration.

“We’re still working through a few remaining design issues and we have to conclude some property-related negotiations,” he said. “It is a very complicated small project. That tunnel was built as part of a site plan development. We have to work with the adjacent property owner and the adjacent tenants.”

With nearly 35,000 combined entries and exits on an average weekday, the Pentagon City Metro station is the second-busiest Metro station in Arlington — second only to Rosslyn.

Morning Notes

by ARLnow.com | May 17, 2013 at 9:15 am | 1,719 views | No Comments

Bike to Work Day (5/17/13) in Ballston (photo via @BallstonBID)

Highest Percentage of Commuters in U.S. — At 76.6 percent of its total workforce, Arlington County has the highest percentage of commuters in the nation. Arlington is even ahead of D.C. (71 percent) and New York City (69.5 percent). Nearly 150,000 people commute into Arlington on a typical weekday, and most don’t pay any county taxes. [Governing]

Taste of Arlington Road Closures — A number of roads in Ballston, including a stretch of Wilson Blvd, will be closed for most of the day on Sunday for the annual Taste of Arlington festival. As a reminder, the Ballston and Virginia Square Metro stations will be closed throughout the weekend and additional shuttle buses will be provided for festival-goers at the East Falls Church and Clarendon Metro stations. [Arlington County]

Rosslyn Outdoor Movies Start Tonight — The annual Rosslyn outdoor summer film festival starts tonight. The theme of this year’s festival is “Summer School” — films that use high school as a backdrop. Tonight’s flick is the 1985 classic The Breakfast Club. This and every other Friday showing through Aug. 30 starts at dusk at Gateway Park. [Rosslyn BID]

Tight Inventory in Home Market — Arlington’s residential housing market is still afflicted by a dearth of inventory. There are more buyers in the market than there are homes to buy. [Sun Gazette]

Photo via @BallstonBIDDisclosure: Ballston BID and Rosslyn BID are ARLnow.com advertisers.

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