The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) invited community leaders to be among the dozens to attend a ceremony marking the opening of its new headquarters today.
DARPA headquarters, which used to be at 3701 N. Fairfax Drive in Virginia Square, is now in the recently finished building at 675 N. Randolph Street in Ballston. The new development is being touted as more secure and environmentally sound than the previous location.
Congressman Jim Moran (D) and several Arlington County Board members, including Chair Mary Hynes, attended the event. Moran and Hynes spoke of how local officials spent years working to keep the defense contractor in Arlington.
“DARPA is the center of the wonderful knowledge economy that’s become part of our identity,” said Hynes.
Moran, who held a cybersecurity summit last month, noted that one of DARPA’s accomplishments is attracting top workers who can help prevent threats to the United States, particularly cyber threats. He also cited work on stealth technology and prosthetic limbs. He said all of the defense agency’s work helps Arlington’s economy.
“DARPA represents an enormous economic boost,” Moran said. “We’re extraordinarily proud that we have DARPA as part of this community.”
The new 13-story facility is considered one of largest secure conference centers in Northern Virginia, and more than 1,100 people work there. It’s expected to receive a LEED platinum designation for commercial interiors from the U.S. Green Building Council.
District Taco Cart Returns — Just two days after it flipped over in the middle of a busy entrance ramp, the District Taco cart was patched up and serving crowds of customers at the Courthouse Farmers Market.
McAuliffe to Headline LGBT Fundraiser — Terry McAuliffe — who’s said to be considering another run for the Virginia governor’s mansion — is headlining a fundraiser for the Virginia Partisans, the Political Action Committee of the LGBT Democrats of Virginia. The fundraiser, which seeks to raise $40,000 for Democratic state Senate candidates, is being held at the house of County Board member Jay Fisette on July 14.
Endorsements in Delegate Race — There have been two significant endorsements in the Democratic primary battle for the 49th District House of Delegates seat. Alfonso Lopez has been endorsed by Jay Fisette, while Stephanie Clifford has been endorsed by retiring state Sen. Patsy Ticer. Fisette called Lopez “an effective advocate for Arlington and our values in Richmond.” Ticer was scheduled to make an appearance at a Clifford fundraiser Friday night.
DARPA Developing Killer Laser — Arlington’s own Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency is developing a new, high-energy laser weapon that could someday be mounted on fighter jets, armored vehicles and patrol ships. [Military and Aerospace Electronics]
Mysterious Brown Flip Flop Spotted – A lone brown flip flop was spotted floating in a fountain near Circa restaurant in Clarendon Sunday morning. The intriguing sight was dubbed by Clarendon Culture as “the quintessence of Clarendon.” [Lockerz, Clarendon Culture]
You won’t find this on Wikipedia, but the internet was invented in Arlington in the 1970s.
On Tuesday, the County Board will recognize several former employees of the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) who were instrumental in creating ARPANET, the forerunner of the internet. As part of the ceremony, which is set to take place just after 3:00 p.m., the county will show off two new historical markers that will be erected at 1400 Wilson Boulevard in Rosslyn, DARPA’s former headquarters.
The marker will read:
The ARPANET, a project of the Advanced Research Projects Agency of the Department of Defense, developed the technology that became the foundation for the internet at this site from 1970 to 1975. Originally intended to support military needs, ARPANET technology was soon applied to civilian uses, allowing information to be rapidly and widely available. The internet, and services such as e-mail, e-commerce and the World Wide Web, continues to grow as the under-lying technologies evolve. The innovations inspired by the ARPANET have provided great benefits for society.
ERECTED IN 2011 BY ARLINGTON COUNTY, VIRGINIA
Attending the meeting will be Steve Lukasik, former DARPA director, and several of his colleagues. The county will present each with a certificate, complete with the agency’s name spelled in binary code. As part of the ceremony, AVN, the county’s TV network, will air a short film on DARPA’s role in creating the internet.
DARPA is currently headquartered at 3701 N. Fairfax Drive in Virginia Square, but will be moving to a new office building — currently under construction — at 675 N. Randolph Street in Ballston, perhaps as early as the first quarter of 2012.
Arlington Jury Hears Rape Victim’s Story — A 23-year-old University of Maryland graduate student took the witness stand yesterday in the trial of former Henderson Hall Marine Jorge “George” Torrez. The woman described the night in February when she was abducted while walking home with a friend in the Ballston area, then repeatedly raped and left for dead in a remote, wooded area. More from the Washington Post.
Solar Raisers Install First System – Volunteers organized by Arlingtonians for a Clean Environment helped install a solar water heating system at a home in south Arlington’s Claremont neighborhood over the weekend. The system reduces water heating energy use by 75 percent. The installation was the first in ACE’s Solar Raisers initiative. More from the Sun Gazette.
DARPA Conference to Discuss ‘Pre-Crime’ System — The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency is trying to develop a system that would use powerful analytical tools to determine if a soldier is becoming homicidal or suicidal, or if an intelligence operator is about to turn double agent. Next week, DARPA will be holding a conference in Arlington to educate contractors about the development process for such a system. The publication Government Computer News compares such a system to the “pre-crime” technology in the Tom Cruise film “Minority Report.”