Last week, an opinion piece in Bloomberg View theorized that the Washington area is boring and un-hip “because it’s full of people who work for and around the government.”
Undoubtedly, there are lots of people in the area, and in Arlington in particular, who work for or around the government. And employment estimates bear that out. But does that really tell the full story?
Putting aside whether we’re collectively boring, let’s find out just how many of us are directly connected to the government.
The restaurant is opening in the former Market Tavern space at 2800 Clarendon Blvd. Interior construction is still underway, but the restaurant started accepting applications from job candidates this week. Job applications — for server, bartender, cooks and other positions — will be accepted through Sept. 7, according to the Market Common shopping center website.
Like Market Tavern (formerly Harry’s Tap Room), Fuego will have two levels: a tequila bar featuring more than 120 tequilas on the first level, and a restaurant serving Mexican small plates and entrees on the second level.
“Fuego [Cocina] y Tequileria will be a temple of traditional Mexican cuisine serving in-your-face-food with authentic, robust, not-for-the-faint-of-heart flavors and textures,” according to the restaurant’s new website. Once it opens this fall, Fuego will serve dinner seven nights a week and will also be open for weekend brunch on Saturday and Sunday.
Fuego is owned by the Passion Food Restaurant Group, which also owns DC Coast, Acadiana, Ceiba, District Commons and Burger Tap and Shake in the District, and Passionfish in Reston. The new restaurant will be helmed by Chef Alfredo Solis, who has been the chef at District Commons and Burger Tap and Shake.
If you’ve ever wanted to become an Arlington firefighter or EMT, now’s your chance.
Arlington County is beginning a new round of firefighter/EMT recruitment starting today, May 11. According to a fire department recruitment web page, the process will remain open through Tuesday May 22, 2012.
The application process for becoming an Arlington firefighter is a bit daunting, however. The following are the steps one must go through in order to be offered the job, according to the fire department website:
- Submission of online application
- Application screening
- Communication of eligibility via letter and/or email
- Written examination
- CPAT Practice Sessions
- Submission of Background Package
- CPAT Official Test
Fingerprinting & Ongoing Background Investigation
- Panel Interview with Fire Department Personnel
- Conditional Offer of Employment
- Polygraph Examination
- Psychological and Physical Examinations
- Uniform Fitting
- Interview with the Fire Chief
- Final Offer of Employment
According to a leading jobs website for those with security clearances, the average security-cleared employee in the Washington region earned $97,838 in 2011.
ClearanceJobs.com says that figure represents a 4 percent increase from one year ago. By comparison, the national average security-cleared salary was $76,152 in 2011. According to the website’s survey, there was no pay gap between men and women working in the same position.
Though average salaries may be high, security-cleared workers are increasingly worried about the future. The survey — of 11,000 security-cleared professionals — indicated that 43 percent were afraid of the loss of contract funding, 40 percent were afraid of increased work loads as a result of staff cuts, 38 percent were afraid of their position being eliminated, and 31 percent worried about their position being relocated, perhaps as a result of BRAC.
According to a Craigslist ad, the soon-to-open restaurant, which promises to serve “obscure” cuts of meat in the style of a rustic French bistro, is looking for “only those with serious food passion.”
“Don’t expect to find loins, micro greens and baby veg here,” the help wanted ad says. “Think sous vide. Think obscure cuts of meat in their finest form — food that is hearty, not heavy; sustainable and with proper technique above all.”
The ad continued: “Prior frustration with fine dining service is preferred.”
Chef/owner Scot Harlan, who used to work under celebrity chef Gordon Ramsay, told ARLnow.com last month that his biggest investment in the restaurant will be hiring good people in the kitchen.
In addition to line cooks, sous-chefs, and pastry-sous, the Craigslist ad also seeks hosts and servers.
“We will be employing an eSavvy staff and familiarity with iPhones, iPods, and iPads is a plus,” the ad says, noting that the restaurant will be using wireless iPads as the point of sale system (instead of traditional cash registers and/or credit card readers).
An Arlington resident has created a new web-based video series.
Mike Kravinsky, 57, was working as a video editor and technical editor for the ABC News D.C. bureau when, in 2010, he decided to take a buyout package offered by the company. After 29 years at ABC, Kavinsky now found himself pondering what to do next. In the end, he decided to pursue a passion for filmmaking by creating a six-part scripted video series.
“The Nextnik,” as the series is called, follows the trials and tribulations of Larry Zimmerman, a 55-year-old upper-middle management type who is abruptly fired and has a year to find a new vocation before his severance money runs out.
The series — which is described as part drama, part comedy — was filmed in Arlington, at locations like Java Shack, Restaurant 3, Silver Diner (Clarendon) and several residential locations. Additional filming took place in the District and at Rehoboth Beach, Del.
Kravinsky says The Nextnik is especially topical given the current state of the job market.
“As the economy improves, many people are exploring starting over professionally, whether by choice or layoff,” Kravinsky said. “‘The Nextnik’ will focus on both professional and personal reinvention.”
The first episode of the series will premiere on the web on Jan. 1.
Memphis Barbeque, a new restaurant that’s starting to wrap up construction in Crystal City, is now hiring.
The restaurant (320 South 23rd Street) recently posted a help wanted ad on Craigslist seeking bartenders, servers, cooks, and hostesses. The ad also described the concept behind the $750,000 restaurant.
“We are Metropolitan Washington’s first upscale-casual BBQ restaurant featuring authentic hickory-pit smoked barbeque and live hickory grilled meats, fish and seafood,” the ad said.
Memphis Barbeque is taking the place of the shuttered Mackey’s Public House.
Arlington Wages High, Growth Low — Arlington residents earn some of the highest weekly wages in the nation ($1,549/week), but the county’s wage growth is slowing. [Sun Gazette]
Songwriters Come to Iota Club — A group of 9 singer-songwriters from around the region will be performing at Iota Club in Clarendon (2832 Wilson Blvd) tonight. Among the musicians scheduled to take the stage are Brittany Jean and Justin Trawick. [Facebook, Clarendon Nights]
Health Care Company Signs Clarendon Lease — A behavioral health care company called ValueOptions has signed a lease for 37,250 square feet of office space in the heart of Clarendon. [CityBiz Real Estate]
Flickr pool by Reid Kasprowicz
Trader Joe’s has been interviewing potential employees all week to help fill positions at its new Clarendon store.
A “now hiring” sign outside the store advises interested job seekers to apply at the Arlington Employment Center, at 2100 Washington Boulevard. The employment center’s blog indicates that hourly wages start at $10 per hour.
Interior construction on the store, located at 1109 N. Highland Street, seems to be progressing swiftly. The company’s signature blue walls and wood-accented aisles are visible through the large front windows.
Last we checked, Trader Joe’s is planning to open the store at some point next month.
Civic boosters once tried to brand Rosslyn as “Manhattan on the Potomac.”
The connection between Times Square and N. Lynn Street pretty much stopped at the WJLA news ticker, but there is one actual similarity between Manhattan and Arlington as a whole.
Among U.S. counties nationwide, Arlington is second only to Manhattan in terms of average wage per job.
Recent figures from the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis show that Manhattan workers make an average of $109,028, compared to the $102,373 average income of Arlington workers.
According to the Business Journals, Manhattan and Arlington “are the only two major U.S. counties where average compensation is higher than $100,000 per job.”
Construction of a key ramp from I-395 to the Mark Center complex on Seminary Road in Alexandria may be delayed 18 months due to a federal decision that will require an extensive environmental study before the project can get underway. The delay may further hold up the move of military employees from Arlington offices to Mark Center.
On Friday, VDOT announced that the Federal Highway Administration had decided to require the environmental assessment for the ramp. VDOT argued that it should have instead been granted a categorical exclusion for the project, “since the ramp will be built entirely within existing I-395 right of way, will improve air quality by making transit and carpooling more convenient for Mark Center employees and will not have substantial impacts to natural, cultural, recreational, water quality, or historic resources.”
About 6,400 Department of Defense employees are scheduled to be relocated to Mark Center by the end of the year as part of the Base Realignment and Closure Act (BRAC). VDOT says that “near-gridlock conditions will occur on Seminary Road, Beauregard Street and I-395″ unless the ramp and other infrastructure is built to accommodate the extra traffic. With the environmental assessment, it could be 2015 or 2016 before the ramp opens.
Congressman Jim Moran — who has been working “to suspend or delay the move into the Mark Center site until the necessary transportation improvements to prevent a traffic nightmare on I-395 are implemented” — says that Mark Center moves may need to be pushed back even further.
Mickey D’s is undertaking an ambitious company-wide initiative to hire up to 50,000 people nationwide, including 1,400 in the D.C. area — all in one day. To that end, they’re holding a “National Hiring Day” from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. on Tuesday, April 19.
Among the four area restaurants that will be hosting job applicants are two Arlington locations: 1823 N. Moore Street in Rosslyn and 40 N. Glebe Road, just off Route 50.
A job with the golden arches may not have the caché of, say, a white collar job with the Rosslyn-based Corporate Executive Board, but you can’t deny this — it does provide a first-hand lesson in efficient operations management and effective consumer marketing. Plus, they still have shamrock shakes.
Grand Opening for USAA Office in Pentagon City — A new USAA branch has opened on Pentagon Row. The “financial center” — in company parlance — will hold its grand opening celebration from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. on Saturday, April 2. The branch is located at 1301 South Joyce Street.
Doorways Job Featured — Arlington-based Doorways for Women and Families is looking for a new executive director. The job was featured as the MyFoxDC.com “Job of the Day” yesterday. The listing notes that Doorways’ annual operating budget has more than doubled in the past five years, to $3.1 million. [MyFoxDC]
Hilton Garden Inn Sells for $60 Million — The Hilton Garden Inn in Courthouse has changed hands for $60 million, or $320,000 per room. [GlobeSt.com]
Things are looking pretty good for Arlington, economy-wise — at least according to a presentation this morning by Arlington Economic Development Director Terry Holzheimer.
Unemployment and office vacancies are low. Real estate prices and hotel occupancy rates are on the rise. And a number of new construction projects are underway. Holzheimer said he expects the local unemployment rate to continue declining in 2011 while the impact from BRAC is mitigated by a robust demand for office space.
Holzheimer noted that between 2008 and 2010, Arlington saw a net employment increase while Alexandria and Fairfax saw a net employment decline.
Today’s presentation included a list of the top public and private employers in Arlington. The total number employees in Arlington in 2011 is noted below in parenthesis.
Given the current talk in Congress of significant federal budget cuts, Arlington’s large number of government employees may be of some concern.
- Deloitte (3,490)
- Lockheed Martin (2,668)
- Virginia Hospital Center (2,042)
- Marriott International (1,600)
- Booz Allen Hamilton (1,370)
- SRA International (1,359)
- CACI (1,251)
- US Airways (1,300)
- SAIC (1,281)
- Corporate Executive Board (986)
With Circa in Clarendon “just weeks away from opening,” according to its Facebook page, the restaurant has started hiring the bulk of its staff.
Circa is seeking servers, bartenders, barbacks, hosts and food runners for its first Virginia location. Interested parties can apply via this Craigslist posting.
Interior work is still on-going at the restaurant, located on the ground floor of the Clarendon Center project’s south building, at 1200 North Garfield Street. The restaurant released new construction photos (above) on Thursday.