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by Ethan Rothstein — February 18, 2015 at 11:30 am 2,751 0

Hunan One temporarily closed in Clarendon Hunan One temporarily closed in Clarendon

The Chinese restaurant that has become known around Clarendon for serving giant mugs of beer for cheap is closed for now.

Hunan Number One (3003 Wilson Blvd) has a sign on the door that says it will reopen on Friday, Feb. 20. The business has been closed since last week, it appears.

An employee who answered the phone Wednesday morning said the restaurant was closed “for a bit of remodeling” and confirmed that it’s expected to reopen Friday. When ARLnow.com stopped by this morning, workers were inside getting the business ready for the reopening.

The closure comes at an inconvenient time for those who might have wanted to toast the Chinese New Year, which is Thursday.

It’s unclear at this point what changes are being made to the interior.

Update at 12:05 p.m. — An earlier version of this story reported that Hunan One’s website automatically redirects to an online store that sells only Air Jordan sneakers. It appears that the problem has been fixed and the restaurant’s website is working properly again. Some users, however, may still be experiencing the redirection under certain circumstances due to browser caching.

by ARLnow.com — February 18, 2015 at 9:30 am 1,899 0

Snowy sunset at the Air Force Memorial (photo courtesy @TheBeltWalk)

Police Investigating Apartment Break-In, Fire — A man has been arrested and accused of breaking into his ex-girlfriend’s apartment and starting a small fire. The incident happened on the 1200 block of S. Scott Street, just off of Columbia Pike, Monday morning. [Washington Post]

Arlington Trying to Keep TSA – After losing the National Science Foundation and the Fish and Wildlife Service to Alexandria, Arlington County officials are stepping up their efforts to keep the Transportation Service Administration. The TSA currently has offices in Pentagon City, but at least one office owner is trying to lure the agency to Alexandria. [Washington Business Journal]

Name Chosen for New Park – The future, 8,000 square foot park next to the new Gables North Rolfe apartment complex, which is expected to be approved by the County Board this weekend, now has a name. Various community groups and county commissions have approved “Three Oaks Park” as the park’s name, in honor of the three large trees on the site. [InsideNova]

Building Over I-66 Would be Pricey – A new report has found that building office and apartment buildings over I-66 in Rosslyn would be expensive, but might eventually be worth considering. As much as 2.5 million square feet of new development could be possible by decking over open-air portions of the highway around Rosslyn. [Washington Business Journal]

‘How Arlington Are You?’ Quiz – A questionable, 10-question web quiz on the website of a Crystal City apartment building attempts to answer the question, “how Arlington are you?” Questions include “how many people do you know who work in the defense industry?” and “how often do you go to Starbucks?” [Crystal Square]

Photo courtesy @TheBeltWalk

by Ethan Rothstein — February 3, 2015 at 11:00 am 4,672 0

The Italian Store under construction, Feb. 3, 2015The much-anticipated opening of The Italian Store‘s location in Westover has been pushed back again.

Owner Robert Tramonte told ARLnow.com today that delays in getting utilities installed in the 75-year-old building — water, gas, electric and Verizon FiOS — have been the cause of the delay. Now, he hopes the 6,000-square-foot location on Washington Blvd opens this spring.

“There is no competition for those companies,” Tramonte wrote in an email, “so they schedule as they see fit.”

When Tramonte announced that a second location of his popular grocery/takeout restaurant business would take over the Westover 7-Eleven in December 2013, he planned to open May 2014. Permitting issues held up the start of construction until the summer, when Tramonte said he hoped to be open before the holidays.

Construction was in full swing on the interior when ARLnow.com looked in on the shop this morning. When the new store does open, it will feature a seating area for customers to eat and drink, an expanded grocery section and an Illy espresso bar. Last August, Tramonte described his plans for the location as “The Italian Store on steroids.”

by ARLnow.com — January 29, 2015 at 9:15 am 2,534 0

Snowy Dark Star Park and path in Rosslyn (Flickr pool photo by Brian Allen)

Arlington Named No. 3 Best Place to Live — Arlington has been named the No. 3 “best small to mid-sized city” to live in the U.S. The county scored high marks for civic engagement, education, amenities and diversity. Topping the list were Madison, Wis. and Rochester, Minn. [Livability.com]

County Still Winding Down Streetcar Project — Arlington County still is on the hook for about $60,000 worth of contract work associated with the canceled streetcar project. Most of the county staff members working on the project have been transferred to other departments, County Manager Barbara Donnellan said in an update to the County Board regarding the project wind down. [InsideNova]

Fmr. Rep. Moran to Lobby — Recently retired congressman Jim Moran has been hired by the Washington law firm McDermott Will & Emery. Moran plans to join the firm’s lobbying practice, lobbying primarily for defense contractors. [Washington Post]

Development Tracking Report — Arlington County has released its quarterly development tracking report for the fourth quarter of 2014. Notably, no new office construction was approved or started during the time period, although 761 new residential units were started and another 73 were approved. [Arlington County]

Drone Company Disables Flight in Arlington — Following a recreational drone’s crash landing at the White House, drone manufacturer DJI has pushed out a firmware update for its robotic vehicles that prohibits flight within a 15.5 mile radius of downtown D.C. [Engadget]

Making Business Easier in Arlington — Arlington County is taking some small steps toward making it easier to do business in the county. Arlington recently introduced online business license registration and a streamlined process for paying building permit fees. [Arlington County]

Flickr pool photo by Brian Allen

by ARLnow.com Sponsor — January 27, 2015 at 8:30 am 837 0

Drs. Natasha Ungerer and Kayleen Gloor have recently opened Clarendon Animal Care, located at 3000 10th Street N., Suite B.

The location previously housed Ellen’s Futons, but has been transformed into a state-of-the-art veterinary care facility. Build-out renovations were completed just before the New Year and the hospital has been open since January 5. Drs. Gloor and Ungerer have been delighted by their new professional home and the warm reception they have received from clients and neighborhood residents.

“We really wanted to open in Arlington, and in Clarendon specifically, because there was a local need, and folks around here are very invested in the human-animal bond, which is something we aim to foster by providing the highest quality veterinary care… and I have the added benefit of being able to walk to work!” said Dr. Gloor, who is a neighborhood local.

“We’ve bucked the standard 15-20 minute appointment norm, and have made 30 minute appointments our minimum” said Dr. Ungerer. Both veterinarians emphasize client communication and education as the foundation of their practice.

“I don’t ever want a client to walk out the door not knowing why I chose the tests or treatments I did — or to feel confused about what they’re supposed to do for follow up” said Dr. Gloor, who takes pride in her diagrams, client handouts, and use of non-medical jargon in appointments to ensure clients have the necessary tools and information to make informed decisions about their pet’s care.

The vets’ approach to their clients and patients can be summed up by one of their clients, Stephen Harris.

“[Drs. Gloor and Ungerer] have been taking care of our four legged kids for years and we are so happy they have their practice together now,” Harris said. “They are thorough and thoughtful, they have always made sure we understand everything going on with our kids when they were not well. They have gone out of their way to check up on the pups when they were sick, even calling on the weekends. We just got a chance to check out their new state-of-the-art veterinary clinic and wish them the best of luck with the Clarendon Animal Care!”

Hospital services include: comprehensive medical exams (wellness/preventive care, domestic & international health certificates, and sick pet/urgent care exams), as well as general soft tissue surgery, dentistry, digital radiology, and in-house and reference laboratory diagnostics.

Clarendon Animal Care is open:

  • Monday – Thursday from 7:30am – 7:30pm
  • Friday from 7:30am – 5:30pm
  • Saturday from 7:30am – 12:30pm

Check out their website www.clarendonanimalcare.com, or visit them on Facebook. Appointments can be made by phone at 703-997-9776, email at info@clarendonanimalcare.com, or via website request. If you happen to be in the area, feel free to stop in to say “hi,” meet the doctors and staff and get a tour of the clinic.

Reference this ARLnow article and receive $25 off your first veterinary visit.

The preceding article was sponsored by Clarendon Animal Care.

by Ethan Rothstein — January 26, 2015 at 4:45 pm 4,324 0

Summers in Courthouse planning to reopen Summers in Courthouse planning to reopen

Salt and pepper shakers are still on the tables at Summers Grill and Sports Bar, which closed at the end of last month, and customers will soon join them.

The restaurant, which opened in 1982 and rose to prominence as a haven for soccer fans before the sport became popularized in the U.S., terminated its lease because of a big dip in business, according to the Washington Post. Just weeks after it closed, a sign appeared on its door this weekend announcing it would soon reopen.

“Back by popular demand of our loyal customers,” the sign reads, “and the generosity of our landlord (JBG Cos.), Summers Sports Bar will re-open soon!”

Summers’ owner and JBG representatives did not return requests for comment. Looking through the windows of the restaurant — which sits at the corner of Clarendon Blvd and N. Courthouse Road — it appears that it shouldn’t take long to prepare for a reopening.

by ARLnow.com — January 22, 2015 at 11:00 am 2,342 0

Washington Free Beacon logoThe Washington Free Beacon, a conservative news website, is moving its headquarters from D.C. to Rosslyn.

The company, founded in February 2012, has signed a lease at 1000 Wilson Blvd, one of Rosslyn’s silver “twin towers.” About 25 employees are expected to move into the new office this spring, according to Free Beacon president Aaron Harison.

“I thought we were getting a lot more bang for our buck in Rosslyn,” Harison told ARLnow.com. The publication, described by its soon-to-be Rosslyn neighbor Politico as a “pot-stirring, hyper-conservative news and opinion site,” previously had offices on K Street NW in the District.

“We’re getting this great panoramic view of the whole city,” Harison said. “That’s something you don’t get in D.C.”

The Free Beacon recently transitioned from being a nonprofit organization, founded as a project of another conservative nonprofit, to being a for-profit entity. Harison said the new office will allow the publication to continue to grow.

“We really want to increase our footprint,” he said.

Harison, a Ballston resident, said the expanding Rosslyn restaurant and bar scene should help to ease the transition from D.C.

“We’re certainly going to be looking for a couple of new bars and restaurants to make our local haunts,” he said.

Rosslyn has become something of a minor media hub. Among the media organizations calling Rosslyn home are WJLA-TV, Politico, Washington Business Journal, ARLnow.com and Graham Holdings (owner of Slate, theRoot and Foreign Policy).

In addition to the Free Beacon, twin towers owner Monday Properties on Wednesday announced two other new leases at 1000 Wilson Blvd: Cobro Ventures, an investment and management company, and Riveron Consulting, a financial firm.

Monday will go before the Arlington County Board this weekend to seek permission to build a new roof deck on 1000 Wilson Blvd. That roof deck will be used by Sands Capital, an existing tenant, according to a spokeswoman.

Disclosure: Monday Properties is an ARLnow.com advertiser

by ARLnow.com — January 22, 2015 at 9:05 am 2,262 0

Soldiers from The Old Guard in the snow  (photo via @The_Old_Guard)

Another Early Morning Fire — Arlington County firefighters rescued a man from an early morning house fire on the 2100 block of S. Randolph Street. This is the second day in a row that Arlington firefighters rescued someone from a house fire. [WJLA]

Association Moves from Alexandria to Arlington — The American Diabetes Association is moving from Alexandria to Arlington. The association has signed a 78,000 square foot lease for a building in Crystal City. The building, owned by Vornado, has been vacant since the previous military moved out due to the 2005 Base Realignment and Closure Act. [Washington Business Journal]

Snow Total for Arlington — Yesterday’s afternoon snowfall resulted in an accumulation of 0.4 inches in Arlington, according to a measurement at Reagan National Airport. In the Great Falls section of Fairfax County, 1.8 inches was recorded. [National Weather Service]

Va. Considering All-HOT Lanes I-66 — Virginia is considering a plan to convert I-66 to HOT lanes only during peak periods. That would mean that transit and carpools of three or more people are allowed to use the highway for free during rush hours, but anyone else has to pay tolls. Construction could begin as soon as next year, with the goal of starting HOT lane service by 2017. [Washington Post]

Opening Date for Kapnos in BallstonKapnos Taverna, the new 165-seat Greek restaurant from chef Mike Isabella, has set an official opening date of Tuesday, Jan. 27. The restaurant is located at 4000 Wilson Blvd in Ballston.

Photo via @The_Old_Guard

by ARLnow.com — January 16, 2015 at 11:40 am 2,725 0

Personal property tax envelopeResidential real estate assessments for 2015 have risen 4.9 percent, Arlington County announced Friday morning.

Assessments county-wide rose 3.4 percent over 2014 values. The 4.9 percent rise in residential values (including condos, townhouses and single-family homes) was paired with a 4.7 percent rise in the assessments of existing apartment buildings.

Dragging down both was a 4.5 percent decline in existing office property assessments. Arlington County has been struggling with an office vacancy rate north of 20 percent.

“Arlington’s overall real estate market remains resilient,” Arlington County Manager Barbara Donnellan said in a statement. “The strength of our residential market balances the tremendous pressures we see in the office building market due to the effects of BRAC and regional competition.”

Real estate assessments are being mailed to all Arlington property owners today. The 2015 assessments will also be posted online and made available at 11:00 tonight.

Unless the Arlington County Board decides to lower the property tax rate, the rise in assessments will mean higher tax bills for homeowners. Either way, it should mean lower tax bills for commercial office building owners. Despite the rise in assessments, the county is still facing a multi-million dollar budget gap for its FY 2016 budget.

The full press release from Arlington County, after the jump.

File photo

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by ARLnow.com — January 5, 2015 at 9:00 am 1,227 0

Arlington's planetarium (Flickr pool photo by Lawrence Cheng Photography)

County to Hold Affordable Housing Forum — The Arlington County Human Rights Commission is holding a public forum on affordable housing on Thursday. The forum will be held at 6:30 p.m. at the Arlington Mill Community Center (909 S. Dinwiddie Street). Between 2000 and 2013, the average rent in Arlington increased by 91 percent while the average home sale price rose 140 percent. [Arlington County]

Beware of Contract Vote Requirements — In the interest of government accountability, County Board member John Vihstadt has proposed requiring a Board vote on all county contracts over $1 million. Beware of such a requirement, says a letter to the editor writer. Reformers in the District want to take away the power to vote on large contracts from the D.C. Council, citing recent scandals and the potential for abuse. [Washington Post]

Hynes to Host Business Breakfasts — Hoping to give a boost to Arlington’s economic competitiveness, County Board Chair Mary Hynes is planning on holding quarterly breakfasts with local business leaders. The meetings come at a time when Arlington’s office vacancy rate is north of 20 percent and the Columbia Pike and Crystal City corridors are facing the loss of the planned streetcar project. [InsideNova]

Christmas Tree Recycling Begins Today — Christmas tree recycling begins today in Arlington County. Trees collected curbside and at the Arlington Solid Waste Bureau will be turned into mulch. [ARLnow]

Flickr pool photo by Lawrence Cheng Photography

by ARLnow.com — December 17, 2014 at 9:00 am 1,646 0

Kirkwood Road near Clarendon (Flickr pool photo by Alves Family)

HOT Lane Lawsuit May Haunt County — At a time when the state is studying HOT lanes and other possible changes to I-66 inside the Beltway, Arlington County’s past actions may come back to haunt it. County officials “burned some bridges” when they filed a lawsuit against VDOT in 2009 to block HOT lanes on I-395. The county has also lost some regional credibility by abruptly canceling the streetcar project. Efforts by Arlington to oppose any changes on I-66, therefore, may fall on deaf ears. [InsideNova]

Incubator Launches in Crystal City — Eastern Foundry, a “veteran-owned government technology and innovation incubator,” celebrated its launch in Crystal City yesterday. The company held a ribbon cutting ceremony with Sen. Mark Warner (D-Va.) and Vornado/Charles E. Smith president Mitchell Schear. [PR Web]

Man Arrested for Arlington Attack — Fairfax County Police have arrested a man wanted for allegedly attacking his ex-wife’s boyfriend in Arlington. In the June 15 attack on Columbia Pike, police say Edwin Patino-Medina ripped two necklaces off the boyfriend’s neck then tried to run him over with a car. [WUSA 9]

Menorah Lighting Tonight — Last night was the first night of Hanukkah. Tonight, in the park next to the Clarendon Metro station, Chabad Lubavitch of Alexandria-Arlington will hold a menorah lighting and community celebration. The event kicks off at 6:00 p.m. and features a “giant 6 foot menorah” plus music, potato latkes, chocolate gelt and “dreidels for all.” Tomorrow, the group will hold its annual Chanukah on Ice event at the Pentagon Row ice rink.

Flickr pool photo by Alves Family

by ARLnow.com — December 11, 2014 at 9:35 am 1,916 0

Construction at Eads and 18th Street (Flickr pool photo by Erinn Shirley)

Arlington Firms Among ‘Best Companies to Work For’ – Two Arlington-based companies have made the annual list of the top 50 small and medium-sized companies to work for . The 2015 list, compiled by employment website Glassdoor.com, ranks Ballston-based Evolent Health at No. 3 and Courthouse-based Opower at No. 25.

New Plan for Rosslyn Plaza — Vornado and Gould Property Co. have updated their redevelopment plan for Rosslyn Plaza, the series of aging buildings along N. Arlington Ridge Road between Wilson Blvd and 19th Street N. The development team is proposing 2.5 million square feet of new construction, including a total of five office and residential buildings, four acres of open space and a esplanade deck with views of D.C. and an outdoor ice rink in the winter. [Washington Business Journal]

Celtics Player Swings By The Italian Store — Celtics center Kelly Olynyk stopped by The Italian Store after losing to the Wizards in double-overtime on Monday. He posed for photos and even helped make sandwiches and pizzas. Olynyk isn’t the only pro athlete that has visited the Lee Highway store. Nene, of the Wizards, and Nationals stars Stephen Strasburg and Ryan Zimmerman have stopped by, as has NBA great John Stockton, who happens to be owner Bob Tramonte’s brother-in-law. [Washington Post]

ACFD Recruitment Starts Tomorrow — The Arlington County Fire Department’s biennial open recruitment period starts tomorrow. From Dec. 12-25 ACFD will accept applications for potential firefighter and EMT recruits. No experience is necessary. The county has also made a series of “Join the ACFD” videos for recruitment purposes. [Arlington County]

Arbour Realty Acquired By Md. Brokerage — Arbour Realty, the Ballston-based boutique real estate brokerage owned by “Ask Adam” columnist Adam Gallegos, has been acquired by Real Living At Home, a larger brokerage with office in Chevy Chase, Md. and Dupont Circle in D.C. Gallegos will hand over management responsibilities and continue as an agent with Real Living At Home. [Real Living At Home]

Flickr pool photo by Erinn Shirley

by Ethan Rothstein — December 10, 2014 at 5:10 pm 1,119 0

A retail space at 1800 N. Kent Street that has been vacant for six yearsFour vacant retail spaces — three in Rosslyn and one in Courthouse — could be converted into medical or office space following action by the Arlington County Board this weekend.

The Board has four items in Saturday’s consent agenda dealing with the conversion of space mandated to be retail, based on building’s site plans, to office or medical uses. One of those items is for a dentist’s office already in operation in Courthouse Plaza under a temporary site plan amendment.

The other three agenda items are for:

  • Two vacant retail spaces, totaling 3,696 square feet, at 1800 N. Kent Street. One space (pictured above) was a private school space that has been vacant for six years. The other had been occupied by dry cleaners, but has been vacant for 10 years, according to the staff report.
  • A 2,830-square-foot vacant space on the ground floor of 2001 15th Street N., in the Odyssey Condominiums. The space fronts Clarendon Blvd, but it has been vacant for five years, other than serving as a temporary leasing office for the now-opened apartments across the street, the staff report states. Since the leasing office has relocated, the owner reports difficulty finding a tenant for the space.
  • A 1,520-square-foot space at 1600 Wilson Blvd, the former site of the Sir Speedy Printing Center, which has been vacant since July. The space, according to the staff report, “has a history of retail vacancy and poses some location challenges for retail attraction.”

County staff identified no issues for any of these sites, suggesting a “medical/physical therapy office, will help activate the street and pose no adverse impacts to the neighborhood,” in all of the reports.

The county seems to be taking a softer line on mandated ground floor retail spaces, in recognition that some storefronts are just not viable for traditional retail. For instance, 1800 N. Kent Street is well hidden from Rosslyn’s main N. Lynn Street drag, resulting in a relative paucity of the foot traffic that could bring customers to a small business.

County staff, in recommending approval of the motions, used the draft Arlington Retail Action Plan as guidance in its decisions.

The draft action plan, which would replace and expand upon the 2001 Rosslyn-Ballston Corridor Retail Plan, includes a map that specifies which type of retail can go where. According to the county’s planning staff, all four locations on Saturday’s agenda are considered appropriate for medical or office use under the draft retail map.

by ARLnow.com — December 4, 2014 at 11:00 am 2,449 0

2200 Crystal Drive (photo via Vornado)President Obama’s announcement on Nov. 20 that he would take executive action on immigration is leading to a hiring boom in Crystal City.

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration announced on Monday that it’s hiring about 1,000 full-time federal and contract workers in Crystal City to help implement the president’s executive action, which will grant temporary legal status to millions of undocumented immigrants and help highly-skilled workers stay in the U.S.

Salaries at the facility will range from $34,415 to $157,100, various news outlets reported.

That’s good news for Crystal City and its high office vacancy rate. We’re told the new workers will be based at Crystal Plaza 4, a 46-year-old office building at 2200 Crystal Drive. The federal government is backfilling a General Services Administration lease for the Vornado-owned building.

Republicans have decried the president’s action and are criticizing the new “hiring binge.”

“This facility is a clear symbol of the President’s defiance of the American people, their laws, and their Constitution,” Alabama Sen. Jeff Sessions said, in a statement.

by ARLnow.com — December 4, 2014 at 8:30 am 1,980 0

Inflatable Christmas decorations at a home in the Aurora Highlands neighborhood (Flickr pool photo by Desiree L.C.)

Morroy Announces Re-election Bid — Arlington Commissioner of Revenue Ingrid Morroy announced that she will be seeking re-election in 2015 at last night’s Arlington County Democratic Committee meeting. Morroy, who is recovering from recent hip replacement surgery, outlined her goals for a new term. The goals include returning property assessments to the Commissioner of Revenue’s office, thus bringing it under the supervision of an elected official who’s directly responsible to taxpayers.

Arlingtonian Running for UK Parliament — Arlington resident Sonia Klein, who was born in London, is running for a seat in the UK House of Commons. Klein, who’s affiliated with the Labour Party, can run because residency is not required to run for House of Commons seats. Klein has previously served as vice chair of precinct operations for the Arlington County Democratic Committee. [InsideNova]

Whipple Appointed to Board of Health — Gov. Terry McAuliffe has appointed former state Sen. Mary Margaret Whipple to the Virginia Board of Health. Whipple previously represented the 31st District, which includes Arlington, in the state Senate. [Commonwealth of Virginia]

New Cycletrack Proposed — Arlington County is proposing a sidewalk-level cycletrack along S. Walter Reed Drive to connect the W&OD Trail and the Four Mile Run Trail. However, some cyclists are concerned the cycletrack would be barely distinguishable from the adjacent sidewalk. [Greater Greater Washington]

Clarendon Office Building Sold — The recently-constructed office building at 3003 Washington Blvd in Clarendon has been sold. KBS Real Estate Investment Trust has reportedly agreed to purchase the building from Penzance Cos. for $146.8 million. The building is 95 percent leased to eight tenants. [GlobeSt, Washington Business Journal]

Flickr pool photo by Desiree L.C.

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