The developer behind the upcoming Lacey Lane subdivision in the Waycroft-Woodlawn neighborhood is giving peek at what the new area will look like once it’s developed.
The Barrett Companies, which is a business run by the Chamberlin family since the 1980s, bought the vacant property on the corner of Washington Blvd and N. George Mason Drive and had it excavated last month. The Chamberlins had been working to acquire the land for about a decade.
According to brothers Taylor and Milton Chamberlin, the goal for the Georgian style homes is for them to be an alternative to “McMansions.”
“We really take our time to design the homes to fit in the neighborhood. We’re not builders that come in and put this huge McMansion in a small neighborhood where it doesn’t fit. That’s not what we do,” said Taylor. “All of this is really thought through and it’s really livable, usable space. It’s not those McMansions where you walk in and wonder, ‘What do you do in this room?’”
The base model runs around $1.4 million and features four bedrooms and 4.5 bathrooms, with the possibility of another bedroom and bathroom on an additional level. Costs will vary based on the different lot sizes and individual add-ons the purchasers want in their homes.
“We’re pretty enthusiastic about what we’re giving back to the community and what we’re providing for people who want to live there,” Taylor said. “They’re neat homes, they’re going to be well built.”
Another goal is to foster a 1950s sense of community among the owners of the nine properties, in which everybody knows and interacts with their neighbors. The homes will only be accessible via a private road and there will be a small fence around the subdivision.
“There’s a sense of community where people can interact a little bit more, but not lose their privacy,” said Milton.
The homes feature outdoor living area options — such as screened in “sleeping porches” off the second floor bedrooms or fireplaces exposed to the outdoors — which are supposed to add to the sense of community.
“While one neighbor is out grilling, you can see a couple of other neighbors hanging out on their patios,” Milton said. “You can sit and hang out and watch the kids in the backyard. It’s a very functional space.”
The brothers noted The Barrett Companies’ effort toward green building and energy efficiency. From better insulation and caulking to installing appropriate outlets in the detached garages for plugging in an electric car, the Chamberlins believe small touches make their properties stand out.
“It’s the little things that are very time consuming that a lot of builders wouldn’t want to do,” Taylor said. “All those little things add up. It makes it so much more efficient.”
A few neighbors had voiced concerns about last month’s removal of around 150 trees on the property to make way for the subdivision. But Taylor said the trees that were removed weren’t of high quality; many of them will be replaced with new trees that are native to Virginia.
“The trees that were on this site were very low quality trees per Arlington County’s grading scale. A lot had just grown wild over the years,” said Taylor. “In the process of coming back in here, we’re putting in a lot of newer, higher quality trees to grow up around the homes. I do understand the concern of neighbors around it. They’re going to see that it will be beautiful and lush and green again.”
The hearing will be held from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Feb. 13 at the VDOT Arlington headquarters at 1426 Columbia Pike. The project manager, Edwin Woo, is also soliciting comments via email for the next three weeks.
The bridge, which was built in 1941 and carries 3 lanes of traffic in each direction, is structurally deficient, according to VDOT. The replacement will be widened by 9 feet, to 105 feet, to accommodate an 14-foot shared use path and an 8-foot sidewalk on either side of the bridge — an improvement over the existing, narrow concrete sidewalks.
The bridge will also be lengthened, to 485 feet, and will also allow a slightly higher clearance: 16 feet 6 inches compared to 15 feet 4 inches. It will still carry three vehicle travel lanes in each direction.
Construction on the $20 million project is tentatively expected to start in 2014 and wrap up in 2015. At least two traffic lanes will be maintained on Washington Boulevard and Route 110 during the duration of the project, with the exception of some temporary nighttime closures, according to VDOT.
The bridge carries more than 100,000 vehicles per day, VDOT figures suggest.
(Updated at 4:25 p.m.) An excavating crew has begun clearing land in the Waycroft-Woodlawn neighborhood where a new subdivision will be built. The space at the northeast corner of Washington Blvd and N. George Mason Drive is private property and was one of the few remaining undeveloped pieces of land in the county.
The Department of Environmental Services recently reviewed and approved dividing the property into nine residential lots. This was done as a matter of right, which means the County Board does not have to give approval if the applicant meets all requirements.
During the preliminary review and approval of the subdivision proposal, the applicant, Lacey Lane Land Company, L.C., had to send notification to all adjacent property owners as well as those across the street. The president of the neighborhood’s civic association also had to be notified, along with the neighborhood conservation representative. The notification was to inform neighbors of a possible new development in their area, and to give them a chance to speak with county staff about the proposal.
The developer had to submit design plans for the site to ensure all the development’s infrastructure would be adequately designed and built. As with any public infrastructure to be built and be turned over to the county for operation and maintenance, this one had to be guaranteed by a public improvement performance bond and agreement. The applicant also had to meet requirements in the Zoning Ordinance regarding landscaping regulations and tree removal.
Arlington County Urban Forester Vincent Verweij says the developer was sent a letter suggesting preservation for many of the 150 trees on the land. However, Verweij noted it was only a suggestion because private land owners can cut down whichever trees they choose on their own property once receiving the initial land disturbance permit for the site. He believes the excavators left about five trees on the property.
Verweij believes the remaining trees are too exposed and may be unstable in storms or on windy days.
“I fear they may fall into houses now, because a forest is much stronger than individual trees,” said Verweij. “Most of the support and strength comes from being rooted outward and that’s going to be cut significantly by these houses.”
Under the Chesapeake Bay Preservation Ordinance, the developer must preserve, or in this case re-plant, 20 percent of the trees that stood on the site. The county will not award certificates of occupancy for the homes until those standards are met.
Lacey Lane Land Company, L.C. recently applied for a construction permit for one of the homes, which will be built at 1312 N. Evergreen Street. That permit could be approved in about 30 days. The developer will have to apply for individual permits for every additional home and each will have to be reviewed by the county. Currently, there is no estimate on when the subdivision will be completed; it will depend on the developer’s timing for submitting the additional eight permits and beginning construction those houses.
Update at 4:35 p.m. — One westbound lane is now slowly getting by the scene of the water main break.
A water main break in Virginia Square is snarling traffic on Washington Blvd, and will continue to do so through the evening rush hour.
Westbound lanes of Washington Blvd have been closed between N. Kirkwood Road and N. Lincoln Street. Traffic heading eastbound has been reduced to one lane.
There’s no word when the road will re-open, but a crew will remain on the scene making repairs at least through rush hour.
(Update at 2:40 p.m.) A vehicle flipped on its side on westbound Washington Boulevard this afternoon.
The accident occurred just past noon between I-395 and Columbia Pike, near the scene of a wreck that happened last week. A red vehicle — a Ford minivan or SUV with D.C. tags — somehow flipped on its side on a downhill stretch of Washington Boulevard near the VDOT maintenance yard. Temporary jersey barriers were in place near where the accident took place, apparently for the Washington Blvd/Columbia Pike bridge project.
One occupant suffered a shoulder injury as a result of the single-vehicle accident, according to scanner traffic. A tractor trailer was stopped near the wreck, but had no apparent damage.
The stretch of Washington Boulevard was closed for about an hour but reopened around 1:15 p.m.
A D.C. taxicab somehow went up a steep embankment, ran into and partially went over a guardrail on Washington Boulevard this afternoon.
The accident happened around 1:00 p.m. on the section of Washington Boulevard between I-395 and Columbia Pike. Initial reports suggest the taxi was heading northbound from I-395 to Washington Boulevard when it ran up an embankment and into the guardrail along the southbound lanes of Washington Boulevard.
It’s unclear how the accident happened, although initial reports suggest another vehicle might have been involved in the accident; that vehicle suffered only minor damage.
The driver of the Ford Crown Victoria cab was extricated by firefighters and taken to a local hospital, according to scanner traffic. Traffic on Washington Boulevard was backed up as crews worked to remove the cab from the guardrail.
The outage has been reported in the Westover and Bluemont neighborhoods, as well as in the area around Virginia Hospital Center. Traffic lights are out along parts of George Mason Drive and Washington Blvd, according to several Twitter users. The outage was first reported just before 12:30 p.m.
Dominion is telling customers the outage is the result of “a circuit breaker issue,” according to a tipster.
According to Dominion’s outage map, 4,070 customers have lost power in Arlington. The power is expected to be restored some time between 3:00 and 5:00 p.m.
The call for an accident involving a motorcycle and a vehicle near the intersection of Washington Blvd and Pershing Drive came in around 8:25 a.m. Washington Boulevard has been shut down for at least an hour while police took photos and investigated the accident. Those lane closures are expected to be lifted shortly.
No word yet on the condition of any of the victims.
Photo courtesy @jghazi
Undocumented W-L Valedictorian “Still Kind of Scared” — This year’s Washington-Lee High School valedictorian, 17-year-old Nataly Montano, is one of the young people impacted by President Obama’s recent policy decision to pull back on the deportation of undocumented immigrants who were brought to the U.S. as children. Montano, a 4.3 GPA student, says she is “still kind of scared sometimes because things could happen to get me deported.” [Sun Gazette]
New Washington Blvd Trail to Impact Trees — A new trail extension planned for Washington Boulevard between Columbia Pike and Route 50 will result in the removal of “about 350 trees.” The plan has, on some level, pitted bicycle advocates against tree huggers, according to a blog post. [Commuter Page Blog]
‘Tapping Party’ Tonight in Shirlington — Capital City Brewing Company in Shirlington Village is hosting a “tapping party” tonight (Tuesday) for one of its newest beers, a Rye IPA. “Medium to full bodied, the Rye IPA (6.5% ABV) is an American style IPA made with the addition of Rye malt that lends a spice to the flavor profile and then dry hopped with American style hops,” according to a press release. The event starts at 7:00 p.m. and will include a question and answer session with the brewmasters, a free appetizer buffet and a trivia contest. [Shirlington Village Blog Spot]
Flickr pool photo by Maryva2
A bomb squad investigation has shut down part of Washington Blvd and is causing significant traffic backups.
Washington Blvd in the eastbound/southbound direction has been shut at S. 2nd St, near Route 50. While the investigation continues, there will be various closings in the area, including on S. 2nd St.
Drivers are advised to avoid the area altogether if possible.
The investigation involves a pipe wrapped in some sort of packaging found lying in the bushes.
Traffic heading toward I-395 on southbound Washington Boulevard is slow due to an accident.
The accident involves at least two cars and two injuries, according to scanner traffic.
Emergency activity is on the right-hand side of Washington Boulevard between Columbia Pike and the ramp to I-395.
Based on a study of the intersection at Washington, Wilson and Clarendon Boulevards, the plan provides safety improvements for drivers, bicyclists and pedestrians. Eight other nearby intersections would also be affected by the changes in traffic flow.
The study offers numerous suggestions and sketches of possible redesigns. Some ideas included adding lanes to Washington Blvd, removing left turn lanes, adding bike lanes, adding curb extensions near Liberty Tavern and Sam’s Diner and moving traffic more toward the Silver Diner’s property.
The geometry of the intersection, which is often described as “awkward” and “confusing,” would be normalized by the revamp. The overall size of the intersection would decrease, and better traffic signals and signs would be installed.
The first round of public forums addressing the improvements will be scheduled soon and will continue throughout the spring. A finalized plan and ground breaking is expected sometime in 2014, at the latest.
The traffic light sat the busy Clarendon intersection of Washington Boulevard, 10th Street and Fillmore Street is expected to remain dark throughout the morning rush hour following a car accident Thursday night.
Around 7:15 last night a car hopped the curb and took out the traffic signal control box near the Virginia ABC store. One minor injury was reported.
Arlington County crews have been working throughout the night to replace the traffic signal hardware, but the lights are not expected to come back on until after the morning rush hour. Police have set up cones in the intersection in order to keep traffic flowing in an orderly manner.
The tricky merge from eastbound Columbia Pike to northbound Washington Boulevard has been made even trickier recently due to high grass.
The merge, which lacks an acceleration lane to get up to the speed of fast-moving traffic on Washington Boulevard, has been the scene of numerous fender benders. While it was still hard for drivers to see oncoming traffic when the grass was mowed, cab drivers tell us that it’s now even harder.
Luckily, the entire interchange is slated for replacement by 2015.
Cool, sunny weather is expected Sunday morning for the Acumen Solutions Race for a Cause 8K.
The race will shut down a number of major Arlington streets — from Ballston to Clarendon to Columbia Pike — for much of the morning. Among the expected closures:
- N. Quincy Street from Glebe Road to Wilson Boulevard (5:30 to 10:00 a.m.)
- Eastbound Wilson Boulevard from Quincy Street to N. 10th Street (7:45 to 10:00 a.m.)
- Eastbound N. 10th Street from Wilson Boulevard to N. 10th Street (7:45 to 10:00 a.m.)
- Southbound Washington Boulevard from N. 10th Street to Columbia Pike
The Race for a Cause 8K, which also features a 1-mile Family Fun Run, benefits a number of local charities. Runners get to choose which charity they want to support with their registration: Greenbrier Learning Center (the only Arlington-based nonprofit benefiting from the race), the Boys and Girls Club, Build Metro DC, Education Pioneers, E.L. Haynes Public Charter School, For Love of Children, Literary Council of Northern Virginia, Medical Care for Children Partnership Foundation, National Fatherhood Initiative or The Women’s Center.
Registration for the race is $30 online, $35 on race day.
The race will kick off at 8:00 a.m. Runners and walkers alike are encouraged to participate. The flat, out-and-back course starts and ends on N. Quincy Street in Ballston.
Photo via Facebook