East Falls Church Plan, New Rosslyn Metro Station on Saturday’s Board Agenda

by ARLnow.com July 9, 2010 at 3:31 pm 2,411 17 Comments

In addition to voting on outdoor seating proposals for American Flatbread and Screwtop Wine Bar, the County Board will considering some proposals with far-reaching consequences.

The board will vote on an initial framework for the East Falls Church development plan, which has attracted quite a bit of controversy. The plan could pave the way for the construction of apartment buildings, retail spaces and other dense, pedestrian-friendly development in what is now a much more single-family-home-oriented area.

Another item under consideration would result in the construction of a new entrance to the Rosslyn Metro station . The $32-35 million dollar project was originally meant to take place concurrent to the construction of the Rosslyn Central Place development, but the development has stalled due to financial complications.

A $159 million bond referendum is also under consideration. The board will decide whether to put the bond issue on the ballot in November. The bonds would fund construction of a new Wakefield High School as well as various Metro, transportation, park and infrastructure projects.

Other items of interest include votes on $249,077 in arts grants, more than $750,000 in equipment for the new Artisphere, and whether to schedule a hearing on a proposal to protect six trees from removal on private property.

  • I hope the board approves the EFC redevelopment as well as the outdoor seating plans.

  • Steve

    Very ironic that the EFC development is tied to developer improvements of the area that include a new metro entrance, while on the same meeting agenda they are scrambling to figure out how to build an improvement to the Rosslyn Metro entrance that JBG promised to pay for, but are not. The same stunt was pulled with the promised second Ballston entrance at Arlington Gateway. I think JBG was that developer too, but I might be wrong.

    Lessons to be learned here people: do not let developers reap the benefits of added density when they promise things and do not deliver on them. Of course, they get to build the added density, then thumb their nose at the citizens later.

  • Let’s Be Free

    Good point Steve, when financing falls through the County proceeds as if nothing should get in the way and the community ends up paying the bill. The deep-sixed Columbia Pike Library plan had a similar genesis, when the developer for Arlington Mill backed out, the County scrambled to proceed willy nilly instead of just saying no.

  • Mike

    We are in a budget crisis and the county is blowing one million dollars on art projects?

    They are called starving artists for a reason. No one values art, and taxpayers shouldn’t be forced to pay for it.

    • Skeptical

      I assume you’re trying to be outrageous when you say “no one values art.”

      I know few people who don’t value art, though admittedly few people I know value some of the things that I have seen called “art” in this county over the last couple of decades. My rule of thumb is that as soon as someone refers to “making art,” you run like hell, because that poncey phrase telegraphs a scarcity of any actual artistic skill like carving, painting or playing an instrument. And if you hear the word “installation,” reach for your gun. But “no one values art”? Tell that to Sotheby’s, or anyone who’s attended a play SRO.

      • Mike

        Exactly. The wealthy value this clap-trap and are only too happy to have everyone else pay for it. Meanwhile core services are being cut to the bone.

        I can’t wait for the COG to make the ballot.

        • Skeptical

          On the other hand,

          You gave but will not give again
          Until enough of Paudeen’s pence
          By Biddy’s halfpennies have lain
          To be ‘some sort of evidence,’
          Before you’ll put your guineas down,
          That things it were a pride to give
          Are what the blind and ignorant town
          Imagines best to make it thrive.

          But perhaps William Butler Yeats is passe in this century?

          Not that I suppose Yeats would have been much for installations, but he made a case for art.

          • Mike

            A pad of paper for a kid to write a poem: $2.00

            A renovated building so rich snobs can socialize: $1,000,000.00

  • Efrem Hornbostle

    The all-Democrat Arlington County Board finally sees the writing on the wall as it regards the change-in-government measure. The majority of them realize they cannot be elected in magisterial districts based on their current records of dismal governance. How they approach the EFC redevelopment will be a turning point for them. They will pehaps for the very first time this Saturday as County Board members muster a conscience that reaches beyond the dictate of the ACDC and looks into the hearts of those most affected by this issue. However, I doubt that this conscience will result in a decision that’s in the best interest in helping to retain the current neighborhood flavor of EFC.

    Democrats in Arlington are currently in a major cluster flux. They cannot believe that the common folk openly challenged their continued disenfranchisement of fair and equitable governance and have put the County Board and ACDC on the defensive.

    • Dan

      “They will pehaps for the very first time this Saturday as County Board members muster a conscience that reaches beyond the dictate of the ACDC and looks into the hearts of those most affected by this issue.”

      Your fears were not founded…..despite the vast majority of speakers speaking against the plan, the board voted unanimously to go forward with the the plan.

      The mustering of their collective conscience will have to wait for another day !!

      • Thes

        Dan, that’s not an accurate report. They voted NOT to make the plan County policy, but sent it to the Manager to fix.

        • Efrem Hornbostle

          Classic ACDC/Arlington County Board stunt – postpone definitive final action until the outcome of the change-of-government measure.

          Gutless Democrats.

  • George

    Don’t worry, the county board will approve everything… they always do unless the citizenry wants it. These hearings are merely a formality for them.

  • Efrem Hornbostle

    The ACDC recently met in secret and have put a team of lawyers together ready to disenfranchise the 345+ COG referendum signatories in order to invalidate the referendum under the 14,000 signature threshold.

    They plan on using the same tactics the Democrats used in Florida in 2000 to help Al Gore disenfranchise voters there.

  • Charles Foster Kane

    Of course they will, Efrem. Because we all know how well that turned out for the Democrats.

    Now, tuck yourself in. We know how frightened you get after the sun goes down.

  • Efrem Hornbostle

    “Charles Foster Kane”

    I swear I saw that name at Whole Foods on bottles of imported organic toilet rim cleaner.

    Is that you sir?

    (Isn’t being a Democrat fun when you have nothing left to stand for?)

  • Westover

    I do not understand why anyone would be for further over-populating the area by EFC. In the last 4 years, 2 complexes have been built about 5 blocks from the Metro – not to mention the lot 2 blocks from that of townhouses that are about to get started. Within FC City, they have completed 3 more complexes. The traffic in that area during rush hour is absurd. I live in the neighborhood by the metro and it has taken me up to 30 minutes just to get the .5 miles to 66W in the morning.
    While I agree there could be more improvements to the metro station itself, I do not think building more condos/apts is the answer. As for retail space, as the businesses in the West Lee Complex how it is going….well, you can ask the ones that are still open.


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