Arlington, VA

It couldn’t have looked more out of place. An old building near the Virginia Square Metro station, dressed up in black paint and Gothic-style accents.

What would have been a restaurant, bar and lounge called “Haze” is now being reduced to a pile of rubble. Arlington County purchased the property at 3540 Wilson Boulevard one year ago with the intention of tearing it down, and the demolition is finally happening today.

The property will be used to connect Maury Park and Herselle Milliken Park, two tiny swaths of recreational space located on the same block between N. Monroe and Lincoln streets. So what happened to Haze?

Last year we were told that the owner undertook renovations on the building before any county permits were issued or even requested. Obviously, a county that put the kibosh on a dog mural located next to a dog park is going to take issue with a business trying to pull a fast one with a gaudy black bar across from an apartment building. The owner finally decided to shutter the restaurant-that-never-was instead of trying to to get the building back into compliance.

At least for now, the prime Wilson Boulevard property will be used as a park.

“The entire parcel will be used as park space in the near term, although the immediate frontage on Wilson Boulevard may be reconsidered in the long term if the remaining retail/commercial parcels on the block are consolidated and redeveloped,” Arlington Park Division Chief Lisa Grandle told the Ashton Heights Civic Association last year.

H/t to Bill Colton

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