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Update on Large Residential Developments in N. Arlington

by ARLnow.com August 12, 2011 at 3:17 pm 6,703 36 Comments

A drive through parts of Lyon Park, Clarendon and Rosslyn today revealed significant progress on three large residential developments, as well as clean-up work on one ill-fated project.

In Rosslyn, Clark Construction crews are busy cleaning up from last week’s retaining wall failure at the Sedona and Slate apartment site. Workers were busy reinforcing the adjacent Swansen Apartments building, which nearly collapsed into the construction pit after the failure.

Residents have still not been allowed to move back into the building, according to Arlington County Inspection Services Division Chief Shahriar Amiri. It’s hoped that the building may be ready for re-occupancy next week. The Sedona and Slate project, meanwhile, has been set back untold weeks or even months.

Also in Rosslyn, Abdo Development’s Gaslight Square luxury condominium building has a gleaming metal frame and teams of busy construction workers. The groundbreaking for the project was in January.

In Clarendon, Ironwood Realty’s Garfield Park at Clarendon Village project is also well-underway. The project has been drawing complaints for obstructing traffic and creating significant noise at the intersection of Washington Boulevard and 10th Street.

Finally, in Lyon Park, the old Lee Center is no more, replaced by the beginnings of the so-called 2201 North Pershing project. The mixed-use residential building is expected to wrap up next summer.

  • ARLrez

    What, no bank robberies today? Slow news day.

  • charlie

    VERY disappointed to see the metal structure at Gaslight. Can we not pour concrete and make something sound and soundproof.
    Sad that our market is still so out of control that this poor construction method still brings in top dollar.

    btw, what’s the big construction site at Lee Hwy/Monroe Street? Overpriced townhouses for 22207?

    • CW

      What do you expect for $750k for a 1BR?! 🙂

      • JamesE

        how is that even possible, anyone that actually pays that is out of their mind.

    • Cleveland

      It’s called Dominion Heights.


      Ive seen multiple prices quoted 300’s to 700’s. I think it has some portion of affordable housing with it.

      • cakes

        I remember when that was a bank, then shuttered, then a proposed homeless shelter (yeah right), and vacant for ages.

        For some reason, I recall a giant satellite dish on top of the roof. Lots of potential for redevelopment along Lee Highway in that area (towards DC).

    • Clarendude

      Probably referring to the Christopher Company condo project in Maywood-ish ?


    • BerryBerryCold

      Concrete floors are not soundproof.

      I’m more surprised to see the wood framing at the other site aka lumberyard as fire fighters call those.

      You left out the “affordable” housing in Lyon Village.

      • cakes

        You see lots of residential wood framing now. Penrose square, for example and Potomac Yard on Route 1 in Alexandria is the same.

        Makes me appreciate my 80 y/o brick and plaster condo (though its hardly soundproof either)

        • NPGMBR

          I agree. Developers charge a lot to sell/rent these things and you can hear the conversations of every resident as you walk the halls. When I buy I want my unit to have cement walls but I don’t they do that anymore.

      • charlie

        i keep expecting a good fire in one of these tinder boxes and, fortunately, it hasn’t happened.
        I’m sure it is top quality wood, of course.
        at least the wood will dampen the sound of that very busy intersection.
        some of the stuff developers build today will be ghetto in 20 years.

        • BerryBerryCold

          Just as in a house, in a few years you will hear the floor creaking above when someone is walking.

          Re: Fire:

          • charlie

            true. but it in a house it is my loving family, wonderful kids and ever-perfect dog barking — not someone I don’t know.

          • NPGMBR

            Ya know you have a valid point. I never thought of it but its true, houses have wood frames so the quality is no necessarily greater. However, houses don’t share walls with other houses.

      • Josh S

        I still don’t get the complaints over wood framing. Aren’t most houses wood framed? I know every house I’ve ever seen under construction has been wood framed….except those in Third World countries which are all concrete…..

  • JimPB

    Surprised — nothing on the racing to completion Views at Clarendon apartments.

    • BerryBerryCold

      When will Clarendon turn into a crime magnet?

      • JimPB

        Clarendon as a crime magnet? Only if teachers, firefighters, store managers and the like are, contrary to experience and data, raging street criminals.

        The most costly crime occurs not on the streets or in the lobbies of bank and the like, but in the offices and other settings where white collars work. That’s where the big money is, and there is no shortage of white collars who rip off a lot of that big money.

  • MC

    Agree that wood framing is not good enough for a multi-family dwelling. Buildings of 4 or 5 stories tend to get cheaply build because they can rely on cheap framing. These buildings are often simply stapled together.

    • Jack

      [This post has been deleted due to a violation of our comments policy]

      • charlie

        actually, you don’t know Jack.
        Garfield Park will be a slum in 20 years.
        these buildings are so poorly built. Most of the owners will move out within 5-10 years due to noise and lack of appreciation.
        i know. i have something just like it. i’d walk away if i could.

        • Jack

          You are I’ll informed about modern codes and building materials. Please do some research before you lash out and show your ignorance.

          • charlie

            We aren’t talking about code, jack, we are talking about comfort.

            please let me know which construction firm you work for — that way I’ll never hire you as a sub. if you only do things “to code” well then that is your choice to do poor quality work.

          • Jack

            Ignorance. Charlie it is ok to ask if you don’t understand things like building techniques, code, etc. But don’t act like you do or lash out because you bought a sub standard unit. Construction today and 20 years ago or 20 years from now have little to do with each other. The bulding materials alone have and will continue to change building sciences over 20 years.

          • charlie

            your messages get removed because of things like this —
            you are belittling and obnoxious in your comments.

            and I do know code. i know it quite well and i spend a great deal of time on ASHRAE and IBC policy. i would never buy purchase or live in something that was “only built to code”. It is not an acceptable standard for me. If it is for you, fine.

            so go bully someone else.

          • JohnB


            Just two comments ago you stated:

            “Garfield Park will be a slum in 20 years.
            these buildings are so poorly built. Most of the owners will move out within 5-10 years due to noise and lack of appreciation.
            i know. i have something just like it. i’d walk away if i could.”

            but now you say “i would never buy purchase or live in something that was “only built to code”. It is not an acceptable standard for me.”

            Seems like you’ve contradicted yourself.

      • Jack

        Arlnow, where is this comments policy you speak of? I don’t see any policy on your site. My statement was a fact.

        • ArlForester

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          • Jack

            Arlforester, Still don’t see an Arlnow policy or see how their arbitrary removal of my comment broke the ‘rules’ you posted.

  • jackson smith

    Retaining wall failure: Any information why the retaining wall failed? Rain does not cause construction sites to fail, so there must be some other reason.

    • CW

      “Rain does not cause construction sites to fail”, but excessive loading will cause any structure to fail. Wet dirt is a lot heavier than dry dirt and someone did not provide a high enough factor of safety when they ran the numbers. Either that or someone messed up in the actual implementation and anchoring of the thing.

  • xtr657

    I don’t like how the Gaslight project aligned all the buildings with 16th Street instead of Clarendon boulevard. Now there is a triangular piece of land sticking out that just looks odd to me.

  • I got that PMA

    Condos,Pizza, Cupcakes and Walmart

  • TuesdaysChild

    Gaslight. You pay 1.3 million for a 2 bedroom. And you have to climb a circular staircase to your master-bedroom? That would get old real quick. How do you get furniture up a circular staircase?

  • smartaleck

    most likely in a roundabout way. . .

  • Glebe Road


    Could you look into the big, stalled development on Glebe Road near Lee Highway? They tore down a lot of affordable garden apartments there but the land has been fallow behind a fence for a couple years now.


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