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New Apartment Building Coming to Ballston

by ARLnow.com October 3, 2011 at 11:06 am 9,915 99 Comments

The Goodyear tire store and service center in Ballston will likely be torn down at some point next year to make way for a new apartment building.

The current one-story building is located at 650 N. Glebe Road, across from Ballston Common Mall and one block from Harris Teeter. A developer is planning to build a new 6 story apartment building on the site, starting next year. The new building, tentatively dubbed “The Crimson on Glebe,” will include some 115 to 150 apartments, with 9,000 square feet of ground floor retail space at the corner of Glebe Road and N. Carlin Springs Road.

Arlington County’s Site Plan Review Committee is expected to discuss the building proposal in November. The developer hopes to start construction on the building next year, with construction wrapping up by mid-2013, according to the Washington Business Journal.

Meanwhile, long range planning for the American Service Center site adjacent to the 650 N. Glebe project is underway. The county’s Long Range Planning Committee is expected to conduct a meeting on the site on Tuesday, Oct. 25.

  • Rosslynite

    New apartment building! Yea!

  • Thes

    So, this building hasn’t yet been approved by the County Board. Could be a lot longer than a year for construction to begin, then.

  • Great

    Just what we need!! I can’t wait! More [email protected] 20 somethings!!!!! Wooo hoooo!!!!!!!!

    • I can do that too

      Great, move then! Just what Arlington needs, more arrogant snobby out of touch 40 somethings… (noone is forcing you to live her) Wooooo hoooooo!!!!!

      *See, I can call out and generalize an entire generation/age group too….

      • Thes

        Your choice of spelling is not helping your cause.

        • I can do that too

          Because my incorrect spelling on an internet blog undoubtedly means that I am a D-bag, no good, dumb, worthless 20 something. Perhaps our said friend is jealous 20 somethings can afford to live in an area such as Arlington right out of college because they have good paying jobs.

          Also if we are discussing grammer, the original post has fragments, excessive puncuation and made up words in it, so clearly spelling and age mean nothing.

          But thank you for your english corrections, I hope you plan to monitor the entire internet blog for spelling errors, whether they be from old folk or 20 somethings.


          • OttO


          • It is a wonder someone hired you after reading your cover letter and resume.

    • Michelle

      instead of complaining on a local blog about it, you should get a bat and do something more constructive about the issue.

      • Billy the Exterminator

        I can help you with the bat thing.

    • Tre

      Don’t worry there are still several nice assisted living buildings in Ballston

    • JamesE

      I bought property in Arlington in my 20s, U mad bro? (I just turned 30 yesterday, going to kill myself)

    • YTK

      That Goodyear store has alot more character than any hi-rise ever will — like we NEED another hi rise, for G-d’s sake????

  • Who needs a tire store when the goal is to eliminate cars? More apartments! Yes!

    • Rick


    • drax

      You got a point there, OB.

      • Josh S

        He does? How?

        • sarcasm

          because there isn’t another Goodyear just up the road at Wilson and 10th st

          • He was sarcastically agreeing!

          • Thes

            Too bad there’s no generally accepted punctuation for sarcasm. /s

          • wat

            the location in this article is almost always fully packed as it is. honestly i’m surprised there aren’t more comments about not having enough car shops around. An article a few months back had hundreds of comments when they mentioned a car wash closing about how there aren’t enough places to get the car washed.

            I guess people are taking the vain approach of car washes > maintenance.

          • dirty biker

            But ah ha! The tire store comes to you now (I saw these guys the other day- looked pretty cool actually…)

  • novasteve

    Maybe they can close down any bar that sells drinks fo rless than 7 dollars to celebrate?

    Man this are sucks and is getting s uckier.

    • Heynow

      You could always move….please!

    • LP


      You really should move, all you do is b*tch about Arlington and how much you hate it.

    • Southeast Jerome

      if people didnt pay it Steve, they couldnt charge that. Its called supply & demand

  • drax

    Yet another post-modern brick-and-steel building with a tiara.

    • Juanita de Talmas

      I know. I wish these developers would hire some new architects instead of rehashing these same tired designs.

  • Southeast Jerome

    Definitely need more housing in Arlington. Not sure why you hate 20 somethings who come here for jobs, pay taxes, are educated and help support local businesses.

    If you want to hate on 20 somethings, go ahead. I hope they all vote to cut off your social security and pension payments you old fart.

  • Josh S

    Hey, that picture features a blue sky. ARLnow must have used the wrong file photo. We don’t have any of those around here…..

    • Rosslynite

      Please do not include Donaldson Run in your unfair gross generalization of local weather patterns. We got nothing but blue skies.

  • John B

    “The Crimson on Glebe.” Really? All kinds of jokes can be made…

  • John

    But isn’t the Goodyear building preservation worthy as an iconic “mid-century modern” structure? The floor-to-ceiling glass and functional design defines a bygone era in Arlington. Except for the landmark blue-hued Marymount building, this is the last 50s/60s building in Ballston. Who will stand up to save this?

    • Richard Cranium

      And what of the tires? A decent, honest, American-born tire that might have equipped a police cruiser, rescue vehicle, or hospital worker’s car can’t even afford a place to live in Arlington any more. They’re all getting pushed out by these Evil Developers! THINK OF THE TIRES!!!

      • mc

        One less tire joint along Rossyln-Ballston, but several more that need to go. I think the Mr. Tire on Wilson would make a lovely art gallery or funky cafe.

        • Rick

          Yeah the county needs two places on Wilson Blvd that lose money hand over fist…

    • Well played, sir. I can’t wait until they try to redevelop the Ballston Mall and someone tries to declare it iconic of the windowless concrete boxes of its era.

  • charles

    So, who is it in Arlington County Government who gets paid by each new development project? Isn’t enough ever enough?

    • Josh S

      In what way was this an Arlington County Government decision? Do they own the land? Will they develop it? Will they collect the rent from the new apartment dwellers? Do they own stock in Goodyear?

      Jeez. I mean, great – you’ve got a point of view. Fine. But to go out and LOOK for absurd examples to try to shoehorn into your point of view….it doesn’t help your credibility or appearance of reasonableness.

    • John

      Actually, this block needs help. Modest, upscale apartment buildings that don’t look like those massive red or brown brick Dittmar projects are a welcome addition here. The County just needs to stop allowing additional density for developers who offer to fund bad public art, through the county’s public art program.

      That horrific brown fountain at the corner of Quincy and Fairfax Dr. is one such waste of public art funds.

      • Thes

        That fountain covers up what used to be an even more horrific exposed WMATA water chilling facility. Turning it into an Egyptian mausoleum was a modest improvement, and I believe it was paid for by the apartment development on that same block. Would have been even better if the chillers could have been moved all the way to the roof of the apartment building, but you can’t have everything, I suppose.

        • John

          The county could have at least hired a better architect/artist/designer or held a design competition. That fountain is just one example of many bad public art projects. How about those concrete “canoe” benches at the Virginia Square Metro station, next to the entrance. It’s simply more uninspired junk, and a waste of money.

          • drax

            John, you assumed something but you didn’t know what was going on. The fountain is a great, and inexpensive, improvement on an ugly thing that wasn’t going to be moved anywhere.

          • John

            I know it is part of Metro’s infrastructure, and I remember when the artwork was installed, a few years ago. I’m simply annoyed at the lack of decent art/architecture, and the money spent on mediocre projects.

            The sculpture in Rosslyn (at the intersection of Wilson and Clarendon Blvds) and Dark Star Park, are just about the only noteworthy projects in the county.

            Another questionable public art project is in Clarendon, at the corner of Wilson and Fillmore.

          • Thes

            What art project are you talking about at this location?

          • John

            I meant the artwork at the corner of Fillmore and Clarendon Blvd. It’s outside the Belgian cafe.

  • FW

    Please tear down the Ballston Mall why you are at it.

    • westover chick


      That is an excellent idea!

    • John

      YES! Just keep the parking garage and offer free parking for Metro commuters.

    • mall bar enthusiast

      but then people can’t get dressed up on the weekends to go to a… mall bar!

    • widstc

      my thoughts exactly!

    • dk

      God, yes.

  • I against I

    Man, Sliver Spring get a new brand Fimore for concerts.


    Arlington, get more boring condos. CUPCAKES!! PIZZA!!! yes!!

    • John

      That could’ve been Clarendon, but the JC Pennys fell to the wrecking ball 30 years ago. At least Silver Spring kept their old Pennys and Silver Theater across the street, anticipating the future redevelopment/entertainment potential.

      • The Fillmore was essentially wrecked and rebuilt. The standing capacity only about 2000. With an assigned seat show, much less. You don’t need a huge place for that.

    • Vinh An Nguyen

      Mongomery County and the State of Maryland provided a multi-million dollar subsidy to the Filmore. I can only imagine the outcry if Arlington County did a similar thing here (see ‘Artisphere’).

      • RosRes

        Artisphere is not a good comparison, as no additional funding was used. They County just consolidated exisiting funds and the Rosslyn BID kicked in some added funding.

        • Vinh An Nguyen

          My point was if so many people get bent out of shape over the providing of funds for an arts-related nonprofit, imagine how they would flip out over taxpayer dollars going to a for-profit corporation.

          • RosRes

            Vinh – I see your point! Considering how much everyone here likes to bash our non-profit arts centers I couldn’t agree with you more.

  • Ray

    More childless 20-somethings to pay property taxes for my kid’s public education!

    • mc

      That’s a good point. I like a mix of ages, but 20-somethings consumer a lot of beer that generates taxes for the County.

  • Vik

    I think you can criticize more banal apartment/condo buildings all you want, but I think all these car places are more objectionable. I’m glad a lot of these older used-car dealerships and automotive stores in prime locations are being replaced with uses that add more value to the area. There are certainly building types we lack, like a modern concert/theatre but this will be better than what was there before.

    • RosRes


  • Tre

    These comments clearly reflect the day of the week. Commercial property replacing commercial property, sound the alarm!

    • Suburban Not Urban

      Yea, useful commercial property that provides services to residents replace by building full of useless entitled folk feeding at the public trough and producing very little.

      • marie

        “Useless entitled folk feeding at the public trough and producing very little?”

        Um, what? It’s not a homeless shelter. It will likely house young tax-paying professionals.

  • 1234

    With any luck this will help drive that embarrasment of a shopping mall in to something . . . less embarrasing.

  • I against I

    yeah, we understand, used car dealerships bring poor and working class people. I’m sure, they don’t want to bring down the value of the area. Next time, they can go to woodbridge to get an oil chain or pick up an old honda for sell. Man, Arlington, a land of pricks.

    • Scenario Proposer

      Who is “they”? Before you answer, consider this completely hypothetical but plausible scenario:
      1. I own a piece of land. On it is a building that houses a tire store, which pays me rent. For grins, call it $250,000 per year.
      2. The lease is coming up for renewal, and a condo developer offers me $12 million for the land.
      3. I do a little math and decide that’s a good deal and take it.

      Now, in that scenario, who is the evil “they” that don’t want to bring down the value of the area? Who are the “pricks” in what you imply is a discriminatory (you mention “poor working class people”) practice?

      • Suburban Not Urban

        Except you neglect the details. When “You” bought the land, it was zoned for light commercial – you never had any expectation of selling for $12 million – a developer only offered you $12 million because the county(with the developers greasing the wheels) has changed the rules on the folks that have lived here for many years – destroying quality of life, and stacking the deck by mandating building uses that fill up with folks who have beholding to the county to change the basic rules to get even a minimal quality of life.

  • Frivolous

    I’m sure they are taking parking into factor when building this… right?

    • Advanced Towing certainly is.

      • Johnny Utah


    • Chris Slatt

      Arlington has parking minimums built into the zoning code. During the Site Plan process, developers sometimes ask for reductions in that minimum, especially when a project is located near a Metro stop since their is an expectation that fewer people will travel by car to and from that building than would otherwise be the case if it were not near Metro. Sometimes the reduction is granted, sometimes it is not. When it is, some sort of community benefit is generally extracted in exchange – often a payout to Arlington’s Transportation Infrastructure Fund to pay for further transportation upgrades in the County.

  • John Fontain

    At least the proposed building doesn’t look like every other new apartment building in the area…oh wait, nevermind.

  • UnlimitedCustoms

    I wonder if it will be wood-framed.

    It’s right at the max height where it could be, just as the one at 10th and Washington under construction.

  • Doodler

    Just what the Orange Line needs–more riders at rush hour.

  • Michelle

    When I was in grad school, someone said that the more apartments that in an area causes the housing market (value) to decline. Is this true? It was a business law class so I don’t know the validity of student/professor having the discussion.

    • UnlimitedCustoms

      Maybe the professor was referring to Section 8 of the United States Housing Act of 1937?

    • Ballstonia

      Sure, the law of supply and demand says that increasing the housing supply in a given area should marginally reduce housing costs — assuming constant demand.

      But since Arlington still enjoys a (relatively) warm housing market, and the demand for housing in the county continues to outstrip supply, this one new building certainly won’t cause housing values to decline.

  • OX4

    Gotta love people that move into a town and then complain about other people moving into the town.

    • Winning Bell

      DING! DING!! DING!!!

    • R

      I am not complaining because I’m all for improvements and getting rid of less than diserable older buildings in prime locations as well as adding to the tax base, but some of us were born here and lived here all our lives (somewhere north of 50 years) with the exception of 4 years away in college and 3 defending people’s right to complain, so are we sure that everyone complaining moved here and is now complaining about other people moving here?

      • Lou

        What’s that you say? People on the internet making gross inaccurate generalizations just so they can hit a “submit” button? Well I never.

  • Paul Samuelson

    the demand for housing in the county continues to outstrip supply

    What is the evidence for this statement?

  • kel

    whatever happened to that funeral home/apartment building plan? the one on fairfax dr

    • Southeast Jerome

      I think it died


    • Chris Slatt

      Looks like it is still going through Site Plan Review – it’s on the preliminary agenda again for the October 24th Site Plan Review Committee.

      It’s referred to as the “3901 Fairfax Drive” project if you want to poke around the County website some more on your own.

    • Lee-n-Glebe

      the Developer, WCI, went BK. I know the land around the funeral home has been bought out of BK (note: NOT the land under the funeral home itself), haven’t heard of any new plans for it.

      • General Zod

        Same developer (Crimson Partners) is putting up an office building there.

        • Vik

          I thought the old plan for this site had some theatre space or something like that and its design would interact with the library as well. It would be a shame if it’s just an office building with nothing else. A location like that should have something a bit bigger, IMO.

  • Ballstonresident

    What a shame. I have used that Goodyear for years for not only tires, but also auto repairs. They are honest and reasonable.

  • JohnB

    Looks like it’s being designed by the Lessard Group, Inc. Have no idea if that’s good or bad, but I’d bet the drawing up top is just an initial concept.

  • Just wondering……

    I have always wondered why developers don’t strike deals that would include keeping the existing business in the new building. Seems like a win-win (with a brief shutdown or a brief relocation). Established business, established customers, and rent for the new owners.

    The greek restaurant in claredon appears to have held out selling, only to have a large building constructed around it, and then the restaurant went out of business. Smarter move for everyone would be to make the deal allowing old business to continue in same location after construction of new building.

    • Thes

      A lot of developers, usually under pressure from Arlington County, DO strike deals to keep existing businesses in the new building. But there are several obstacles:

      – The new space usually takes in much higher rent than the old business can generate. So the developer often takes a loss if they agree to do this, and so they resist.

      – The business owner doesn’t want to have to move their business twice, and suffer the lost income from each move — so they don’t participate.

      In Clarendon Center (soon to be the Trader Joes/Pete’s APizza buildings) all the demolished stores were offered a chance to stay. Most did not accept the offer. Some just closed down (like Little Viet Garden) others moved to new permanent locations.

      I don’t know what you expected to happen with the Agean Taverna in Clarendon. The condo developer offered them money to let their land be part of the high-rise development. They refused. Then they sold out to what became Restaurant 3 (probably for less money). It was all their choice.

      • itsGreektome

        Aegean. As someone said earlier, spelling counts.

  • John Andre

    This is not a great location for disruptive construction as it could interfere with access to the Harris Teeter. However, I’m doing most of my Harris Teeter shopping at the Pentagon Row store since my retirement from NRECA. As a matter of fact the Ballston Mall is becoming more run down–only fast-food places remain at the Food Court and even a few of these have been shuttered–wish we could get the “Market to Market” buffet back!

  • Rick

    To those clamoring on about foot traffic in ballston… Why would this project drive traffic to the mall if there’s no direct mall entrance facing Glebe Road?


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