Clarendon Metro Plaza Changes Coming Soon

by Katie Pyzyk May 15, 2012 at 1:45 pm 8,104 57 Comments

A contract worth more than $760,000 to improve the Clarendon Metro Plaza is up for approval at the County Board meeting this Saturday, May 19. The board is scheduled to vote on granting the contract to Fort Myer Construction Corporation.

The revamp involves installing new landscaping, pavers, irrigation, seating, lighting, curbs and gutters. It’s designed to provide a larger public space where community functions, such as the farmers’ market, can be held.

The plaza’s fountain will stay, but will receive upgraded water lines. Additionally, the changes should improve drainage in the plaza.

The ADA-compliant design also includes new sidewalk ramps, a curb extension at the northwest corner of Clarendon Blvd and N. Highland Street and new pedestrian crossings at Clarendon Blvd, N. Highland Street and Wilson Blvd.

The county has been coordinating with WMATA during the planning process. However, the site is, and will remain, county property up to the elevator and escalator landing areas. The Department of Parks and Recreation will continue its maintenance of the plaza.

Construction, which was expected to have begun already, is now anticipated to begin shortly after board approval. It will be completed in phases so pedestrians continue to have access to the Metro escalators and elevators.

Sketches of the proposed changes were released last summer, and can be found with additional details of the plan on the county’s website.

Update on 5/16/12 — Project Manager Tom Hutchings says the county wants to avoid interfering with major events near the plaza this summer. Construction is expected to start after the Air Force Cycling Classic Clarendon Cup on Saturday, June 9. The goal is to have the plaza finished before Clarendon Day at the end of September.

  • walter

    WTF. $760k ? The only improvements they need to make is moving the bums away from sleeping on the benches.

    • Joan Fountain

      …and get rid of all the interest group dogooders with their clipboards.

      • drax

        And get off your lawns.

        • Bum

          …and let me sleep on the benches.

          • drax

            The benches there all have those little “armrests” in the middle to discourage sleeping. Your back must be sore.

      • Richard Cranium

        + 1 Billion.

        “Excuse – do you have a few minutes for the rights of gay and lesbian animals?”


        • demonfafa

          “Excuse me, do you have a few minutes to simply ignore me and go about your day?”

          I’m sure if someone was raising money after being an asshole is outlawed, you’d surely stop for a second.

    • Salmon Ella

      Can they sleep at your house Walter? That’s so nice of you!

    • Tumblebum

      Have they stopped bathing in the fountain? There used to be one who took soap in with him. I admired his personal hygiene.

  • JamesE

    Would be nice if they also updated the other metro stops.

    • Tre

      no one cares about Ballston 😉

    • Ballston needs more love than Clarendon.

  • yo

    and whats with all the colored concrete. This isn’t sesame street.

  • drax

    I don’t like the way that park is looking at me. Dang park! Get off my lawn, park!

  • Roycroft

    It has not yet been built but it already looks dated.

  • novasteve

    STOP! That money could be used to repay the student loans of almost 4 gender studies majors! Think of the children!

    • Southeast Jerome

      dont worry Steve- instead of paying for the old people when they retire, the kids will be paying their student loans instead b/c the boomers wrecked the economy, allowed massive inflation in health care costs and education, and didnt give gen-Y high enough salaries to pay for said student loans.

      The children will take care of themselves. The old boomers- not so much.

  • Vikram

    Everything built by the county has to be ADA compliant. When that blurb gets included in every article about Arlington construction projects it would be helpful to point out non-compliant parts of the site that are being remedied.

  • JamesE

    How will construction affect business at Sam’s Corner?

    • craig

      yeah, i wondered that too.

    • ArLater

      More like how will Sam’s Corner affect construction?

  • karzai

    This project is long overdue. It should be a very welcome addition to the streetscape.

    • drax

      It’s rude that they don’t tell us when it will be open though, huh?

      • Quoth the Raven

        Is karzai ever going to live that down?

        • drax

          Sure. Every joke gets old – see flipflops, brown and yogurt, frozen.

          But every time he complains about it, the clock resets.

          • Josh S

            Ahh, the rules of the playground……

          • karzai

            Right. one would have thought he’d have moved on by now.

        • karzai

          Sam’s Corner is going to become a great bagel place once it’s built. Hope to earn your business there….

        • karzai

          probably not, since my efforts to counter keep getting deleted by the moderators.

  • Tre

    The sample pavers already installed look horrible…. I was hoping the delay was due to someone realizing that it’s ugly and coming up with a better plan.

    • J

      It’s going to be so insanely hot there in the summer.

  • LC

    Where are the bike racks in these plans?

    • Tre

      They are going to be removed so you have to use Capital Bikeshare

  • CW



    The County Govt. is making it easy for ARLnow; just bring up these things once a year and let them stagnate, then the article can be updated and recycled the next year!!

    • Josh S

      It’s amazing how you can go back and read comments from less than a year ago that now seem so quaint…..

  • Southeast Ben

    I wonder how long before Trevor is slumming it on the park benches and harassing the young women of Arl?

    • Josh S

      You know what this comment board needs? The ability to tag comments. Then we could track the most popular tags, how fast certain tags blow up, etc. “Trevor” would most definitely be trending big time over the next few days……

      • Southeast Ben

        I wonder if Trev is a trending topic on Twitter in our area?

      • WeiQiang

        Sure, but will the system recognize ‘brah’ vs. ‘bro’?

        • JamesE


          • King K’amehameha

            I swear, if I see one “brudda” on here …

    • Trevoroni

      When I’m done with my pizza, brah.

  • drax


    • craig


  • novasteve

    Are they ever going to build the second courthous metro entrance on barton street or his wikipedia lying to me?

    • Swag

      …why would they? So they can dig out a 2-block tunnel?

  • novasteve

    Trev really has done wonders to strike down misperceptions about trevs on the internet. Until that story broke, I thought all trevs were unemployed computer programmers, virgins, who live in their mom’s basement.

  • YTK

    I hope a revamping project for Ballston will be in the works too — that place is a mess.

    • Southeast Ben

      Ballston Restoration Plan
      Step 1: Remove public bus hub
      Step 2: Reduce number of chain restaurants
      Step 3: Remove mall.

  • RebeccA

    Interesting how this plan costs less than the Clarendon Dog Park. Da Fuq?

    • WeiQiang

      The fountain is not being replaced and the fountain does not have to be AKC-compliant. Fewer ducats.

      • fake drax

        It’s not a Metro Plaza, it’s a People Plaza that happens to have a Metro under it.

        • drax

          Not bad.

  • Glad to hear it.

    Well, I’m certainly relieved to know we aren’t going to spend the $760k on new classrooms, repairing potholes, or sewage plant repairs. Redoing the current plaza really is priority #1.

    • drax

      This objection is getting lame.

      We can afford to build new class space AND revitalize our public spaces and infrastructure. Go post this stuff in an Artisphere article or something.


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