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Residents Launch Petition Against Ballston Development

An online petition against a proposed residential development in Ballston has gathered 175 signatures.

The petition decries what it describes as a “high rise” development; a seven-story condo building and four story townhomes are proposed for the current Grace Community Church site at the 11th and N. Vermont streets.

The development, the petition says, will exacerbate traffic and school crowding issues. Supporters’ reasons for signing the petition also include “too much dense, high-rise development in Arlington already,” “harming the property values and diminishing the quality of life of those who already live here,” and “Arlington has become unaffordable.”

From the petition:

We request that you DENY the proposal for special use exception to change the zoning on 11th Street North and North Vermont Street from Low-Medium Residential to High-Medium Residential Mixed-Use to prevent several negative consequences to the immediately surrounding Ballston area and the broader Arlington communities.

Specifically, we ask that the zoning committee and county board not approve a deviation from the current zoning designations to a much higher density of development and instead maintain the current, well thought-out zoning plan to avoid:

  • increasing the traffic problems in the already highly congested Ballston area (Glebe & Fairfax and proximate streets and main thorough fares),
  • exacerbating the overcrowding in the Arlington Public Schools (Washington-Lee HS, etc.),
  • clearly deviating from and frustrating the existing plan and layout of a graduated reduction in heights and density in transitioning from the metro rail stations, a detrimental precedent to establish for existing neighborhoods and residents, and
  • introducing significant more disruption, potential physical damage, and nuisance to the closely surrounding residents that comes from heavy machinery, pile driving and heavy construction compared with the lighter construction associated with the current zoning.

Reston-based developer NVR describes the project as “a relatively modest in-fill development” that’s in keeping with the “urban townhouse” neighborhood that surrounds it.

The Arlington Planning Commission and County Board are expected to consider a site plan for the project later this year.

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