Arlington, VA

Dudley’s Sport and Ale in Shirlington is inching ever closer to opening, with plans to start hiring employees in the coming days.

Owner Reese Gardner told ARLnow that an “exact date” for opening of the long-awaited sports bar, located at 2766 S. Arlington Mills Drive, still remains unclear.

However, the restaurant did host a hiring fair this past Sunday (Sept. 23), and Gardner said the pub should be open soon. He’s been working since 2015 to bring the new bar to the space once occupied by The Bungalow Sports Grill, though he’s run into a series of delays over the years, some of which have been linked to the 3,000-square-foot rooftop space he’s building atop the 12,000-square-foot restaurant.

In a Facebook post earlier this month, the restaurant’s staff attributed some of the delays to more requirements from county planners, scuttling Gardner’s plans to open the bar in time for football season.

“Please understand we also want the venue to be open also but there have been continuous hurdles to overcome with this construction process,” staff wrote. “The latest is Arlington County would like us to add a dry sprinkler system to the outside rooftop area. The bottom floor is basically finished except for paint and small punch list stuff.”

Gardner added that the restaurant is now awaiting “final inspections” from the county, which will determine when exactly Dudley’s is able to open its doors.

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