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A look back at 2022, in photos and in Arlington’s biggest storylines

ARLnow is ringing in the New Year with a look back at 2022 through our photo and story archives.

Our photographer, Jay Westcott, compiled a slideshow, above, to encapsulate the stories and moments that made 2022 memorable and remind us of the sights and seasonal shifts that make Arlington home.

After two years of living with Covid, the last 12 months held a continuing return to normalcy in tension with a deepening divide over how Arlington should look and function. On discussions of housing shortages, pedestrian fatalities and fluctuating crime rates, there is a sense that something needs to be done — exactly what remains the question.

The “Missing Middle” housing study and proposed zoning changes embodied this tension the most. While never cracking the Top 20 stories of 2022, the county’s incremental steps toward legalizing housing types such as duplexes, three-unit townhomes and buildings with up to six or eight units in districts zoned exclusively for single-family homes roiled the county.

Residents staged rallies for and against the proposed zoning changes, broke anecdotal Planning Commission meeting attendance records, booed and hollered in a County Board meeting, opined about the “Arlington Way” and ginned up more interest in the Arlington County Board race — one that ultimately went for incumbent Democrat Matt de Ferranti.

In response, the Arlington County Board added community engagement sessions and directed staff to make a number of changes to the proposal, which members later said address some community concerns.

High-profile crashes, including two pedestrian deaths, led residents and the County Board to demand more action on traffic safety. But with crash causes as diverse as alcohol, high speeds, unspecified medical emergencies and sun glare, could slower speeds, road treatments and education ever eliminate pedestrian deaths and serious injuries?

Questions also remain about how prosecutors and judges should serve criminal justice. We took a close look at competing assertions about whether reform efforts led by Arlington’s top prosecutor, Parisa Dehghani-Tafti, are tackling or enabling crime rates.

Still, Arlingtonians came together to mourn the loss of a man and a teenager who each left an indelible mark on their community.

Activist Kent Carter, who died protecting his girlfriend during a shooting on the island chain of Turks and Caicos, was remembered as a family man who led efforts to reform and establish community oversight of the police department. Washington-Liberty high school senior Braylon Meade, who died in a car crash involving a drunk teen, was remembered for leading his basketball team by example.

As evidenced in this year’s gallery, construction hummed along, as Washington-Liberty High School expanded, apartments were built and the first phase of Amazon’s second headquarters prepares to open next year.

Amid all this, the pandemic receded farther into the rear view window for many. Masks became optional in schools, county facilities and on Metro and airplanes earlier this year. Arlington County permanently closed its public vaccine clinic a week before Christmas and has shuttered testing sites.

Yesterday (Thursday), many of you said 2022 was better than 2021. We at ARLnow wish you an even better 2023.

Recent Stories

Morning Notes

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This past week saw 32 homes sold in Arlington. The least expensive condo, single-family home or townhouse sale over the past seven days was $205,000 while the most expensive was…

Tree canopy in Arlington County is lower than it was in 2016, according to a new privately-funded study paid for local residents.

Is home ownership a goal of yours in 2023? Now is the time to make it happen! Grab a (virtual) drink with the area’s top Real Estate experts, learn all about the home buying process and on how you can get $1,500 towards your closing costs immediately!

Did you know the average Arlington renter will spend $150K in 5 years of renting? Stop paying down someone else’s mortgage! Join us for a Rent vs. Buy Happy Hour on Wednesday, April 5th at 6 p.m. via Zoom. If this time doesn’t work, we also are offering times convenient for your schedule!

A lot has happened in the local market since the beginning of the pandemic. Sip on your drink of choice and learn from Northern Virginia, Arlington and Washingtonian Magazines top producing agents! We will discuss the latest market updates, the home buying process and rent vs. buy cost savings. Please RSVP by clicking here.

Call/text Manavi at 703-869-6698 with any questions!

Submit your own Announcement here.

Synetic Theater Camps are a wildly fun, highly accessible choice for young people who love moving, playing games, and making memories. Registration is open now for Summer Camps (sessions June 20-August 25) and there are even a few spots left for Spring Break camp, April 3­-7.

Located in National Landing, these performance-based camps are designed for students of all ages – no theater or performance experience required.

Led by professional teaching artists, campers learn acting, movement, and technical theater skills through the lens of Physical Theater. Physical Theater incorporates acting, movement, dance, mime, and acrobatics. If you’ve seen a Cirque du Soleil performance, you’ll find many similarities.

Most first-time campers are new to the performing arts, and teaching artists are well-versed in engaging students at all levels. Parents and campers report that one of the best parts of Synetic is the community, with many families returning year after year because they feel a strong sense of belonging.

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Submit your own Announcement here.

WHS Spring Festival

Join us at the WHS Spring Festival on April 22, 2023, from 10am- 3pm at Wakefield High School(main parking lot). Come out to shop, play, and eat!

Shop local vendors, arts & crafts, new and used items, food vendors/trucks, and

District 27 Toastmasters 2023 Virtual Conference

District 27 Toastmasters invites you to its annual conference where you can hear phenomenal speakers, attend professional development and personal growth seminars about leadership, negotiation, communication, teamwork, and mentorship. Learn how to develop your personal story and how to improve


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