Arlington County is in the midst of a “Missing Middle Housing Study,” to determine whether legalizing additional housing types in certain areas could “address the shortage of housing supply in Arlington.”
So what is “missing middle housing” anyhow?
It’s described by Opticos Design, whose founder claims to have coined the term, as “a range of multi-unit or clustered housing types — compatible in scale with detached single-family homes — that help meet the growing demand for walkable urban living.”
Alternately, Wikipedia describes it as “multi-unit housing types such as duplexes, fourplexes, bungalow courts, and mansion apartments that are not bigger than a large house, that are integrated throughout most walkable pre-1940s neighborhoods, often [on] blocks with primarily single-family homes, and that provide diverse housing choices and generate enough density to support transit and locally-serving commercial amenities.”
In a nutshell, missing middle housing is what’s between single-family detached homes and mid-rise apartment buildings, including duplexes, townhouses and fourplex apartments. And Arlington County is studying zoning changes that would allow it in certain places, to increase housing supply and provide alternatives to moderate-income households that can’t afford pricy detached homes (median sale price in 2019: about $950,000, compared to $575,000 for townhouses and duplexes.)
In a recent webinar, below, county staffers said the study is being conducted as housing costs rise and the county’s population is expected to exceed 300,000 by 2045.
Without finding ways to increase the housing stock and the types of housing in the county, the webinar suggested, Arlington will become more expensive and less diverse.
Current building trends, according to the presentation, are skewed toward the replacement of smaller, older homes with large, luxury houses in single-family home neighborhoods, while developers build small one- and two-bedroom apartments and condos along Metro corridors.
Neither are good options for a family of moderate means.
“We have a gap in housing options here in Arlington,” the presentation said. “Arlington’s Metro corridors offer smaller apartment and condo units in medium to high density buildings, however that style of housing does not suit everyone’s needs. Other neighborhoods offer single-family homes or townhomes and only a very limited quantity of other housing types.”
“If we do nothing to address these challenges, the existing housing stock will continue to get more and more expensive while existing mid-sized homes will continue to be replaced by large single-family homes and very little else,” the presenter continued. “Arlington’s vision to be diverse and inclusive will become less and less attainable. Our lowest income households are at home risk of being squeezed out, while moderate income households will also be at risk, further burdened with rising housing costs and potentially unable… to stay here.”
The webinar went on to explain the history of Arlington’s zoning ordinance, which echoes the history of such zoning decisions in many other communities. Currently, the zoning ordinance prevents duplexes and triplexes in most neighborhoods.
“A recent study found that 73 percent of the land zoned for residential use in Arlington is zoned exclusively for single-family detached housing,” the presenter said. “These zoning restrictions originated in early 20th century decisions that required the separation of different housing types. This enabled patterns of racial and economic segregation and the repercussions of that persist today.”
Arlington Travel Baseball (ATB) is a 501(c)3 non-profit youth baseball organization that provides an opportunity for players ages 9-14U to acquire superior skills through higher levels of competition.
ATB is seeking head and assistant coaches who have a passion for the game and want to join a “winning” team. Ideally, we are in search of former college baseball players who want to teach the game they grew up playing.
Coaches will be compensated a competitive wage and required to pass a background check. Coaching experience is a plus but not required and training is available as needed. Coaches will report to the Director of Player Development, who will set team goals and assist with practice plans and specific skills development.
Typical responsibilities include:
- Manage the day to day field activities of the team. Teaching relevant skills, tactics and techniques
- Arrive on time and have a practice plan for each practice
- Lead the team at all regular season, playoff and tournament games
- Coach in a positive manner (Coaches will have coach of conduct form)
- Communicate with Team General Manager with administrative needs of team
- Prepare the players for the physical and mental challenges of competitive baseball
- Identify player strengths and weaknesses and provide progress reports at end of summer season
- Attend annual tryouts in July
If you’re interested or know someone who might be please contact us at [email protected] or call 703-801-6297.
This sponsored column is by James Montana, Esq. and Doran Shemin, Esq., practicing attorneys at Steelyard LLC, an immigration-focused law firm located in Arlington, Virginia. The legal information given here is general in nature. If you want legal advice, contact James for an appointment.
As of Monday, February 24, 2020, most green card applicants will need to clear an entirely new, extraordinarily complex hurdle: the Form I-944, Declaration of Self-Sufficiency.
Our goal, in this brief article, is to provide readers with an overview of what the Trump Administration is demanding of green card applicants going forward. We encourage our U.S. citizen readers to imagine doing this for themselves.
Tax Return Transcripts
Previously, green card applicants were required to provide tax documentation in a form familiar to most Americans — mostly commonly a copy of Form 1040, plus Form W-2. This will no longer suffice. Now, green card applicants must provide tax return transcripts, which are produced by the IRS. Tax return transcripts are, in theory, available online. In practice, obtaining a tax return transcript online can be quite difficult, and so many people will need to file paper applications and wait for the IRS to answer.
If you’re applying for a green card, you’ll need a tax return transcript for yourself, plus a separate tax return transcript for each and every member of your household who filed a separate tax return.
Can’t figure out how to get tax return transcripts? Find an accountant, and get out your checkbook.
Household Assets and Resources
You’ll need to provide the net value of real estate — so, you had better dig up the deed and a recent appraisal by a licensed appraiser. Don’t have a recent appraisal? Get out your checkbook.
You’ll need to provide checking and savings account statements for the past twelve months. Yes, all of them. Enjoy your trip to the bank or, if you switched banks in the past year, to several banks.
If you have investments, you’ll need to provide statements showing their net cash value. This includes retirement investments, which are tallied separately. Can’t figure out the net cash value of liquidating your traditional IRA or 401(k)? Remember, you’ll need to calculate taxes and early withdrawal fees, so don’t leap to conclusions. Probably safest to find an accountant, and get out your checkbook.
Liabilities or Debts
You’ll need to provide documentation for each and every liability in your financial picture, including mortgages, car loans, child support, alimony, credit card debt and tax bills.
Having fun yet?
You’ll need to get a credit report. Did you freeze your credit after the recent Equifax scandal? Too bad, you’ll have to unfreeze it. If there are any errors in your credit report (and there frequently are), provide evidence that you’ve disputed the errors and that the error is under investigation.
If you don’t have a credit score, you’ll need to provide evidence of continued payment of bills. We have no idea what that means in practice.
A Courthouse pub is again lending its name to an annual St. Patrick’s Day-themed race.
The Four Courts Four Miler will start and finish in front of Ireland’s Four Courts (2051 Wilson Blvd). It’s taking place on Saturday, March 14, starting at 9 a.m.
New this year, the race is now a part of the St. Pat’s Run Fest, a two-day event that offers three races, including a 5K and 10K in the District on Sunday, March 15.
“Join us for an entire weekend of celebration and running as we combine two of our favorite iconic events,” wrote organizer Pacers Running. “The Four Courts Four Miler (Arlington) and the St. Pat’s Run (DC) merge across our community into one Run Fest. A region-spanning, shamrock-shaking, running event with adult beverages, Double Challenge and Triple Challenge finisher custom medals for our multi-event competitors, post-race fun and the most beautiful views in Arlington and DC.”
The Four Courts Four Miler course will take runners down Wilson Blvd into Rosslyn, then down Route 110, and back. It famously includes a steep climb at the end and a leprechaun that passes and heckles runners — for a good cause.
Shreeya Aranake contributed to this report. Photo by Brian W. Knight/Swim Bike Run Photography.
The redevelopment of the Key Bridge Marriott in Rosslyn will come with some changes to the local streetscape.
The plan is to redevelop the current site into three separate buildings: a condominium building, a hotel, and an apartment building.
N. Nash and N. Meade Streets are proposed to be extended north through the site to help separate and provide better accessibility to the three buildings.
“The development proposal calls for the establishment of two new street sections to serve the new residences and the existing hotel,” a county staff report said. “Both streets will intersect with Lee Highway in approximately the same locations as current driveways used to access the Marriott Hotel.”
The new streets are scheduled to be considered at the upcoming Saturday, Feb. 22 County Board meeting.
Though built for use primarily by the private development, the new streets would be accessible to the public. Part of the staff report included some insight into the behind-the-scenes discussions that go into naming streets.
The development has proposed to name the two streets Potomac Lane and River View Lane. Since 1932, Arlington County has had a street naming system in place and has used that system for all new street additions. To avoid public confusion, staff recommends that all new publicly accessed streets should be named in accordance with the County’s street naming system. The western-most of the two new streets will connect to Lee Highway at the location of North Nash Street and therefore should also be named North Nash Street. According to the Arlington street naming system, the eastern-most of the new streets should have a single-syllable name that begins with the letter “M.” There are two single-syllable “M” street names currently in use in the County system, they are “Moore” and “Meade”. Based upon the new street’s proposed physical location, Meade is the more appropriate name as there already is an intersection of Lee Highway and North Moore Street elsewhere in Rosslyn.
In addition to the new condo and apartment buildings, the development plan calls for demolishing part of the existing, 582-room hotel and remodeling it into a 449-room hotel. The Key Bridge Marriott is the second Marriott ever built and the company’s longest continuously operating hotel; the first was the former Twin Bridges Marriott Motor Hotel near Crystal City.
The lights are off at Stageplate Bistro (900 N. Glebe Road), but the tables are already set for the Ballston restaurant to reopen in March.
“We had to close to regroup to come back better than ever,” said general manager Mary Marchetti.
Marchetti said the restaurant had to close for hiring and staff training, as well as some internal reorganizing. It took a little longer than expected, she admitted, but they are planning for the reopening to coincide with the first day of spring on March 21.
Springing off that, Marchetti says there will be a new seasonal menu and she’s excited to open the patio back up for the warmer weather.
This isn’t the first time Stageplate Bistro, which opened in 2017, has had a brief hiatus. The restaurant was closed over the summer in 2018. Restaurants west of Glebe Road have lamented not getting the same attention as their eastern cousins, but Marchetti said she remains optimistic and is looking forward to reopening.
HQ2 Employment Up 50% in Two Months — “Less than two months into the new year and Amazon.com Inc. says it has more than 600 employees at its second headquarters — a fairly significant staffing jump considering there were some 400 employees there as of late December.” [Washington Business Journal]
Construction Progress at DCA — “It’s happening: Reagan National’s nightmarish Gate 35X at Terminal C will soon be demolished. Construction is underway for Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority’s Project Journey, which will bring a new concourse to the north end of the airport and add new security checkpoints for Terminal B/C.” [NBC 4, DCist]
Fire Alarm Delays DCA Flights By 30 Minutes — “Flights have resumed and Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) controllers have returned and continued tower operations after a control tower was evacuated to investigate a sprinkler alarm activation Wednesday.” [WJLA]
Food Delivery Driver Robbed in Claremont — “At approximately 11:04 a.m., the victim, who was operating as a food delivery driver at the time of the incident, exited his vehicle to make a delivery and was approached by three male suspects. The suspects demanded the victim provide them with the contents of the delivery, then attempted to assault him. The suspects stole the delivery and fled on foot.” [Arlington County]
Property Owner Goes 100% Renewable — “Brookfield Properties has added 100 percent clean, renewable power to six of its office buildings in Northern Virginia, with the new energy source going into effect this month… The changes are impacting three of the firm’s Arlington properties: Potomac Tower at 1001 19th St., 601 South 12th Street, and 701 South 12th Street.” [Commercial Observer]
Big Raise for Startup With Clarendon Office — “Carbon Relay and Insight Partners today announced a $63 million transaction to accelerate the growth of its Red Sky Ops solution for optimizing application performance in Kubernetes environments.” [Carbon Relay via Potomac Tech Wire]
‘Mr. Z’ Wins Award, Gets on TV — “The Virginia Department of Transportation has named an Arlington County crossing guard one of 2019’s Most Outstanding Crossing Guards. He’s one of only four in the state. Affectionately called Mister Z by faculty and students, Zeleke Taffesse says his smiling students make him feel younger every day. Taylor Elementary School is one of three schools he’s worked for.” [Local DVM]
It’s time for another Cupid update! As you know, we had a goal to raise $6,500 for Cupid’s care. Now after two days, multiple interviews and Cupid’s story reaching across the country, we just found out our current fundraising total – but you’ll have watch the video below to see how much money we have raised so far because of Cupid! Cupid continues to do well today and is switching between naps, snacks, and snuggles. He now has his own Instagram account, @savingcupid, where we will post daily updates. From now on we’ll just post weekly updates here on Facebook. We are so, so, SO grateful to everyone out there who has supported and/or donated because of Cupid…we are completely overwhelmed by your generosity and could not be happier to be a part of this community. THANK YOU!
Posted by Animal Welfare League of Arlington on Tuesday, February 18, 2020
Update at 5 p.m. on 2/20/20 — AWLA now says more than $80,000 has been donated.
Earlier: People have fallen in love with Cupid, an injured kitten brought to the Animal Welfare League of Arlington, and opened their wallets to help pay for his care.
The shelter near Shirlington received a call from a fellow animal rescue group in West Virginia on Friday — Valentine’s Day — that they had a seriously injured orange tabby that they were unable to care for. Cupid, as he was named, had been shot in the head with an arrow.
The Animal Welfare League brough Cupid to Arlington, paid for his expensive surgery, then asked the public for donations to help defray the costs.
AWLA set out to raise $6,500. In a Facebook post yesterday evening, above, the nonprofit’s CEO announced that it had received $65,000 from donors.
“This is fantastic… this is beyond my wildest expectations,” said AWLA CEO Samuel Wolbert, while making the dramatic reveal. “Thank you guys, Cupid is a fighter and as long as he’s fighting we’re going to do what it take to give him the care he needs.”
“Anything that we don’t use for Cupid, we’re going to be able to help so many other animals,” added AWLA spokeswoman Chelsea Jones. “We’re going to be able to say ‘yes’ when we get phone calls like this and to help when we need [to].”