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by ARLnow.com — June 30, 2015 at 8:30 am 2,132 0

The Corner Bakery at 2200 Crystal Drive in Crystal City has closed.

It’s unclear when exactly the eatery shut down, but as of Monday its signs had been taken down and part of its interior had been removed.

The only other Corner Bakery in Arlington, at 2111 Wilson Blvd in Courthouse, remains open.

by ARLnow.com — June 23, 2015 at 9:15 am 1,922 0

Storm clouds over the Arlington Forest Club (Flickr pool photo by Alves Family)

Fire at Columbia Pike Gas Station — A small fire, reportedly started by an acetylene torch, prompted a large fire department response at the Citgo gas station on Columbia Pike yesterday morning. The fire was quickly extinguished. [Twitter]

Bills Proposed to Scuttle Immigration Office — Three Republicans are sponsoring legislation in the House of Representatives that would block the Obama administration from opening a new immigration office in Crystal City. The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services office could bring some 1,000 jobs to the area, but Republicans worry that it may eventually be intended to process cases of what they term Obama’s “executive amnesty” program. [Washington Business Journal, Breitbart]

Arlington Housing Cools a Bit — Arlington’s hot real estate market cooled a bit in May, according to recently released housing sales data. The volume of sales was down 10 percent in May while the median selling price held steady. [Washington Business Journal]

Association Moving to Crystal City — The Aluminum Association, a trade group, is moving into a new headquarters in Crystal City this week. The association is moving into the refurbished, LEED Gold certified office building at 1400 Crystal Drive. [Associations Now]

Flickr pool photo by Alves Family

by ARLnow.com — June 22, 2015 at 3:45 pm 1,992 0

Metro transit police vehicle (file photo)Metro Transit Police pepper sprayed a man who allegedly assaulted a station manager and a police officer in the Crystal City Metro station this afternoon.

Arlington County paramedics were called to the station around 1:30 this afternoon, to treat the suspect after the pepper spray incident.

According to Metro spokesman Dan Stessel, then man had “rammed” the Crystal City station manager while attempting to run through the emergency gate to evade the transit fare. Metro Transit Police officers responded to the station and found the man sitting on the floor in the station entrance area, smoking a cigarette.

“As they began talking to the man, the suspect abruptly kicked one of the officers from his position on the floor,” Stessel said. “The officers moved in to make the arrest, and in that process, utilized [pepper] spray to gain compliance. The suspect was arrested without further incident.”

The man is being charged with assault, for bumping the station manager, and assaulting a police officer. The station manager was not injured.

File photo

by ARLnow.com — June 16, 2015 at 9:30 am 1,770 0

Daisies (Flickr pool photo by Erinn Shirley)

Car2Go Coming to Arlington — Arlington County is giving the car sharing service Car2Go a try. The county will allow up to 200 Car2Go vehicles on the streets, in metered parking spots, as part of a one year pilot program. Car2Go will pay the county for use of metered spaces. [UrbanTurf, WTOP]

‘Jen’s Kitchen’ Now Open in Va. Square — “Jen’s Kitchen” has reportedly opened in Virginia Square, replacing the former Metro Cafe and Gourmet at 901 N. Nelson Street. [Twitter]

Texas Questioning New Office in Arlington — Senate Republicans and the Texas Attorney General’s office are asking the Obama administration for more information about an immigration services facility that’s bringing hundreds of jobs to Crystal City. The office was originally intended to help with processing related to Obama’s executive action on immigration, which is currently on hold due to legal challenges. [Breitbart]

Flickr pool photo by Erinn Shirley

by Heather Mongilio — June 15, 2015 at 3:10 pm 2,252 0

(Updated at 3:45 p.m.) Hundreds of cyclists took to Clarendon and Crystal City streets as part of the Air Force Association Cycling Classic this past weekend.

The two-day event saw professional, amateur and youth cyclists speed up and down Wilson and Clarendon Boulevards and Crystal Drive. The course also featured several tight turns for participants to whip around. The Clarendon Cup had five of these turns, which makes it one of the more difficult courses of its kind in the United States.

“It’s a really fun, local race. It’s one of the best in the area,” said Mattison Brady, a Washington, D.C. resident who placed second in the Amateur race.

The course’s technical challenges only add to the fun, Brady said.

But for some the two courses proved to be anything but fun. The Clarendon Cup’s challenges turned the race into a “race of attrition,” said Christopher Hair, a local cyclist with the United Healthcare/National Capital Velo Club Amateur team.

“It’s about an hour of excruciating pain,” Hair said. “Most people are smiling because it’s over.”

Riders also fell prey to the courses with multiple crashes throughout the two days. Multiple women hit the pavement during an early crash in the Clarendon Cup and at least two riders hit the ground during the men’s professional Crystal Cup causing a small slowdown.

The event was also apparently hazardous to a County Board candidate. Independent Board candidate Audrey Clement said the road closures from the Clarendon Cup hindered her ability to safely bike to Saturday’s Board meeting.

“As you know, I am an avid biker. I’ve biked to work every day for the past 25 years and I’ve biked to virtually every County Board meeting for the past three years,” Clement said in the meeting’s public comment period. “Yet today, I risked my life to bike to this meeting because the bike race… had blocked off all the streets in Clarendon. This represents not just an inconvenience to pedestrians, motorists and other bikers in the county, it constitutes reckless endangerment.”

For Hilton Clarke, a professional cyclist with United Healthcare, the two-day event was something to celebrate. The 35-year-old Australian cyclist won both the Clarendon and Crystal Cups and the Omnium.

“Well, I’ve been here a few times, and I’ve won now yesterdays race three times, and this race I’ve come in second three times, so it’s nice, even though my teammates normally beat me in this race, it’s nice to get a win here in this event so I’m really happy,” Clarke said.

For the women, Lauren Stephens took the Clarendon Cup after a long breakaway, and Coryn Rivera, a nationally-known cyclist, took the Crystal Cup and the Omnium.

by ARLnow.com — June 12, 2015 at 10:20 am 2,729 0

Lavender (Flickr pool photo by Erinn Shirley)

Arlington Scores Lidl HQ — Arlington County will be the home of the new $77 million U.S. corporate headquarters of Lidl, a discount German grocery chain that’s seeking to expand in the United States. The headquarters is expected to create 500 new jobs in Arlington and will anchor the National Gateway office development near Potomac Yard. “Lidl chose Arlington for its U.S. corporate headquarters because of our commitment to diversifying our economy, a terrific workforce, regional transit connections and access to a major airport,” Arlington County Board Chair Mary Hynes said in a statement. [Arlington County]

Arlington Teen Advances in Singing Competition — Kenmore Middle School student Samantha Rios, who is competing on the Telemundo singing program “La Voz Kids,” has advanced to the semifinals and is now being coached by Reggaeton musician Daddy Yankee. [Washington Post]

Young Republicans Blast Anti-Gun-Store Tactics — Opponents of a gun store that’s trying to open in Cherrydale are urging their supporters to confront the owners of the store and the shopping center in which it’s opening in person. That has Republicans crying foul. “Having exhausted reasonable avenues, the anti-gunners encourage their flock to harass property owner,” said the Arlington Falls Church Young Republicans. [Twitter]

Immigration Center to Open in Crystal City — A planned immigration services center in Crystal City, which has been delayed due to legal wrangling over President Obama’s executive action deferring the deportation of certain illegal immigrants, is now reportedly set to open soon. Hundreds of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services employees will be working out of the office building at 2200 Crystal Drive, processing immigration applications and petitions. [Breitbart]

Praise for ‘Alice’ Production — The Encore Stage and Studio production of “Alice in Wonderland” is garnering critical kudos for its star, Brandi Moore, a Harvard-bound Washington-Lee High School senior. The show wraps up its run this weekend at Thomas Jefferson Community Theatre at 125 S. Old Glebe Road. [InsideNova]

Flickr pool photo by Erinn Shirley

by Heather Mongilio — June 11, 2015 at 4:30 pm 1,738 0

Air Force Cycling Classic Crystal Cup(Updated at 1:20 p.m.) Hundreds of cyclists will descend on Clarendon and Crystal City for the Air Force Association Cycling Classic this weekend.

The two-day event boasts multiple races, with a men’s and women’s professional cycling race in each neighborhood. There will also be multiple amateur races, kids races and a challenge ride.

On Saturday, the highlight of the event is the Clarendon Cup, a professional/amateur course that takes cyclists through the heart of Clarendon. The course is known as one of the most difficult in the United States, according to the association.

The event starts at 8 a.m. with amateur races from 8-9:50 a.m. The women’s professional teams will race at 10 a.m., and the men’s professional teams will take the course at noon. In between the two professional races is the kid’s race at 11:35 a.m.

Arlington cycling enthusiasts can block out their morning or decide to come for a couple of the races, said Emily Helpern, a PR rep. She recommends viewers watch near the start/finish line, where the main stage is located, at the intersection of Wilson Boulevard N. Herndon Street.

On Sunday, the event moves to Crystal City and starts at 7 a.m. with a non-competitive challenge ride. After the ride concludes, the men’s pro teams will start the Crystal City Cup races at 10:20 a.m, followed by a kid’s race at 12:25 p.m., the women’s pro race at 12:35 p.m. and amateur races at 1:45 p.m.

Helpern also recommends spectators watch from the start/finish line on Crystal Drive between 20th and 23rd Streets S.

Those willing to brave some of Arlington’s hottest days should plan on using the Metro to get down to the course and get off at the Clarendon or Crystal City stations, both of which are on the Blue Line. There will be some public parking on Saturday and parking is free at the Crystal City’s underground public garages.

Residents may want to avoid driving in Clarendon and Crystal City as a result of the races. Many of the roads, including Wilson Boulevard and Clarendon Boulevard, will be closed.

The following roads will be closed from 4:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday for the Clarendon Cup:

  • Wilson Boulevard, from Fillmore Street to Washington Boulevard
  • Clarendon Boulevard, from Washington Boulevard to N. Fillmore Street
  • Washington Boulevard, from Wilson Boulevard to N. Highland Street
  • N. Highland Street from Wilson Boulevard to Washington Boulevard
  • N. Garfield/N. Fillmore Streets from Wilson Boulevard to Washington Boulevard

The following roads will be closed from 4:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Sunday for the Crystal City Cup:

  • Crystal Drive, from 15th Street S. through 23rd Street S.
  • Wilson Boulevard, from N. Kent Street to the ramp to Route 110
  • S. Clark Street, from 20th Street S. to 23rd Street S.
  • 20th Street S., from Crystal Drive to S. Clark Street
  • 18th Street S., from Crystal Drive to Bell Street
  • 23rd Street S., from Crystal Drive to S. Clark Street
  • Crystal Drive (west side), from 23rd Street S. to the Century Center Parking Garage

The ramps from Memorial Avenue, to Route 110 and Route 27 on the GW Parkway will be closed Sunday, June 14, from 5 a.m. to noon.

by ARLnow.com — June 8, 2015 at 9:45 am 1,563 0

Escalator construction between the Pentagon City Metro station and the mall

FIFA Movie Shown in Arlington — Arlington is home to one of ten theaters nationwide that showed a biopic about Sepp Blatter, the embattled president of FIFA who last week announced that he would be stepping down from the international soccer organization. The AMC Loews Shirlington 7 grossed $161 from “United Passions” as of Friday. Nationwide the film, which cost FIFA at least $25 million to produce, grossed only $607. [Washington Post]

Crystal City Hosts Car ‘Micro-Factory’ — Crystal City is currently home to the Local Motors Mobifactory, a car factory in a shipping container. The “micro-factory” uses 3D printing technology to produce prototype vehicles. The micro-factory plans to remain at 1900 Crystal Drive for the rest of the summer. A grand opening is planned for Thursday. [Tech.co]

GGW on Tomorrow’s Primary — Greater Greater Washington weighs in on which Democratic Arlington County Board candidates would be best for smart growth, transit, walking and bicycling. The Democratic primary will be held tomorrow. [Greater Greater Washington]

CivFed Backs Affordable Housing Plan — The Arlington County Civic Federation has voted 47-29 to support Arlington County’s draft Affordable Housing Master Plan. The plan sets goals for affordable housing in the county and is several years in the making. The County Board is scheduled to vote Saturday on setting a public hearing for the plan. [InsideNova]

A Note on InsideNova Links — Normally, ARLnow.com warns readers of auto-play videos in articles that we link to in the Morning Notes. We have observed that InsideNova often hosts autoplay videos, with sound on, within its ad units. Because this doesn’t happen every time we visit, however, we will not include an auto-play video warning for these links. ARLnow.com believes that advertising should be local and relevant and should not purposefully interrupt or annoy readers. We hope that users who might use AdBlock Plus to block annoying ads from other publishers would whitelist our site so that we can continue to bring you interruption-free local news content and relevant messages from local advertisers.

by Heather Mongilio — June 5, 2015 at 1:30 pm 546 0

Wine in the Water Park posterCrystal City will be combining wine with art tonight for the kickoff of its 2015 Wine in the Water Park events.

The events, which are free to attend, feature live music and, for paying customers, sips of various wine varietals.

“Expert noses from [Washington Wine Academy] help guests select and enjoy the perfect wine for an after work beverage to kick-off the weekend right amidst the calming sounds of falling water mixed with live music,” according to the Crystal City website.

This year, the event is being combined with ArtJamz, which offers aspiring artists paint and canvas so they can create their own paintings in a social setting.

Wine in the Waterpark and ArtJamz will run from 6:00-10:00 p.m. tonight and will take place every Friday in June at the Crystal City water park (1750 Crystal Drive).

On Wednesdays in June, from 5:00-8:00 p.m., Crystal City will hold Blues, Brews and Barks, featuring beer and live music in a dog-friendly setting. The event will take place at the 2121 Crystal Drive courtyard.

Attendees are encouraged to pick up food from local eateries before going to the park. Beverages will be available in the beer garden. Attendees can get two drink tickets for $5 if bought in advance.

Disclosure: Crystal City BID is an ARLnow.com advertiser

 

by Heather Mongilio — May 27, 2015 at 3:30 pm 1,300 0

Outdoor movie in Crystal City

The Crystal City Business Improvement District has revealed the lineup for its annual outdoor summer movie festival. The theme this year: espionage.

The movies begin on June 1 at sunset with “Mission: Impossible.” Other spy-themed movies include “RED,” “Argo” and the “Bourne Identity” series.

The movies are shown weekly on Monday at sunset — around 8:30 p.m. — and are held rain or shine, except in the event of dangerous weather.

Families are encouraged to bring a blanket to the free event. The outdoor “theater” is located in the courtyard of an office building at 1851 S. Bell Street.

The lineup is:

  • June 1 — Mission: Impossible
  • June 8 — Mission: Impossible II
  • June 15 — Mission: Impossible III
  • June 22 — Mission: Impossible- Ghost Protocol
  • June 29 — Charlie Wilson’s War
  • July 6 — RED
  • July 13 — Argo
  • July 20 — Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy
  • July 27 — Body of Lies
  • Aug. 3 — Enemy of the State
  • Aug. 10 — The Bourne Identity
  • Aug. 17 — The Bourne Supremacy
  • Aug. 24 — The Bourne Ultimatum
  • Aug. 31 — The Bourne Legacy

by Ethan Rothstein — April 27, 2015 at 11:00 am 403 0

Crystal City Sparket logoDuring lunchtime this Wednesday, Crystal City’s weekly arts market, Sparket, will return for the 2015 season.

From 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. every Wednesday until Nov. 18, Crystal City’s arts market will occupy Crystal Drive between 18th and 20th Streets S., providing the areas thousands of office workers a place to go to shop for craft works like paintings, jewelry and pottery.

In addition to the art work, there will be products like home-made bath scrubs and soaps, greeting cards and “artisan food products,” according to the Crystal City Business Improvement District, which organizes the market.

Each week, the BID plans on hosting a variety of makers and vendors to give market attendees new items to peruse and new gifts to buy.

Disclosure: Crystal City BID is an ARLnow.com advertiser

by Ethan Rothstein — April 22, 2015 at 4:45 pm 2,336 0

Pedestrian struck in Crystal CityA pedestrian was sent to the hospital with a head injury after being hit by a car near the Arlington-Alexandria border this afternoon.

At about 3:30 p.m., a pedestrian at 33rd Street S. and Jefferson Davis Highway in the Potomac Yard area was struck by a sedan.

The pedestrian was conscious, but couldn’t remember where he was, according to scanner traffic. He was transported to George Washington Hospital’s trauma center with a reported head injury. The striking vehicle remained on scene.

The northbound lanes of Jefferson Davis Highway were blocked while the injured pedestrian was treated and the Arlington County Police Department investigated the incident, but the road has since reopened.

by Ethan Rothstein — April 22, 2015 at 2:00 pm 730 0

Air Force Cycling Classic Crystal CupThe D.C. region’s biggest cycling race is coming back to Arlington for its 18th running next month.

The Air Force Association Cycling Classic will take place in Clarendon and Crystal City over the weekend of June 13 and. The event will have several races, inviting cyclists of all ages and skill levels to participate in the event most appropriate for them.

The premier race of the weekend is Saturday’s Clarendon Cup, a pro/am race that will take riders up and down Wilson and Clarendon Boulevards in the heart of the neighborhood. That race is part of the National Criterium Calendar, a 13-race tour organized by USA Cycling.

Sunday morning, the Challenge Ride — a 15-kilometer jaunt up Route 110 and around the Pentagon, Air Force Memorial and Crystal City — will kick off, allowing anyone to register and compete.

During the Challenge Ride, staffs from congressional representatives will be invited to compete as teams, racing for their party. There are also races for kids, competitive amateurs and opportunities to compete as corporate teams. The Challenge Ride costs $60 to participate, with a $10 discount for active, reserve and retired military members.

Sunday afternoon, the event will conclude with the Crystal Cup, another National Criterium Calendar race, that will take riders along Jefferson-Davis Highway and Crystal Drive in Crystal City.

File photo

by Ethan Rothstein — April 16, 2015 at 4:15 pm 600 0

1776 announces expansion into Crystal City (photo via @1776)The heralded 1776 tech incubator and seed fund is moving into Crystal City, bringing tech bonafides and millions of dollars with it.

Today, on the roof of 220 20th Street S., Gov. Terry McAuliffe, Arlington County Board Chair Mary Hynes, Vornado CEO Mitchell Shear, 1776 co-founders Evan Burfield and Donna Harris and former Disruption Corporation CEO, and now 1776 Managing Director, Paul Singh joined forces to make the announcement.

“We’re proud that this new partnership will be anchored in Crystal City, which is increasingly becoming a globally-recognized home for world-changing startups,” McAuliffe said. “This new, unprecedented level of regional collaboration removes the traditional regional boundaries, creating tremendous opportunity for broad-based economic growth that benefits the entire region, and offering a model for future, long-term economic growth throughout Virginia and the D.C. Metro area.”

As part of its deal to expand in Crystal City, 1776 acquired Singh’s Disruption Corporation, a combination of a venture fund and financial advisory firm. Disruption’s headquarters on the 10th floor of 2231 Crystal Drive will be 1776’s base of operations in Arlington, according to Crystal City Business Improvement District Angela Fox.

“One of the beauties of Crystal City is there is so much space to expand, and if they do well, that’s certainly the thinking in all of this,” Fox told ARLnow.com this afternoon.

Earlier this week, 1776 announced a partnership with Montgomery County, and the incubator’s announcement today makes it one of the, if not the premier, dominant forces in the D.C. area technology space. In 1776’s new headquarters, it will already have member companies like Bloompop, Power Supply and Onomono Media.

1776 also hosts the Challenge Festival, an international, weeklong festival aimed at bringing together entrepreneurs in the energy, education, health and transportation sectors. The company anticipates more than 10,000 industry members will attend, and the opening party will be in Crystal City, at 2121 Crystal Drive, on May 8 from 7:00-11:00 p.m.

The incubator hopes to leverage the still-significant hub of government agencies and contractors in Crystal City, as well as the close proximity to the Pentagon, in its latest expansion.

“This region’s growing innovation economy and its future economic growth are closely linked, which is why at 1776 we’ve focused our attention on creating new opportunities for regional innovation and unfettered access to the networks that exist across regional borders,” 1776 co-founder Donna Harris said in a press release. “Between our partnership with Vornado and the acquisition of Disruption, this exciting new venture will allow us to bring together ALL the tremendous assets this region has to offer, from the NIH and MedStar in Bethesda to the Pentagon and Lockheed Martin in Crystal City, and create one of the most vibrant technology communities in the country.”

Photo via @1776

by Ethan Rothstein — April 13, 2015 at 12:15 pm 7,536 0

Rosslyn Metro station (Flickr pool photo by Wolfkann)

As Arlington grapples with the cloudy future of transit on Columbia Pike, in the wake of the streetcar line’s cancellation, one question has been largely absent: Is Metro the answer?

The Pike, Pentagon City and Crystal City together are projected to account for 65 percent of the county’s population growth and 44 percent of its job growth in the next three decades, and Arlington doesn’t have a long-term transit plan in place for the Pike to accommodate that growth. So far, much of the discussion has revolved around bigger and better buses.

But there is another option, a much bigger, bolder and pricier option than even the streetcar: taking advantage of an existing stub tunnel at the Pentagon Metro station and building a new Metrorail line under Columbia Pike. Such a line was envisioned as a likely expansion by the Metrorail system’s original planners in the 1960s.

When the proposal for Arlington’s short-term plan for the former-streetcar corridor comes before the Arlington County Board next year, two of the five members of the Board will be newly elected, replacing the retiring Board chair and vice chair, Mary Hynes and Walter Tejada.

So far, seven candidates have declared they’re running for the two open seats: Democrats Christian Dorsey, Peter Fallon, Katie Cristol, Andrew Schneider, James Lander and Bruce Wiljanen, and independent Audrey Clement. Will this new crop of Arlington leaders revive the idea of Metro as long-term a solution for the Pike’s growth?

Dorsey tells ARLnow.com that he’s open to Metrorail as part of a more holistic discussion of the Pike’s transportation future.

“We haven’t undergone a process to really do that in a sufficient way, where we’ve looked at a variety of transit options that are possible — not feasible, but possible — and determining whether or not that matches long-range projections,” he told ARLnow.com. “I absolutely think that’s something that needs to be done in consultation with regional partners on heavy rail.”

The county is still planning to install 23 more transit stations along Columbia Pike, for a total of $12.4 million — redesigned to cost far less than the Walter Reed Super Stop prototype — and those stations are designed to accommodate enhanced bus service. However, other than assumptions that more, bigger and fancier buses will be coming to the Pike, it’s unclear how those stations will be integrated. The county has vowed to spend $200 million on the corridor’s transit over the next six years.

Cristol agreed with Dorsey, saying Arlington needs to consider all long-term options in the corridor’s future.

“I believe we need to keep everything on the table as we contend with the forces shaping re-development and transit demand in Arlington,” she said. “Rapid population growth and demand for public transit on the Pike will be a defining feature for Arlington’s coming decades … I will always be for considering and discussing big ideas — even the expensive ones that seem infeasible in the immediate — as we look to address those dynamics.”

WMATA already has a 40-year plan in place for Metrorail’s future development, but that plan, adopted in 2013, includes a connection between Arlington’s since-cancelled and D.C.’s embattled streetcar lines. WMATA has since discussed plans for a second tunnel in Rosslyn and another line in Virginia, but public discussions from the agency have not included Columbia Pike.

Photo courtesy Thierry Discoll

Wiljanen said Arlington taking on that discussion would distract from the immediate needs of the Pike’s residents.

“If a Metro line opened tomorrow under Columbia Pike, I would be elated,” he told ARLnow.com in an email. “However, given the current political and budgetary climate, starting the process now will prove to be an exceedingly heavy lift, and the timeline could easily extend 30 years or more into the future. I think we need quicker solutions.”

Clement, a perennial candidate for Arlington public office, thinks Arlington needs to take up these discussions as soon as possible.

“It is definitely time to plan for a Metrorail line under Columbia Pike,” she said. “One of the principal reasons I opposed the Pike trolley was the fact that the trolley tracks would have to be dug up to accommodate the subway, which is the ultimate solution to congestion on the Pike.”

(Fallon, Schneider and Lander did not respond to ARLnow.com’s email asking for comment.)

Dorsey also opposed the streetcar, while Cristol, a Pike resident, and Wiljanen didn’t say whether they supported the project, only that Arlington needs to move on.

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