Another Snowstorm on the Way? — “Confidence is growing in a messy mix of wintry precipitation in the Washington region Thursday, the latest in a parade of wintry weather events since late January… Parts of the region could see significant amounts of snow and/or ice before a possible change to rain. The precipitation, which may be heavy at times, is likely to continue into Thursday night or very early Friday morning.” [Washington Post]
More Details on Pike CVS Development — “Last summer, the public caught wind of upcoming plans to redevelop the Fillmore Gardens Shopping Center on Columbia Pike in Arlington. Now… [a] rezoning application has been filed to apply Columbia Pike-specific zoning to the property at 2601 Columbia Pike (map) in order to deliver The Elliott, a six-story building with 248 apartments with a new CVS pharmacy and a grocery store on the ground floor.” [Urban Turf]
Equinox Isn’t Coming to Clarendon — “An affiliate of Regency Centers Corp. has sued an affiliate of upscale fitness chain Equinox for more than $20 million for allegedly pulling the plug on a planned location at the Market Common retail center… Clarendon Regency IV LLC sued Equinox Clarendon Inc. in U.S. District Court in Alexandria in mid-November for breaching the terms of its lease for space on the first and second floors of the nearly 68,500-square-foot building at 2801 Clarendon Blvd.” [Washington Business Journal]
Capitol Police Officer Died in Arlington — “Smith returned to the police clinic for a follow-up appointment Jan. 14 and was ordered back to work, a decision his wife now questions… Police found him in his cherished Ford Mustang, which had rolled over and down an embankment along the George Washington Memorial Parkway, near a scenic overlook on the Potomac River. He was the second police officer who had been at the riot to take his own life.” [Washington Post]
Reaction to Senate Trump Vote — Arlington’s Congressional delegation expressed disappointment with the acquittal of former President Trump in the Senate impeachment trial. Said Sen. Mark Warner (D-Va.): “A bipartisan majority of Senators voted today to send a clear message to future presidents that conduct of this nature is impeachable, intolerable and disqualifying. When the history books on this moment are written, I believe that judgment will be clear.” [Blue Virginia]
Solving Arlington’s Hunger Problem — “The pandemic has made it harder for many Americans to feed their families. After the COVID-19 outbreak, Arlington’s Department of Human Services estimated nearly 16,000 residents needed food assistance. Now the Capital Area Food Bank estimates 26,000 are at risk of hunger in Arlington. County leaders have a plan to help.” [WJLA]
Southwest Air ‘Love’ Story at DCA — “And of course, there’s the inspiring story of Reecie and Imani. Reecie met Imani in 2018 after Imani requested that her plane return to the gate [at Reagan National Airport] before taking off. Imani was the maid of honor in her best friend’s wedding, but she was too nervous to fly.” [Twitter]
Jenna Bush’s Worst Date Happened in Arlington — “Hoda Kotb asked Jenna about her worst first date ever and boy, did the story deliver. ‘My worst first date involved the Secret Service, let’s just leave it at that,’ Jenna said, laughing…. She explained that they were in Arlington, Virginia, where her now-husband was living at the time. He had realized he was running out of fuel, so he tried to get to a corner gas station that was up a slight hill. ‘He started to go up the hill and then booooop, crash.'” [Today Show]
Flickr pool photo by Kevin Wolf
Despite everything that transpired leading up to it, Inauguration Day saw a peaceful transfer of power as now-former President Donald Trump departed the White House and President Joe Biden was sworn in.
Overlooking it all from across the Potomac, Arlington played a bit part in pomp and circumstance.
Those with a vista across the river could catch a clear view this morning of President Trump departing the South Lawn of the White House on Marine One.
The view from Arlington of Marine 1 as the Trump family left the White House headed for Joint Base Andrews. Just past the U.S. Capitol, Marine 1 turned back for a final tour along the National Mall. @HelicoptersofDC @ARLnowDOTcom @WTOP @hhowardWTOP #Inauguration2021 @DildineWTOP pic.twitter.com/ZAiVgiJ8Gc
— Dave Statter (@STATter911) January 20, 2021
The inauguration ceremony that followed was devoid of members of the general public, as security and virus concerns closed the National Mall. Some who wanted to experience history unfold in person headed instead to the Marine Corps War Memorial, near Rosslyn.
— Victoria Sanchez (@VictoriaSanchez) January 20, 2021
A sizable security presence could be seen near the Rosslyn Metro station as the inauguration ceremony concluded and as President Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris — joined by former residents Clinton, Bush, Obama — headed via motorcade to Arlington National Cemetery.
Biden and Harris paid their respects at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier before heading back into D.C., via the Memorial Bridge, for their arrival at the White House.
At Arlington National Cemetery, @POTUS and @VP, joined by former Presidents @BarackObama, @BillClinton and George W. Bush, honor our men and women in uniform who have paid the ultimate sacrifice. #InaugurationDay pic.twitter.com/tAsx9NoRiM
— Biden Inaugural Committee (@BidenInaugural) January 20, 2021
Earlier today, President @JoeBiden and @VP Kamala Harris participated in a Presidential Armed Forces Full Honors Wreath-Laying Ceremony at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. Biden and Harris visited ANC after Biden was sworn-in as the 46th president of the United States. pic.twitter.com/B4RM0Sbt4l
— Arlington National Cemetery (@ArlingtonNatl) January 20, 2021
Va. Denied Reimbursement for Riot Response — “The Federal Emergency Management Agency has denied requests from Maryland and Virginia for an emergency declaration to cover expenses associated with responding to the Capitol riot and increasing security around President-elect Joe Biden’s inauguration. FEMA’s decision — which both states plan to appeal — could mean the states would not receive federal funds for providing law enforcement personnel and other support.” [Washington Post]
VP Pence Says Farewell — From outgoing Vice President and former Arlington resident Mike Pence: “Thank you for the privilege of serving as your Vice President these past four years, it has been the greatest honor of my life. On behalf of our Wonderful Second Lady, Karen Pence, and our entire Family, Thank You and God Bless America.” [Twitter]
Beyer Rips Trump One Last Time — From Rep. Don Beyer (D-Va.): “At long last, Donald Trump will leave office tomorrow. His presidency and administration will be remembered for unprecedented incompetence and corruption.” [Twitter]
Change of Plan for 3rd-5th Graders — “We have decided to transition 3rd-5th grade students to the ‘concurrent instruction’ model, similar to the model adopted for secondary students… Students will be able to continue in their current class, with their current teacher, regardless of the model they selected.” Meanwhile, APS Superintendent Francisco Durán said in a School Talk email that “we do not have new student return dates to announce yet.” [Arlington Public Schools]
Changes for Annual Homeless Count — “Nicole Harmon, who oversees housing assistance for Arlington County, Va., says her county will make a number of changes when it conducts its count on the night of Jan. 27. ‘Safety is one of our primary concerns,’ she said. ‘We’re no longer able to take vans, where you could load up six to eight volunteers and staff to go out and perform the count.'” [NPR]
Car vs. Tree Crash Near Pentagon City — “A driver crashed into a tree near a condo building at 1515 S. Arlington Ridge Road this morning. We’re told the driver, who was shook up and evaluated by medics, mistook the gas pedal for the brake.” [Twitter]
Flickr pool photo by Kevin Wolf
(Updated at 4:30 p.m.) Arlington County says it is “taking all necessary steps to ensure public safety” ahead of the Jan. 20 presidential inauguration.
In a statement issued this afternoon, County Board Chair Matt de Ferranti thanked the county police officers and firefighters dispatched into D.C. as mutual aid during last week’s pro-Trump storming of the U.S. Capitol, and assured residents that the county will “protect our community and help keep the peace in the coming days.”
De Ferranti said he has “full confidence” that Acting Police Chief Charles “Andy” Penn and County Manager Mark Schwartz are “taking the steps necessary to keep Arlingtonians safe” in the lead-up to president-elect Joe Biden’s inauguration.
Full statement is below.
My colleagues and I share the concerns that so many Arlingtonians have voiced in the wake of the storming of the Capitol last Wednesday. We are proud of the Arlington County police officers and firefighters who helped defend the Capitol and tended to the wounded. While we are grateful that no Arlington first responders or residents were injured, we mourn the loss of life, including the death of Capitol Hill Police Officer Brian Sicknick, who was mortally injured while defending the Capitol. Our officers who defended the Capitol and democracy deserve our profound gratitude. Everyone who participated in this violent assault on our Capitol must be held accountable.
Arlington will take all necessary legal steps to protect our community and help keep the peace in the coming days. I have full confidence that the County Manager and the Acting Police Chief are taking the steps necessary to keep Arlingtonians safe and appropriately assist with the safe transfer of power in a way that aligns with our community’s ideals and commitments.
The FBI is warning of a group potentially planning an armed uprising in the coming days by supporters of President Trump.
In a statement issued Monday afternoon, Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam joined Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan and D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser in urging people to “not to come into Washington, D.C. for the Inauguration and to instead participate virtually.”
Last week, Arlington officers in riot gear defended the Capitol, following a request from D.C. police for mutual aid assistance. Despite more than 50 police officers during the clashes that day, and the death of a U.S. Capitol Police officer, no Arlington officers were seriously injured.
Photo via Tyler Merbler/Flickr
ACPD Warned About Possible IED Threat — “Virginia police are warning officers to be on the lookout for IEDs and disseminated photos of the two found in DC during the Trump mob, per internal bulletin leaked to me.” [Twitter, The Nation]
Beyer Signs On to Impeachment — From Rep. Don Beyer: “I have just signed onto the Articles of impeachment… Donald Trump is a clear and present danger to our country and he has to go immediately. [Twitter]
Local Eateries Get Dine-In Bump — “Nam-Viet Restaurant co-owner Richard Nguyen has similarly seen a bump in diners from Maryland and the District since those jurisdictions paused indoor dining. ‘We’ve been around for such a long time that I know my clientele,’ he says… ‘The locals have only been doing takeout.'” [Washington City Paper]
Robbery Attempt Near Police HQ Fails — “15th Street N. at N. Taft Street. At approximately 5:37 a.m. on January 6… the victim was walking in the area when he was approached by the suspect, who allegedly displayed a knife and demanded the victim’s belongings. The victim declined and began walking away, however the suspect followed for a short while and continued shouting at him. Arriving officers located the suspect still in the area and took him into custody.” [ACPD]
Discussion About Police Officers in Schools — “The APS School Resource Officer Work Group will host a virtual community engagement session on Wednesday, Jan. 13 at 6 p.m. The session will be an opportunity for the community to provide feedback and recommendations going forward on the relationship between APS and the Arlington County Police Department.” [Arlington Public Schools]
Columbia Pike Blanket Initiative — “Columbia Pike is working together with its restaurants with outdoor seating areas through our new initiative, the Columbia Pike Blanket Program. Launching today, customers will be able to purchase a Columbia Pike Blanket at these participating restaurants: Cafe Sazon, The Celtic House, Dama Cafe, Rebellion on the Pike, Ruthie’s All-Day, and William Jeffrey’s Tavern.” [Columbia Pike Revitalization Organization]
Flickr pool photo by BrauhausDC
Beyer: Trump Must Be Removed — Rep. Don Beyer: “Donald Trump is a danger to our democracy. I continue to support his impeachment and removal from office, and am looking carefully at new articles of impeachment being drafted and offered by my colleagues… Congress must ensure Trump’s removal from office by the swiftest and surest method available: confirmation of the American people’s will as expressed in the 2020 election.” [Press Release]
Bishop: ‘Saddened and Appalled’ — From Bishop Michael Burbidge, of the Arlington Diocese: “Today, I was saddened and appalled to see the violence at the US Capitol that disrupted a constitutional process. I ask all people to pray for unity and healing in our nation. May God bless and protect this great country and grant us the peace for which we long.” [Twitter]
Northam: ‘Virginia Will Be There’ — Gov. Ralph Northam: “I continue to pray for the safety of every member of the House and Senate, all the staff, the journalists, everyone who works in the Capitol. And I commend the Virginia National Guard and Virginia State Police for quickly stepping up in this time of great need. Let me be clear: Virginia will be there for as long as it takes to protect our nation’s capital and ensure the peaceful transfer of power.” [Gov. Ralph Northam]
Lopez Discussed Capitol Chaos on BBC — Del. Alfonso Lopez appeared on BBC’s Newsnight, discussing the insurrectionists who stormed the U.S. Capitol: “This is an extreme group that have bought into the misinformation from the Trump family,” he said. [Twitter]
State to Speed Up Vaccinations — “Governor Ralph Northam today announced new actions to support the Commonwealth’s COVID-19 vaccine distribution program and accelerate the pace of vaccinations across Virginia.” [Gov. Ralph Northam]
Now for Something Completely Different — “About this time yesterday I posted a video of an Arlington fox playing with dog toys — I’m just gonna re-post now for anyone who needs a break from today’s news cycle.” [Twitter]
Prosecutor Calls for End to Va. Death Penalty — “Top prosecutors from across Northern Virginia are calling on state lawmakers to take up several criminal justice reform measures at the upcoming General Assembly session.. An end to cash bail, the death penalty, mandatory minimum sentencing and the state’s ‘three strikes’ rule for felony offenses are among the reforms the coalition wants to see lawmakers address during the next General Assembly session, which begins Jan. 13.” [InsideNova]
Pouring One Out for Siné — “Another casualty of the pandemic, we are bummed to report, is the beloved Sine Irish Pub on Pentagon Row, where defense journalists and many of their sources have gathered for countless milestones over the years… We agree the watering hole’s central place in national security cannot be overstated. ‘There wouldn’t be a Space Force without the Pentagon’s Unofficial Officer’s Club, Sine Irish Pub!’ tweeted space policy consultant Ryan Faith.” [Politico]
New Home Near Yorktown HS Impresses — “Take a look at the jewel-toned hues in this pretty Arlington home. This couple built a colorful dream home that recognizes their rural roots but gives it a modern edge.” [Northern Virginia Magazine]
Murals Make Crystal City More Colorful — “Messages of positivity and inclusiveness in the form of fun and colorful artwork. You can see it with your own eyes on 18th and 20th Street S. in National Landing.” [Twitter]
Rosslyn Physical Therapy Office Bought — “OrthoVirginia is pleased to announce the acquisition of Optimal Physical Therapy in Arlington, VA. This merger allows more continuity of care for patients as well as improves access to physical therapy services.” [Press Release]
Beyer Unloads on Trump — From Rep. Don Beyer (D-Va.), in response to President Trump questioning the Georgia Senate election results: “Donald Trump is a pathetic, disgraceful liar and the day we are rid of him will be a great day for the United States of America.” [Twitter]
Amazon Eyes Retail Spot in Bailey’s Xroads — “Amazon.com Inc. appears to be taking a portion of a shuttered Safeway supermarket in Baileys Crossroads for another of its full-size grocery stores, at least the fifth in Greater Washington for the e-commerce and cloud computing giant.” [Washington Business Journal]
(Updated at 2:50 p.m.) Arlington County police officers will be deployed to D.C. as mutual aid during pro-Trump rallies and counter-protests, starting today, ARLnow has learned.
The Arlington County Police Department tells ARLnow that they have received and agreed to a request from the D.C. Metropolitan Police Department for mutual aid assistance for both today (Jan. 5) and tomorrow (Jan. 6).
“Arlington County has agreed to this request,” police spokesperson Ashley Savage said. “ACPD officers will be in D.C. and available to assist our regional law enforcement partners in maintaining peace and order in the event of a significant disturbance or unrest.”
The Arlington County Board, meanwhile, is urging residents to refrain from counter-protesting across the river, as thousands of Trump supporters descend on the region for demonstrations in the District.
The president has encouraged a large show of support among the MAGA faithful, ahead of Wednesday’s Congressional certification of the presidential election, as he continues to make unproven claims that the election was stolen.
Yesterday (Jan. 4), Arlington’s elected officials urged local residents to not jump into the fray, as clashes between protesters and counter-protesters are expected in D.C.
“This Board upholds free speech and the right for all to peacefully demonstrate,” Arlington County Board Chair Libby Garvey said in a press release. “We understand the desire to show support for our election processes, for democracy and the constitution. But my colleagues and I have a responsibility to our constituents to keep them safe. With far-right extremist groups broadcasting their desire to engage in violent acts to upend the results of the presidential election, we ask everyone to stay home on January 6 so the District of Columbia can better manage the situation.”
This has led Arlington and other local jurisdictions to caution residents to avoid D.C. on those days.
“Mayor Bowser has asked that people not come to the city to counter-protest, to avoid inflaming an already dangerous situation,” Garvey continued. “We support her request.”
It’s also believed that a number of supporters and Proud Boys, a far-right extremist group defined by the Southern Poverty Law Center as a “hate group,” are staying at local hotels.
For the December protests, organizers suggested that attendees to stay in Crystal City. However, a number of counter-protesting groups asked hotels like the Crowne Plaza Crystal City and the Holiday Inn National Airport to refuse rooms to those coming for those rallies.
On social media, protesters coming to the area could be seen discussing hotel availability in Arlington over the past couple of days.
A protest against the Proud Boys was set to take place yesterday outside of the Holiday Inn in Alexandria, where it was thought that a number of members were staying. But that protest was canceled due to safety concerns.
The department has mutual aid agreements with a number of local and federal law enforcement agencies. This includes an agreement with U.S. Park Police, which came under fire this past summer when ACPD sent riot gear-clad officers to assist with crowd control near Lafayette Square.
Market Common to Ditch Driveway? — “The loop road through the heart of Regency Centers Corp.’s Market Common Clarendon project could soon look a lot more like a plaza. The developer is pitching a series of changes to the central hub of the development… to try and make the area a bit more pleasing for pedestrians. That includes closing off to vehicular traffic the end of the U-shaped road connecting many of the development’s shops to Clarendon Boulevard.” [Washington Business Journal]
Beyer Statement on Trump Tape — “This recording makes Nixon’s ‘smoking gun’ tape sound tame, but that tape captured only one part of a larger criminal conspiracy. Donald Trump must be held accountable for his illegal acts and his attacks on the Constitution. Nothing less than a criminal investigation will serve.” [Press Release]
Affordable Housing Nonprofit Buys Crystal House — “The Washington Housing Conservancy has acquired the Crystal House apartments in Arlington County in a bid to help combat rising rental rates as Amazon.com Inc. continues to expand its second headquarters nearby. The District-based nonprofit on Dec. 31 notified residents of the complex at 1900 S. Eads St. of the acquisition.” [Washington Business Journal]
Fmr. ACDC Chair Is Top Ga. Runoff Dialer — “And the top caller into Georgia for the ‘blue team’ in the 1/5/21 U.S. Senate runoff elections is… yep, Virginia’s own Kip Malinosky (former Arlington County Democratic Committee Chair), with a whopping 2,801 calls and still dialing!” [Blue Virginia]
Local Basketball Ref Shortage — “Players, coaches and school administrators aren’t alone in making adjustments to hold a high-school basketball season in Fairfax and Arlington counties, which began Dec. 21 with many restrictions and protocols to follow because of the COVID-19 pandemic.” [InsideNova]
Crystal City Hotel Restaurant Reopening — “Really Yummy Good News! Our [Crystal City Marriott] bar and restaurant, Bell20, is Reopening TOMORROW! What a great way to start 2021!” [Twitter]
Pentagon City-Based FLIR Acquired — “Teledyne Technologies Incorporated and FLIR Systems, Inc. jointly announced today that they have entered into a definitive agreement under which Teledyne will acquire FLIR in a cash and stock transaction valued at approximately $8.0 billion.” [FLIR via Potomac Tech Wire]
Rosslyn-Based Politico Buys Energy Publication — “POLITICO, the world’s leading global news operation and information service specializing in politics and policy, today announced that it has entered into an agreement to acquire E&E News, the renowned news organization focused solely on energy and the environment, now in its 22nd year.” [Politico]
Flickr pool photo by Kevin Wolf
It’s Veterans Day — Today is Veterans Day, and as a result of the holiday government offices are closed and metered parking is not being enforced. Per the county, Arlington is currently home to about 13,000 veterans. [Arlington County]
Trump Scheduled for Cemetery Visit –“To mark Veterans Day… President Donald J. Trump and First Lady Melania Trump will visit Arlington National Cemetery. The President will lay a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown [Soldier],” according to CBS News producer Sara Cook. [Twitter, Washington Examiner]
Man Exposes Himself a Block from Police HQ — “At approximately 12:05 p.m. on November 9, police were dispatched to the late report of an exposure. Upon arrival, it was determined that approximately an hour prior, the female victim was inside her parked vehicle when she observed the suspect expose himself. Arriving officers located the suspect and took him into custody without incident.” [ACPD]
From Record Warmth to Heavy Rain — Tuesday “set new daily record highs at the three major climate-observing locations in the Washington-Baltimore region. Washington reached 76 degrees, tying a record set in 1999.” Meanwhile, heavy rain is expected later today. [Capital Weather Gang]
County Updating Natural Resources Plan — “Arlington County is updating its Forestry and Natural Resources Plan to conserve, plant, and maintain wildlife there. Over the next year, the project team will be collecting comments from the public about the county’s conservation and maintenance. The county hosted its first public comment session on Tuesday.” [WDVM]
About Today — ARLnow will be publishing on a limited schedule today due to the holiday.