Bloomberg BNA Expansion — Crystal City-based Bloomberg BNA will invest $5.5 million to expand in Arlington County and create up to 125 new jobs. Governor McAuliffe approved a $500,000 grant from the Commonwealth’s Opportunity Fund to assist with the project. [Augusta Free Press]
Suspect Has Missing Ex-Wife — The Capital Area Regional Fugitive Task Force arrested a man in Arlington this weekend in connection with the 2009 disappearance of his girlfriend, who lived in D.C. Now Jose Rodriguez-Cruz also has been tied to the disappearance of his first wife, who was last seen in 1989. Arlington County police have opened an investigation into her disappearance. [WTOP] [NBC Washington]
Overnight I-66 Closures — VDOT will be closing part of eastbound I-66 for 20 minute intervals tonight for toll construction. Beginning at 9:30 p.m. and running until 5 a.m. on Wednesday, closures will occur on eastbound I-66 between I-495 north and Lee Highway.
The property at 6616 18th Street N., near the park’s existing playground and adjacent to the W&OD Trail and Four Mile Run, is approximately 8,250 square feet.
The homeowner has already signed an Agreement of Sale with the county at a purchase price of $637,500. The agreement needs approval from the County Board to be finalized.
There’s a house on the property that is occupied by tenants of the owner. If approved, it will be demolished as part of the acquisition as it was not found to have historical significance.
According to the agenda item about the purchase, the county first expressed interest in this land in January. It is one of several parcels along 18th Street North identified in the 2005 Public Spaces Master Plan as land that could be acquired for the expansion.
It is also the second piece of land the County has moved to purchase this year.
In February, the County Board unanimously approved the purchase of 8,375 square feet of land at 6608 18th Street N., which is one property away from the one now awaiting purchase approval. That plot sold for more than $688,700 and also had a house on it when the county purchased it.
The County Board yesterday unanimously approved the purchase of a house at 2822 S. Arlington Ridge Road, a .22 acre property adjacent to the Lang Street Community Garden, for $699,000.
The house is described as a “modest, colonial-style home built three-quarters of a century ago,” which was determined to not be historic.
The County plans to tear down the house and use the land to expand the garden, which is currently 1.2 acres and includes 70 garden plots. The expansion will enable the addition of 45 half-size plots.
Arlington has seven community gardens comprising about 300 individual plots. As of now, the wait list for one of these plots has close to 500 names on it.
Photo via arlingtonva.us
(Updated at 9:55 a.m.) As it approaches its third anniversary of opening in Clarendon, South Block Cafe (3011 11th Street N.) have unveiled plans for growth. The juice, smoothie and wrap shop will expand into the spot next door previously occupied by Clarendon Alliance, which moved to 3033 Wilson Blvd. earlier this week.
Owner Amir Mostafavi explained he decided to expand because South Block’s line of raw, unpasteurized, cold pressed juices — called South Block Juice Co. — has enjoyed a tremendous response from customers. South Block opened in 2011 and the juice line launched more than a year ago.
“This brand has sort of taken on a life of its own. So we have decided to give the juice its own space, and we are putting our first South Block Juice Co. location in the Clarendon Alliance Spot next door to us,” Mostafavi said. “I refer to South Block Juice Co. as a ‘micro-juicery,’ so we are having a little fun with this and taking on some traits of a microbrewery.”
Similar to beer flights at a microbrewery, South Block customers soon will be able to sample “juice flights.” Visitors also can take home a growler of juice and get information on juice cleanses.
“In general, this will allow us to expand on what has become a very good part of our business,” said Mostafavi. “South Block Juice Co. will be a brand whose focus is on nutrition, community, art and charity.”
The new juice store is expected to open in September.
The company plans to begin construction later this month on a new juice production kitchen in East Falls Church, which will allow for producing a larger volume of juice. South Block also intends to offer more juice varieties after the expansion.
The Fashion Centre at Pentagon City is planning a 50,000 square foot expansion that will add new street-facing retail space to the front of the mall.
The plan is being presented to Arlington’s Site Plan Review Committee tonight (Wednesday). The meeting is scheduled to start at 7:00 p.m. at the Walter Reed Community Center (2909 16th Street S.)
The expansion would eliminate some of the driveway in front of the mall, facing S. Hayes Street, and replace it with a two-level addition featuring 46,000 square feet of lease-able space for 5-7 tenants. In a presentation, mall owner Simon Property Group says it plans to market the outward-facing retail bays to “fashion retail, fast casual dining and restaurants.”
As proposed, the facade of the addition will be largely curved, featuring glass, tapered metal panels and limestone. Along the outside of the curved portion of the addition will be outdoor cafe-style seating.
No word yet on when the site plan amendment required for the project to proceed will reach the Arlington County Board for consideration.
It’s taken about six months of construction and renovations, but O’Sullivan’s Irish Pub (3207 Washington Blvd) is ready to unveil its expansion.
The bar has taken over the space previously occupied by Fragrance World and Sam’s Corner. Owner Anselm Griffiths said there are still about two weeks worth of small projects to accomplish before the bar is considered finished.
Griffiths and his wife, the bar’s namesake Karen O’Sullivan, have owned the business for about seven years and have been interested in expansion nearly from the get go.
“I think we’ve had our eye on the little fragrance shop since we moved in,” Griffiths said. “When the space became available we were very happy to grab it up.”
The new space has been converted into a whiskey bar, with room for table seating. Bartenders will serve up more than 100 brands of whiskey, along with an expanded selection of tap beers.
“We definitely wanted to have a second bar to give us the ability to do private functions, which is something we’ve been turning away since we opened,” Griffiths said. “We think whiskey is sort of a great niche to get into, it’s definitely trending right now. I think a lot of the young people are getting back to more classic drinks.”
Much of the menu will stay the same for now, but there will be an effort to incorporate more of the whiskeys into sauces.
Despite the new bar, extra seating and additional restrooms, management wants customers to know O’Sullivan’s largely remains the same.
“We’re still keeping the character of O’Sullivan’s. It’s a family owned bar, that’s how it’s going to stay,” said General Manager Patrick Doody. “We will preserve the atmosphere that’s been really successful for us. That’s not going anywhere, we just have an extra room. What made us a really good local neighborhood Irish bar will stay the same.”
The exterior has been restored to how the building looked in the 1920s.
“Arlington County had a lot of say in the design of the exterior because the building was marked for historical preservation,” Griffiths said. “It was fun working with Arlington County on that. We spent a little more time and money, but it is really neat to restore the building.”
Tonight there will be a “soft opening” for invited guests, but the public will be able to get a peek at the changes on Thursday (January 31). An official grand opening celebration is being planned, and will feature a buffet and live band. An announcement on the date for that event is forthcoming, but it’s expected to be in about two weeks. Until then, the managers hope people come in to check out the upgrades.
“We’re looking forward to the new challenges of the new whiskey bar. We’re looking forward to more regulars, more people coming through the doors,” Doody said. “O’Sullivan’s is staying the same, it’s just getting a little bit bigger.”
Restoration Anglican Church (1815 N. Quincy Street) hasn’t been in existence for long, but it’s already looking to expand into a larger building.
The church congregation formed in January 2009, when it was around 100 people. At that time, it rented space for one service per week from Trinity Baptist Church, as did a third congregation which ended up relocating to Reston. Restoration bought the church building when Trinity disbanded in 2010.
Now, the congregation is closer to 450-500 people and the number of weekend services has increased to three. The Rev. David Hanke says the congregation has reached its threshold for expansion in the current facility.
“Our ability to keep adding services has hit its end so we need to build something larger,” he said.
Last month, Restoration began its capital campaign in an effort to raise a portion of the $4.5 million budgeted for the project. Although a design has not yet been finalized, the goal is to build a facility that would seat around 400 people, instead of the current 150 person capacity.
The existing church building will be razed and the new facility will be built on the same plot of land. So far there is no hard date for breaking ground, considering a final design hasn’t even been approved yet, but the hope is to start construction in early 2013.
While construction takes place for an estimated 12 to 18 months, the congregation will use space at Little Falls Presbyterian Church for one service per weekend.
Rev. Hanke reports having a good relationship with the surrounding community, and mentioned attending a Cherrydale Citizens Association meeting to address any concerns about a larger church. One of the issues that has come up as a concern among some residents is the lack of parking.
Right now, there are only 13 parking spaces at the church but there is a shuttle on Sundays that runs to the designated parking lot adjacent to Washington-Lee High School near I-66. The parking plan is in compliance with a county code allowing churches to run such shuttles to nearby parking lots. Rev. Hanke says the new church will house the same number of spots and the Sunday shuttle service will continue. Church goers will be reminded, as they are now, to appease neighbors by not parking on Quincy Street or nearby side streets.
Although a finished church facility is far in the future, the congregation is looking forward to its larger, permanent home.
“In the ongoing conversation we’re having with our community, one of the parallels I’ve drawn is to being a homeowner. There’s a big difference between renting a space and owning a space,” said Rev. Hanke. “Since we became owners, we became much more invested in the Quincy Street area. We love being on that street and we love our neighborhood. We are excited we have the opportunity to be there for a long, long time.”
Two years after opening the 1,400-square-foot storefront, owner/couple Enzo Algarme and Anastasiya Laufenberg are taking over the next-door space left by Union Halal Butcher & Grocery. The move will almost double the store’s footprint and allow for a total of about 75 seats with a second dining room.
It’s a long way from the made-to-order food cart the two began operating near the Ballston Metro in 2007.
“It’s been really nice to get to know people from the neighborhood and feel their love and their support,” Laufenberg said. “I’m really looking forward to having a more comfortable space for them to come and eat.”
More space will also mean more hours. On Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday the pizzeria is open for dinner only.
Laufenberg said once the couple finishes hiring new staff, they’ll be open for breakfast (coffee, donuts and other Italian morning treats) and lunch (sandwiches and pasta dishes).
“It won’t be as crammed and we’re excited because we think it’ll be more relaxed,” Laufenberg said.
During its year in existence, Capitol Bikeshare has seen a rapid expansion, including planned expansions into Alexandria and in the Rosslyn-Ballston corridor. Now you can help choose where that next wave of growth will occur.
By using a new interactive map, you can click on locations where you think Bikeshare stations should be built. The map also allows users to “like” or “dislike” suggested stations.
Staff will consider all of the suggestions and will base station decisions on criteria such as property ownership and feasibility.
Flickr pool photo by Chris Reed
The wooden deck will have casual tiki bar theme and will be called “Fu Bar,” owner Greg Cahill tells us.
It will be massive — with room for up to 286 people. Food will be served and there will be about 50 tables for outdoor dining. The menu will remain the same as Whitlow’s this year, with changes possible for next year.
Construction is set to begin Monday and Cahill hopes to have the deck open in September.
Photo by Monika & Tim
Two popular Shirlington destinations are growing. Capitol City Brewing, which is closing its Capital Hill location, is expanding its brewing capacity so that it can supply more beer to the local chain’s non-brewing restaurants.
On the other side of Shirlington Village, Busboys and Poets is also expanding. The restaurant will be building larger event and dining areas and a stage, reports Shirlington Village Blogspot.