A perilously perched tree has prompted the temporary closure of a playground near East Falls Church.
The severe rain storms of the last few days has caused a “tree-mergency” in Madison Manor Park (6225 12th Street N.).
Susan Kalish, a spokeswoman for the county’s Department of Parks and Recreation, says the rain managed to so thoroughly soak the ground at the park that the tree eventually tipped over. She says workers will be removing it “first thing” tomorrow morning (Thursday).
“After they have finished, parks crew will clean up any mess and refasten a section of fence that has been removed,” Kalish wrote in an email. “None of the play equipment has been damaged. One section of the perimeter timber has been dislodged by the tree’s roots and will have to be repaired once the tree is removed.”
Kalish said the county hopes to reopen the playground by “close of business tomorrow,” or Friday morning at the latest.
Parks and recreation workers plan to announce exactly when it will re-open on the department’s Twitter account.
Photo via @arlparksrec
The County Manager’s fiscal year 2019 proposed budget includes service eliminations to Arlington Transit bus routes 92 and 54.
The reductions would save the county $356,771 in 2019, according to the proposed budget. Public hearings on the budget and tax rate are scheduled for Tuesday, April 3 and Thursday, April 5, respectively.
The routes “are not meeting minimum service standards,” according to the budget document, and “service delivery can potentially be met by other transit or other modes such as Capital BikeShare.”
ART Route 92 runs weekdays from the Crystal City Metro station to the Pentagon Metro station via Long Bridge Park. Several WMATA routes also run through that area.
According to the ART Route 92 web page, “the route also serves as a shuttle for those working at Boeing and the U.S. Marshals Service.”
ART Route 54 operates weekdays during the morning and afternoon rush hours from Dominion Hills to the East Falls Church Metro station via Madison Manor neighborhood.
Both routes have “experienced low ridership (3 passengers per hour) and [have] performed below the established minimum service standards of 15 passengers per hour and a 20 percent cost recovery ratio,” according to budget documents.
The County Board is expected to adopt its final budget on April 21.
The incident happened around 9 p.m. last night, two blocks from McKinley Elementary School.
More from an Arlington County Police Department crime report:
PEEPING, 2017-10040316, 900 block of McKinley Road. At approximately 9:08 p.m. on October 4, police responded to the report of a peeping. Upon arrival, it was determined that a witness observed an unknown male suspect peering into a residential window. When confronted by the witness, the suspect fled the area on foot. A canvas of the area by the responding officer was negative. The suspect is described as a white male between the ages of 18-25 with a thin build. He was wearing red shorts, a black tank top and a black baseball hat the time of the incident. The investigation is ongoing.
Photo via Google Maps
A car caught fire on N. Quintana Street in Madison Manor just after noon Wednesday (August 2).
The fire began under the hood of a black Honda parked on the street around 12:15 p.m. According to scanner traffic, flames were visible for a short time. Firefighters from Fairfax County Fire & Rescue quickly handled the blaze, a job perhaps made easier by a fire hydrant being located just feet away from the car.
A firefighter on scene had no information about why the fire started, and said it was “just one of those things.” There were no injuries, and the firefighters left the scene around 12:45 p.m. The car’s owner stood nearby talking on his telephone once the flames were doused.
Madison Manor Park is getting a face-lift.
Renovations at the park at 6225 12th Road N. in the Madison Manor neighborhood will include redesigning the playground, basketball court, picnic shelter, multi-use field, water fountain, park furniture, irrigation walkways, fences and landscaping. The park will also be brought up to current standards, including the Americans with Disabilities Act.
The county has been soliciting input from users of the park on its future with a chalkboard where people can write suggestions for what they would like to see and what they would not like to see.
The “information gathering” process for the upgrades is happening summer. The design process is set to begin in September and last until November.
Under a timeline proposed by staff, the Arlington County Board is projected to approve a contract for construction by fall 2018 so work can get underway soon after. The county hopes to have the renovation completed by summer 2019.
The county’s Capital Maintenance Fund will pay for this project. The fund is used for projects that bring existing parks up to current standards.
Despite a pair of arrests earlier this week, car break-ins are continuing in Arlington.
Someone broke into at least 16 cars — most of them unlocked — between Tuesday night and Wednesday morning in the Madison Manor neighborhood. Items of value were stolen.
Arlington County Police have repeatedly advised residents to lock their cars and remove valuables.
More from an ACPD crime report:
LARCENY FROM AUTO (Series), 2017-06210061, 800 block of N. Nottingham Street. At approximately 7:20 a.m. on June 21, officers responded to the report of a larceny from auto. Upon arrival, it was determined between 10:00 p.m. on June 20 and 7:10 a.m. on June 21, an unknown(s) suspect entered at least 16 mostly unlocked vehicles and stole items of value. A resident in the area called to report suspicious activity after witnessing an unknown suspect enter several vehicles. The suspect fled the scene on foot prior to police arrival. The suspect is described as a black male in his early twenties, approximately 5’9″ tall and weighed 150-160 lbs. He was wearing dark clothing. The investigation is ongoing.
That’s according to this week’s Arlington County Police Department crime report.
Police set up a perimeter and used a K-9 to try to track the suspects but they remain at large. More from ACPD:
ARMED ROBBERY, 2017-06200273, 1400 block of S. Queen Street. At approximately 9:14 p.m. on June 20, officers responded to the report of an armed robbery. Upon arrival, it was determined that the victim and the two unknown male suspects were connected through an online classified and had arranged to meet for a cash transaction. During the transaction, one suspect brandished a firearm and stole the victim’s cash. The suspects then fled the scene on foot. The first suspect is described as a black male, wearing a white tank top and shorts. The second suspect is described as a black male. The investigation is ongoing.
Also on Tuesday, police arrested two Falls Church men for a series of car break-ins in the Madison Manor neighborhood, near the East Falls Church Metro station.
LARCENY FROM AUTO(Series), 2017-06200005, 1100 block of N. Powhatan Street. At approximately 12:25 a.m. on June 20, officers responded to the report of a tampering. Upon arrival, it was determined two suspects entered at least four vehicles and stole items of value. Officers located and apprehended both suspects in the area shortly after. Louis Earl Blount Jr., 18, of Falls Church VA, and David Evans-Herring, 20, of Falls Church VA, were arrested and charged with petit larceny and tampering with auto. Both suspects are being held without bond.
The rest of the past week’s crime report highlights, including some that we’ve already reported, after the jump.
MALICIOUS WOUNDING, 2017-06200154, 3600 block of S. 27th Street. At approximately 1:53 p.m. on June 20, officers responded to the report of a malicious wounding. Upon arrival, it was determined that following a verbal argument between known individuals, a male suspect stabbed a male victim. The suspect then fled the scene. The victim was transported to INOVA Fairfax Hospital with non-life threatening injuries. The investigation is ongoing.
ROBBERY, 2017-06160141, 1100 block of S. Hayes Street. At approximately 11:27 a.m. on June 16, officers responded to the report of a larceny in progress. Upon arrival, it was determined four male suspects had stolen merchandise and fled the scene in a nearby vehicle. One suspect brandished a knife and threatened employees. Following further investigation, one suspect, Kendall Charlie Mobley-Reid, 20, of Washington D.C, was arrested and charged with robbery. The investigation into the identity of the three remaining suspects is ongoing. The first suspect is described as a black male in his mid-twenties, approximately 6’1″-6’2″ tall with a skinny build. He was wearing dark shorts, a white tank top, and red sneakers. The second suspect is described as a black male in his late teens-early twenties, approximately 5’2″-5’4″ tall. He was wearing a white tank top, jeans, and sneakers. The third suspect is described as a black male in his mid-twenties, approximately 5’8″ tall with an average build. He was wearing black pants and a “mustard colored” jacket.
ROBBERY, 2017-06180039, 2700 block of N. Washington Boulevard. At approximately 2:23 a.m. on June 18, officers responded to the report of a robbery. Upon arrival, it was determined an unknown male suspect approached a male victim and stole his belongings. The male suspect then fled the scene in a nearby vehicle. The suspect is described as a Hispanic male in his late thirties, approximately 5’1″-5’2″ tall, and 160-170 lbs. He was wearing a dark colored shirt, dark colored pants, and black sneakers. The investigation is ongoing.
MISSILE INTO OCCUPIED VEHICLE, 2017-06160070, 2700 block of Wilson Boulevard. At approximately 7:09 a.m. on June 16, officers responded to the report of an individual throwing objects. Upon arrival, it was determined a male subject was throwing objects at an occupied vehicle from an upstairs window. No one was injured. Marvin Sosa Velasquez, 21, of Arlington VA, was arrested and charged with missile into occupied vehicle and drunk in public. He is being held without bond.
BURGLARY(Late), 2017-06170168, 800 block of N. Jefferson Street. At approximately 3:18 p.m. on June 17, officers responded to the report of a late burglary. Upon arrival, it was determined between 12:00 p.m. on March 15 and 12:00 a.m. on April 1, an unknown subject(s) entered a residence and stole items of value. There is no subject(s) description. The investigation is ongoing.
RECKLESS HANDLING OF A FIREARM (late), 2017-06130094, 1000 block of N. Vermont Street. At approximately 11:03 a.m. on June 13, officers responded to the report of a suspicious circumstance. Upon arrival, it was determined that at approximately 2:00 a.m. a resident heard a loud noise and later discovered two bullet holes in a shared wall of his residence. Police responded, conducted an investigation which is ongoing at this time.
The suspect in this morning’s incident was wearing a gray sweatshirt and a clown “skull” mask, according to a police lookout. It was initially reported that the suspect was wielding an axe; later it was reported that it was actually a skateboard.
Multiple kids reported seeing the “clown.” Police are now searching for the suspect around the park and up and down the trail.
Most elementary and middle school students in Arlington do not have school today due to parent-teacher conferences.
Update at 11:40 a.m. — Another witness told officers that the suspect was a teenager with red hair, whom she saw take off the mask and run off with two other teen boys, according to police radio traffic.
The burglaries occurred on the 6200 block of 12th Street N. and on the 1000 block of N. Quintana Street.
“As we were investigating these burglaries, we received a report from two witnesses that they saw two Hispanic males approach a residence in the 900 block of N. Quesada where they attempted to steal a bicycle,” said ACPD spokeswoman Ashley Savage. “The suspects fled the area on foot.”
An earlier version of this article reported that more than two homes were broken into, which is incorrect, Savage clarified.
From an ACPD crime report:
BURGLARY(series), 160331013, 6200 block of N. 12th Street. Between 9:45 a.m. and 11:45 a.m. on March 31, two male subjects forced entry into a residence and stole an undisclosed amount of cash and several items of value. A second residence was entered in the same fashion and an undisclosed amount of cash was stolen. Two witnesses described seeing two Hispanic males with backpacks and short black hair approach a residence in the area around the same time as the incident. Investigation is ongoing.
**This series is related to case numbers 160331015 1000 block of N. Quintana Street, 160331018 900 block of N. Quesada Street
The incident happened just before 1 p.m. on the 1300 block of N. Quintana Street, near Madison Manor Park and the Four Mile Run trail
A worker was reportedly jackhammering the porch when he fell through into some sort of concrete pit or recessed area. The man’s leg was pinned but the first arriving firefighters were able to extricate him before a technical rescue team arrived, according to ACFD spokesman Lt. Shawn Pendo.
The man suffered “minor injuries” — a broken leg, according to scanner traffic — and was transported to a local hospital, Pendo said.
The expansion will add a 33,040-square-foot addition in the northeast corner of the school, at 1030 N. McKinley Road, and smaller additions in the southwest corner and at the main entrance to the school. The project is expected to be complete by the beginning of the 2016-2017 school year.
An expansion of this size would, according to the county’s Zoning Ordinance, necessitate that Arlington Public Schools add 108 parking spaces. But because open space and a number of mature trees surround McKinley, the County Board approved plans to add just 20 spaces to the existing 36 spaces. Even those 20 spaces were the source of controversy; the county’s Planning Commission and Transportation Commission recommended adding no spaces and instead using street parking to accommodate the additional staff and parent vehicles.
Advocates from the school and community who were a part of the planning process, including McKinley Principal Colin Brown, spoke in favor of adding the 20 spaces.
“I’ve said from the start that we enjoy a fantastic day-to-day relationship with the neighbors and the community,” Brown told the Board. “At this point, the neighborhood is able to handle the volume of staff and parents parking on the street given the current capacity of the parking lot. We’re at a tipping point. We need to maintain a fine and delicate balance.”
Ultimately, County Manager Barbara Donnellan recommended keeping the 20 spaces in the plan, and the County Board approved it unanimously. Only three members of the general public spoke, two of whom, School Board candidate Audrey Clement and Jim Hurysz, decried APS’ inability to expand schools “up, not out,” which would save green space. Despite that opposition, County Board Chair Jay Fisette marveled at the lack of animosity toward the plan, which marked the expansion of Ashlawn Elementary School.
“I think it is quite a testament to this process that we had three speakers,” he said. “This is one of the easiest things I’ve seen to come before the Board.”
To make way for the school expansion, 78 trees will be removed — 12 of which are gingko trees that will be transplanted elsewhere in the county. Nearly 150 trees will be planted once construction is complete, according to APS Director of Design and Construction Scott Prisco.
“We feel strongly this is a sensitive approach to the neighbors, and it will meet our needs as a school system,” Prisco said.
In total, the expansion will mean a net increase of 32,250 square feet and include 10 new classrooms, two art rooms, two music rooms and expand the gymnasium to have enough space for the entire, expanded school. The expansion will also add a stage. Construction will include pedestrian improvements on N. McKinley Road and 11th Street N.
Photo via APS
A power outage is affecting the northwestern section of Arlington County this morning.
Dominion is reporting that 1,673 customers in Arlington are currently without power. The company’s power outage map says the outage is a result of a circuit problem, and estimates that power will be restored between 10:00 a.m. and noon.
Impacted neighborhoods reportedly include Dominion Hills, Madison Manor and East Falls Church. Among the intersections where traffic lights are dark are Wilson Boulevard and Patrick Henry Drive, and Wilson Boulevard and N. McKinley Road.
The call came in to police around 11:15 a.m., stating that a young male wearing a black ski mask and holding something that looked like an assault rifle was spotted in the Madison Manor neighborhood. The teen and a companion were heading toward the pedestrian bridge that crosses I-66 near Ohio Street, just east of East Falls Church on the W&OD trail.
Police officers swarmed the area. At least three witnesses reported seeing the same teen, who was accompanied by another young male who was carrying a camera bag and a camera.
A half-hour search of the Madison Manor, Westover and East Falls Church neighborhoods turned up nothing, and eventually the search was called off. During the search extra security measures were put in place at McKinley Elementary School. One tipster reported that some roads were blocked in the area during the search.