by ARLnow.com March 14, 2018 at 1:45 pm 0

Police are looking for a man who shot up a vehicle with a BB gun in the Nauck neighborhood last week.

The incident happened Wednesday night along S. Shirlington Road. Police responded to a parking lot for a report of gunshots. They arrived and found a vehicle damaged by BBs, but the suspect had already fled and could not be located.

More from this week’s Arlington County Police Department crime report:

DISCHARGE FIREARM/MISSILE INTO OCCUPIED BUILDING, 2018-03070203, 2200 block of Shirlington Road. At approximately 8:10 p.m. on March 7, police were dispatched to the area after a witness reported hearing shots fired inside a parking garage. Arriving officers canvased the area and located a vehicle with damage from a BB gun. The suspect fled the scene prior to police arrival. No injuries were reported. The suspect is described as a black male with curly, reddish dreads, wearing a black jacket. The investigation is ongoing.

The rest of the crime report, after the jump.


by Bridget Reed Morawski March 6, 2018 at 4:45 pm 0

Demolition has begun in preparation for the Nauck Town Center project, and the neighbors might not be the only ones buzzing with interest.

The building torn down last week is none other than the former home of about 70,000 honey bees, which the county relocated in July 2017 after realizing they had not only purchased a former office building but an apiary abode as well.

The aging building had only been vacant for about four months, according to the county, but about 100 pounds of honey were already generated by the time that local beekeepers swooped in to relocate move the hive.

The demolition is one of the final steps in the project’s first pre-construction phase. Utility undergrounding and site perimeter streetscaping will start fall 2018 and end spring 2019.

The second phase of Nauck Town Square project construction is scheduled to begin in the spring or summer of 2019 and wrap up by the winter of 2020. Pre-construction for phase two will begin spring 2018 and last through winter 2019.

The Nauck Town Center project, which has been years in the making, includes an open plaza, outdoor stage, public art, tables and seating and sidewalk improvements, along with displays about the history of the community, which was settled by free African-Americans in 1844. The design includes a large sculpture of the word “FREED.”

Photo courtesy Daniel Wanke

by ARLnow.com February 14, 2018 at 3:50 pm 0

Someone broke into nearly a dozen vehicles overnight, between Monday and Tuesday, in the Nauck, Douglas Park and Westover neighborhoods.

Most of the vehicles were unlocked, according to police.

More from this week’s Arlington County Police Department crime report:

LARCENY FROM AUTO (series), 2018-02130043/0046/0057/0061/0065, 3000 block of S. 19thStreet/1500 block of S. Glebe Road/3100 block of S. 15th Street. At approximately 6:37 a.m. on February 13, police were dispatched to the report of a larceny from auto series. Upon arrival, it was determined that an unknown suspect entered multiple, mostly unlocked, vehicles overnight and stole numerous items of value. There is no suspect description. The investigation is ongoing.

LARCENY FROM AUTO (series), 2018-02130040/0052/0055/0060/0066/0067, 1000 block of N. Kensington Street/1000 block of N. Kentucky Street/800 block of N. Lexington Street. At approximately 7:16 a.m. on February 13, police were dispatched to the report of multiple larceny from autos. Upon arrival, it was determined that an unknown suspect entered numerous, mostly unlocked, vehicles overnight and tampered with the contents and stole items of value from some of the vehicles. The suspect is described as a white male, approximately 5’6 to 5’10, 150-175 lbs. The investigation is ongoing.

The rest of this past week’s crime report highlights, including some that we’ve already reported, after the jump.


by Bridget Reed Morawski February 13, 2018 at 10:45 am 0

The annual Feel The Heritage Festival, a black history month tradition now in its 26th year, is scheduled for Saturday, February 24.

The county-sponsored festival, held at the Charles Drew Community Center in Nauck, will host its first-ever soul food cook-off, with prizes for category winners. That’s in addition to dozens of vendors, music and dance acts, and fun for the kids.

Emceed by former WPGC 95.5 FM radio host Dr. Justine Love, a range of dance and musical groups will perform throughout the day, including a Joy of Motion dance center youth hip-hop group, and Elijah Jamal Balbed’s Chuck Brown-inspired The Jogo Project. Motown, hip-hop, gospel, and traditional African performers will also take the stage.

Festival organizers are touting dozens of artisan vendors selling jewelry, clothing, and more. Local African-American citizen associations and organizations, such as the Black Heritage Museum, will bring historical artifacts and photos for display in a “hall of history.”

Rocklands Barbeque and Grilling Company’s food truck will be parked outside of the community center, and the Nauck Youth Enterprise will sell hot dogs, half smokes, and more.

There will be plenty for kids to do, from creating a traditional African art inspired animal mask to face painting, balloon art, and oversize games of checkers and Connect Four. Colgate, the toothpaste company, will also be on-site from 2-6 p.m. to conduct free dental screenings and treatment referral for children up to 12 years old.

Photo via Arlington County

by ARLnow.com February 12, 2018 at 4:45 pm 0

The following Letter to the Editor was submitted by long-time Nauck resident Portia Clark, the current president of the Nauck Civic Association.

My family has lived in Arlington for more than a century. I was raised in Arlington, and my children and grandchildren live here too. Some of my ancestors from the 1800’s are buried in the cemetery next to Lomax A.M.E. Zion Church, which was established in 1866. Lomax falls within the Four Mile Run Valley Study Area.

When I was young, I went to Arlington public schools. Yet, my mother growing up in Nauck, was not allowed to play in most Arlington County parks because of the color of her skin.

The the only park open to her and her siblings was Jennie Dean Park. Arlington County’s then- Department of Recreation noted in its 1949 report that Jennie Dean Park was the county’s “sole recreation area for colored citizens.” In the Park’s historical markers, there are photos of my family members, friends and neighbors.

After decades of waiting, Arlington County is now focused on revitalizing Jennie Dean Park and the surrounding area in Nauck. I have seen the draft plans for Jennie Dean Park put forth by Arlington County staff. The plans are astoundingly tone-deaf.

The Nauck community hasn’t asked for much with regard to Jennie Dean Park, other than to revitalize it and to minimize the impacts on our community. We certainly have ideas for what amenities we would like to see in the Park, but we understand – maybe better than anyone else – that parks should be for the entire community. So, when the County told us that they wanted the same amenities to stay in the park – no more, no less – we understood that everything we discussed at numerous meetings could not go into the park.

We did insist, however, that respect be paid to the Nauck community. This means that the front of Jennie Dean Park, the portion fronting the neighborhood at Four Mile Run Drive, be left open for casual use. We want this area to be a gateway for the community to enter the Park. We want it to be green. We want it to be landscaped. We want it to have flowers and trees and open space.

Instead, the County has drafted plans to place a baseball field in that spot, instead of another part of the Park. A baseball field, especially one with fencing and stadium lights, is not welcoming. The County’s draft plan also hides a playground and shelter area away from the community it would serve. This County plan offers no connection to the neighborhood and its cultural heritage, except for a historical marker with some friendly faces on it. This plan will negatively impact our community in a number of ways.

It doesn’t have to be this way. In fact, the County drew up plans, which it insisted were viable, that accepts the placement we requested and the honor we deserve.

The Nauck Civic Association has already voted – unanimously – that this draft plan from the County on Jennie Dean Park is a non-starter. We hope others will join us in expressing this concern.

by Bridget Reed Morawski February 8, 2018 at 4:45 pm 0

The draft framework for the proposed Four Mile Run Valley area is now open for public comment. 

The county is setting out to reshape the Four Mile Run Valley area — centered around the Shirlington and Nauck neighborhoods — while balancing the commercial, residential, historic, environmental and industrial needs of the community. This is the latest step in a process which began June 2016.

The plan includes the redevelopment of Jennie Dean Park, with the goal of maximizing the park’s open green space. It also includes the potential establishment of an arts district — with a clustering of studios, theaters and maker spaces — though the idea has received some criticism from groups that want more green space or playing fields.

Proposed park amenities include educational stream overlooks, improved access to the stream, and commissioned public art pieces or sculptures, per the framework.

Changes to the Shirlington Dog Park seem to be limited to minor changes to improve erosion and water quality issues. That follows a public outcry about a potential reduction of the dog park’s size.

Among environmental considerations, the document states that the “area’s history of [industrial] development suggests that there may be soil contamination in soil locations.” Further sections note that excrement from the dog park is another significant soil and water contaminant in the area. The need for “an eye toward environmental remediation, stormwater management, and stream protection” is cited in numerous sections of the draft.

Residents have until Friday, Feb. 16 to comment online. The plan is expected to be presented to the Arlington County Board this spring.

by ARLnow.com February 6, 2018 at 3:05 pm 0

A man was stabbed in a home in the Nauck neighborhood last night, police say.

Initial reports suggest that that a woman stabbed a man during some sort of household argument, though the victim’s wounds were reported to be relatively minor.

More from an Arlington County Police Department daily crime report:

MALICIOUS WOUNDING, 2018-02050214, 2400 block of S. Lowell Street, At approximately 6:43 p.m. on February 5, police were dispatched to the report of a dispute. Upon arrival, it was determined that following a verbal altercation between known individuals, a male victim was stabbed. The victim was transported to the hospital with non-life threatening injuries. Warrants for the suspect were obtained for Malicious Wounding.

File photo

by Chris Teale January 30, 2018 at 2:45 pm 0

A historic pharmacy in Nauck is closed, reportedly for renovations.

A sign on the door of Green Valley Pharmacy at 2415 Shirlington Road said it “will reopen in the near future” once work is done. A reader said it has been closed since the end of last year.

The pharmacy earned local designation as an Arlington Historic District in 2013, after a request by longtime owner Dr. Leonard Muse.

“When Green Valley Pharmacy opened, no other pharmacies in Arlington welcomed the black community,” county staff wrote. “Typically, black customers had to use rear entrances and were not treated well with their medical prescriptions. Green Valley served both black and white customers, and it was especially popular for its dine-in food counter, where breakfast, lunch, dinner and an abundance of ice cream desserts were served. In the early days, an order of two hot dogs cost just 25 cents.”

But Muse died in August at the age of 94 after operating the pharmacy since 1952.

by ARLnow.com December 8, 2017 at 3:45 pm 0

Arlington County Police are still investigating a drive-by shooting in the Nauck neighborhood this past Sunday night.

Three male suspects in a dark van or SUV opened fire on a group of four juvenile near the intersection of 24th Street S. and Shirlington Road around 8:15 p.m., according to police. A resident who lives nearby emailed ARLnow.com and described a chaotic scene.

“Around 8:12 a series of approximately eight gunshots were heard followed by several individuals seen running through the neighborhood,” she said. The resident added later that she’s skeptical that no one in the neighborhood was able to give a better description of the vehicle or the suspects.

Police are treating the shooting as an “attempted malicious wounding” rather than attempted murder. ACPD spokeswoman Ashley Savage said the incident “remains an active and ongoing investigation by the Arlington County Police Department’s Homicide/Robbery Unit.”

“Police have collected crime scene evidence, canvased the area and spoken with witnesses,” Savage said. “The events that preceded the shooting remain under investigation.”

“The Third District Community Policing Team has been in touch with community members since the incident occurred and is attending a tenants meeting in the community next week,” Savage continued. “Anyone who has information regarding this investigation is asked to call Detective Bertollini at703.228.4243 or [email protected]. Information can also be reported anonymously by calling the Arlington County Crime Solvers at 866.411.TIPS (8477).”

Photo via Google Maps

by ARLnow.com December 4, 2017 at 3:45 pm 0

Someone fired gunshots at a group of four juveniles walking down the street in the Nauck neighborhood last night.

Police did not report a possible motive for the Sunday night shooting, only saying in a crime report that a vehicle with three males inside approached, shots were filed “in the direction of the juveniles” and the suspects drove off. The kids were unhurt.

More from an Arlington County Police Department crime report:

ATTEMPTED MALICIOUS WOUNDING, 217-12030213, 24th Street S. at Shirlington Road. At approximately 8:16 p.m. on December 3, police were dispatched to the report of shots fired. Upon arrival, it was determined that four juveniles were walking in the area when they were approached by a vehicle with three black males inside. One of the occupants of the vehicle brandished a firearm and fired shots in the direction of the juveniles. The vehicle fled the scene prior to police arrival. It is described as a large black van or SUV. There is no suspect(s) description. The juveniles were uninjured. Officers canvased the area with negative results. The investigation is ongoing.

by ARLnow.com November 20, 2017 at 8:15 am 0

County HQ to Be Named After Bozman — “The Arlington County Board today voted unanimously to name the County Office Building at 2100 Clarendon Boulevard for Ellen M. Bozman, the six-time Board Chair who served on the Board through some of Arlington’s most transformative years, and who died in 2009.” [Arlington County]

Blue, Yellow Line Service Disruption — Metrorail service on the Blue and Yellow lines was suspended earlier this morning due to “fire department activity” at the Pentagon station. Arlington County Fire Department units investigated the incident and turned the scene back over to Metro around 6 a.m. Service has since been restored. [Twitter, Twitter, Fox 5]

County Board Sets Stage for Va. Square Redevelopment — The Arlington County Board on Saturday took a first step towards the redevelopment of several properties at the corner of Washington Blvd and N. Kirkwood Road. New apartments and upgrades to the YMCA have been proposed for the site. The Board approved a General Land Use Plan Study and Concept Plan that will “serve as a long-range planning guide for potential redevelopment.” [Arlington County]

Arlingtonian Among Rhodes Scholars — Arlington native Matthew Chun, a senior at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, has been named one of 32 Rhodes scholars in the U.S. Chun, who is also captain of the school’s wrestling team, is one of two Virginians among the latest group of Rhodes scholars. [Associated Press, MIT News]

Juvenile Hospitalized After Nauck Hit and Run — An individual under the age of 18 was reportedly struck by a car on the 2400 block of Shirlington Road, in the Nauck area, over the weekend. The car’s driver drove off after hitting the juvenile, who suffered non-life threatening injuries. [WJLA]

Nestle Lease Lauded in Commercial RE Awards — The lease of 1812 N. Moore Street in Rosslyn to serve as Nestle’s new U.S. headquarters was given the “Award of Excellence” in the Real Estate Transaction category at the 2017 NAIOP Northern Virginia commercial real estate awards. It was among six Arlington-related winners at the awards ceremony, including the new Marymount University Ballston Center development. [NAIOP]

Flickr pool photo by Chris Guyton

by Chris Teale October 30, 2017 at 3:15 pm 0

Chester’s Billiards, Bar & Grill is no more after its landlord put its building in Nauck up for sale.

The billiards hall and neighborhood bar at 2620 Shirlington Road closed on Wednesday, October 25. Signs outside show the building, now abandoned, is up for sale. The Chester’s sign remains.

Chester’s had gone before the Arlington County Board on Tuesday, October 24 for a three-month review of its live entertainment permit. County staff had recommended before the meeting for a second time this year that the Board deny an extension of the permit.

But at the meeting, Rebecca Lewis, a managing member at Chester’s, said the building’s owner has decided to sell their property. Lewis said he did so because of the ongoing issues with the building’s elevator, which has led to criminal charges and will take more than $250,000 to fix.

Lewis also questioned staff’s data on calls to the Arlington County Police Department, as well as the violation of its ABC license. She said that several of the five police calls involved an employee who was caught embezzling funds and is now the subject of criminal proceedings, and said that there were people in the community who wanted to “sabotage the business.”

“It seems that there seems to have been, especially with the police department, a wanting to shut down this business,” Lewis said.

Adam Watson, a staffer at the county’s Department of Community, Planning, Housing and Development, also noted that Chester’s hosted two dance parties with 40-50 people despite not holding a permit to do so. In response, Lewis said that those events were music shows that did not qualify as dance events.

“It’s almost impossible to tell people when music is playing that they can’t move their bodies,” she said. “[We] never encouraged or had something that we called a dance event.”

In a brief statement to the Board, Chester’s manager David Breedlove stood by the bar’s arrest record, and said he was grateful to the police for their help.

“I want to thank the Arlington police department for setting me straight, but never, one time, was there an arrest at that bar,” he said. “Yes, there were problems down below.”

Board member Christian Dorsey said it is clearly “difficult” to run a business, but said he hoped the bar’s managers try again soon. In a unanimous vote, the Board denied an extension to the bar’s permit.

“Clearly this didn’t work out for you or the community, which is why we are where we are today,” Dorsey said. “But I certainly wish you luck in any future endeavors you are about to take.”

by ARLnow.com October 25, 2017 at 9:30 am 0

Arlington Murder Suspect Arrested — Jason Allen Johnson, wanted for the fatal shooting of 23-year-old Michael Gray at an Arlington house party in February, has been arrested. Fox 5 reports that Johnson was arrested in New York on unrelated charges. [Fox 5]

County Threatens Eminent Domain for Bus Parking Lot — Arlington County is threatening to use the power of eminent domain to acquire a property it is currently leasing for bus parking along I-395 near Shirlington. The County Board last night authorized an offer to buy the property, which is assessed at $20.5 million, but also authorized use of eminent domain to acquire the property if its purchase offer is unsuccessful. [Arlington County]

Auditor Plans to Tackle School Construction Costs — “The Arlington School Board’s internal auditor plans to take a crack at a vexing question: Why does it cost so much more to build a school in Arlington than elsewhere? Or does really cost that much more, after all?” [InsideNova]

ACPD Greets All-Law Enforcement Honor Flight — Officers from the Arlington County Police Department and other local law enforcement agencies often greet honor flights arriving at Reagan National Airport. Yesterday they greeted the first-ever honor flight of veterans who all later served as law enforcement officers. [Twitter, Twitter]

Endorsements for Gutshall, McCullough — Democratic Arlington County Board candidate Erik Gutshall has picked up the endorsement of the Sun Gazette newspaper. Independent progressive candidate Charles McCullough, meanwhile, has been endorsed by the Working Families Party. [InsideNova, InsideNova]

Flickr pool photo by Ameschen

by Chris Teale October 17, 2017 at 3:30 pm 0

After being given three months to remedy its violations, county staff is recommending the Arlington County Board not extend the live entertainment permit for Chester’s Billiards, Bar & Grill.

In a report to the Board ahead of Saturday’s monthly meeting, staff said issues continue to plague the billiards hall and neighborhood bar at 2620 S. Shirlington Road in Nauck.

Since the Board’s last review in June, staff said the Arlington County Police Department visited to help Chester’s staff correct outstanding violations, train security staff and conduct ABC compliance checks.

But during that period, police found three ABC violations and saw Chester’s hosting a dance party for between 40 and 50 people in August, despite being warned it was not allowed under its permit with the county.

Staff also said police were called five times, with four of those calls involving co-owner David Breedlove. No arrests were made.

The building’s unsafe elevator also remains an ongoing problem, with the property’s owner having been served a court summons and set for arraignment next month for violating the Virginia Maintenance Code. Staff said the elevator is, in the opinion of Code Enforcement, “dangerous to the health, safety and welfare of the building’s occupants.”

A property owner nearby also complained that Chester’s patrons used a parking lot on his property without permission.

In their report, staff noted that the Nauck Civic Association “had not come to a consensus” on whether the permit should be renewed. Staff added that the president of the Bowman’s Hill Homeowners Association, speaking for himself, said there had “not been much of an improvement” from Chester’s.

Staff were critical of Chester’s management, who they said had not worked hard enough to remedy the problems.

“Given the continued non-compliance with the use permit conditions, and a general lack of good-faith effort on behalf of both the applicant and the property owner to voluntarily comply with these conditions, staff recommends that the County Board not renew the subject use permit,” staff wrote.

Photo via Google Maps.

by ARLnow.com October 4, 2017 at 9:30 am 0

Nauck Town Square Project Progressing  — “There seems to be a light at the end of the tunnel for the Nauck Town Square project, which aims to turn a barren (though iconic) strip of land into a true community gathering place… If all goes as planned, a construction contract will be inked in 2018, with completion a year later.” [InsideNova]

History: Arlington’s Three Sisters — Arlington County was home to the second-tallest human-made structure in the world after the Eiffel Tower: one of the “Three Sisters” U.S. Navy radio towers that once stood along Columbia Pike. [Arlington Magazine]

Mall Raising Money for Breast Cancer Research — This month the Fashion Centre at Pentagon City will be raising money for breast cancer research by offering discount cards to shoppers who make a $5 donation to the Susan G. Komen organization. The mall will also be holding meet and greets with the Susan G. Komen D.C. chapter and on Oct. 21 will be offering free pink cookies and pink lemonade. [Simon]

Arlington Issues New Bonds — Arlington County successfully sold $58 million in new bonds this week at an average 3.24 percent interest rate. “This sale allows the County to finance two important land acquisitions, while also saving the County $3.8 million of future debt service by refinancing existing bonds at lower rates,” County Manager Mark Schwartz said in a press release. [Arlington County]

Photo courtesy James Mahony


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