Summer Camp Registration Woes — “There were technical problems with the online registration system for Arlington Dept. of Parks and Rec summer camps this morning, readers tell ARLnow. From a parks dept. spokesperson: ‘Our online registration system experienced some technical issues this morning during the first hour of registration, but it was fixed by approximately 8:05am. By noon, over 8,300 registrations were completed.'” [Twitter]
Reminder: HQ2 Phase 2 Meeting Tonight — “The County is kicking off a public review process for the proposed next phase of Amazon’s HQ2. Thursday at 6:30 p.m. join an virtual community meeting to learn more about the plan, how the review process works, and when you can share feedback.” [Twitter, Arlington County]
‘Our Revolution’ Joins Civic Federation — “You say you want a revolution? Upon further review, the Arlington County Civic Federation has decided… it does! At the organization’s March 13 meeting, a vote on the membership application of the left-leaning political group Our Revolution Arlington came up for consideration by federation delegates. The final vote was 40 to approve, 11 to reject, eight abstentions and one non-response.” [Sun Gazette]
New GOP Entrant in Delegate Race — “The district trends Democratic in the same way Chicago winters trend cold, but a Republican has stepped up with plans to contest the 45th House of Delegates district in November. J.D. Maddox, a small-business owner and former Central Intelligence Agency official, announced March 23 he planned to seek the seat currently held by Del. Mark Levine, a Democrat.” [Sun Gazette, ALXnow]
Death Penalty Repealed in Va. — “Gov. Ralph Northam on Wednesday signed legislation to officially abolish the death penalty in Virginia, making it the first Southern state to ban capital punishment. ‘Justice and punishment are not always the same thing, that is too clearly evident in 400 years of the death penalty in Virginia,’ Northam, a Democrat, said during remarks ahead of signing the legislation, saying that it is both the right and the moral thing to do.” [NBC News, Commonwealth of Virginia]
Northrop Could Be Leaving Arlington — The name “Northrop Grumman” may not grace the Rosslyn skyline for much longer. Capital Business reports that landlord Monday Properties has begun to market the primo office space currently occupied by Northrop, after receiving a tip that the company would be consolidating the office into its new Falls Church corporate campus by next summer. More from the Washington Post.
Metro Hero Interviewed on CNN, CBS Early Show — We have to apologize to Virginia Square Metro Hero Dimas Pinzon. He has apparently been hounded by reporters since we posted surveillance video of him walking over two electrified rails to come to the aid of an injured man who had fallen on the track. Pinzon was just interviewed by his hometown newspaper, the Virginian-Pilot, and in the past couple of days he has appeared on the CBS and CNN morning shows. Oh, and an appearance on the Ellen DeGeneres Show is possibly in the works. More from HamptonRoads.com.
Murray Brings the Bus Back — Republican congressional candidate Patrick Murray has brought back the bus from his successful primary campaign. This morning Murray and the bus traveled to Ballston Metro, where he and his supporters shook hands and talked to voters. The campaign has already posted photos on Facebook.
Flickr pool photo by Mark C. White
Dangerous Curve Near Roosevelt Island? — Bicyclists on the Bike Arlington forum say that a sharp curve on the Mt. Vernon Trail near Roosevelt Island has been the site of numerous wipe-outs, at least one of which resulted in broken bones. The main problem with “Deadman’s Curve” seems to be that the painted wooden surface gets extremely slippery after it rains or even when it’s humid. Posters are calling on the National Park Service to make the surface more abrasive to prevent further accidents.
Arlington Caterer Ditches Plastic Bottles — Shirlington-based Main Event Caterers has done away with bottled water — at least the kind that’s plastic and disposable — in favor of a reusable glass bottle system. The company, which is already 100 percent wind-powered and carbon-neutral, says the move will significantly cut down on waste. “We believe that businesses have a responsibility to not only protect but also improve our natural environment,” a company rep said in a press release.
Smart Growth Advocate Criticizes Northrop Grumman Move — Northrop Grumman’s decision to move its headquarters to the Falls Church section of Fairfax County instead of a Metro-accessible site in Arlington has attracted some criticism. Stuart Schwartz, executive director of the Coalition for Smarter Growth, told the Falls Church News-Press that the decision “is disappointing” due to the new headquarters’ distance from Metrorail. An off-the-record source tells ARLnow.com that proximity to transit wasn’t much of a concern to the 300 or so executives who will be the primary tenants of the office. What was more important? Proximity to certain country clubs.
Northrop Spurns Arlington, Doesn’t Even Call — First, Northrop Grumman decided to head to the grassier, cheaper environs of Fairfax County. Now, it turns out Northrop didn’t even give a “thanks but no thanks” call to Arlington Economic Development, which had been working with the company as it considered a building in Ballston for its new headquarters. More from WBJ’s Sarah Krouse. Also: Northrop, if you’re reading this, you still owe us a call regarding the status of your Rosslyn office.
Metro Plans Confusing Service Change — Metro is considering shifting some Blue Line trains to the Yellow and Orange Lines by next summer to help expand capacity. Simple, right? Wrong. Our friends at Greater Greater Washington will make your brain hurt by trying to explain in 1,000 words how Metro plans to pull it off.
Strong June for Arlington Real Estate — Arlington home prices soared 13.5 percent in June compared to one year prior, reports local Realtor Laura Rubinchuk. The average number of days on the market plummeted 27 percent.
Jimmy Smits TV Show Coming to NBC With Arlington Scenes — Three months ago we told you that Jimmy Smits was filming a TV pilot near the Iwo Jima Memorial. It turns out the show will be airing on Friday nights this fall on NBC. Promos have started running on the network, and a longer series preview (complete with a half-second’s worth of Arlington) is available here.
Northrop Grumman has bypassed Arlington and selected the Falls Church section of Fairfax County for the location of its new DC-area headquarters. The company will purchase a building in the Fairview Park office park, near the Beltway and Route 50, the company said in a press release.
The purchase caps a “comprehensive site selection process” that lasted about a month and a half longer than originally anticipated. When Northrop CEO Wes Bush and Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell announced in April that the company had narrowed its headquarters search down to Northern Virginia, Bush said the process would take about a month.
Amid the media speculation about the headquarters location, two sites were consistently mentioned near the end: the Falls Church site and a building in Ballston. Buildings in Crystal City and Rosslyn were also said to be in the early running. In the end, however, Falls Church won out.
The fate of Northrop’s ritzy Rosslyn government affairs office is now in question. The company said cryptically that employees from the office will help “initiate operations” in the new building next summer. We’re awaiting further clarification from a Northrop representative.
The company’s full press release, after the jump.
Northrop Grumman is days away from announcing the location of its new corporate headquarters, the Washington Post reports this morning.
At a press conference with Northrop CEO Wes Bush and Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell last month, Bush said the company was negotiating with building owners in Arlington and Falls Church. Those sites were believed to be a new development in Ballston or the Fairview Park office complex in Falls Church.
The Washington Business Journal, meanwhile, is now reporting that Northrop is thinking about buying a new office building somewhere “inside the Beltway or [in] Tysons Corner.”
It would move to the Fairview complex now as a temporary measure, while the new office is constructed, WBJ says.
Wherever the company decides to move to, expect it to be within Virginia’s eighth congressional district, we’re told.
At a press conference at Northrop Grumman’s Rosslyn government affairs office, Governor Bob McDonnell and Northrop president and CEO Wes Bush formally announced the decision.
Bush said the company is in “final negotiations” with building owners in Arlington and Falls Church — both within Rep. Jim Moran’s eighth congressional district — and will announce a location within a month. The new headquarters will open by the summer of 2011.
“I’ve got to say, this is certainly one of the most exciting days — and the best announcement — we’ve been able to make in a long time,” McDonnell said.
Bush said the decision to locate in Virginia largely came down to real estate and economics. The state offered an incentive package worth between $12 and $15 million to lure the company, which already employs 30,000 people in Virginia. Bush also cited the region’s proximity to its largest customer, the Pentagon.
In the end it was a “very close competition,” Bush said, adding that the mid-Atlantic “is a great region to do business.”
“This is a very exciting step for our company and we’re looking forward to being part of this community,” he said.
The headquarters will bring about 300 jobs with an average salary of $200,000 to the area, along with a number of support and contract jobs. Bush said the company is considering the possibility of relocating jobs from the Rosslyn office to the new headquarters.
The Associated Press is reporting that the site will either be in Fairfax County near Dulles Airport or in Crystal City.
The Los Angeles Times says that the company will move to “the Falls Church area.”
Yesterday, the Washington Business Journal said the choice was between Ballston, Falls Church and Alexandria.
The company, meanwhile has released a statement saying it is in negotiations with building owners in Falls Church and Arlington.
Northrop Grumman is currently conducting negotiations with several building owners in the Falls Church/Arlington area, with a specific building selection to be announced soon. The company expects to initiate operations in the new corporate office in summer of 2011 with approximately 300 people. Northrop Grumman currently employs approximately 40,000 people in Maryland, Virginia and Washington, D.C. and is the largest industrial employer in both states.
Based on that statement, it would seem that Rep. Jim Moran’s personal call to Northrop CEO Wes Bush worked, since Arlington and Falls Church are within Moran’s congressional district.
Gov. McDonnell will formally announce Northrop’s selection of Virginia during a press conference at the company’s Rosslyn offices at 2:00 this afternoon.
Governor Bob McDonnell is expected to announce tomorrow that Northrop Grumman has selected Northern Virginia for the location of its new headquarters, according to sources cited by the Washington Business Journal.
McDonnell is not expected to announce which Northern Virginia site has been selected quite yet. Among the reported finalists are the 800 North Glebe Road development in Ballston, along with a site in Falls Church and a site in Alexandria.
The giant defense contractor, which is relocating its headquarters from Los Angeles, was initially also considering locations in Montgomery County and the District.
Gov. McDonnell’s public schedule puts him in the Washington area tomorrow. He’ll appear on WTOP’s “Ask the Governor” from 10:00 to 11:00 a.m., and at noon he’ll address a commercial real estate development trade association at the Tysons Corner Hilton.
Contacted by ARLnow.com, an official with Arlington Economic Development said he had talked with the governor’s office today, but refused to “speculate” about Northrop’s decision.
Giant defense contractor Northrop Grumman has narrowed its search for a Washington-area headquarters down to Ballston, Falls Church, and Rockville, Md, according to the Washington Post.
The news is a blow to the District, which had pumped up its campaign for the headquarters with tax breaks and slams hurtled at Crystal City.
It’s a partial victory for Rep. Jim Moran (D). The Ballston and Falls Church sites are within the confines of his congressional district. But the defense appropriations committee member was apparently not successful in trying to convince Northrop to move to Rosslyn.
The Ballston site being considered by the company is a yet-to-be-built office building on North Glebe Road, the Post reports.
Rep. Jim Moran (D-VA) is pushing for Northrop Grumman to relocate to Rosslyn. He told the Arlington County Board that he personally called Wes Bush, president and CEO of Northrop Grumman, to make the case for the huge defense contractor moving its corporate headquarters to Rosslyn.
“[I] let him know that while there can’t be any quid pro quo, of course, I would like to see Northrop Grumman locate in Rosslyn, and if not in Rosslyn at least in the eighth district,” Moran said during a work session with the board on Monday.
“I think Rosslyn has advantages that other places don’t,” like close proximity to defense and intelligence facilities as well as easy Metro access, Moran said.
“We agreed upon the boundaries of the eighth district,” Moran added, haltingly, although it’s not clear whether he was referring to any specific commitment made by Bush. The eighth congressional district includes Arlington, Alexandria, Falls Church and parts of Fairfax County.
Northrop announced in January that it would move to Washington by 2011 to be closer to its biggest customer, the U.S. government.
Arlington is competing with the District, Montgomery County, and other local jurisdictions for the company’s headquarters. The competition has included insults thrown at Arlington from a D.C. Council member.
During Monday’s session Terry Holzheimer, the director of Arlington Economic Development and the county’s lead for the Northrop headquarters bid, told Moran that he believes a decision will be made by Northrop in the near future.
Holzheimer said he believes efforts by the state, including efforts by Gov. Bob McDonnell, make it likely that Northrop will locate in some Northern Virginia locality.
“I believe Virginia has a strong position,” Holzheimer said, adding that he’s been in weekly negotiations with Northrop.
Curiously, the county apparently did not try to coordinate its efforts with Rep. Moran, who sits on the powerful House Defense Appropriations Subcommittee. Northrop Grumman has been one of Moran’s top campaign contributors.
“I haven’t been involved,” Moran told the board, with a measured degree of exasperation. “Just a suggestion, particularly when you’re dealing with a large defense contractor, you might think about coordinating with our office at some point.”