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by Chris Teale November 3, 2017 at 10:00 am 0

The Arlington County Police Department is seeking the public’s assistance to find a man suspected of sexually assaulting a woman in Shirlington last night (Thursday).

Police responded to the area of S. Randolph Street at 31st Street S. at approximately 10:41 p.m. on November 2 for the report of a rape. Officer said the victim was putting items in her parked car when a man approached her from behind and sexually assaulted her. He then fled on foot.

The area is near The Citizen at Shirlington apartment building and the Shirlington bus station.

Police said the suspect is a black male in his 20s, approximately 5-foot-6 to 6-feet tall with a thin build. He was wearing a white t-shirt at the time of the incident. He was last seen fleeing the area on foot, traveling southbound on 31st Street S.

More from an ACPD press release:

Detectives from the Special Victim’s Unit are actively investigating this incident. Responding officers established a perimeter, canvassed the area and spoke with possible witnesses. Arlington County canine units attempted a track of the suspect and the Fairfax County Police Helicopter Unit provided an aerial search with negative results. Officers will continue conducting extra checks in the area.

If anyone has information on the identity of this individual or details surrounding this incident, please contact Detective N. Brooks of the Arlington County Police Department’s Special Victim’s Unit at 703.228.4169 or at [email protected]. To report information anonymously, contact the Arlington County Crime Solvers at 866.411.TIPS (8477).

Photo via Google Maps

by Chris Teale October 12, 2017 at 12:45 pm 0

A burger restaurant in Ballston will succeed the former Johnny Rockets burger restaurant in Shirlington.

Permitting applications filed with Arlington County show that the Big Buns Damn Good Burgers & Bar will move into 4251 Campbell Ave., its second location. Its first is at 4401 Wilson Blvd.

On its website, Big Buns — not to be confused with existing Shirlington bakery Best Buns — describes itself as being “[inspired] by a backyard party with killer burgers, ice-cold drinks and good friends.” It serves customizable burgers, “designer” burgers with pre-chosen ingredients and burger bowls, where the meat and toppings are served without buns.

There is no word on an opening date yet. On its website, Big Buns lists what appears to be its new location as “coming soon.”

When an ARLnow reporter stopped by on Thursday morning, construction crews were removing various items from Johnny Rockets, which closed in 2015, including a soda machine.

The restaurant is on the first floor of the Delancey at Shirlington Village apartment building, and across the street from Harris Teeter, the Shirlington Branch Library and Signature Theatre.

by ARLnow.com October 3, 2017 at 8:30 am 0

Construction at Shirlington Library — Construction is expected to begin this week on renovations to the Shirlington Branch Library, to bring the library into Americans with Disabilities Act compliance. Library administrators caution that “certain areas of the building may be closed for short periods, and noise may be unavoidable at times.” [Arlington Public Library]

Millennials Leaving D.C. for Cheaper Cities — “A new analysis by George Mason University researchers finds that… more people are leaving the region than arriving for the first time since the Great Recession. Millennial deserters — ages 20 to 29 — are one factor. But another big one is baby boomers leaving to begin retirement life elsewhere. Families and the unemployed are also going.” [Washington Post]

‘Anti-Muslim’ Group Holding Conference — Despite opposition, ACT for America — which describes itself as “a nonprofit national security organization” but which is described by critics as “the largest anti-Muslim organization in the U.S.” — kicked off its annual conference yesterday at the Crystal Gateway Marriott in Crystal City. [Southern Poverty Law Center]

Yorktown Teacher Publishes Third Book — “Melanie McCabe, an English teacher at Yorktown High School and now three-time author, will debut her new work, His Other Life: Searching For My Father, His First Wife, and Tennessee Williams at the Arlington Central Library (1015 N Quincy St., Arlington) on Thursday, Oct. 5.” [Falls Church News-Press]

Region’s Dry Spell Continues — Today is expected to be the 20th straight day without measurable precipitation at Reagan National Airport. But it is still far from the region’s record of 34 straight rainless days in the fall of 2007. [Washington Post]

Photo courtesy Leslie Aun

by Katie Pyzyk September 29, 2017 at 10:30 am 0

Arlington County is interested in purchasing property in Nauck that has been the subject of redevelopment talks for years.

At its meeting next month, the County Board will take up the issue of purchasing 2631 and 2633 Shirlington Road, according to a public notice the county released this week.

Several years ago, a portion of the 153,000-square-foot industrial site near Shirlington was redeveloped into a self-storage facility, called CubeSmart. Prior to that, it was considered as a potential location for an urban Walmart, but the County Board quickly passed a measure that would require large-format retailers to get Board approval for building stores.

Arlington County is already leasing the parking lot next to the CubeSmart for ART buses and other needs.

The public notice indicates that the county might consider acquiring the land through eminent domain if the owner does not agree to sell.

Photo via Google Maps

by ARLnow.com September 28, 2017 at 8:30 am 0

Car Fire on 23rd Street N. — A car was engulfed in flames on 23rd Street N. near the Overlee pool last night just before 6:30 p.m. The fire department arrived on scene and quickly extinguished the fire. [Twitter]

Local Tech Firm Benefiting from TrumpGiant Oak, a low-profile data mining firm based in Clarendon, has been awarded nearly $3 million in contracts from Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) since President Donald Trump took office. Most of the contracts are for “social media data analytics.” [Forbes]

Arlington On-Time Grad Rate Dips — “Arlington Public Schools’ on-time-graduation rate dipped slightly in 2017, remaining roughly on par with the state average, according to figures reported Sept. 27. The school system’s on-time-graduation rate of 90.8 percent was down from 91.1 percent a year before and the lowest since 2012.” [InsideNova]

No ‘Code Red’ Days This Year — Summer is over and the D.C. area got through it with no “code red” and fewer “code orange” low air quality days. “We’ve seen a dramatic improvement in the region’s air quality thanks to more than a decade of action and coordination at all levels of government,” said Hans Riemer, chair of the Metropolitan Washington Air Quality Committee. [MWCOG]

Road Closures for Shirlington Oktoberfest — Campbell Avenue and part of S. Randolph Street in Shirlington will be closed most of the day Saturday for the annual Shirlington Oktoberfest, which runs from noon to 7 p.m. [Arlington County]

County Awarded for Economic Development Efforts — “Arlington Economic Development (AED) has been honored with three Excellence in Economic Development Awards by the International Economic Development Council (IEDC). The awards were presented at a ceremony earlier this month during the IEDC Annual Conference in Toronto.” [Arlington County]

Flickr pool photo by Erinn Shirley

by Chris Teale September 26, 2017 at 4:30 pm 0

The Arlington County Police Department will participate in “National Coffee with a Cop Day” next week with an event in each of the county’s three police districts.

Officers will be on hand on Wednesday, October 4 to get to know community members, answer questions and listen to concerns.

“The Arlington County Police Department is committed to engaging with those we serve and effectively communicating to ensure the public’s trust,” organizers wrote. “Whether you live, work, or visit Arlington County, we hope you’ll join us to build strong community-based partnerships one cup of coffee at a time.”

The events will be held at the following locations:

  • Starbucks at Lee Heights (4526 Lee Highway): 9-11 a.m.
  • Starbucks at Pentagon Row (1101 S. Joyce Street): 4-6 p.m.
  • Best Buns Bread Company at Shirlington Village (4010 Campbell Ave): 4-6 p.m.

by Chris Teale September 21, 2017 at 2:00 pm 0

The long-awaited Dudley’s Sport & Ale in Shirlington appears to be moving closer to opening after months of delays.

In a Facebook post earlier this week, owner Reese Gardner said the inside of the sports bar at 2766 S. Arlington Mill Drive is “85 [percent] completed and we are just waiting for the final finishes.”

Gardner said those finishes cannot be done until after the steel arrives and welding is finished. The steel is scheduled to be delivered on October 14, he said. After that, an opening date could become clearer.

“We understand the frustration and trust us we want to be open as much as you want us open,” Gardner wrote. In the comments on the post, would-be customers wondered whether Dudley’s would open before the end of football season.

The sports bar had planned to open last year, but struggled with permitting issues and other delays.

A 28-seat bar, a 125-seat dining area, and a “stadium style” viewing area are planned, as well as a rooftop bar — Shirlington’s first — with a game area, a 15-seat bar, and patio seating for about 114 people.

Dudley's update: We wanted to give everyone a brief update on where we are out with the build out. The interior is 85…

Posted by Dudley's Sport and Ale on Tuesday, September 19, 2017

by Chris Teale September 21, 2017 at 11:00 am 0

Capitol City Brewing Company in Shirlington is preparing to host its 18th annual Mid-Atlantic Oktoberfest on Saturday, September 30.

The Teutonic, beer-filled festivities last from noon to 7 p.m. at The Village at Shirlington and close Campbell Avenue to traffic for most of the day.

For those imbibing, the cost of admission is $30, which includes a wristband, tasting glass and 10 drink tickets. Additional drink tickets are available for $2 each, with a five-ticket minimum. Admission is free for children and non-drinkers.

More than 65 breweries from around the region and 30 local restaurants will offer German food, more than 100 beers on tap, traditional music and Alpine dancing, according to organizers. And Capitol City will host its “Best Fest” competition, where a panel of judges will crown the best Oktoberfest-style beer.

More from a press release:

Willkommen! Capitol City Brewing Company is gearing up for its 18th annual Mid-Atlantic Oktoberfest celebration. On Saturday, September 30, more than 65 regional breweries and 30 local restaurants will serve up their best fares at this year’s Oktobefest celebration. The eighteenth annual event runs from noon to 7 p.m. at The Village at Shirlington. Ticket sales begin at 11:30 a.m. and beer taps close at 6 p.m. Entrance is free for children and non-drinkers.

Enjoy a “familiennachmittag” or family afternoon like they do in Munich, Germany. Capitol City invites beer-drinkers and festivalgoers alike to dress in traditional German garb and enjoy the tastes of authentic Bavarian brews, bratwurst and brezlen – the German-style pretzel. More than 65 local breweries will set up over 100 taps and share ale and lager samples with the thousands of anticipated guests from the DMV region.  Notable breweries include Fairwinds, DC Brau, Hardywood, Heroic, Port City, 3 Notch’d, James River, Heritage, Atlas and Caboose.

Capitol City will offer samples of its featured fall beers, including the classic Oktoberfest Lager and a new signature brew, the Grumpkins & Snarks Pumpkin Ale. Festivalgoers can enjoy Alpine music while they taste authentic German cuisine and other American fare from various local eateries.

Capitol City Brewing Company will again hold a BEST FEST competition for Oktoberfest-style beers. A panel of judges, all certified by the Beer Judgment Certification Program, BJCP, will taste and vote on the top Oktoberfest brew at the festival. Best Fest awards will be announced at 2 p.m.

The $30 admission ticket for beer drinkers includes an official Oktoberfest wristband, a Capitol City branded tasting glass, and 10 drink tickets. Additional drink tickets are available for purchase for $2 each with a five-ticket minimum. Admission is free for non-drinkers. Beer-drinkers must be 21+ to purchase a ticket. DC 101 is sponsoring the eighteenth annual Capitol City Oktoberfest.

Capitol City’s Oktoberfest Beer Selections:

Grumpkins & Snarks Pumpkin Ale:  6.2% ABV 20 IBU  A malty amber colored ale with Red Crystal Rye and Golden Naked Oats, flavored with over 120 lbs of spiced pumpkin butter made in house from locally grown Jarrahdale Pumpkins from Brookefield Pumpkins.  Gently hopped with Saaz for a true fall treat.

Oktoberfest:  5.5% ABV  25 IBU  An easy drinking fall lager, brewed with Pilsner, Vienna, Munich, and CaraMunich malts then moderately hopped with German noble hops.  Full and rich malt profile, lovely copper hue; perfect for the fall season!

For more information on Capitol City Brewing Company, please visit: www.capcitybrew.com. Find Capitol City Brewing Company on Facebook: www.facebook.com/CapCityBrew and on Twitter: @CapCityBrewers.

Courtesy photos.

by Chris Teale September 19, 2017 at 11:00 am 0

A report on the future of the Shirlington Dog Park did not recommend reducing its size, but still left members of the Four Mile Run Valley Working Group with plenty of questions.

The report, prepared by a committee of five group members over the summer, made various recommendations for the park’s short, medium and long-term future.

It looks to find ways to manage stormwater runoff into Four Mile Run from surfaces that do not absorb rainwater and to ensure the park remains well-used. The report was drafted after the Arlington County Board sent plans to reduce its size back to the drawing board.

The report said taking down two county-owned warehouses on S. Oakland Street, adjacent to the park, would help manage stormwater runoff and allow a connection between the dog park and a proposed arts district nearby.

“In addition to addressing some adjacent stormwater issues, this would serve an array of complementary objectives such as integrating this new park area and the dog park with the arts district, provide a flexible-use area for festivals and arts events, provide swing space for recreational functions as Jennie Dean Park is developed, and improve connectivity and open up the line of sight from South Four Mile Drive into the park,” the report reads.

But in suggesting those warehouses be taken down, some group members argued the committee exceeded the scope of its study.

“I felt as though the report spent a lot of time on issues that frankly were not in the group’s charge,” said group vice chair Robin Stombler. Others noted that a report on a potential arts district suggested using the warehouses as space for artists.

Longtime civic leader Carrie Johnson expressed her disappointment at what she described as a “disputed space problem,” and urged the group to find a compromise between the warehouses’ use in the arts district or removal for the dog park.

“I would have hoped to hear less fighting over acreage and more about how it could be used for everybody’s benefit,” she said.

In the short-term, the group recommended various small ways to help manage stormwater at the park, including no longer mowing the grass, protecting existing trees and limiting access to the stream.

But in the medium term, the report called on county government to show leadership in managing stormwater runoff from its buildings to help protect the park. They also urged an expansion of a program where businesses receive grants and other incentives to install ways to manage stormwater through green roofs, rain barrels and the like.

The area’s current zoning encourages making changes through redevelopment, as opposed to incentivizing existing businesses to make those environmentally-friendly tweaks.

“There seems to be no answer here, because the county seems unable to change anything for the existing businesses until they redevelop,” said Anne Inman, a group member.

The report noted that the need to balance stormwater with the park’s popularity is a “catch-22,” as “leaving the park in its current condition is not a viable long-term solution, but efforts to mitigate the environmental issues would trigger significant, costly and undesirable changes to the park.”

Group chair Charles Monson said they will not look to endorse any report prepared by a committee, but will instead use them to guide their thinking as planning the area’s future continues.

The report’s full recommendations are after the jump.

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by ARLnow.com September 5, 2017 at 9:50 am 0

A vehicle overturned on the road from Shirlington to Fairlington Monday night.

The crash occurred around 11:30 p.m. on the 4200 block of 31st Street S.

It’s unclear how the crash happened. At least one parked car had visible damage near the flipped car.

It was initially reported that one person was trapped in the car, but that person was able to “self-extricate,” according to scanner traffic. No serious injuries were reported.

The road was closed following the wreck, while police waited for a tow crew to arrive.

by Chris Teale August 28, 2017 at 4:30 pm 0

Residents can have their food waste composted by the county as part of a pilot program launched earlier this month.

From 7:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. each weekday, any county resident can take their food scraps to the Department of Environmental Services’ Solid Waste Bureau at 4300 29th Street S. in Shirlington, near the Animal Welfare League of Arlington’s headquarters.

There, the scraps are being collected in two green carts at the bottom of the scale house, at the top of the Trades Center hill. Staff will be on hand to assist with disposal.

Per a county fact sheet on the program, the following food scraps are being accepted:

  • fruits
  • vegetables
  • food soiled paper (paper towels, napkins and paper plates)
  • coffee grounds, filters and tea bags
  • breads, grains and pasta
  • meat and seafood (including bones)
  • plate scrapings

Collected scraps are processed at the county’s Earth Products Recycling Yard using a composter. The compost that is produced will then be given to the county’s Department of Parks and Recreation to use in landscaping projects and to amend topsoil in public spaces.

DES staff said they launched the pilot program to “address increasing interest from residents to manage food disposal through a more environmentally conscious process.”

by ARLnow.com August 22, 2017 at 10:30 am 0

Shirlington’s Samuel Beckett’s is expanding across the river with a new Irish pub at the District Wharf development in D.C.

Kirwan’s on the Wharf is expected to open in October, when the first phase of the massive, restaurant-filled waterfront development is set to hold its grand opening.

The new bar, from Beckett’s Irish-born owner Mark Kirwan, is reported to have seating for 235 indoors and outside. It will feature “live Irish music and genuine décor” while touting itself as “Washington’s only Irish pub on the water.”

by ARLnow.com August 2, 2017 at 3:45 pm 0

A man was arrested last Wednesday and accused of masturbating in his car near Rosslyn, in view of passersby.

Police have charged the man, a Burke, Va. resident, with “obscene sexual display.”

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

INDECENT EXPOSURE, 2017-07260139, Wilson Boulevard at N. Rhodes Street. At approximately 11:39 a.m. on July 26, police were dispatched to the report of an indecent exposure. Upon arrival, it was determined that the reporting party allegedly observed a male subject masturbating in his vehicle. Arriving officers located the subject and took him into custody. Otman El Garras, 37, of Burke, VA was arrested and charged with obscene sexual display.

Also last week, someone stole the airbags from at least seven vehicles along the 4400 block of 31st Street S., the steep road from Shirlington to Fairlington.

LARCENY FROM AUTO (Series), 2017-260058, 4400 block of 31st Street S. Between 10:00 p.m. on July 25 and 6:00 a.m. on July 26, an unknown subject(s) forced entry into at least 7 vehicles and stole the airbags. There is no subject(s) description. The investigation is ongoing.

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

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by ARLnow.com July 28, 2017 at 1:00 pm 0

A bus stop, fire hydrant and sign were damaged by an errant driver in the Shirlington area this past Saturday evening.

The fire department tweeted a photo of the damage Monday, with a skull-and-crossbones above the fallen hydrant, urging drivers to “keep your wheels on the road and save our hydrants!”

Arlington County Police Department spokeswoman Ashley Savage said the driver of the striking vehicle — a Nissan Altima — was cited for the crash.

“At approximately 7:11 p.m. on July 22, police responded to a single vehicle crash in the 2500 block of S. Arlington Mill Drive,” said Savage. “The driver was traveling eastbound on S. Arlington Mill Drive when the vehicle left the roadway and collided with a bus stop, fire hydrant and light pole. The driver was cited for failure to maintain proper control of their vehicle.”

So far, there’s no exact timeframe or cost estimate for repairs.

“The bus stop is on the schedule to be fixed as soon as possible,” said Dept. of Environmental Services spokeswoman Jessica Baxter. “Crews will have to get in there and assess the damage to determine cost and timeline for repair.”

Photo (top) via Arlington County Fire Department/Twitter, (middle) via Google Maps

by ARLnow.com July 17, 2017 at 11:00 am 0

County officials say the reduction of a westbound turn lane on Arlington Mill Drive near Shirlington is a pilot program and the backups it’s causing will be resolved by traffic signal adjustments.

Arlington Mill Drive was recently re-striped at the “T” intersection with S. Walter Reed Drive. One of the two left turn lanes from Arlington Mill to Walter Reed was removed and blocked off with bollards, a move intended to improve safety for pedestrians and bicyclists.

There is heavy bike and pedestrian traffic at the intersection, which connects two sections of the Four Mile Run Trail.

But the lane removal has caused traffic to back up during peak times, according to several accounts. Sun Gazette editor Scott McCaffrey wrote about the backups last month, proclaiming the lane reduction to be part of the county’s “semi-official ‘drivers must suffer’ policy.”

Last week a Twitter user also reported significant evening rush hour delays.

(The backups seem to be short-lived; a brief evening rush hour visit by a reporter last week did not reveal any long lines.)

In a statement released to ARLnow.com, officials with Arlington County’s Dept. of Environmental Services said that the lane re-striping is a “test” that is being evaluated ahead of a larger intersection improvement project, slated for next year.

The test will help traffic engineers determine adjustments to the traffic signal timing, which should alleviate any delays, officials say. Potentially complicating the plan, however: there is already heavy traffic on Walter Reed Drive during the evening rush hour, which could be exacerbated by changes to the traffic light cycle.

The full statement from DES, after the jump.

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