Purse Snatching Outside of Whole Foods Saturday — “The male suspect approached the victims near their vehicle and attempted to engage them in conversation before entering their vehicle. One victim confronted the suspect, who then threatened them, before attempting to steal a purse from the vehicle and flee. With the assistance of two bystanders, the suspect was stopped and the purse was recovered. The suspect was subsequently chased away from the area prior to police arrival.” [Arlington County, Twitter]
Arlington Man Dies in Route 7 Crash — “A 92-year-old man has died as a result of injuries from a crash that occurred around 3:30 p.m. on Sept. 24 in the 5600 block of Leesburg Pike. Donald Buzzell, 92, of Arlington, was operating a 1997 Mercury Marquis eastbound on Leesburg Pike when his vehicle hit two cars that were stopped in front of him, in traffic. The crash contributed to an additional three vehicles being hit.” [Fairfax County Police]
‘Pumpkin Patch’ Event in Ballston This Weekend — “Celebrate fall with a Pop-Up Pumpkin Patch at Ballston Quarter featuring live music, specialty drinks, crafts and of course, pumpkins! All pumpkins will be sold for $5 (cash only), with all proceeds going to Arlington Food Assistance Center. ” [Ballston Quarter]
N. Va. Atop State in Tourism — “Virginia’s tourism industry generated a record $26 billion in tourist spending in 2018 — and 40% of that, or $10.3 billion, was spent in Northern Virginia… Arlington County, Fairfax County and Loudoun County rank as the top three counties in Virginia for individual tourism spending.” [WTOP]
Winter Hours for Arlington National — Starting today, October 1, Arlington National Cemetery will close at 5 p.m. as part of its winter hours, which are in effect until the end of March. The Arlington Cemetery Metro station, meanwhile, will close at 7 p.m. during that time. [Twitter, Twitter]
ALXnow Launches Today — Our new Alexandria local news site, ALXnow, launches today at 8 a.m. Want to keep up with everything happening from Old Town to Potomac Yard to the West End? Follow ALXnow on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram and sign up for our daily newsletter.
Arlington 9/11 Remembrance Ceremony — “The County’s wreath-laying ceremony will begin at 9:30 a.m. on Wednesday, Sept. 11, at the Bozman Government Center. A moment of silence will be held at 9:37 a.m., the moment when the plane struck the Pentagon and 184 lives were lost.” [Arlington County, Press Release]
Stabbing in Boulevard Manor — “ACPD responded to a domestic violence incident in which a woman was reported stabbed in a home in the Boulevard Manor neighborhood around 11:30 a.m. [Tuesday]. She’s expected to be okay. Police are not releasing additional details, to protect the victim’s identity, per spokeswoman.” [Twitter]
ACPD Considering Ring Doorbell Partnership — “The Arlington County Police Department appears likely to become the fourth Greater Washington law enforcement agency to sign a partnership with Ring Inc., a doorbell-camera company owned by Amazon.com Inc., despite internal concerns over privacy and racial profiling.” [Washington Business Journal]
Marymount Jumps in Rankings — “Great news — Marymount has jumped more than 20 spots in the rankings for top Regional Universities in the South, according to the 2020 Best Colleges Rankings from @usnews!” [Marymount University, Twitter]
Arlington Visitor Spending Keeps Rising — “Arlington visitors spent a record $3.4 billion in 2018, a 4.3 percent increase over 2017, according to the U.S. Travel Association. Arlington has led Virginia counties in visitor spending since 2009. Tourism generated nearly $94 million in local tax receipts, benefiting County programs and services, as well as state tax receipts of nearly $127 million.” [Arlington County]
Rosslyn Neighbor Drama Does Federal — “A former analyst for the FBI admitted Tuesday to copying the private emails of a conservative conspiracy theorist and sharing them with his superiors while his wife offered them to the press… Tolson, who has left the FBI, agreed to forfeit two phones and two computers and avoid contact with Burkman, his neighbor in Arlington. He was released on bond until sentencing on Dec. 20.” [Washington Post]
Hoskins Wants ‘Innovation Campus’ in Fairfax — “As one of the lead negotiators involved in bringing Amazon.com Inc. to Arlington County, Victor Hoskins also helped Alexandria land Virginia Tech’s new ‘Innovation Campus’ — and now that he’s changed jobs, he wants to help Fairfax County do the same.” [Washington Business Journal]
(Updated at 9:45 p.m.) The View of DC, the observation deck on the 31st floor of Central Place Tower in Rosslyn, appears to be closing to ticketed guests.
On the venue’s website, tickets are only available through Friday, July 26. A somewhat cryptic message on the website (below) suggests that the observation deck will “pivot” to being primarily a private event venue.
As we continue to improve operations at The View of DC to offer an elevated and exceptional experience, we have also been carefully evaluating and analyzing our performance for our guests. As a result of that analysis, we will be transitioning The View of DC to serve Arlington County residents and their guests and after-hours events attendees. We believe this will allow us to better serve Arlington County residents and to better leverage The View of DC as a point of civic pride and the go-to event venue in the region.
We will honor all group and advance sales admissions tickets through Friday, July 26, 2019 and pivot to a full-service special event venue immediately thereafter.
Reached be phone today, an employee said staff had not been told the plans but were scheduled to have a 3 p.m. meeting to discuss the changes.
It’s unclear when Arlington residents will be able to access the observation deck after July 26. The county’s site plan for Central Place Tower — formerly known as CEB Tower — specifies that “a minimum of 2 days of every week… as well as the 4th of July, the Observation Deck will be open to Arlington residents free of charge.”
Before the observation deck opened, hopes were high that it would be a major tourism draw for Rosslyn. It is “the tallest destination inside the Beltway that is open to the public — until the Washington Monument reopens,” according to the Washington Business Journal.
While online reviews of The View of DC are largely positive, with praise for the venue’s staff and the views, complaints abound about the price of admission. For non-Arlington residents, tickets are up to $22.
When the tower, part of the Central Place development next to the Rosslyn Metro station, was first approved in 2007, the developer envisioned a more modest admission fee.
“As the applicant estimates an annual operating cost of approximately $1.5 million… an admission fee would be charged for entry to pay for operating expenses,” the original site plan said. “The applicant estimates that a future admission charge would be approximately $3.00 in order to be revenue-neutral.”
Legends, the hospitality company behind One World Observatory at the World Trade Center in New York City and OUE Skyspace in Los Angeles, manages The View of DC, which also features various exhibits and a rooftop Champagne bar.
Photo via View of DC/Facebook
Arlington County has a plan to lure in fitness-lovering tourists with retro sports ads.
The County Board is considering accepting $10,000 in state funds for a marketing campaign designed to attract exercise enthusiasts to Arlington, as the state celebrates the 50th anniversary of the “Virginia Is for Lovers” slogan.
A staff report to the Board said the Arlington Convention and Visitors Service (ACVS) will use the money to promote sports tourism in the county:
The goal is to attract travelers from at least 50 miles away to stay in Arlington hotels on vacation. Centered on the fall race season and major Arlington-based events like the Army Ten-Miler and Marine Corps Marathon, ACVS’s initiative will appeal to fitness-focused leisure travelers through retro, 1969-style visuals and sports accessories, along with creative storytelling via blogs, videos and national social-media influencers.
The item is included in the Board’s agenda for its meeting this Saturday.
If approved, the county would accept $10,000 from the Virginia Tourism Corporation and apply the funds to the Arlington’s Economic Development Commission.
“This fall, ACVS will use the grant funds to collaborate with local fitness and neighborhood organizations to fuse Virginia’s ’50 Years of Love’ campaign with the idea that ‘Arlington is for Fitness Lovers,'” said the report.
Photo via Arlington Sports Hall of Fame
Lidl Opens Store at Arlington HQ — “Arlington finally has its first Lidl grocery store — it just happens to be pint-sized… the company took a little more than 1,000 square feet it was using as storage on the ground floor of its HQ to open Lidl Express, a convenience-sized store with a variety of convenience store staples and fresh food.” [Washington Business Journal]
Lee Highway Group Wants More Funding — “The Lee Highway Alliance is seeking what its president calls a modest increase in funding from the county government. But the budget proposed by County Manager Mark Schwartz is heading in the other direction.” [InsideNova]
Crystal City Condo Aiming for Record Sale — “With Amazon’s HQ2 on the way, the seller of Penthouse 3S at the Crystal Gateway Condominiums believes the time is right to go for a record… While $2 million might sound like a hefty number, DeHart stresses that inside DC limits, buyers pay nearly twice as much for Potomac views.” [Washingtonian]
Former ACPD Captain in the News — “The former police chief of Portsmouth, Va.” — Tonya Chapman, a former Arlington County Police captain and the first black woman to lead a municipal police department in Virginia — “says she was forced out by city leaders over resistance to her attempts to overhaul a department riven by racial tension.” [Washington Post]
Instagrammable Arlington Spots — Arlington tourism booster StayArlington has compiled a list of Instagram-friendly locations in the county. [StayArlington]
Nearby: Halal Butchery Approved — “A retail halal butcher shop that slaughters chickens on-site will be allowed to open in a small industrial area of Alexandria, despite strong opposition from nearby business owners and their patrons.” [Washington Post, Patch]
Flickr pool photo by Erinn Shirley
Amazon’s Offices Will Be Dog-Friendly — Amazon’s new “HQ2” offices in the Crystal City area will be dog-friendly, its head of economic development said at an event yesterday. Property owner JBG Smith wooed Amazon, in part, by making sure there were lots of dogs around during Amazon’s visit to the area. [Bisnow]
HQ2 Still Not a Certainty — “While there aren’t any signs Amazon.com Inc. plans to walk away from National Landing after abandoning Long Island City, the company’s future landlord and development partner warned Tuesday that HQ2 is still just an agreement in principle, not a done deal.” [Washington Business Journal]
Autonomous Vehicles in Ballston? — “In collaboration with the Ballston Business Improvement District, [a Virginia Tech] research team is seeking current public attitudes towards [self-driving vehicles] in Ballston through an online survey.” [Virginia Tech]
Arlington Gets ‘Love’ Tourism Grant — “The Arlington Convention and Visitors Service (ACVS) announced today that it has received a $10,000 grant from the Virginia Tourism Corporation (VTC) ’50 Years of Love’ grant fund. ’50 Years of Love’ is part of VTC’s efforts to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Virginia is for Lovers tourism slogan.” [Arlington County]
Marymount Names New Provost — “Marymount is pleased to announce that the search process for its new provost has drawn to a successful conclusion. From a distinguished national pool, the University has selected Hesham El-Rewini, Ph.D., P.E. as the newest member of the Marymount team.” [Marymount University]
Beyer on Bryce — Rep. Don Beyer (D-Va.) quoted Star Wars upon new of now-former Washington Nationals slugger Bryce Harper signing with the Phillies: “I felt a great disturbance in the Force, as if millions of voices suddenly cried out in terror and were suddenly silenced. I fear something terrible has happened.” [Twitter]
Medical Emergency at Yorktown — A student suffered a serious medical emergency at Yorktown High School this morning. Police and medics rushed to the scene, CPR was performed and the student was reportedly revived. He was taken to a local hospital.
Arlington Tourism Website Wins Award — “The Hospitality Sales & Marketing Association International… on Jan. 22 presented the Arlington Convention and Visitors Service (ACVS) with a 2018 Adrian Award for the StayArlington tourism website.” [Arlington County]
Best Bowls of Soup in Rosslyn — A new list exhaustively details “where to go for a good bowl of soup” in Rosslyn, “because it’s everybody’s favorite cold-weather lunch.” [Rosslyn BID]
Gymnastics Competition at W-L — “The annual Barbara Reinwald Invitational girls high-school gymnastics meet was held Jan. 19 at Washington-Lee High School. The high-school meet, which has been held for decades, included 11 teams and was won by the host Washington-Lee Blue team.” [InsideNova]
Chef Geoff Winning Happy Hour Fight — Chef Geoff Tracy is poised to withdraw his lawsuit against the Commonwealth of Virginia, which seeks to overturn restrictions on advertising happy hour specials and prices, after the state legislature overwhelmingly passed bills that would remove those and other happy hour restrictions. [Tysons Reporter]
Crews Pre-Treating Roads — Arlington County crews are pre-treating arterial streets with brine ahead of expected snow this weekend. The forecast currently calls for “light to moderate snowfall,” with perhaps 3-4 inches of accumulation. [Twitter, Capital Weather Gang]
Long-Time Resident Marries in Family’s Cemetery — Austin Thomas, an 11th generation Arlingtonian, wed real estate agent Justin Kafka last summer in the rose garden of Arlington’s Columbia Gardens Cemetery, which Thomas’ family owns. [Arlington Magazine]
County Unveils New Visitors Guide — “The Arlington Convention and Visitors Service introduced the 2019 Arlington Visitors Guide, Meeting Planner Guide and tear-off pad map Tuesday, distributing initial supplies to attractions as well as the County’s 45 hotels and residential buildings in several neighborhoods. With a sleek, magazine-style cover featuring Arlington’s newest attraction, The Observation Deck at CEB Tower, the guides highlight ‘The New View from Arlington.'” [Arlington County]
‘Meet the Chair’ Event Next Week — “Leadership Center for Excellence in conjunction with co-host George Mason University, and supporting partner, Arlington Chamber of Commerce, will hold its annual Meet the Chair event on Thursday, January 17” from 6:30-8 p.m. at GMU Founders Hall at 3351 Fairfax Drive. “This free event will be one of the first opportunities for community members to connect with newly elected Arlington County Board Chair, Christian Dorsey.” [Leadership Center for Excellence]
Dorsey Elected COG Vice Chair — “Arlington County Board Chair Christian Dorsey today was elected vice chair of the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments (COG) Board of Directors. COG, an independent, non-profit association, brings together 300 elected officials from 24 local governments, the Maryland and Virginia state legislatures, and the U.S. Congress to develop solutions to regional challenges.” [Arlington County]
Flickr pool photo by Kevin Wolf
New Record Warm Low Temperature — Yesterday set a record for the warmest low temperature ever recorded at Reagan National Airport on Sept. 6. The new record: 78 degrees. [Twitter]
Tourism Record Broken — “Tourism revenue for Arlington reached a record $3.3 billion in 2017, a 4.5 percent increase over 2016, according to the U.S. Travel Association. Arlington has led Virginia counties in visitor spending since 2009. Tourism generated nearly $92 million in local tax receipts… Local tourism-supported jobs totaled 26,321, nearly 400 more than in 2016.” [Arlington County]
Another Mind-Boggling Feat for Wardian — This past weekend, local ultramarathoner and indestructible, ageless superhuman Michael Wardian ran the entire 184.5 mile length of the C&O Canal in what is believed to be a record: 36 hours and 36 minutes. [Washington City Paper, Twitter]
Flickr pool photo by Tom Mockler
County Board to Vote on Arts Grants — “County Board members on July 14 are slated to approve $215,810 in direct support to Arlington arts groups for the coming year. The funding request, which is in line with those of previous years, comes from the Arlington Commission for the Arts.” [InsideNova]
New Building Sign in Rosslyn — The logo for the University of Virginia Darden Graduate School of Business now sits atop one of Rosslyn’s skyscrapers. The school recently expanded its facilities within the building at 1100 Wilson Blvd. [Twitter]
‘Instagrammable’ Sights in Arlington — Stay Arlington, the county’s tourism promotion agency, has a list of the “Most Instagrammable Places in Arlington.” The list includes: the Air Force Memorial, the Netherlands Carillon, murals in Crystal City, Theodore Roosevelt Island, New District Brewing Co. and the Mount Vernon Trail. [Stay Arlington]
Local Young Professionals Spend Wisely — A “money diary” for a married, young professional couple in Arlington has none of the excesses usually found in the genre. Instead, the couple jointly makes $175,000 per year, plus bonuses, and spends it modestly on things like cheddar Chex Mix and a $1,600 per month one bedroom apartment. [Refinery 29]
New Look for Our Homepage — You might have noticed that ARLnow’s homepage has a new look. This is an interim step on our way to launching an entirely new website design. Please let us know what you think about it in the comments. Also, let us know if you find any significant bugs or problems, as we’re still working out the kinks.
Nearby: Dual-Use Path on W&OD Trail — “Within the next year, pedestrians and bicyclists will be able to use separate, parallel sections along the trail in the city of Falls Church.” [InsideNova]
Photo courtesy Dennis Dimick
Yorktown Grad Chosen in NFL Draft — The Tampa Bay Buccaneers chose Yorktown High School graduate M.J. Stewart in the 2018 NFL draft. Stewart was working with his youth foundation at Langston-Brown Community Center when he learned that he was the 21st pick in the second round of the draft. [InsideNova, Twitter]
Amazon Speculation Boosts JBG Stock — JBG Smith Properties’ stock is up 13 percent in the past month on speculation that Amazon could build its second headquarters in the D.C. metro area. Many of the company’s holdings are based in Crystal City, which is seen as a contender for the site of Amazon’s new HQ2. [Washington Business Journal]
Drug Take-Back Day Numbers Up — Arlington police collected nearly one-third more prescription drugs at Saturday’s National Prescription Drug Take Back Day than at last spring’s event. Residents handed over 744 pounds of prescription drugs to police on Saturday, compared with 562 pounds last April. [Twitter]
Arlington Recognized for Tourism Event — The Virginia Association of Destination Marketing Organizations presented the Arlington Convention and Visitors Service with an award for its June 2017 Monumental Views IPW Travel Trade Reception, which showcased Arlington to international travel trade and media during the U.S. Travel Association’s IPW 2017 event in Washington, D.C. [Arlington County]
Rosslyn Circle Beautification — Arlington County Board Chair Katie Cristol was among the volunteers with the Tree Stewards of Arlington and Alexandria and the Children’s International School to team up with the National Park Service to beautify Rosslyn Circle on Sunday (photo above). They planted 32 trees and plan to add more later this year.
Red Flag Warning Today — Northern Virginia is under a Red Flag Warning through 8 p.m. today, indicating a heightened danger of outdoor fires. “Dry and windy conditions will create an environment conducive for the rapid spread of wildfires,” the National Weather Service said. “All outdoor burning is discouraged today.” [Twitter]
Photo via Katie Cristol on Twitter