by ARLnow.com — October 7, 2016 at 10:05 am 0

The Staples store at 3804 Wilson Blvd in Virginia Square is slated for redevelopment, though the plans are still in the early stages.

Schupp Companies presented a plan to build a hotel on the site to the Ashton Heights Civic Association last month.

“My understanding is that the redevelopment would also replace the apartments on that side of N. Oakland [Street],” said a resident who was in attendance.

Ray Schupp said the exact details are still fluid and that his company will be working with residents to craft the plan.

“We have not decided exactly what we’ll do with the site,” Schupp told ARLnow.com. “We are exploring several options including a hotel. That being said we have been extremely pleased with the reception of the community to our new Hyatt hotel at Courthouse.”

“We will be working with the County staff and the neighbors on solutions to the Staples site,” Schupp continued. “Just as we developed a close relationship with Lyon Village homeowners and reached a win-win solution to the Courthouse site… we will work with the community and staff on this.”

Plans should begin to firm up within 3-4 months, said Schupp.

by ARLnow.com — September 27, 2016 at 10:20 am 0

Members of the Ballston-Virginia Square Civic Association were given an early look at two new developments planned for the community over the next few years.

The first, from Reston-based developer NVR, would redevelop Grace Community Church and its surface parking lot at the intersection of 11th Street and N. Vermont Street in Ballston.

The 40-year-old church, which is used by Grace for meetings but not for Sunday services, would be replaced by a seven-story condo building and a block of four-story townhouses. A series of townhomes and a private driveway is planned for the parking lot.

The developers described the project as “a relatively modest in-fill development” that’s in keeping with the “urban townhouse” neighborhood that surrounds it. The development, like the neighborhood, tapers from the towers of central Ballston to the south to the lower-density townhomes and condos to the north.

Officials from NVR said the plans are preliminary and have not yet been filed with the county.

Also at Monday’s civic association meeting, local developer Eleventh Street Development presented early plans for a new apartment building in Virginia Square.

The proposed six-story, 220-unit rental complex, at the intersection of Kirkwood Road and Washington Blvd, would replace the closed Sport & Health gym, the Slye Electronics building and an automotive business.

Developer Garrett Erdle, who previously helped to develop Penrose Square on Columbia Pike, told residents that the building is at least three years away, following “a structured and lengthy” regulatory process.

Before a site plan process for the building can start, the county and its Long Range Planning Committee is expected to discuss land use planning for the parcel and the area as a whole. The special General Land Use Plan study that the development will first go through is expected to take about a year.

Residents at the meeting expressed concerns about the height of the building, parking along their already-crowded streets and a potential lack of public green space in front of the building. The developer responded that the proposal for the building is in the very early stages and that they will take public feedback into account throughout the process.

by ARLnow.com — August 24, 2016 at 3:05 pm 0

Police standoff in Virginia Square (courtesy photo)

(Updated at 4:15 p.m.) A reported standoff with an armed man near the Virginia Square Metro station ended peacefully this afternoon.

The standoff was said to be taking place in an apartment tower on the 900 block of N. Pollard Street. Police said the man was making threats and was in possession of multiple loaded firearms.

A police spokeswoman described it as a “fluid situation,” with officers “taking an abundance of caution for everyone’s safety.”

While police took defensive positions down the hall from the man’s apartment, he was spotted outside the Starbucks near the Metro station. As it turns out, the man had left his apartment prior to police arriving. Officers talked with the man, who was said to be calm and mostly cooperative.

At 4 p.m., police said the situation was “safely resolved” and the man was “being referred to County services.”

During the standoff Pollard Street was closed to traffic and police advised people to avoid the area. One nearby resident told us that heavily-armed officers had the apartment building “locked down.”

Courtesy photo

by ARLnow.com — July 27, 2016 at 4:40 pm 0

Update at 6:55 p.m. — The leak has been stopped and ACFD units have now left the scene.

Arlington County firefighters are on the scene of a major gas leak in the Virginia Square area.

Initial reports suggest that construction crews at the Latitude Apartments site, on the 3600 block of Fairfax Drive, across from the Metro station, hit and severed a three-inch gas line.

Police were called to the scene to block traffic around the gas leak.

by ARLnow.com — July 13, 2016 at 5:00 pm 0

Anyone walking to or from the Virginia Square Metro station may see this curious sight just across Fairfax Drive from the station entrance.

The patio of an under construction apartment building is seemingly being built around a streetlight and traffic signal pole.

So what’s going on here, asks an ARLnow.com reader?

The photo shows the Latitude Apartments on the 3600 block of Fairfax Drive, first approved by the County Board in 2013 and expected to open later this summer, according to its website. County officials say the pole will eventually be moved at the developer’s expense.

“The pole is going to be relocated as part of the private developer’s site plan,” said Arlington Dept. of Environmental Services spokeswoman Jessica Baxter. “The developer’s contractor chose to move the pole later on during construction.”

by ARLnow.com — May 27, 2016 at 11:00 am 0

Police car (file photo)A woman walking down the street in Virginia Square Wednesday night was grabbed by a stranger who reached underneath her dress.

The man grabbed the woman’s underwear, then fled the scene. A police dog attempted to track the suspect down but lost his scent.

From an Arlington County Police crime report:

SEXUAL BATTERY, 160525052, 3800 block of N. Fairfax Drive. At approximately 10:45 p.m., a female victim was walking down the street when an unknown male subject reached his hand underneath her dress and grabbed her underwear. The subject fled the scene on foot and a K9 track in the area was negative. The subject is described at a black male, 20-30 years old, approximately 6ft tall with an average build.

Also Wednesday evening, a 19-year-old Arlington man was charged with being drunk in public, having a fake ID and attempting to bribe the officer who was taking him to jail.

ATTEMPT TO COMMIT BRIBERY OF A LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICER, 160525042, 4900 block of N. Lee Highway. At approximately 5:27 p.m., officers were dispatched to the report of an intoxicated male subject. When the officers arrived, the subject provided them with a false identification. During transport to booking, the subject became agitated and offered to pay the officer to allow him to leave without charges. Ryan McNulty, 19, of Arlington VA was charged with Attempt to Commit Bribery, Possession of a Fictitious license (x2), Provide False ID to Avoid Arrest, Underage Consumption of Alcohol and Drunk in Public.

by Jackie Friedman — May 25, 2016 at 11:05 am 0

Lawn Chair Talks graphicIt’s finally going to feel like May today, with the temperature nearing 90 degrees — just in time for some outdoor chocolate sampling.

Arlington Cultural Affairs and BizLaunch are hosting a “lawn chair talk” tonight with chocolatier Jason Andelman, of Artisan Confections in Clarendon, and artist Molly Springfield.

The event is being held from 6-8 p.m. at the Arlington Arts Center in Virginia Square (3550 Wilson Blvd).

Andelman and Springfield will be discussing their methods and how they got their start in art and business. Chocolate samples and light refreshments will be provided. Admission is free, but registration is required.

by ARLnow.com — April 29, 2016 at 12:15 pm 0

Testy-Fest-2016-Logo-FBThe ever-popular Montana State Society Testicle Festival is only two weeks away.

Now in its 12th year, the festival is taking place from 6-11 p.m. on Saturday, May 14. As usual, it’s being held at the American Legion hall at 3445 Washington Blvd, in Virginia Square.

The event is, of course, all about the all-you-can-eat Rocky Mountain Oysters, but for those who aren’t fans of “swinging beef” — also known as “cowboy caviar” or “Montana tendergroins” — there are other options thanks to food trucks that will be parked behind the hall. And then there’s the beer and Crown Royal.

Here’s how the pun masters at the Montana State Society are promoting their big day.

You’d be NUTS to miss this! The Montana State Society would like to invite you to have a ball (literally!) at the 12th annual D.C. Testy Fest – “Members Only” – to be held from 6:00PM – 11:00PM on Saturday, May 14th, 2016 at the Arlington American Legion.

Last year over 600 people flocked to the event to enjoy live music provided by the Wil Gravatt Band and graze on all-you-can-eat Rocky Mountain Oysters! Thirsty? Wash them down with a limitless supply of Crown Royal (A.K.A liquid courage) & beer – all for the bargain price of $25 bucks! While the theme this year is “Members Only,” all are welcome at this great event.

Our Rocky Mountain Oysters are prepared by legendary chef Frank McGraw, and shipped fresh from the Rock Creek Lodge in Western Montana. Not your ‘bag’? Don’t worry baby! We will have food trucks there selling delicious grub. Get there early, the first guests will also get a T-Shirt to forever memorialize the event.

What: 12th Annual DC Testicle Festival “Members Only”
When: Saturday, May 14th 2016, 6:00PM – 11:00PM
Where: Arlington American Legion, 3445 N. Washington Blvd, Arlington, VA (metro accessible via Virginia Square or Clarendon stations)
TICKETS: $25 online OR $30 at the door. http://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/2540264
**MUST BE 21+ years of age!

Prepare to go Ballistic! For more information and to see all of your friends who are attending please visit our Facebook page for the event! https://www.facebook.com/events/104383383301895

by ARLnow.com — April 13, 2016 at 4:30 pm 0

Yaser Mansour Alio (photo courtesy ACPD)A 35-year-old man has been arrested after allegedly exposing himself to a woman who was oblivious to the whole thing.

The incident happened just after noon on Tuesday, on the 3700 block of Wilson Blvd in Virginia Square.

Police say a man was following a woman down the street, exposing his genitals to her. The only problem: she didn’t notice. A man who did notice the indecent exposure came over and alerted the woman, who called police.

From an Arlington County Police Department crime report:

INDECENT EXPOSURE, 160412028, 3700 block of N. Wilson Boulevard. At approximately 12:03 p.m. on April 12, a male witnessed a male subject following a female victim and exposing his genitals to her. Yaser Mansour Alio, 35, of no fixed address, was arrested and charged with indecent exposure. He is being held without bond.

Also on Wednesday, a man was robbed at knifepoint by two suspects as he was leaving a building.

The incident happened around 10:40 a.m. on the 6100 block of Wilson Blvd, near Seven Corners.

Police are still investigating the the brazen, broad daylight robbery, during which one of the suspects held a knife to the victim’s throat. At one point the man tried to flee and had his hand slashed by the knife-wielding suspect, police said.

ROBBERY, 160412025, 6100 block of N. Wilson Boulevard. At approximately 10:40 a.m. on April 12, two unknown subjects approached a male from behind and held a knife to his throat. When the victim attempted to flee, his hand was cut with the knife. The subjects fled the scene with the victims backpack. The first suspect is described as a black male, approximately 6’0″ tall. He was wearing a black hoodie and black pants. The second suspect is described as a black male, approximately 6’0″ tall. He was wearing a blue hoodie, jeans, and white shoes.

On Wednesday afternoon, meanwhile, a Dumfries man was arrested in Clarendon for allegedly brandishing a gun while driving.

The gun brandishing was observed by a police officer, who at first thought the man was threatening her. She called for backup and then conducted a traffic stop.

The man said he was not brandishing the gun at the officer, but rather at the car behind him, which was following too closely, according to Arlington County Police spokeswoman Ashley Savage. He was charged with brandishing a firearm near a school — since the New Directions school was located less than 1,000 feet away, on the 2800 block of Wilson Blvd, Savage said.

BRANDISHING FIREARM NEAR SCHOOL, 160412032, 3000 block of N. Wilson Boulevard. At approximately 2:45 p.m. on April 12, while on patrol, an officer observed a male subject brandish a firearm in his vehicle near school property. Jeffrey M. Volan, 36, of Dumfries VA, was arrested and charged with brandishing a firearm near a school. He was held on an unsecured bond.

by ARLnow.com — April 1, 2016 at 4:35 pm 0

The new Conte’s Bike Shop in Virginia Square quietly opened for business last week.

The store, at 3449 Wilson Blvd, is awaiting some additional window signage and product inventory before holding its grand opening.

Located between two other well-established bike shops along the Orange Line corridor — Freshbikes in Ballston and Revolution Cycles in Clarendon — Conte’s hopes to compete on selection, price and service.

Conte’s is primarily a dealer of bicycles from Giant, the world’s largest bike manufacturer. The store also offers Liv bikes, Giant’s brand aimed at female cyclists, and BMC bikes.

Revolution, by contrast, is primarily a Trek and Felt dealer, while Freshbikes offers brands like Cannondale, Specialized, Cervelo, Santa Cruz and others. It’s not dissimilar to there being a number of car dealerships offering different makes of cars along a given corridor.

It’s a return to Arlington for Conte’s, which previously lent its name to what its now Freshbikes. About five years ago Conte’s decided to stop franchising and the store at 3924 Wilson Blvd was renamed in 2011. Co-owner and store manager Charles Conte called Freshbikes and Revolution “great” stores, but said he’s looking forward to serving Arlington again.

“We create a level of professionalism in the marketplace that will give customers another choice,” he told ARLnow.com Friday. “There are too many people who cycle in this community without having enough choices.”

Conte’s, which will celebrate its 60th anniversary next year, has seven other stores throughout Virginia, including one that opened at 7121 Leesburg Pike in Falls Church a few months ago. Conte said “several” new stores are in the works, but declined to provide additional details.

by ARLnow.com — March 29, 2016 at 11:00 am 0

(Updated at 3:10 p.m.) Arlington County Police are investigating a break-in and theft at Japanese Auto Service, a service station located between Clarendon and Virginia Square.

The service center, at 3413 Wilson Blvd, has been in business for 19 years, according to owner Ed Lahrime. It was broken into by an unknown suspect early Sunday morning.

From an ACPD crime report:

Japanese Auto Service on Wilson Blvd (photo via http://japaneseautova.com/)“At approximately 4:51 a.m. on March 27, an unknown male subject forced entry into a business and stole several items of value and an undisclosed amount of cash. The suspect is described as a white male, wearing a dark hooded sweatshirt, blue jeans, and dark shoes.”

A customer provided ARLnow.com with some additional details about what happened.

“The thief took their cash register and a significant amount of money in cash and checks,” the customer told us. “The store owner was able to provide the police with video of the suspect and they are currently reviewing the footage. Poor guy looked heart broken that his business had been violated like that.”

Lahrime said that his motion detection security system didn’t go off during the break-in, for some reason, and has since been replaced by the security company. He also had to replace a broken window and his cash register. All told, the theft is costing him more than $1,500, along with some sleep and peace of mind, he said.

“I couldn’t sleep that night,” he said. “I had to put my phone [with a connection to the surveillance system] next to me to make sure he didn’t come back to rob us again.”

Police told Lahrime of a number of other recent burglaries and burglary attempts in various parts of the county, from Shirlington to Clarendon, he said. This was the first burglary at Japanese Auto Service since it opened nearly two decades ago.

“Arlington is not safe,” said Lahrime.

Tuesday afternoon Arlington County Police released multiple surveillance images of the suspect, describing him as “a white male in his mid-20’s to early 30’s, wearing dark clothing and a gray hoodie.”

“If anyone has information on the identity and/or whereabouts of this individual, please contact Detective Echenique of the Arlington County Police Department’s Burglary/Larceny Unit at 703.228.4241 or at [email protected],” police said in a press release. “To report information anonymously, contact the Arlington County Crime Solvers at 866.411.TIPS (8477).”

“This is an ongoing and active investigation,” said ACPD spokeswoman Ashley Savage.

The video shows the thief returning to the scene of the crime a half hour after the initial break-in, apparently to steal some change from the floor, Lahrime added.

by ARLnow.com — March 1, 2016 at 11:25 am 0

John Kasich (photo via John Kasich/Flickr)Republican presidential candidate and Ohio Gov. John Kasich is holding a Super Tuesday election day rally at George Mason University Law School in Virginia Square this afternoon.

The rally is scheduled from noon to 1 p.m., at GMU’s Hazel Hall (3301 Fairfax Drive). Doors opened at 11 a.m. An RSVP is required.

The university is warning of potential traffic and parking issues around its Arlington campus.

“This event is open to students, faculty and staff, as well as the broader community,” GMU said in a press release. “Though we expect no changes to operations at Hazel Hall and the Arlington Campus, there are likely to be parking and traffic impacts associated with the event.”

“We expect additional traffic on campus on Tuesday as Founders Hall is a designated polling place for Arlington County for the Virginia Primary Election,” the university added.

Photo via John Kasich/Flickr

by ARLnow.com — February 17, 2016 at 3:45 pm 0

Arlington police carA reported attempted stabbing in Quincy Park, near Arlington Central Library, didn’t actually happen, according to Arlington County Police.

The 19-year-old man who reported the crime has admitted that he made it up and has been charged with filing a false police report, said ACPD spokeswoman Ashley Savage.

Police conducted a “significant investigation” into the crime because the purported victim claimed the suspect who tried to stab him said it was part of a gang initiation.

“Because it had gang affiliation, it was turned over to the Gang Unit,” Savage said. While re-interviewing the man and canvassing the area, detectives noted inconsistencies in the story.

“Things just started to not line up, they weren’t consistent with the original story,” said Savage. “He eventually admitted that the story was not true and he was looking for attention from his dad.”

According to Savage, the false police report charge was noted in today’s daily crime report to let the public know that the gang attack did not happen.

“We don’t encourage people to walk through parks at night, but we also want people to feel safe in their community,” she said.

FILING A FALSE POLICE REPORT, 160211049, 1000 block of N. Quincy Street. At approximately 8:40 p.m. on February 11, officers responded to an attempted malicious wounding in the 1000 block of N. Quincy Street. After significant investigation by patrol officers and members of the Gang Unit, it was determined that the incident did not occur. Julian Leiter, 19, of Arlington VA was charged with filing a false police report.

by ARLnow.com — February 12, 2016 at 11:15 am 0

Arlington police carUpdate on 2/17/16 — Police say the attack did not happen and was made up by the purported victim. The man, 19, has been charged with filing a false police report.

Police are investigating a possible gang-related attempted stabbing in Quincy Park last night.

Police say a male victim in his late teens was cutting through the park — near Arlington Central Library and Washington-Lee High School — just after 8:30 p.m., when he was approached by an unknown male suspect, also in his teens.

The suspect had a knife and told the victim that he was about to stab him as part of a gang initiation, according to Arlington County Police Department spokeswoman Ashley Savage. The victim, however, used self defense to foil the suspect’s apparent gang rite of passage.

The victim grabbed the suspect’s wrist as he tried to stab the victim, Savage said. The victim then struck the suspect in the side of the face, possibly injuring him. At that point, three men in hoodies started running toward the victim, who ran across the intersection of Wilson Blvd and N. Quincy Street, at which point the suspects fled, according to Savage.

Police are encouraging anyone with information about the crime, or any potential gang-related activity in Arlington, to call ACPD’s gang unit at 703-228-GANG (4264). Gang activity may be reported anonymously.

The crime report item on the attempted stabbing, including the suspect descriptions, is below.

ATTEMPTED MALICIOUS WOUNDING, 160211049, 1000 block of N. Quincy Street. At approximately 8:40 p.m. on February 11, an unknown male subject approached a male victim and attempted to stab him. The victim was able to use self-defense in fighting off the suspect and then fled. The suspect was accompanied by three additional male subjects. The first suspect that brandished a knife is described as a white male in his teens, approximately 5’10” tall with a slim build. The three accompanying suspects are described as males wearing grey-hoodie style jackets.

by ARLnow.com — February 3, 2016 at 10:25 am 0

(Updated at 11:15 a.m.) Arlington County firefighters are on the scene of a house fire on the 1300 block of N. Nelson Street, a block from Washington-Lee High School.

The fire department was called around 10:15 a.m. after residents and passersby spotted smoke coming from the home’s attic.

The fire was extinguished quickly and no one was injured. Three people, including one disabled man, escaped from the house during the fire and are expected to be temporarily housed by the Red Cross.

The house has three apartments. Its roof partially buckled during the fire.


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