2019 NEWS

Latest News (as of 1/4/19) 

Happy New Year 2019!

January 2019 Newsletter is Out

Please Pay your 2019 CCCA Dues

 Dues are for a calendar year, January 1 to December 31.  Fill out the form on our "Join" page if you're a new member and send a check for $10 to the CCCA Treasurer at 1300 Crystal Drive, #203, Arlington, VA 22202.   This year, we are using February 1 as our cut-off date for dues payment, after which you will not get your Newsletter or updates by email.

What do you get for your dues?  Your small contribution of $10 funds primarily:  our website, dues in the Arlington County Civic Federation (required); advertising for meetings; snacks for meetings.  All Executive Committee members are volunteers who spend many hours working on behalf of Crystal City residents—and producing this Newsletter!

Next CCCA Meeting; February 27

JBG Smith will present an updated overview of upcoming development in Crystal City, as well as Amazon planning.    This includes:  1770 Crystal Drive/Crystal Square (grocery, park, schedule, USPS, etc.); 1900 Crystal Drive (demolition, site plan, construction schedule, etc.); 1800 Bell Street (will Synetic stay? what and when site plan and construction?); 2121 Crystal Drive (retail plans); potential other sites under consideration for future development (e.g., 101 12th Street).

Our Man in Arlington:  Crystal City is not a city

Read Charlie Clark's blog on Crystal City here.

Friends of Long Bridge Park excited to see proposed expansion of Long Bridge

In a few years, Arlington's Long Bridge, which runs from Crystal City to Long Bridge Park, might be the newest walkable route to D.C.  A proposed extension, from a half mile to a mile, would allow easier access to D.C. for pedestrians and cyclists, who currently use the Mount Vernon Trail.  Friends of Long Bridge Park's president, Eric Cassel, says the Mount Vernon Trail is especially difficult for tourists to navigate. The straight and wide Long Bridge, Cassel says, would be a better alternative.  Read more here.

Kojo Nnamdi town hall on Amazon's HQ2

Depending on whom you asked Monday evening December 3, it seemed Amazon’s plan to establish part of its new headquarters in Crystal City and Pentagon City was either the cause of, or solution to, all of Northern Virginia’s problems.  They had nearly three weeks to digest the news that Amazon.com Inc. (NASDAQ: AMZN) had chosen sites in Arlington and Alexandria for part of its new HQ2. On Monday evening, residents who stand to be most directly affected finally got the chance to sound off at a town hall held at the Synetic Theater in Crystal City.  Full broadcast here.

They weren’t carrying pitchforks or burning effigies of Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos during the two-hour event, but neither were they looking through rose-colored glasses at the prospect. The company’s pledge to bring up to 25,000 jobs to the area also stands to exacerbate the region’s affordable housing problem, add more cars to congested roads and put more students into crowded public schools.  Read more here.

CCCA Annual Meeting and Elections:  November 29

What a great meeting!  Some 130 folks turned out November 29 to hear Tracy Gabriel (BID President and Executive Director), Andy Van Horn, JBG Smith VP for Development, and County Board Chair Katie Cristol talk about what the Amazon decision means for our area. 

CCCA Elections

 New officers were elected for a two-year term:

Vice President Judy Freshman

Treasurer Eric Cassel

Communications Director Stuart Mize

The position of Membership Liaison remains vacant as there were no candidates and the duties will be assumed by other officers until the position can be filled.  We are particularly looking for young, apartment dwellers to fill this position.  Please email us if you’d like to know more about serving in this position:  [email protected]

Many thanks to CCCA founding member Diane Oksanen-Gooden who served for four years as Treasurer for all her assistance.  Sadly, she is moving out of Arlington, but we won’t forget her.

Amazon IS Coming To Crystal City

And here we go.  Click here for a CCCA editorial and a FAQ sheet on what this all means.

Amazon in National Landing in Arlington, Virginia

“This is a big win for Virginia – I’m proud Amazon recognizes the tremendous assets the Commonwealth has to offer and plans to deepen its roots here,” said Governor Ralph Northam of Virginia. “Virginia put together a proposal for Amazon that we believe represents a new model of economic development for the 21st century, and I’m excited to say that our innovative approach was successful. The majority of Virginia’s partnership proposal consists of investments in our education and transportation infrastructure that will bolster the features that make Virginia so attractive: a strong and talented workforce, a stable and competitive business climate, and a world-class higher education system.”

“We are proud that Amazon has selected National Landing for a major new headquarters. This is, above all, a validation of our community’s commitment to sustainability, transit-oriented development, affordable housing, and diversity,” said Arlington County Board Chair Katie Cristol. “The strength of our workforce coupled with our proximity to the nation’s capital makes us an attractive business location. But Arlington’s real strength is the decades of planning that have produced one of the most vibrant, civically engaged communities in the world. Those plans have paved the way for this investment, and we look forward to engaging the Arlington community about Amazon’s plans and how we can grow together.”

 https://newsroom.arlingtonva.us/release/amazon/

Demolition/Construction on Clark Street

Using 10 to 15 dump trucks per day, crews continue removing and hauling away soil that supported the elevated Clark Street. To date, the contractor has hauled approximately 12,000 cubic yards of soil material off-site, out of an estimated project total of 22,000 cubic yards.  The contractor has completed demolishing the concrete walls and abutment next to the 15th Street off ramp and the south abutment on 15th Street S eastbound. Crews have advanced their excavation and demolition activities to locations between 12th and 15th Streets. Rough grading activities have begun between 15th and 18th Streets.  Subcontractors continue their work to install a new traffic signal and street light equipment at the intersection of Route 1 and 20th Street South and along the median and northbound right shoulder of Route 1 between 15th and 20th Streets.

Next project detours expected in early 2019.  The next detours for this project will occur during removal of the Clark Street bridge over 18th Street South. This work has not yet been scheduled, but there will be a two-week advance notice before the detour starts.  Visit the project page

Demolition/Construction of 1900 Crystal Drive

On December 3rd, JBG SMITH will start demolition at 1900 Crystal Drive making way for new residential and retail offerings in our neighborhood. It’s exciting and we know that construction can create changes for our everyday routines. Here’s what to expect in the next few months:

•  The garage entrances on 18th and 20th Streets will remain open.

• The west side of the sidewalk on Crystal Drive will remain    open, and will have a covered walkway for your safety.

•  The BID Events will continue, and will be moved to new locations - be sure to check out the BID website for the new spots!

•  The motorcycle parking will be relocated to Crystal Drive and 20th Streets.

•  The games will be relocated to the plaza. 

Construction On Crystal Square and Garage closures

On October 22nd, JBG SMITH started a construction project bringing 130,000 sf of new retail, including a movie theater and a grocery store, to Crystal City.

Here’s what to expect in the next few months:

• The parking garage entrance on 15th Street South closed permanently on October 22nd. Office and retail tenants and visitors can use the entrances on Crystal Drive and 18th Street.
• All currently open retail shops will remain open.
• The south side of the sidewalk on 15th Street will be closed. Pedestrians will need to cross to the north side of 15th to access Crystal Drive or Bell Street destinations.
• The central vehicular entrance for the Crystal Square Apartments on 15th will be closed and drivers will need to use the South Bell Street entrance.

Additionally, JBG plans to have property managers and engineers on the ground with “How Can I Help?” buttons, to help answer questions or direct traffic.

Construction is scheduled to finish in two years – late 2020.

See the map attached.

Crystal Drive speed limit changing from 30 mph to 25 mph

On Oct. 23, the County Board approved decreasing the speed limit on Crystal Drive by five miles per hour, from 30 mph to 25 mph. The new speed limit is expected to be implemented by the end of November.  The change is based on a traffic engineering investigation the County conducted for Crystal Drive from 12th Street South to Route 1. The investigation analyzed speed statistics, collision history, pedestrian activity and roadway characteristics. Based on these factors, the investigation supported a reduced speed limit for this street.  For more information, view the Board Report

See our CCCA Facebook page for the latest information.

ANNOUNCEMENTS:

January Newsletter is Out

January 12  Amazon in Arlington: Community Listening Session (IN Person-Location TBD) -6:30 pm

January 16  Virtual Learning Series on Amazon: Housing -6:30 pm      

February 27:  Next CCCA Meeting; JBG Smith will present an updated overview of upcoming development in Crystal City, as well as Amazon planning.    

2019 Dues​​ Cut Off February 1, 2019:  

 Dues are for a calendar year, January 1 to December 31.  Fill out the form on our "Join" page and send a check for $10 to the CCCA Treasurer at 1300 Crystal Drive, #203, Arlington, VA 22202.   Pay now and you'll be a member for the rest of 2019 as well.

What do you get for your dues?  Your small contribution of $10 funds primarily:  our website, dues in the Arlington County Civic Federation (required); advertising for meetings; snacks for meetings.  All Executive Committee members are volunteers who spend many hours working on behalf of Crystal City residents—and producing this Newsletter!

Reminder:  Train Horn Notice:  It is now CSX policy that trains should not blow horns passing the Crystal City VRE station when the station is closed: i.e., weekends and outside of 5:30 am to 8 pm weekdays. The only exception is for a potentially dangerous situation; e.g., equipment, workers, or intruders on the track. There have been violations of this policy last weekend and this, which we have reported.  Remember that you can report violations of this policy to: [email protected].   List train owner (CSX, Amtrak), direction train is traveling, and the time you heard the horn.

Social Media Resources

CCCA Facebook page – Immediate information on things happening in Crystal City and of interest.

CCCA Website – More extensive articles than Facebook, but not updated as regularly.

Nextdoor.comA community bulletin board to post events, County notifications, and items for sale or of interest to the community. 

Engage ArlingtonCurrent ways to engage with the County on issues of concern to you.

Engage Arlington FlyerContact and resource information.

Inside Arlington – To subscribe to the County’s weekly online newsletter

My Arlington Projects Map - Find projects happening around the County – daily work, transportation, parks, water and utilities, facilities projects, and more.

CIP – Capital Improvement Plan:  Weigh in by May 16 on Arlington’s 10-year Capital Improvement Plan (CIP) for FY 2019-2028 which is now under development.

Map and Links

ccmap

Directly Related Links

Newsletters (see "Resources" for earlier issues)

Arlington County Links

Non-Profit Related Links

ccmap

Transitway Extension to Pentagon City

    

Arlington County Transportation held an open house Nov. 8 about the project to extend the Crystal City Potomac Yard Transitway to Pentagon City.  This extension will run from Crystal Drive and Clark Street along 12th Street South to South Hayes Street and Army Navy Drive. It will add 0.75 miles of bus-only lanes to the Transitway corridor, along with 7 new stations serving high-quality, high-capacity, frequent bus service. Staff are currently working to prepare the project’s traffic and operations analysis and complete design for the project’s first segment by summer 2019.  The long-term plan is to extend the Metroway to Columbia Pike.  Visit the project page

Crystal City US Post Office to Move

The USPS held a pubic meeting November 13 to inform residents that the post office must move from what has been a temporary location in the Crystal City Underground at 2180 Crystal Drive pending Crystal Square redevelopment.  They are currently negotiating with JBG Smith to (hopefully) return to Crystal Square.  Most of us are happy with this possibility.  But if you are not, you have 30 days from November 13 to voice opposition to leaving its current location:  [email protected].  We are not/not being asked to vote on where it should go, only whether it should leave its current location or not.

 Phase I of Uber Lyft Lot Started

On October 12 the County activated a temporary traffic signal at the corner of Route 1 and 27th Street South, in response to community requests to the County to mitigate the serious traffic problems.   MWAA coordinated with the County to open the lot's Route 1 gate at the same time. These changes allow traffic from MWAA’s TNC lot to exit to Route 1. This concludes installation of phase 1 of the interim solution.

The County is monitoring this location through traffic cameras installed on site, and will fine-tune the signal timing based on actual operations.  The County continues to encourage MWAA to seek additional strategies dealing with the displacement of its TNC lot due to the construction on its campus. At the same time, County staff is working on congestion mitigation measures to counter, to the maximum extent possible, the significant increase in traffic volume.

This is the first phase to mitigate the traffic problems on S. Eads Street caused by installation of this lot in the spring. Phase II for a more permanent solution is a long way off, but this is a good start. Thank you, Arlington County Traffic Division.  Here's the project website.