Wednesday, March 26, 2008

HeraldTrib Today, March 26, 2008

Big news for people interested in the reconstruction of the N. Glebe Road at N. Pershing Drive intersection, or what’s called the Buckingham Center. The County’s Planning Division is holding a community forum to discuss the project on April 1, see the notice at right.
(Click to enlarge the image.)

This is a meeting for citizens to speak with Arlington County staff from various departments and divisions, including planning, transportation, economic development and housing, said Jennifer Smith in the planning department.

Georgetown Strategic Capital, the potential developer, has been going to the meetings of the Historical Affairs and Landmark Review Board and to the Design Review Committee for months as they form their design to apply for a certificate of appropriateness on the historic site. Ms. Smith said this is an opportunity for staff elsewhere in the county to get a sense of what is happening.

“We are looking to gain additional stakeholder input on the this project before anything is formally filed,” Ms. Smith said.

Representatives from Georgetown Strategic attended the Buckingham Community Civic Association meeting on Monday March 17. According to Buckinghamster Mick Pulliam who attended the meeting, the developer is planning to lease about 50,000 square feet of retail space—about 25,000 in each of two buildings.

As has been reported before, the buildings that currently house CVS/Ravi Kabob, El Paso/Popeye’s Chicken, and the Glebe Market will be torn down to make way for two new, much larger buildings with retail on the ground floor and up to three stories of apartments above. (See the list of stories, below, for more on all of this.)

The CVS, Ravi Kabob, Popeye’s, El Paso and Woof’s Dog Training all plan to lease space in the new buildings.

According to Mr. Pulliam, Georgetown Strategic still has not gotten a replacement for the Glebe Market, which will close when the buildings are torn down. There was some discussion of whether that market should be replaced by a Latino market of some type, wrote Patrick Hope in an email. He is the BCCA president.

The mural on the side of the Glebe Market was painted by the Buckingham Youth Brigade. (Click to enlarge the image.)

At the meeting, there was some discussion about what should happen to the mural on the Glebe Market’s southern wall. It was painted years ago by the Buckingham Youth Brigade, a group for teens who live in the Gates of Ballston, Buckingham Villages and other apartment complexes in the neighborhood. They are supported by BU-GATA, a tenants association in the neighborhood.

Mr. Hope wrote that Georgetown Strategic has agreed to allow a police substation to take some space in the project (many people who took the HeraldTrib survey on this subject wanted a police substation, see the survey results, below).

The construction currently disrupting vehicle and pedestrian traffic at that intersection is a completely different project focusing only on streetscape and pedestrian improvements.

Related stories…

  • Finally, the Survey Results (These are the results of the HeraldTrib-sponsored survey of what residents would like to see in the retail space of the two buildings.)
  • Will Glebe Market Owner Sam Chon Retire?
  • All Quiet at the HALRB Meeting (Click here for drawings and matching photos.)
  • HALRB to Georgetown Strategic: Envisioned Buildings ‘Too Big’ (Click here for more drawings and a bit more history of the plan.)

  • Don’t know if you’ve been paying attention, so I clicked this picture of the now-demolished apartment building at 461 N. Thomas Street. That’s the Hyde Park Condominium building in the background.

    The plan for the space, according to the Dittmar Company which owns the site as “461 N. Thomas Street LC,” is on-going, but they can redevelop the site “by right” meaning that they do not have to go through a lengthy approval process so long they stay within county zoning requirements. A new building could be as tall as four storeys, and about 33 units.

    For the original story, click here, and for an update and map, click here.

    Whoda thunk it, but I won second place for column writing at the Virginia Press Association awards last week. This is for the columns I wrote for the Arlington Connection. I thought at first that I was up against maybe a half dozen other writers, so I had it in mind “somebody had to win second,” but Mary Kimm, the Connection’s publisher, said that I was up against about 40 other writers, so I must say that I am very happy.

    The judge wrote, “An intelligent take on issues of local interest without trying to write over the readers' heads.”

    I submitted three columns for consideration, including “I’ve Grown Tired of the Killing.”

    I'm off again, galavanting about, so I won't be posting anything for the rest of the week. Sit tight, and I'll be back next week with more news of the neighborhood. Thank you for sticking with me. --ST

    The Week’s Headlines…
    As always, you can scroll down to see all the recent stories, or simply click the links below (if the link doesn't work, scroll down to find the story, and email to tell me what's busted: --Steve Thurston).

    Today's Headlines:

  • Because of time constraints today, I do not have the police report from this week or last week. I'll have all three weeks next week, I promise. --ST

  • Headlines from Earlier in the Week:

  • “Eggstravaganza” Not Scrambled by Weather
  • Immigration Advocates See Little to Be Happy About This Session
  • Gas Line Break Disrupts Traffic, Draws Schools Superintendent

  • Monday, March 24, 2008

    "Eggstravaganza" Not Scrambled by Weather

    The Easter Bunny hopped through the "Spring Eggstravaganza" in the person of Buckinghamster Jackie Hernandez, the third Hernandez sister to don the suit. (Click to enlarge the image.)

    The weather held Saturday for the Lubber Run Center's annual “Spring Eggstravanza.” The event, 20-odd years and running, included pony rides, moon bounce, face painting, and a petting zoo, for a $5 per child fee.

    The county pays for the eggs and candy, the fee covers the zoo and pony rides.

    “That has [the pony rides and zoo] become such a big draw,” said Carol Hoover, a parks and recreation administrator for the county. “People don’t seem to mind” the fee.

    A highlight of the event is the Easter Egg hunt. With more eggs than last year, the hunt was moved to Lubber Run Park itself.

    Organizers hoped this would give the littlest children a better chance at getting eggs. Five golden eggs were hidden with the others. The children who found them, got special prizes provided by the Buckingham Community Civic Association.

    Sydney Scott took a pony ride while her mother, Leslie Stuler of Arlington Forest, looked on. (Click to enlarge the image.)

    Erin Hagarty practices her short game with a little intsruction from her father, Kevin. Erin's brother goes to the Lubber Run Center's preschool, Mr. Hagarty said. (Click to enlarge the image.)

    London Lordos gets her face painted.(Click to enlarge the image.)

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    Friday, March 14, 2008

    Immigration Advocates Saw a Bad Session

    “Cool heads on both sides” won some in the legislature. --Andres Tobar, the president of the Virginia Coalition of Latino Organizations.

    Although a statement from a statewide immigrant rights group said nothing positive came from this year’s General Assembly session, the outcome could have been worse for immigrants in Virginia had legislators passed many of the 100-plus immigration-related bills during the 2008 legislative session, admitted Andres Tobar, the president of the Virginia Coalition of Latino Organizations. VACOLAO is an umbrella group that organizes many local and state groups.

    “Cool heads on both sides,” especially in the party leadership, won in Richmond, he said in an interview. In a press release, he cited senators Richard Saslaw, the Senate majority leader (D-35, Fairfax County), and Emmett Hanger Jr. (R-24, Mt. Solon, near Staunton) as deserving particular praise.

    Sen. Hanger offered a bill that would have allowed students whose families are in the process of becoming legal aliens or citizens, who have lived in Virginia for at least three years, and who have been paying taxes, to go to state colleges paying in-state tuition. It failed after a lot of wrangling, according to the Assembly’s web site.

    Leni Gonzalez, another activist with VACOLAO, said in an interview, “We have had some success,” during this session. She said that students without full documentation can still go to college, but they pay out-of-state-tuition, about $19,000 per year for full-time undergraduate students at George Mason University.

    “The House’s determination to punish children for the acts of their parents can only yield increased drop outs and enhanced gang recruitment,” Mr. Tobar said in a press release. In the interview, he called students unable to continue an education a “tremendous loss of talent.”

    This sentiment was echoed by Walter Tejada, the Arlington County Board president who had travelled with Mr. Tobar, Ms. Gonzalez and others to Richmond on Jan. 15 for “Lobby Day.” Leaders, students and others spoke to legislators then to curry support.

    “The General Assembly, yet again, held another mean-spirited show,” Mr. Tejada said in an interview today. He lay the blame squarely on the shoulders of Republicans, especially those in the House of Delegates who voted against a bill the Senate unanimously supported. The bill would have made it illegal for law enforcement officials to ask a victim about his or her immigration status. Now victims of crime can be “victimized twice,” Mr. Tejada said.

    One of the many bills that did not pass, however, was a bill creating “a division of legal presence investigation and enforcement within the Department of State Police.”

    Introduced by Del. Paul Nichols (D-51, Woodbridge) the bill would have established a new 100 officer State Police division to “conduct investigations related to the failure by individuals to provide evidence or proof of legal presence in the Commonwealth when required by law.” The division would work with United States Department of Homeland Security, Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

    Although many bills that would have cracked down on illegal immigration did not pass, Mr. Tejada said he was not willing to look favorably on the session. Although the bills were struck down, it was an awful lot of bills to strike, he said. On top of that, the number of bills just shows that Virginia really is not open to immigration, he said. Work needs to be done to find them new jobs come November, he said.

    Ms. Gonzalez is not ready to determine how good this year’s session was, either.

    “We can make an assessment after April 2 or 3, when they reconvene,” she said. “Probably by the end of April we’ll be able to say was it good or bad.”

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    Gas Line Breaks Diverts Traffic, Draws Superintendent

    A police officer redirects traffic at N. Fourth Street. (Click to enlarge the image.)

    Construction crews cut a one-and-a-quarter inch gas line while installing a new storm drain system along N. George Mason drive this afternoon, shutting down traffic in both directions along the road between N. Fourth Street and N. Henderson Road.
    Washington Gas emergency personnel responded. (Click to enlarge the image.)

    Students at K.W. Barrett Elementary School, at the north end of the block, were kept inside as Dr. Robert Smith the schools’ superintendent, toured the site.

    The children are expected to be dismissed at the normal time, 3:05 p.m.; however, bus drivers may be asked to take different routes from the school, depending on what the Arlington County Police Department suggests, said Frank Bellavia, a spokesperson for Arlington Public Schools.

    The accident cut gas service to a portion of the Buckingham Village apartments, but no one was evacuated, a police officer said. Staff at the Buckingham Village Apartments could not verify the number of apartments.

    Crews working on this storm sewer line severed the gas line. (Click to enlarge the image.)

    The break occurred before 12:30 p.m., and one side of N. George Mason Drive was reopened to traffic, with police direction, just after 2:00 p.m.

    This section of N. George Mason Drive has seen many delays in recent months as crews work on new townhouses on the southeast corner of N. George Mason at N. Henderson, on a large apartment building near N. Fourth, and on the street itself.

    [Updates from Washington Gas are pending. –ST]

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    Thursday, March 13, 2008

    Thinking of Spring...

    Jim Cassatt, grandfather to Ben (unpictured), tried kite flying at K.W. Barrett Elementary School after the final bell rang yesterday. He stopped soon after starting as the wind was too gusty, and the flock of helpers a little too chaotic. He said he was afraid the kite would dive out of the sky and hit someone in the head. (Click to enlarge the image.)

    Wednesday, March 12, 2008

    HeraldTrib Today: March 12, 2008

    Well, there’s not much here, I’ll admit. Part of this is that last week, K.W. Barrett Elementary (where my kids go to school) hosted parent-teacher conferences on Thursday and Friday. Instead of trying to pawn the kids off on others leaving me with time to blog, I just hung out with the kids (we had a great time).

    Next week, the kids have spring break, so I won’t be working then, either. In fact, I won’t even have this weekly update on March 19. I’ll see you again on March 26.

    There’s more to it than that, however.

    I started this blog with the idea that not only would you be able to get news about Buckingham (since no one else was covering it), but you’d also get writing a little different than what you might find in the area’s papers and web sites. Frankly, I was going to have a little more fun with it.

    Those of you who have been reading since the onset might remember the “poems” (I use this term very loosely), and my attempt at stuff that might loosely have been called “prose” rather than stories.

    I’ve found, as time has progressed, that I have fallen, more and more, into standard news style. There’s nothing wrong with that, per se. Finding and reporting news items daily, however, leaves less time for thoughtful pieces, more creative pieces. It is easier, though. That’s why so many papers in the country cover the basic news with the basic story. It’s efficient.

    I think these ideas really started rolling through my brain when I was sitting at the new McDonald’s on N. Glebe Road, at the entrance to Arlington Boulevard, watching people. I had been working on my “Poop on Science Night Piece,” and as you might have witnessed from the end result, it was not going well.

    This guy caught my attention. I started wondering how I would handle his description if I were writing a fictional story about him (I have a master’s in fiction writing), and how long it’s been since I really got creative.

    He was a white guy, morbidly obese, a day of grey stubble on his grey fleshy cheeks, cheeks with spots of red high up near his eyes. He chewed with his mouth open, rolling the food with his tongue then masticating. He wore a thin jacket over a button-down dress shirt.

    I remember him now, and my memory is a little foggy, so we’re now, maybe, not quite factual, with mayo tucked into the corner of his lip, and a pair of wire-framed glasses. The blue jacket, more a windbreaker than coat, hung open over his dull, yellow shirt. His tan pants were stretched over his thighs so tightly the pocket openings flared open like the strangling gills of a landed fish.

    He did not chew like an obese man who had gone too long without food, but with the perfunctory diligence of any animal, and lacking the self-awareness that separates man from other animals.

    In that fictional sense, I got wondering how that lack of self-awareness would play elsewhere in his life, in his work, his relationships.

    And somehow, the fact that he is real, that I am very consciously writing about him, making us all conscious of his existence and habits somehow seems unfair in a non-fiction setting.

    I find myself now giving him the benefit of the doubt. Perhaps he was very aware of his chewing habits, but could do nothing about them. Perhaps we was sick, the pallor and red blotches on his cheeks evidence of the flu. His mouth he opened to breathe since his nose was stuffed. Perhaps, a fat man all his life, he was daring people to watch him eat—“You want a sideshow?” he asks in the glance over to me. “I’ll give you a sideshow.”

    …There, that feels a little better.

    The Week’s Headlines…
    As always, you can scroll down to see all the recent stories, or simply click the links below (if the link doesn't work, scroll down to find the story, and email to tell me what's busted: --Steve Thurston).

    Today's Headlines:

  • Police Notes for Buckingham

  • Headlines from Earlier in the Week:

  • Letter: Don't Put Apartments at Glebe and Pershing

  • Police Notes for Buckingham March 12, 2008

    Police are reporting a very high number of larcenies from autos, a trend that started last year and has continued into this year.

    Thieves are breaking into cars to steal electronic devices such as GPS systems, iPods and cell phones. They break into the cars if they can see the device in plain view. If thieves can see wires or mounting brackets for the devices, they might break in thinking that the devices are hidden inside the car.

    For more on this, and for tips on keeping your possessions safe, click here.

    March 6: Commercial Burglary, 100 block of N. Glebe Rd. At midnight, officers responded to a call about a person breaking into a business. K9 units responded and located the suspect who was identified by a witness. Donald Musil, 34, of Arlington, was arrested for Burglary and Possession of Burglarious Tools. He was held on a $7,500 bond.

    March 6: Attempted Commercial Burglary, 4300 block of N. Arlington Blvd. Between 2 p.m. on March 6 and 10:30 a.m. on March 7, someone tried to pry open the door to a storage facility at a business. A vehicle belonging to the business was also broken into.

    March 6: Stolen Auto (recovered), 300 block of N. Edison St. License tag number: VA KAL6208. The car is a 1996 black, Honda Accord.

    View Larger Map

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    Thursday, March 06, 2008

    Letter: Put a Grocery and Office Space, Not Apartments, at Glebe/Pershing


    My wife and I just read with interest your survey about how to redevelop this corner [the corner of N. Glebe Road at N. Pershing Drive]. We're keenly interested because we live just three blocks away, and partially bought the house two years ago because of the convenience of the Glebe Market: We LOVE walking to the grocery store. (We like the El Paso, the dollar shop, the post office, etc., but the market is the most important by far.)

    So, for our late two cents: YES, put in a grocery store, any grocery store. I'll help you twist [Trader] Joe's arm to get him to move in. We shop there (on Rt. 7) all the time, but are also afraid of the Rt. 7-like traffic it would bring. Keep it as small as possible!

    And yes, we would love a hardware store; [a] non-Starbucks coffee shop [is] OK, but they're really all the same.

    We don't like the idea of more high-rise housing: Who would want to live at such a busy intersection anyway? Why don't they just put offices above the retail? We don't like the idea of large shops or housing on Pershing that will bring more traffic to Pershing (we're just two houses from the corner, on Oakland). We want to keep Pershing as a residential street, and would like the speed limit to be 25 mph, like similar streets in Alexandria and Falls CHurch.

    Thanks for reading our opinions!

    Ken Moskowitz

    PS: We've also considered retail attractions. We would like a DVD rental shop. If there has to be a coffee shop, make it Caribou [Coffee]. If there has to be chain restaurant, we would welcome Panera Bread.

    Related stories…
  • Finally, The Survey Results

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  • Wednesday, March 05, 2008

    HeraldTrib Today, March 5, 2008

    Last week marked the official death of the “Crosswalks Bill” in the Virginia Legislature. Scroll down to find the link to the final story covering the saga this year. Sen. Patsy Ticer’s office said she’ll try the bill again next year.

    Since I’m on the pedestrian topic, I’ll point out yesterday’s story about the renovation of N. Henderson Road at N. Thomas Street. A portion of the design is at right (Thomas Street runs vertically). Notice how the crosswalks over Henderson are “zebra striped” but those over Thomas Street are only the parallel lines. I asked Dan Reinhard, a county engineer, about this, and he said that’s just how the traffic people do it. So, I called Jose Thommana, a transportation program manager with the county.

    Why not zebra stripes on all four sides, I wondered. He gave me one answer I expected (and do not really like, I must admit): if you put them everywhere, then no one pays attention to them. I do not totally buy that, but I have not studied it as much as the pros.

    The answer, that made more sense was, of course, money related.

    The parallel lines cost about $200 to $300 dollars. The zebra striping can hit $2,000. The paint is not actually a paint, he said, but a durable plastic with glass beads inside it to make it reflective at night and during rain storms. When one starts counting all the intersections in the county, no doubt the extra cost adds up.

    I suppose I should be happy the county recognizes Henderson as a busy enough arterial for zebra striping.

    The letters this week, got readers reacting.

    Even the innocuously titled “Letter: Watch Where You Drop Milkweed Seeds” got a comment. But the one to generate quite a bit of action was Nancy Bukar’s question asking what to do about people who walk across The Chatham Condominium’s property on their way to the Assembly of God Church for a free dinner. People had reactions and ideas.

    Check out the letter and reactions, below.

    The discussions surrounding of the Buckingham retail redevelopment at the corner of N. Glebe Road at N. Pershing Drive continues tonight with the DRC meeting, 6:30. Representatives from the developer, Georgetown Strategic Capital, will be on hand to show new drawings and discuss plans with county staff and DRC volunteers.

    By the end of the month, or early next month, the county will be seeking community input on the plan, said Rebbecah Ballo in the Historic Affairs office.

    “It’s as far as it can go without the community input,” she said.

    The plans for the corner might go before the planning commission (a major step toward implementation) before that group takes a break for the summer.

    I cannot go to tonight's DRC meeting, so if someone else wants to check it out and then drop an email to me, that would be great.

    (For some stories on the plans, click here, and here)

    Did you have troubles using the county’s computer system to sign your kids up for summer camp? So did I. Write me an email detailing the problems, and I’ll send them on to a person I know who can handle these sorts of problems. (

    I keep thinking what a pain the system is, but then I really wonder what the people who don’t have computers, or have limited access to computers, do. How are they not totally shut out of the system?--ST

    The Week’s Headlines…
    As always, you can scroll down to see all the recent stories, or simply click the links below (if the link doesn't work, scroll down to find the story, and email to tell me what's busted: --Steve Thurston).

    Today's Headlines:

  • Barrett Brownies Give Cookies to Troops
  • Police Notes for Buckingham, March 5, 2008

  • Headlines from Earlier in the Week:

  • Pedestrian Safety and Visibility Is Aim of Henderson/Thomas Renovation
  • Poop on Science Night
  • Letter: Church Should Help Respect Private Property
  • Sen. Ticer Will Try Pedestrian Bill Again Next Year (The bill has finally died for the year.)
  • Letter: Watch Where You Drop Milkweed Seeds

  • Barrett Brownies Give Cookies to Troops

    Brownie Troop 5837 with their cases of donated cookies, counterclockwise starting from the right: Kate Felsenheld (in the dog shirt), Faith Dabrio, Autumn Gromada, Silvia Gomez-Ruiz, Sophie Hickey , Sophia Constantine, Sara Brown , Allison Vernon, Hazel Thurston, Nell Curtain. Unavailable for the photo: Annie Choudhry, Casey Donovan, Nakeysa Hooglund, and Samantha Merlos. (Click to enlarge the image.)

    K.W. Barrett Brownie Troop 5837 sold almost 23 cases of Girl Scout cookies that will be donated to recuperating troops at the Walter Reed Army Medical Center.

    Of the 1,600 total boxes that the girls sold, 271 will go to the troops as part of the Girl Scouts’ “Gift of Caring” program in which extra boxes (they always have extra boxes) are donated to a charity the Brownie Troop chooses. The girls also asked people to buy boxes specifically for donation.

    Hazel Thurston sold the most donated boxes while Alison Vernon sold the most boxes total. Donna Felsenheld, Patricia Hickey and Sylvia Merlosis are the troop leaders. Cathy Constantine coordinated the cookie sales.

    Brownies are younger Girl Scouts, from 6 to 8 years old. Barrett Elementary is also home to a Junior Girl Scouts Troop (8 to 11 years old) and a Daisy Girl Scouts Troop (5 to 6 years old).

    Although the Walter Reed Public Information Officials would have been happy to figure out exacatly how many boxes of Girl Scout cookies they get every year, I didn't ask them to (why waste Veteran's Administration's dollars). Still, V.A. staff said, "I do know [the cookies] are much appreciated." --ST

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    Police Notes for Buckingham, March 5, 2008

    Feb. 25: Burglary, 400 block of N. George Mason Dr. Between 6 p.m. and 10 p.m., someone pried open the door to a maintenance workshop in an apartment complex and took copper fittings.

    March 3: Stolen Auto, 500 block N. Glebe Rd. Tag number: JLP6132. The car was a black Mercedes-Benz E320w, 2005.

    View Larger Map

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    Tuesday, March 04, 2008

    Pedestrian Safety and Visibility Is Aim of Henderson/Thomas Renovation

    Streetlight placement and the possibility of moving a bus stop dominated last night’s conversation between county staff and a few members of the Buckingham community as they discussed a renovation of the intersection of N. Henderson Road at N. Thomas Street. It was the second meeting between county staff and representatives of the property owners near that corner.

    The intersection, known in the neighborhood for limited visibility and unmarked crosswalks, will be upgraded through the Neighborhood Conservation Program. It’s the first project to get funding in the neighborhood under the Buckingham Conservation Plan, written last year. [See a link to the full NCP under the drop-down menu "County Links" at right. --ST]

    “The major design, I think we agree on,” said Stuart Engel, of Jackson Manor Condominium, which sits on the northeast corner of the intersection. He joined two people from Hyde Park Condominium and county staffers Angela Courtney and Dan Reinhard at the meeting.

    By the end of last night's meeting, a copy of this drawing was covered in notes for minor changes to drainage, street light and bus stop placement. (Click to enlarge the image.)

    The design pushes the sidewalks out into the streets a little more, giving drivers turning from N. Thomas onto N. Henderson a better view before crossing or merging with traffic. These sidewalk “nubs” should push the no parking zone farther from the intersection, increasing visibility, and shortening the distance for pedestrians to cross.

    “It should get you out where you’ll be able to see past the parked cars,” Mr. Reinhard said. Drivers on N. Thomas will stop before the crosswalk and then roll forward and stop for the traffic on N. Henderson. “Virginia is a two-stop state.”

    Available space on N. Henderson Road does not allow for the sidewalk nubs to shorten the distance on both sides of N. Thomas; however, the crosswalks will be “ladder” or “zebra” painted for increased visibility.

    Mr. Reinhard suggested moving the street light that is tucked away in a corner of the sidewalk (see the upper right hand corner of the drawing) from the space between Jackson Manor and Hyde Park and putting a new one in front of Jackson Manor.

    That section of the sidewalk, with awkward right-angle turns and little room for maneuverability, is a problem for the planners.

    This street light, tucked into the trees, is planned to be removed and replaced by two lights, one in front of the Jackson Manor Condominium (the sand-colored building at right), the other near Hyde Park Condominium. In all, four lights will be added to the intersection. (Click to enlarge the image.)

    “I didn’t find anything that really helped us out here other than moving the light,” Mr. Reinhard said.

    Moving that light, which is hidden in the tree canopy, would mean a dark corner would get darker, and could feel dangerous to pedestrians.

    Discussion led to adding another light near Hyde Park, just east of the current light.

    A third light is planned for the northwest corner of the intersection. In all, four new lights are planned, including one on the south side of N. Henderson that will be installed when Paradigm development builds townhomes on the southwest corner of the intersection.

    Mr. Engel also suggested moving the bus stop currently just east of the intersection to a location just west. He hoped this would push the no parking area even farther down the street, allowing for more visibility. However, the stop is a Metrobus, so it is not controlled by Arlington. As well, moving the stop might have other problems with traffic flow. There was a question of whether it is possible at all.

    “We’ll put the question to our transportation people and our bus people,” Mr. Reinhard said. “We’ll find out.”

    By the end of the meeting, Mr. Reinhard’s copy of the plan had many notes and reminders covering it.

    The County's Dan Reinhard consults the proposed renovation plan with Sara Ellen Swatt, a representative of the Hyde Park Condominium. (Click to enlarge the image.)

    Other changes and timeline:

  • ADA accessibility ramps east of the intersection in front of the Hyde Park’s pool driveway.
  • Grass swatches (shown green in the drawing) on the northwest, northeast and southwest corners of the intersection to match grass strips already there.
  • Mr. Reinhard will look into whether the corners can be “yellow painted” to decrease the number of people who might park in the no parking areas.
  • Mr. Reinhard will look at drainage issues on the south side of the intersection.
  • County staff needs to complete the plans and get all necessary signatures by the end of the month. The plan becomes part of the budget process, finalized this summer. Mr. Reinhard said he thought the project would be completed by late spring or early summer next year.

  • Related stories…
  • Sen. Ticer Will Try Pedestrian Bill Again Next Year
  • County: Give Bham Real Crosswalks

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