CCCA September Newsletter

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So much for returning to normal.  With Delta looming over us, we’re going to continue meeting on Zoom for the indefinite future, even with the forthcoming booster shots..  Please help inform our decisions on future CCCA meetings by responding to our survey.  We continue to have great topics.  If you have ideas for meeting topics, please send them to [email protected].

We are also looking for volunteers to take over officer positions in the CCCA in November.  With 7 years of experience, we are an active and respected voice for Crystal City residents. Help us continue to support the needs and concerns of our community.  See the Newsletter for details.

Transitway Public Meeting, September 1, 7-8:30 pm:  At the July 20 Board meeting, five activists in our area, including the CCCA president, expressed their concerns about the proposed placement of a new transitway station close to the corner of 12th & Long Bridge Drive.  The posted plans before the Board meeting seemed to indicate that the new bus shelter would conflict with pedestrians and cyclists, as the bus shelter on Crystal Drive by 18th already does.  Community engagement prior to the Board meeting was also very limited. At the Board meeting, the Board approved Item 51, the deed of easement for the transitway station, but recommended that a public meeting be held prior to the September Board meeting to discuss concerns further.  Project staff are holding a public meeting on Wednesday, September 1, at 7PM to discuss plans for the transitway and its stations along 12th Street.  Please plan to attend. Construction on combined projects expected December 2021 for 12 months.

Move the Fair to Long Bridge Park?  Not unless they answer a lot of questions:   Be sure to read about this.  The Arlington County Fair Board, an independent non-profit which manages the fair, has informed the county that it would like to move the fair to Long Bridge Park.  The County has issued a survey asking whether folks prefer to keep the Fair at Thomas Jefferson Community Center and Park where it’s been for 45 years or move it to Long Bridge Park.  We have protested that without background information, folks don’t know why there should be a change and whether it should change.  Think about this before you answer the survey.

CCCA August 2021 Newsletter

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Highlights:
1.  National Night Out August 3:   The three civic associations in 22202–Arlington Ridge, Aurora Highlands, Crystal City–have joined with the National Landing BID to co-sponsor National Night Out in the Summer House and park at 101 S. 12th Street. National Night Out is a community-police awareness-raising event in the United States, held the first Tuesday of August.  It’s a community-building campaign that promotes police-community partnerships and neighborhood camaraderie to make our neighborhoods safer, more caring places to live. National Night Out enhances the relationship between neighbors and law enforcement while bringing back a true sense of community. Furthermore, it provides a great opportunity to bring police and neighbors together under positive circumstances.  We will have fire trucks, police cars, food trucks, games, music, and lots of goings on.  Thank you to Amazon for sponsoring the refreshments!  Although no more vouchers for food are available via the RSVP due to an overwhelming response, you can still visit the park and join the festivities.

2. Long Bridge Aquatics & Fitness Center Opening Soon
Around mid-August the new Long Bridge Aquatics & Fitness Center will open! We’re excited to see everyone return to the water. Once the new center is open, it will become the home for all Arlington County Parks & Recreation aquatics classes and private swim lessons, including the 55+ aquatics programs. There will be an array of aquatics offerings this fall, pending COVID-19 guidelines. Online registration begins at 7 a.m. for gymnastics classes and 7:30 a.m. for all other programs on Aug. 4. View our online registration guide.  Also look for the 55+ Guide eNews in August; fall registration will open for 55+ County residents on August 18. For more information, click here. We anticipate being able to provide more aquatic offerings and look forward to utilizing the amazing new space! There are over 200 parking spaces available when you arrive. If you have questions regarding Parks & Recreation 55+ aquatics programs or the Long Bridge Aquatics & Fitness Center, please contact Allison Cheek at [email protected].
 
Tour of Aquatic Center for 22202 residents
We are coordinating with the Facility Manager  a tour of the Aquatic Center on August 18 and 19.  Register on Sign Up Genius as tours are limited to 20 people each.  If the tours fill up, the County might agree to additional tours the next week.

3. Two deadlines for feedback (see newsletter articles):

  • August 15:  CC2DCA Project Needs and Purpose Assessment
  • August 23:  Pentagon City PDSP Study First Draft

CCCA July Newsletter

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1.  Call for Civic Engagement!  We are a very dynamic area, with lots of apartment dwellers coming and going.  That means also that our CCCA officers and volunteers come and go!  So we are looking for more folks to join us as observers or officers in the CCCA Executive Board.  You don’t need any special skills, just a little bit of time and a lot of civic interest. It’s a great way to get engaged in your neighborhood and learn what’s going on.  It also really looks good on a resume.  Please contact me if you’d like to discuss joining the team in any capacity:  mailto:[email protected].

2.  SAVE THE DATE:  July 19 CCCA General Meeting: Plans are still being worked out.  But we plan to have JBG Smith to come back to talk about development updates for Crystal City, including their draft revised plan for 223 S 23rd Street and 2250 Crystal Drive.  Virginia Tech has agreed to come talk about their plans for Potomac Yard.  VP Chris Wimbush will also explain the work the Civic Federation is doing on exploring a possible new governance plan for Arlington County.

3.  VDOT Feasibility Report is Incomplete and Unsatisfactory:  After 10 months of study and public meetings, VDOT released its feasibility report on Route 1 at the final Public Information Meeting June 16. No surprise: the recommendation is to bring Route 1 down to grade. The Livability Working Group released a press release on June 27. Read the full text on the Livability22202 website:

The Arlington 22202 Civic Associations united in Livability22202 find VDOT’s Feasibility Study of Route 1 Multimodal Improvements to be incomplete.  It raises further questions, fails to address a number of community concerns, and recommends a traffic pattern that, by VDOT’s own recognition, reduces safety.  If Arlington County and the state proceed without addressing these concerns, our community will be further divided by a dangerous, wide road that puts cars before pedestrians and bikes.  The Associations urge Arlington County Board not to approve the study when submitted unless these larger questions and concerns are addressed.  

4.  Reminder of upcoming feedback deadlines (see details in Newsletter):

  • July 9 Feedback deadline for: 
    • 15th Street/Clark Bell Realignment Project
    • Crystal City Bike Study
    • Army Navy Drive PBL Missing Link Study
  • July 12 Comment Deadline for VDOT Route 1 Study

May Newsletter is Out

Well, those who responded to our survey on the Newsletter indicated that they want the Newsletter to be as long as necessary to cover the news—so I guess 14 pages is ok!  The highest votes for what to include were the Timeline of Meetings and Development, followed by CCCA, Livability and Surrounding Area News.  So we must be doing something right.  We may make format changes in the future to liven up the text. Thanks to those who responded.

May 19 CCCA Meeting
Join us from 7-9 pm on Zoom.  From 7-8 pm, we will have a presentation by the County on the opening of the Aquatic Center at Long Bridge Park and meet the new facility manager.  From 8-9 pm, the National Park Service will  make a presentation on upcoming changes in our area and possible projects.  Details and a registration link will be sent the week before the meeting.  Stay tuned.

See the list of other upcoming meetings in the Newsletter.

Your President
Carol Fuller

https://www.crystalcitycivic.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/05/CCCA_Newsletter-No.-5.pdf

April Newsletter is Out

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1.  Survey:  We are gradually modernizing our CCCA procedures and media.  We will be issuing more frequent emails to keep you up to date on meetings and issues in coming weeks.  In this issue, we are including a survey to ask members what you like, dislike, or would like to see in the Newsletter in the future.  Please help by by filling out the attached survey. 

2.  Construction Coming Up: 

  • 1900 Crystal Drive:  Construction to Close Lane and Sidewalk. The general contractor will begin closures associated with 1900 Crystal Drive construction on March 29th and they will continue progressively over the next two weeks.
  • 2000/2001 S Bell:  Preparation work for demolition of 2001 Richmond Hwy starts April 12 with the Underground passage from 20th to Crystal City Shops closed; when demolition of the tower starts end May, Underground passage will close for about 3 ½ years

3.  Earth Day Clean Up – 17 April 2021 (rain date 24 April):  Join the National Landing BID and Livability 22202 to clean up the wooded area along the GW Parkway south of the Mount Vernon Trailhead at the Crystal City Water Park to the access road on 26th St South.  (And get a look at some what may someday become accessible open space for our 22202 community.)   Sign up now to help keep National Landing green and clean!

4.  National Cherry Blossom Festival in 22202:  See the Newsletter for all of the art work and events from now till April 11.

5.  Meetings, Development, and Other Issues:  See the Newsletter for a detailed list.

March CCCA Newsletter is Out

(FYI, this is the first Newsletter going by email only to renewed members for 2021.) Click here to download.


So many issues, so many meetings, so little time!  We need members to become and stay engaged. 


Highlighting Upcoming Meetings:  Please attend the following and lend your ears and voice to ongoing work.  These are our most important activities right now.

March 2 Livability Open Space Working Group Meeting (discussed below)
The meeting will be mostly informational. If afterwards, you’d like to stay engaged, great!  But join us March 2 to learn what’s happening and where you could join in, if you’d like to.  We really want/need to expand the working group membership, to promote diversity (demographics, housing, opinions?).
 
March 3 VDOT Public Meeting on Route 1 Feasibility Study (discussed below)
Is this what we want for Route 1 in National Landing?  Come to the VDOT public meeting on March 3rd and find out! 
 
March 9 Sustainable Mobility for Arlington (SUSMO) meeting at 7:30 (discussed below)
Come learn what is wrong with the proposed Crystal City Bike Network.
 
March 17 CCCA Meeting
The Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority (MWAA) has agreed to provide a video and PowerPoint update on all the work that is being done at National Airport and which is expected to be completed by summer 2021.  Stay tuned for more details.  The Arlington County Police Department will also present on crime statistics and car jackings.

Your President
Carol Fuller

February 2021 Newsletter

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Don’t forget to renew your membership here and stay involved.  After February 1, you may not get your Newsletter or email updates if not paid.  This is the last Newsletter for those paid only in 2020.

1.  January 27 CCCA Meeting:  Read the summary of the meeting on COVID and Development and click on the links to see the full meeting and the slide presentations.

2.  Development:  Each month, a listing of all upcoming development and other major issues will be included i the Newsletter.

3. Upcoming Meetings:
February 2:  JBG Pre-Construction Meeting on 1900 Crystal Drive
February 9 Livability22202 Meeting on County Planning and Affordable Housing
February 15 virtual workshop on the Pentagon City Planning Study
February Livability22202 Meeting with VDOT on Route 1 Feasibility Study, Date TBD
March 17 CCCA Meeting with MWAA on Project Journey at the airport

Your President
Carol Fuller

CCCA January 2021 Newsletter

Looking forward to a better year than 2020! We’re moving to bimonthly virtual meetings live streamed to Facebook, starting January 27.  Let us know if you have suggestions for topics you would like to be covered. Also, we’ve added a timeline of development/construction issues to the Newsletter and each CCCA meeting which explains why we’re all so exhausted.  And lots more inside the Newsletter–download it here.

Above all, don’t forget to 
renew your membership here and stay involved.

1.  SAVE THE DATE:  January 27 CCCA Meeting
Our first meeting of the year is scheduled for Wednesday, January 27, from 7-9 pm.  We’ve invited Arlington County health officials to talk about their COVID vaccination plan, what they are doing to help disadvantaged during the crisis (e.g., food/evictions), and the impact COVID has had on the County budget.  We may also ask JBG to give a brief update on the ongoing public engagement about their site plan for 2000/2001 Clark/Bell and upcoming construction at 1900 Crystal Drive. Stay tuned for the details.

2.  Responses Needed :  Note that the next 3 items are calling for public feedback by January 11:

Pubic Engagement:  2000/2001 Clark/Bell Site Plan
This is Block M, AKA Crystal Plaza Square that has been through 2 Long Range Planning Committee sessions. This is your last chance to weigh in publicly on any concerns you might have about the site plan for these 2 buildings on 20th Street:  e.g., Clark/Bell extension, open space, Underground. Be sure to make your voice heard before the SPRCs in February and March. The comment period has been extended to January 11.  See everything on the project page:  https://projects.arlingtonva.us/projects/2001-clark-st/
 
The VDOT Route 1 Multimodal Feasibility Study
VDOT held the first Public Engagement Meeting December 16 for the public to review existing conditions; hear about public survey responses; and ask questions and provide input.  The purpose of this feasibility study is to identify enhanced multimodal connectivity and accommodations along Route 1 (between 12th Street to 23rd Streets) to meet the changing transportation needs of the Crystal City and Pentagon City communities. As this area’s commercial and residential densities continue to increase, transportation plans will need to address the wide-ranging needs of pedestrians, bicyclists, transit riders, motorists, and other users while maximizing the safety, convenience, and sustainability of the system for decades to come. At this time, no construction funding has been allocated, so this study will not set design or construction dates. 
The timeline includes a second public meeting in March for more analysis; presentation of a draft report to the public in May and a final report in June. Access the online comment form and view details on providing feedback through January 11 here.
Note:  Participants in the December 16 meeting were surprised that VDOT is missing a lot of essential data and seems to see its charge is to determine if and how Route 1 can be brought down to grade.  The Livability22202 working group on Route 1 is providing input.  See the Study webpage here.
 
Here’s your chance to design the new park at South Eads Street and Army Navy Drive
 Share Your Feedback on Three Draft Design Concepts that resulted from the first public engagement for the area at South Eads Street  With the guidance of the Crystal City Sector Plan and the Public Spaces Master Plan, it was decided that this new park will help meet the county’s goals of increasing public space opportunities.  This past fall, community comments shared information about how people currently use the space and what they envision for the future. Those comments helped shape the three draft concepts that the design team present in the video below—The Meander, The Canal Walk, and The Central Hub. We want to know what you think. What are your favorite elements of each concept? What do you feel is missing? Your feedback by January 11 will help inform the design of the Park Master Plan and Design Guidelines for this new public space.  Share your feedback here.

Your President
Carol Fuller

December 2020 Newsletter

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1.   Election of Officers: Welcome to our new (and returning) officers.  The following were elected by acclamation poll for a two-year term:

  • Vice President for Policy and Planning:  Christopher Wimbush
  • Treasurer:  Eric Cassel
  • Membership Liaison:  Emily Norton
  • Communications Director:  Idris Clay

2.  Public Community Meeting on the Water Park:  JBG Smith has submitted a site plan amendment to make changes to the Crystal City Water Park, as we have posted previously. At our request, they are holding a virtual public community meeting December 2 from 6-7 pm to show their revised plans and get feedback from the community. JBG and Equity Realty own the park, but it is also one of the most well-known symbols of Crystal City. So we will want to be informed and let them know what we do and don’t like in their plan.  One of the key issues is the proposal to put 8 back-to-back kiosks at the edge of the park with 2 sidewalks on either side–1 between the kiosks and a tree-lined buffer to the street and a larger one open to the park.  If the kiosks go in what do you think they should sell:  e.g., only food and drink? That’s a JBG decision, but if you have strong feelings or good ideas, be prepared to suggest them. The link to register for the meeting is here:  https://jbgsmith.zoom.us/…/WN_JonbM_GATXi-AJBvZw94IA

3.  CCCA Plans for 2021:  As it looks like we will be staying virtual until at least the summer of 2021, the Executive Committee is starting to plan for bimonthly meetings on a series of topics that could include, among others:  updates on the airport Project Journey, the Aquatic Center, and other development issues; Virginia Tech Alexandria project; Arlington County CERT training; police and fire department issues; etc.  Please send us your ideas about topics you would like to be covered:  [email protected].   

4.  The VDOT Route 1 Multimodal Feasibility Study:  The first Public Engagement Meeting will be held Wednesday, December 16 at 6:30 P.M.  See details in Newsletter.

Your President
Carol Fuller

November 2020 Newsletter

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Happy Halloween and Good Dia de Muertos!

1.  Annual Meeting November 11:  Be sure to join us for this important Zoom meeting from 7-9 pm.  
Agenda:
1.  Elections of 4 CCCA officers for 2 years (see bios in Newsletter)
2. Vote on approval of minor ByLaws Amendment (full text on CCCA website)
3.  Updates on Development Projects in Crystal City (JBG’s Andy VanHorn will jointly present)
4.  Updates on Livability 22202 Working Groups

Register in advance for this meeting:
After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.

2.  Elections Nov. 3:  If you plan to vote in person on Election Day, November 3, you will need to vote in your own precinct – either Crystal City 006 (251 S. 18th Street, the red Wells Fargo Bank building) or Crystal Plaza 050 (inside the Crystal Plaza apartment building.  Polls are open 6 am to 7  pm.  See details in Newsletteride.

3.  SPRC Process for 101 S. 12th Street:  Following the September 19 Site Plan Review Committee meeting on JBG’s site plan for 101 S 12th Street, the County Planning Commission will consider the final site plan November 4.  It then goes to the County Board for approval Nov 14 or 17.  You can view the full staff report for the meeting here.   County staff reject community concerns about the extension of Ball Street from 12th to 10th Streets.  If residents wish to object to a full street extension of Ball Street, you can find the information on submitting comments, viewing the meeting, and signing up to speak here

4.  AFAC Food Drive:   We have teamed up again with FLARE and the National Landing BID, and the Arlington Ridge and Aurora Highlands Civic Associations for another food drive to benefit the Arlington Food Assistance Center!  FLARE will be placing donation boxes at 13 locations throughout National Landing from October 31 – November 8. Donations of canned good will be collected and donated on November 9th.

Your President
Carol Fuller