Thursday, February 20, 2014
The 'Realize Rosslyn' panel met last night and issued its draft 'vision stateement' for Rosslyn. Or rather, its County Board Chair Jay Fisette's shared vision with his developer cronies. The extensive planning for redeveloped Rosslyn has been dubbed 'Neverland on the Potomac' by unhappy residents of Rosslyn, Ft. Myer Heights, Radnor, and other Rosslyn-area neighborhoods whose civic association leaders constantly criticized Chairman Fisette, County planning staff, and developers on the 'Realize Rosslyn' panel for imposing too much new in-fill on their already-urbanized neighborhoods.
The draft Rosslyn sector plan calls for redevelopment of the area between Key Bridge and Fort Meyer into a place 'where Yuppies can frolic' according to an unhappy Ft. Meyer Heights resident. Chairman Fisette and his developer cronies in effect chaired the panel and made ad hoc changes to things they didn't like. For example, Jay doesn't want skywalks (residents should be walking past retail and restaurants), doesn't want solar (detracts from Dominion's district energy plan), and wants more really tall buildings extending into Clarendon to provide more upscale residents with vistas of D.C.
But what's most interesting is that a County planning staffer revealed that not only will the DC streetcar be brought across Key Bridge into the Rosslyn Metro station but secret planning is underway to build a streetcar line from the Rosslyn Metro station to Ballston, and possibly beyond to East Falls Church Metro and the City of Falls Church. When asked about citizen opposition to such planning, Chairman Fisette reportedly remarked 'They'll get over it once they see the Pike streetcar'.
Oh, BTW, County is appropriating another $290,706 to fund 'Realize Rosslyn' planning. Agenda item 18 at Saturday's County Board meeting.
Tuesday, February 18, 2014
Virginia's bicycle cults have been aggressively lobbying the General Assembly for more 'free range' activities for bicyclists and more restrictions on motor vehicle operators. These activities include allowing people on bicycles to wear face masks in the winter (currently illegal), increasing the required separation between motor vehicles and bicycles from 2 feet to 3 feet, prohibiting motor vehicles from closely following bicycles, allowing bicyclists to pass motor vehicles on the left, and holding motor vehicles owners and operators responsible when bicyclists run into vehicle doors being opened.
Of course, there is nothing related to safety and responsible bicycling in any of the bicycle cults' proposed legislation - like making wearing helmets and reflective vests mandatory. Stay tuned to see how much of the legislation gets passed and signed into law this year.