Saturday, September 3, 2016

Georgetown-Rosslyn Gondola - Another Mendelson-Mitten Production

Hey Yupette,

I wondered what's going on behind the scenes with the Georgetown-Rosslyn Gondola. Is it another 'done deal' or what? Whose idea was it and who's promoting the Gondola?

Insofar as I can determine from Web searches, speaking with County Staff, and reviewing the presentation made at the last Arlington Transportation Commission meeting, the idea for the Georgetown-Rosslyn Gondola came from DC City Council Chairman Phil Mendelson working with the Georgetown business community. In Arlington, the Gondola is being promoted by Deputy Arlington County Manager Carol Mitten and Arlington Economic Development Director Victor Hoskins. Victor Hoskins lives in Georgetown. Carol Mitten also lives in DC, with Phil Mendelson.

So how did Carol Mitten get to be Arlington's Deputy County Manager, with DES (e.g., Planning Division) and Economic Development reporting to her? She was hired by Barbara Donnellan (another non-resident) shortly before Barbara retired as County Manager. You can do a search on 'Carol Mitten Phil Mendelson' and you will find that there was a huge conflict-of-interest scandal two years ago involving Carol facilitating the construction of a $300 million soccer stadium for DC United for Phil. Then Carol was hired by the Department of Homeland Security for a short time before being hired by Barbara. BTW, Carol was a long-time DC Government executive, with an expertise in real estate appraisal, who worked closely with Phil politically for many years.

So what occurred at the Arlington Transportation Commission meeting on September 1st? A Georgetown business development group made a short presentation together with its team of gondola consultants. No information about safety, costs, alternatives, anything. What the presenters did disclose was that they are obtaining approvals from 22 state, federal, and local agencies needed to start construction of the Gondola. And the Gondola would likely cost $40 million. They will return to the Transportation Commission late this month after the County Board meeting.

Fire-Aim-Ready Done Deal or what? Another expensive vanity project the County Board has pre-approved, or what? It will get worse. Stay tuned for the announcement of the $250 million Potomac Yards Convention Center sometime after Election Day.

2100-2

45 Comments:

At 03 September, 2016 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

One Party Government in Arlington for 35 years. What can you expect?

 
At 03 September, 2016 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Although double deck buses are seen all over the DC side of the Potomac they are completely off-limits for discussion as a transportation alternative in Arlington.

 
At 03 September, 2016 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

FYI, Mendelson and Mitten are working on another deal where DC residents will be allowed to pay Arlington resident fees to use the Longbridge Aquatics Center in return for a couple million from DC for the Aquatics Center's construction.

 
At 03 September, 2016 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Carol Mitten has charge over DES, the Department of Environmental Services? When do the brick sidewalks get replaced in Rosslyn and the street lighting in Rosslyn upgraded so I can leave my flashlight home at night?

 
At 03 September, 2016 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

What has changed in County Government? Another blank check for another expensive vanity project? Can't they just buy a dozen tourist trolley buses and run them back and forth across Key Bridge, like in Old Town Alexandria?

 
At 03 September, 2016 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Here's how to fix this once and for all: County Managers, Deputy County Managers and Assistant County Managers MUST reside in Arlington.

 
At 03 September, 2016 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Post should have been all over this as the Post was 2 years ago when Phil used Carol to get fast-track approval for a new DC United stadium.

 
At 03 September, 2016 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Classic Arlington Government: "Let's just approve the doggie spa, bus shelter, elementary school, etc., and we'll worry about the cost later".

 
At 03 September, 2016 , Anonymous gratefully anonymous said...

DES = Dysfunctional Environmental Services

 
At 03 September, 2016 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Of course they don't want to discuss the cost of a gondola system. Cost is $25 million per kilometer and up. A kilometer is 0.62 miles. Do a Web search.

 
At 03 September, 2016 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Pike residents will really be pissed. They get plain old city buses, Rosslyn gets an $40+ million aerial streetcar plus a $100 million water park on the Potomac.

 
At 03 September, 2016 , Anonymous 22201 said...

It appears that Arlington residents aren't losing control of Arlington, we've LOST control of Arlington.

 
At 03 September, 2016 , Anonymous Phil Mendelson said...

"Carol, tell Libby that DC won't pay Arlington more than $3 million toward Longbridge aquatics construction and we want to pay the same user fees as Arlington residents in return. If Vihstadt doesn't like it, too bad. I also want to wrap up the Gondala deal at the next County Board dress rehearsal at Jay's home".

 
At 03 September, 2016 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Are they Machine Democrats or what?

 
At 03 September, 2016 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Didn't Arlington and Alexandria revert back to Virginia from DC about 170 years ago?

 
At 03 September, 2016 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

She's cute. Kind of reminds me of Caitlyn Jenner. Is she the same Carol Mitten who used to be called the Mayor of DuPont Circle?

 
At 03 September, 2016 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Latest on the Gondola Project is that Phil and Carol and Libby and Jay want the Gondola to run between somewhere near Georgetown U. and somewhere near the Rosslyn Metro Station - cost at least $60 million.

 
At 03 September, 2016 , Anonymous Parent said...

Help! My kids are going to be educated in trailer classrooms until they enter high school in 5 years. Where are our tax dollars going? Next up will be their $250 million Convention Center? How insane can you get?

 
At 03 September, 2016 , Anonymous another parent said...

I'm not going to vote for Trump or Hillary. But I WILL vote for Audrey Clement. We DO have a real choice on November 8th.

 
At 03 September, 2016 , Anonymous Earth to Urban Village Idiots said...

Don't like this Independent and Third Party Blog? Go comment with the other Smart Growth Urban Village Idiots on ArlNow !!!

 
At 03 September, 2016 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Time for Carol Mitten and Victor Hoskins to depart from Arlington to work where their "resegregation through gentrification" agenda is desperately needed - Baltimore.

 
At 03 September, 2016 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Insane? I navigate home with a flashlight at 9 PM over Rosslyn's broken sidewalks while a DC fun couple sits in a gourmet DC restaurant and decides the spending priorities for Rosslyn's public infrastructure? Duh.

 
At 03 September, 2016 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Earth to $cott McCaffrey and $cott Brodbeck - Don't like Independents posting comments on AY? Take a carrot out of your refrigerator and sit on it.

 
At 04 September, 2016 , Anonymous MB said...

Thanks for this blog. I was also banned from ArlNow for questioning the intelligence of smart growth.

 
At 04 September, 2016 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I was also banned from ArlNow, for questioning APS's school enrollment projections.

 
At 04 September, 2016 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Media are getting rich from promoting Smart Growth, that's why.

 
At 04 September, 2016 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

To what degree is the County Board complicit in these shenanigans?

 
At 04 September, 2016 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anyone notice the local media never question the lack of candidates to challenge incumbent Democrats and when there is a challenger the local media ignore and/or trash that person?

 
At 04 September, 2016 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

This isn't Phil appointing Carol to some DC committee. This is Carol being a lobbyist for whatever Phil and others in DC Government have planned for Arlington while she's paid by Arlington taxpayers to serve as a Deputy County Manager.

 
At 04 September, 2016 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yupette, thanks for allowing anonymous comments on this blog. Much appreciated.

 
At 04 September, 2016 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

What does the County Board actually do? Holds VIP meetings with various VIPs and the County Manager and then tells the County Bureaucracy to facilitate whatever VIP projects and programs the County Board likes and wants?

 
At 04 September, 2016 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

That's about right.

 
At 05 September, 2016 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

You've left out Victor Hoskins who, in the most ambitious Gondola scenario, catches a ride on the Gondola from near his Georgetown home to Rosslyn Metro Station and thence to AED's office suite on Glebe Road via the Orange Line.

 
At 05 September, 2016 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

What else have Phil and Carol been cooking up in the 18 months she's been Deputy County Manager?

 
At 05 September, 2016 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

How about this for a vibrant Smart Growth success story? Victor's view from his luxury office suite includes the vibrant thriving Mirlex used car lot which has gone from selling used Nissan Sentras to selling pre-owned Mercedes vehicles and even a few Bentleys during Victor's tenure as AED Director.

 
At 05 September, 2016 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Car free diet? Did someone mention car free diet?

 
At 05 September, 2016 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Speaking of Smart Growth, Arlington's new Minister of Smart Growth Propaganda starts work tomorrow.

 
At 05 September, 2016 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

If $60 million is spent building a gondola transit system from Rosslyn Metro Station to Georgetown University where will the funding for new elementary school classroom additions, at $30 million each, come from?

 
At 05 September, 2016 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Parents will hold a bake sale?

 
At 05 September, 2016 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anyone know if there will be a County Board meeting at Jay's home after the chili cook off today?

 
At 05 September, 2016 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yes, there was.

 
At 06 September, 2016 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Notice that even the pre-owned car dealers are selling more pre-owned luxury vehicles. Everybody who has a garage space in a new condo building has to have one.

 
At 06 September, 2016 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Today would have been a 'drive your kids to school day' traffic disaster except the morning weather was pleasant and many parents walked their kids to school.

 
At 06 September, 2016 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yeah, have to wonder how many used Mercedes sold by Marlex end up in underground garages a few blocks away.

 
At 06 September, 2016 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

How many County Government VIPs who live in the District take the bus or Metro to work?

 

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