Saturday, July 16, 2011

Favola, County Board, County Staff Were Briefed About New EPA Stormwater Regs Before Pike Charades

Hello, Yupette,

I was told that County Staff and the County Board were briefed about the new and hugely expensive EPA stormwater regulations for the Bay weeks before the Dover, Kohl Pike Charades began (on June 24th). There was a high-level EPA briefing on June 16th. Not only is Barbara Favola serving on a COG environmental committee but her husband is a career EPA employee.

Arlington taxpayers paid at least $550,000 for Pike infill planning during FY 2011, including $250,000 for the Pike Charades from June 24-30. But the County Board, County Staff and planners knew that managing and treating stormwater from a massive increase in Pike corridor density was going to be very expensive. Nevertheless, the County Board went ahead with the Pike Charades and is going to be considering major in-fill site plans in September with (apparently) no heed paid to the EPA's 2014 stormwater treatment and management regulations.

How's that for 'governance'?


Thursday, July 14, 2011

Favola - Stormwater Upgrades May Cost $500 Million

Hello, Yupette,

Did you hear Barbara Favola's statement about the cost of stormwater management and treatment at Tuesday's County Board meeting? It's going to be very expensive. Barbara stated that stormwater management and treatment upgrdes mandated by the federal government and State of Virginia may cost more than $500 million.

So why is she and the County Board promoting higher density along the Pike and elsewhere that will generate large amounts of additional stormwater?


Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Political Parties Tell County Board to Fix Artisphere's Problems

Hello Yupette,

I am happy to see representatives of the Democratic, Republican, and Green parties were all exasperated with the management and operation of the Artisphere and spoke out at last evening's County Board meeting.

Republican Robert Atkins denounced the waste of tax dollars used to subsidize the Artisphere. Green Party Candidate for County Board Audrey Clement asked County Government to provide financial data to indicate when the Artisphere would become self-sustaining. Democrat Peter Owen criticized the Artisphere's lease agreement as censoring performing arts groups.

Response from the County Board was "Don't worry, be happy, we'll work it out, etc."

So even when all three political parties speak to the County Board on an issue, the County Board doesn't listen. Typical of every County Board meeting. It's obviously time for all the County Board incumbents to retire.


Monday, July 11, 2011

County Board to 'Shirlington' Bergmann Cleaners Site, Neighborhood

Hello, Yupette,

Another older neighborhood off a major arterial, another major redevelopment to 'Shirlington' the area. Latest is Bergmann's Cleaners on Lee Highway and the neighborhood around Bergmanns.

Proposal by the same County Planning Staff responsible for Shirlington and same law firm responsible for Shirlington is...yet another Shirlington. Did I mention none of them live in Arlington?

This followed many closed-door meetings among non-resident Economic Development staff, non-resident CPHD staff, non-resident development attorneys, and an out-of-state REIT. The North Highlands neighborhood was targeted for gentrification after the usual Arlington County 2-step process - do nothing to help middle class neighborhoods along arterials revitalize, then point to the neighborhoods as 'deteriorated' and in need of massive mixed-use redevelopment.

In fact the County Board and County Planning Staff want to exactly duplicate the 12 story Shirlington hotel-apartments-supermarket-parking complex on and around the Lee Highway Bergmann's site. Even Dover, Kohl, the County Board's pet planners, stated that Shirlington was 'poorly planned'. How much more dumb growth are they going to cram into Arlington?

Lyon Village