Thursday, March 27, 2014
County Board to Build Huge 'Legacy' County Office Building in Courthouse
Another classic Arlington County Design Charette (pronounced 'Charade') last night, this one held at Key School to solicit ideas from citizens about the redevelopment of Courthouse Square, especially the County-owned parking lot just north of Courthouse Plaza.
Didn't take long for County Board Member Walter Tejada to divulge the news that the County Board wants a huge new legacy County Office Building to replace the Vornado-owned office building County Government currently occupies at 2100 Clerendon Boulevard, which is 30 years old and received a makeover ten years ago. Lease on 2100 Clarendon Blvd. expires in 2018 and, according to County Staff, the County Board wants to move out.
Impetus for a new legacy County Office Building came from (who else) Chris Zimmerman. Chairman Fisette came on board when he was promised a new live theater would be part of the project. J. Walter (Nada) Tejada is the County Board member responsible for holding the community to the parameters of decisions made among County Board Members, developers, and real estate trusts (e.g., JBG and Vornado).
So what are the parameters of those decisions? There will be a huge new County Office Building, a live theater, lots of parking underground, and open space on some of what's now the parking lot, and a number of 'redevelopment opportunities' for the REITs that are on the County Board's 'approved list'.
The usual gang of Zimmercrats were on-hand, along with the police, to ensure the planning charade proceeded smoothly and no affordable housing activists interfered with the Smart Growth, New Urbanist, Urban Hipster agenda.
See you at the County Board's Public Tax Rate Meeting tonight.