Special Alert: Columbia Pike Traffic Changes & Local Detours
CHCA Meeting, Monday, January 13th, 2020, 7 pm – 9 pm
Location: Walter Reed Community Center
7:00 PM President’s Update and the goals for tonight (we still need to add a new delegate for CivFed) – (Ron Haddox)
7:05 PM Approval of the Meetings tonight agenda and the Dec 9th meeting minutes. (Marian and Ron)
7:10 PM CHCA teaming up the three civic association in Crystal City and Livability 22202 Presentation at Civic Federation (Sarah and Ron)
7:15 PM Should Metro Be Arlington’s Plan for Columbia Pike? (Takis and All)
Special Note: Short before the holidays, WMATA published the long-awaited Blue, Orange and Silver Line Capacity and Reliability Study. There it proposes 6 possible future expansions for the Silver Line, one of which (Concept #6) positions the line right under Columbia Pike!
WMATA is currently seeking input from citizens in the region (online survey: here) and will be working on a final proposal in the course of next year (2020).
The prospect of the Silver line going through Columbia Pike generates a lot of interest and discussion in our community.
7:45 PM Formal Resolution regarding the parking proposals for the Career Center (ALL)
7:50 PM Resolution to APS and the County Board regarding our position on its proposed renovations (concerns about cutting study space/going mostly digital, etc). Discussion and a formal vote are requested by Juliet Hiznay. (ALL)
8:00 PM Career Center BLPC/PFRC update (Takis and Marian)
8:15 PM Arlington Arts / Transit Station Art update (Juliet)
8:25 PM Update on Pupatella and Rite Aid– (Reggie and Ron, Mostly Reggie and ALL)
Notes and Insight From Reggie:
Are you aware that Pupatella Neapolitan Pizza at 1621 South Walter Reed Drive had a “soft” open house today (“soft” because they ran out of flour)? It was MOBBED by our dear neighborhood locals, tonight around 8:30 pm. The place is great: fashionably decorated, clean, and friendly. Terrific Neapolitan pizza menu! If you are already up on this news, then disregard it. However, if you are not, spread the word! I don’t have the civic association mailing list just yet.
Here’s the low down on the Rite Aid use permit property. Use Permit 2945-98-4 at 2820 Columbia Pike was approved by the Arlington County Board in 1998 for a pharmacy with a driveway, subject to conditions requiring an extensive site development, parking, and landscaping plan, associated with a comprehensive sign plan.
The conditions, as many as 25 of them, were very detailed. They ensured that the entire site is kept clean and well-managed, from landscaping to paving. From what I can tell, the use permit is not in compliance with three of the conditions concerning landscaping and site maintenance: #7g, #19, and #24.
Condition #7g, among other tasks, requires the applicant to submit a maintenance agreement ensuring site upkeep beyond the nursury’s two-year guarantee for the site’s trees.
Condition #19 requires the submission of contact information to the two civic associations (Douglas Park and Columbia Heights), CPRO, and the Office of the Arlington County Zoning Administrator.
Condition #24 requires the applicant to provide a business staff member to pick up site trash daily.
There may be other conditions that the applicant is violating, but at least the above three, I believe are not being in complied with.
Now, Zoning Office officials inform me that someone dropped the ball during the intervening years since the last County Board review of this use permit. The last County Board review in 2006 continued this use permit, subject to all previous conditions with an administrative review in six (6) months (evidently to address landscape deterioration issues), and with a County Board review in two (2) years: 2008. Somebody didn’t follow through, and the 2008 County Board agenda never saw that review as scheduled!
I’ve never known that to happen, but now that it has Zoning Office officials have advised me to contact the enforcement arm of the Zoning Administrator. Zoning Enforcement deals with use permits that are no longer being reviewed and any use permit violations involved.
Therefore, Zoning Enforcement is where I recommend the CHCA starts, in addressing use permit property management at 2303 Columbia Pike.
Reminder CHCA is no longer using yahoo.com. Columbia Height’s new list server is groups.io FYI. ColumibaHeightsCA is still our group name. Please pass the word about our new listserve.