Alexandria, VA

(Updated 2:05 p.m.) Alexandrians have had to deal with a frustrating uptick in power outages this year, and Mayor Justin Wilson said locals are getting tired of it.

The city has faced several large-scale power outages in 2020 — including a particularly large one in October that hit 12,750 residents in Del Ray, North Ridge, Rosemont, Seminary Hill and Potomac Yard. Dominion representatives said the outage was a fluke, but city representatives pointed to the recent spate of outages as evidence to the contrary. In a letter sent yesterday, Wilson outlined local concerns and what Dominion can do to improve the situation.

“Unfortunately, I write in frustration on behalf of the 160,000 residents of the City of Alexandria, of which 66,039 are direct customers of Dominion Energy,” Wilson wrote. “The residents of our community are frustrated with the recent reliability of the electricity service that they have received, Dominion’s response to these reliability challenges and the lack of meaningful infrastructure investments planned to prevent these challenges in the future.”

In the letter, Wilson listed 16 large-scale outages between April and December.

“As you know, the City has worked with Dominion to make the large-scale infrastructure investments required to improve reliability,” Wilson said. “Over six years ago, when Dominion approached the City seeking to construct a 230KV transmission line across out community using municipal right-of-way, we convened a multi-year community process, at taxpayer expense, to work with dominion to determine the proper route. After years of work, Dominion chose to abandon the project.”

Wilson also said that for the last 15 years, the city has been sharing funding with Dominion to perform utility under-grounding and has been requiring new private and public sector development to be undergrounded — only to find that very few undergrounding projects have been undertaken by Dominion.

“In fact, it has been the City’s efforts, either through development proffers or taxpayer-funded projects that have led to most of the undergrounding efforts in recent years,” Wilson said.

In response to the concerns, Wilson asked Dominion for:

  1. A multi-year infrastructure investment plan to improve reliability of electricity service for the City of Alexandria, including appropriate exercise of all available authority under the Grid Transformation and Security Act to accelerate implementation
  2. Improved transparency for customers relating to reliability data and recovery performance
  3. An enhanced Service Level commitment for customer requests (street light repairs, property constructoin/renovation, municipal projects, etc)

The letter was sent and signed by the City Council, along with City Manager Mark Jinks and five members of the Alexandria General Assembly delegation.

“We understand how critical reliable energy is for our customers,” said Dominion spokesperson Peggy Fox. “We take these concerns seriously and work to continually improve our service.”

Photo via Dominion Energy/Facebook

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Just Listed highlights Alexandria City properties that came on the market within the past week. This feature  is sponsored by the Jen Walker Team (Licensed in VA) of McEnearney Associates Realtors®. 

Welcome Back!

Jen Walker here with The Jen Walker Team! We are a real estate group based out of Alexandria. I, along with my two rock-star team members, Sue Kovalsky and Micki MacNaughton, have more than 35 years of experience in real estate and sold over $103 million in 2019.

Join us this Saturday, Jan. 23, at 11:45 a.m. on our Instagram for a Virtual Open House featuring this Just Listed beauty in Del Ray.

Expert craftsmanship, fine details and top-of-the-line finishes are evident in every room of the beautiful Del Ray gem. Southern-style porch welcomes you to six spacious bedrooms, four full baths and three levels of grand living space. The gourmet kitchen overlooks the large living room with a gas fireplace. Take advantage of this excellent location, walkable to “The Avenue” in Del Ray and easy access to the Metro.

14 Caton Avenue W., Alexandria, VA 22301The Jen Walker Team

Another Just Listed home is available for your viewing pleasure Saturday, Jan. 23, at 11 a.m. on our Instagram!

This is a 3 BD/1.5 BA brick semi-detached home just blocks to “The Avenue.” An open floor plan on the main level boasts an updated kitchen with granite countertops and stainless appliances. Fine three large bedrooms upstairs with ample closet space, and beautiful hardwood floors throughout the home. Enjoy COVID-safe entertaining outside on the fabulous, large patio. Park in the driveway and walk to Braddock or King Street Metro, Del Ray and Old Town.

1316 Commonwealth Avenue, Alexandria, VA 22301The Jen Walker Team

Lastly, but certainly not least, is this newly listed condominium on Eisenhower Avenue with amenities galore! See it yourself this Sunday, Jan. 24, at 11 a.m. on our Instagram!

This is a fabulous 2 BD/2 BA updated condo. It has a great kitchen with granite countertops and lots of cabinetry. The living/dining room features wood flooring and fresh, neutral paint. There are two spacious bedrooms and en-suite bathrooms — great for everyday living. The patio off the living room is ideal for morning coffee or relaxing in the summer. Community amenities include a basketball court, community pool, clubhouse and more. There’s one garage space. Welcome home!

4850 Eisenhower Avenue, #105, Alexandria, VA 22304The Jen Walker Team

Click here for Just Listed properties in Alexandria and call The Jen Walker Team to schedule a home tour at 703-675-1566 or email [email protected].

Additional Just Listed properties include:

In this midst of COVID-19, we will not be hosting any in-person open houses. We will, however, be going live on our Instagram every weekend for our virtual tours. Stay updated with our virtual tours by following us on our Instagram page for updates.

Happy House Hunting!

In our highly competitive Alexandria market, the Jen Walker Team has the insider knowledge to connect you with homes that are not even public yet. With more than 35 years of experience, the Jen Walker Team has the expertise to answer questions, calm fears, and streamline your transaction. Want to see other homes not featured in this article? Contact our team today!

Please note: While The Jen Walker Team provides this information for the community, they may not be the listing agents of these homes. Equal Housing Opportunity.

McEnearney Associates Realtors®, 109 S. Pitt Street, Alexandria, VA 22314 #WeAreAlexandria

Just Listed highlights Alexandria City properties that came on the market within the past week. This feature is sponsored by the Jen Walker Team (Licensed in VA) of McEnearney Associates REALTORS®.

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Alexandria Police are investigating a series of hit-and-runs that damaged cars in the West End last month.

On Dec. 13 at around 11:15 p.m., Alexandria police responded to the area of N. Van Dorn Street and Sanger Avenue in the West End in reference to a motor vehicle crash.

Police found a blue Subaru Impreza “sitting across the sidewalk and in the grass of the north side of Sanger Avenue,” according to a search warrant affidavit. “Upon further examination, (the officer) observed damage to not only the blue Subaru Impreza, but also the red Hyundai Elantra parked behind it, and a red Honda Civic parked behind that.”

The 911 caller told police that she saw a silver or gold SUV drive past her on the wrong side of the road at a high rate of speed, and then reported that it crashed into parked cars. The witness told police that a man exited the car, approached her car and pulled on the door handle.

Another witness was on his balcony and saw a silver or gold sedan crash into parked vehicles. He then said that the driver got out of the car briefly, got back into it and then drove away from the scene. He also said that the car was smoking when he left, and that the suspect was a Hispanic male about 5-foot-9 with black hair, a black T-shirt and blue jeans.

At around the same time, Alexandria Police responded to another hit and run by a gold Acura in the 1400 block of N. Beauregard Street. The car was later found less than a half mile away in the 5400 block of Sheffield Court, according to the search warrant.

Police spoke with the registered owner of the car three days later, and he told police that he let another man use the car from Dec. 11 to Dec. 14. Police contacted that man, who had a key to the Acura, but said that it must have been stolen.

No one has been arrested in connection with these incidents.

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Police are currently investigating a body discovered in the area of Homes Run Parkway near Cameron Station.

Alexandria Fire Department spokeswoman Raytevia Evans said that around 9:35 a.m. they received a call and dispatched an inland rescue unit for the report of a possible body in the water.

Police are currently investigating scene and Evans said the fire department is standing by to remove the person once the investigation is completed.

Photo via Google Maps

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Beyer Says Congress Needs to Pass COVID-19 Relief Bill — “Last week was the 44th week in a row in which more Americans filed new unemployment claims than in any week on record prior to 2020. Damage from delaying relief still hitting American families, which shows how important it is for Congress to move quickly on the next relief bill.” [Twitter]

Mayor Says Alexandria Needs More COVID-19 Vaccines — “My friend @JeffreyCMcKay is absolutely right. NoVa jurisdictions have been planning for administration of vaccinations for months. We have the staffing, volunteers, processes and community partnerships in place to vaccinate our population. We just need more vaccine doses.” [Twitter]

Alexandria Fire Department Protected Potomac During Inauguration — “#DCsBravest also played a key role in helping to protect the waterways during the inauguration. Our Fireboats worked in conjunction with @DCPoliceDept Harbor Division, @USCG @AlexandriaVAFD and other maritime assets.” [Twitter]

Democrat Kirk McPike Announces Run for City Council — “As our city recovers from the COVID-19 pandemic, we will need leaders who are ready for the challenges and opportunities that lay ahead. My experience on commissions that deal with housing affordability and the city budget, along with my work in legislative offices, have prepared me to serve on the City Council in these trying times.” [kirkmcpike.com]

ALX-OPOLY Game Available for Pre-Order — “You can now order ALX-OPOLY in any quantity! Explore one of our nation’s most fascinating cities from the comfort of your living room. No matter which space you land on, you’ll see how this city has charmed residents and visitors from around the world.” [ChamberALX]

Today’s Weather — “Sunny along with a few clouds (during the day). High 51F. Winds WNW at 10 to 20 mph. A few clouds from time to time (in the evening). Low 27F. Winds NW at 10 to 15 mph.” [Weather.com]

New Job: Dog Daycare Pack Leader — “We are looking for responsible individuals that love dogs but are also capable of working with a group of dogs in a dog daycare setting. YOU MUST HAVE EXPERIENCE EITHER IN A DOG DAYCARE OR VET. OWNING A DOG IS NOT THAT KIND OF EXPERIENCE. We are looking for an individual that is committed to dogs and their care. You need to be attentive – be able to follow a set of daily activities with the dogs, and be able to be on your feet for the majority of your work day.” [Indeed]

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After a recommendation for approval by city staff and the Planning Commission, a proposed replacement of the Linday car dalership campus North Ridge is headed to the City Council this weekend.

The plan is to build a new 36,500 square foot Volvo automobile sales/service facility building, a 34,873 Lexus sales facility building and a 63,066 square foot Lexus service facility building with above grade and under-ground parking facilities throughout the site.

The facilities are located at 1511 N. Quaker Lane, 1707 Osage Street, and 1525 Kenwood Avenue.

The planned replacement drew some concern from nearby residents about whether the existing divide from the surrounding neighborhood was sufficient, and in response the developer has increased the size of the proposed fence at the site. While the new project is larger, it will be placed further back from the neighborhood than the current buildings.

The replacement is scheduled to be reviewed a the City Council meeting on Saturday (Jan. 23).

Images via City of Alexandria

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Just after midnight on Dec. 21, Alexandria Police received a 911 call from a city resident saying that she could hear a woman screaming for help in the 2200 block of N. Van Dorn Street in the West End.

The woman in distress allegedly pulled out a knife when approached by police, and was then commanded to drop it. An officer used a TASER on the woman and she was placed in handcuffs, according to a search warrant affidavit.

A witness told police that “he saw the female either fall or get thrown out of a vehicle,” according to the affidavit. “(The woman) was admitted to the hospital and was diagnosed with multiple injuries, to include a severe dislocation of her elbow. This injury was so severe that (her) arm was subsequently amputated at Alexandria Hospital.”

Police soon found inconsistencies in an interview with a man who later identified himself as the woman’s boyfriend. Shortly after the incident occurred, the man arrived at the hospital to check on the victim and said that he did so at the behest of her worried mother.

The man later told police that he had a romantic relationship with the woman, that she’d been in the United States for only a year and had no family in the city. He said that before her encounter with police she was out with a male friend he only knew as “G-Man”, and that he only found out about her injuries after receiving a worried call from her mother. He then said that he decided to check into area hospitals in the off chance that she had been admitted.

The man’s story fell apart — namely that he hadn’t seen the woman since her supposed dinner with G-Man — when he revealed to police that he was in possession of the woman’s cell phone. Police then seized the woman’s phone.

The man, who has not been charged with any crime in relation to this incident, then “admitted that he was lying about what happened,” according to police.

The man then told police that the woman showed up at his business, and started acting erratically and screaming. He then said that he was able to get her into his car and that she continued acting erratically and pulled over three-and-a-half miles later. He said that she then got out of the car and ran toward the Exxon station at Kenmore Avenue, which is near to where she was found by police.

The man then told police that he parked his car in a nearby shopping center and went looking for the woman. When he got back to his car he found it was being towed and showed police a tow receipt that had the time of 12:34 a.m. stamped on it.

“I found this significant because the initial 911 call came in at 12:04 a.m.,” police noted in the affidavit. “Therefore, if (the man) was indeed out looking for (the woman) and returned to his car to find it being towed, there was no way he wouldn’t have seen the massive police response to the area of (2200) North Van Dorn Street. It should be noted that approximately 12 Alexandria Police Units responded to the 911 call.”

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Alexandria Mayor Justin Wilson announced his bid for reelection to a second term this morning. He currently stands unopposed in the Mayor’s race, according to the city’s office of Voter Registration and Elections.

Wilson, who defeated then-Mayor Allison Silberberg in the democratic primary in June 2018, has presided over an unprecedented period in Alexandria’s history that has been marked by social strife and a pandemic.

“I am proud of how we have weathered this storm, but we must now lead the recovery,” Wilson wrote in a campaign email. “With that optimism for the City’s future, I am excited to seek your support to serve a second term as your Mayor.”

Wilson cited numerous challenges that have marked his tenure, in addition to new opportunities with the redevelopment of Landmark Mall into a hospital, funding for five new public schools, launching the construction of the Potomac Yard Metro station and investments in sewers.

“We are in a unique and challenging moment for our City,” Wilson said in his message, and also appealed for donations to his campaign. “Our success has never been assured. It has been created through generations of leaders who have placed the City’s future first.”

Wilson, who is married with two children, was elected in a special election to Council in 2007 after the resignation of then-Vice Mayor Andrew Macdonald. He lost reelection in 2009, was elected in 2012 and was elected as Vice Mayor in 2015. For his day job, he is a senior manager for Amtrak.

Two members of City Council — Vice Mayor Elizabeth Bennett-Parker and Councilwoman Del Pepper —  are not running for reelection. Three members of the Alexandria Democratic Committee have filed paperwork to run for Council.

The democratic primary for the mayoral and city council races is Tuesday, June 8, and election day is Tuesday, Nov. 2.

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Odie is all about domesticity, and the 10-year-old gray and white domestic short-haired cat is looking for a new home in Alexandria.

The affectionate feline is currently up for adoption with the Animal Welfare League of Alexandria.

“Odie is so sensational at being a cat that he’s pretty sure you won’t need any other cats, once you have him in your life,” AWLA spokesperson Gina Hardter told ALXnow. “Odie is pretty easy to please. All he needs is some cuddle time with his best friend and treats as a bonus.”

If you’d like to learn more about Odie and schedule time to meet him either in person or virtually, visit AlexandriaAnimals.org/Adopt-By-Appointment.

Odie has been front declawed and can be seen in the video below.

Photos via AWLA

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Police confirmed last week that roughly one-third of the the shootings last year were connected.

In 2020, Alexandria experienced an increase in shots fired calls with a total of 55 confirmed cases as compared to 37 in 2019. One-third of those occurred last fall, between September and December.

So far this year there have been three confirmed shots fired incidents, with two of them taking place a block apart.

Police said in a press release that they are working with the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives on the case and have made 20 arrests.

Anyone who hears gunfire is asked to call Alexandria Police Sgt. William Taylor at 703-746-6271. Callers can remain anonymous.

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