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Alexandria police are investigating after a woman was shot Sunday afternoon in the area of the 7-Eleven on South Reynolds Street at Duke Street.

Police acknowledged the shooting incident but have not yet commented on specifics. Initial details from witness reports and radio traffic suggest that the female victim had been struck by stray gunfire when gunmen opened fire around 3:20 p.m.

She was taken by private auto to the hospital before police arrived on scene. She was reported to be conscious and is expected to survive.

Police later stopped several suspects and are interviewing them to determine their involvement.

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S. Jordan Street 7-Eleven fire (Image courtesy Will Mahoney / @HeelWillMahoney)

A possible firebombing at a convenience store is under investigation.

Alexandria officials have not commented officially yet, but according to radio reports, investigators are looking for four to five men who threw Molotov cocktails into the 7-Eleven on S. Jordan Street at Duke Street around 4:30 p.m. on Monday.

The fire caused significant fire and smoke damage to the store. Fire officials did say there were no injuries reported. Firefighters spent several hours on scene after extinguishing the blaze, which had spread into the ceiling.

Fire investigators remained at the store well into the evening.

Officials have been investigating similar fires at 7-Eleven stores in the D.C. area, mostly in Prince George’s County, during the past few months. The most recent was a fire reported early New Year’s Day in Forestville.

https://twitter.com/HeelWillMahoney/status/1478143843086315520

Images courtesy Will Mahoney (@HeelWillMahoney)

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The City of Alexandria is trying to get the word out about major changes coming to a stretch of Duke Street and the connecting streets.

The proposed overhaul will change traffic patterns along Duke Street near Telegraph Road, a major connection to I-395 and a source of significant backup onto nearby residential streets. The pilot phase for the program is planned to start Monday, Jan. 3. The pilot project is scheduled to end on March 30, followed by a period of traffic analysis.

“The City is considering two pilot projects aimed at reducing regional cut-through traffic on neighborhood streets and shifting traffic onto the major arterials,” the City of Alexandria said on the project website. “To do this, we also must improve the flow of traffic on the arterials and make those routes faster than cutting through the neighborhoods. In the upcoming months, staff will be having conversations with the community on these potential projects.”

The planned change will adjust signal timing on side streets like West Taylor Run Parkway and Cambridge Road, lengthening the long lights in an effort to make those streets less appealing to drivers and, eventually, navigation apps. On the flip side, lights will stay green longer on Duke Street and Quaker Lane.

The short-term impact, the city previously admitted, could be longer backups on the very residential streets the pilot aims to protect, but the goal is an eventual decrease once drivers adjust to the new signal timing.

The city has said residents and drivers will be able to provide weekly feedback on the conditions they’re experiencing along Duke Street and/or the side streets.

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Alexandria Commons shopping center (photo via Alexandria Commons/Facebook)

The Alexandria Commons shopping center on Duke Street is planning to throw a pop-up holiday celebration next week.

The event is scheduled for Friday, Dec. 10, from 4-6 p.m. at Alexandria Commons (3101 Duke Street), a shopping center anchored by Giant.

The event is free and will include holiday music, a caricature artist, and a hot chocolate bar.

“The first 100 guests will receive an Alexandria Commons take-home hot chocolate kit,” the event organizers said in a Facebook post, “and a few surprises from Alexandria Commons merchants.”

Photo via Alexandria Commons/Facebook

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It was election week in Alexandria, so congratulations and/or condolences.

Alexandria Democrats managed to hold onto all of the City Council seats. Mayor Justin Wilson won reelection and Elizabeth Bennett-Parker was elected to the 45th District House of Delegates seat. But any local Democrat euphoria was dampened by statewide losses that Wilson warned could reverse recent local wins on some issues.

Here were the most-read stories around ALXnow this week:

  1. Developer reopens abandoned Alexandria power plant for tours later this month
  2. Cut-through traffic protections along Duke Street could go into effect early next year
  3. Man arrested for DWI, smashing cars and leaving scene while parking in Old Town
  4. BREAKING: Alexandria School Board election results
  5. Georgetown tearoom relocating to Alexandria waterfront
  6. Retail, residential, and music venue could replace North Old Town office park
  7. City Council to step up fight against Comcast internet monopoly next week
  8. BREAKING: Bennett-Parker declares victory in 45th District seat in Virginia House of Delegates
  9. Alexandria man arrested for stealing packages outside homes in Old Town
  10. Silver Parrot Jewelry permanently closing at end of year in Old Town
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Traffic backed up off Duke Street, courtesy Jill Hoffman

The city is moving forward with a pilot program that could — deliberately — make traffic slower on residential streets near Duke Street to push more drivers onto the main arterial roads.

Phase 1 of the new program, scheduled to start in January and run through March, would change signal timing along Duke Street and nearby roads, punishing drivers using residential streets to get to Telegraph Road and I-395 beyond that with longer wait times. Phase 2, which would start next fall, would prohibit access to Telegraph Road from West Taylor Run Parkway.

The goal is to push drivers, many of whom are using shortcuts recommended by navigation apps, back onto the intended main routes.

The city cautioned that, while this is aimed at alleviating the traffic difficulties for residents on the city’s side streets, there could be some growing pains.

“In the first few weeks, more vehicles could queue on neighborhood streets until they realize those routes are not faster,” the city said. “If you live in the neighborhood and want to access Duke Street before 4 p.m. and 7 p.m., it could take you longer.”

Overall the presentation said the city will monitor the impact of the pilot to see if there’s a decrease in travel times on arterial routes and an increase of travel times on neighborhood streets, and to see whether traffic increases on nearby Quaker Lane as drivers adjust.

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The City of Alexandria is looking to move forward with Phase 1 of a pilot program that could help reshape traffic patterns on Duke Street.

The pilot program will start in Phase 1 with changes to signal timing on Quaker Lane and along Duke Street for routes to Telegraph Road, an access point to I-395 that sees frequent backup during rush hour periods.

According to a presentation to the Traffic and Parking Board, the pilot would increase signal timing for traffic on Quaker Lane and closer to the Duke Street-Telegraph Road interchange while decreasing signal timing on side streets during the afternoon rush hour, from 4-7 p.m.

The goal is to cut down on cut-through traffic going through the nearby neighborhoods, which locals have said makes life miserable for those in neighborhoods just north of the crowded interchange. The pilot would, in theory, make cutting through slower and a less attractive option.

The first phase of the pilot would run through March 2022.

If the first phase of the pilot achieves those goals, it could come back later that year for Phase 2, which would re-implement those changes starting in August and would prohibit access to Telegraph road from West Taylor Run Parkway — a connecting street just north of the interchange and one where residents blame cut-through traffic for repeated crashes.

The presentation reiterated that the goal of the pilot is to keep the traffic to I-495 off the neighborhood streets and on arterial roads.

It won’t all be roses, though, and the city warned the pilot could have some growing pains for locals.

“In the first few weeks, more vehicles could queue on neighborhood streets until they realize those routes are not faster,” the city said. “If you live in the neighborhood and want to access Duke Street before 4 p.m. and 7 p.m., it could take you longer.”

Overall the presentation said the city will monitor the impact of the pilot to see if there’s a decrease in travel times on arterial routes and an increase of travel times on neighborhood streets, and to see whether traffic increases on nearby Quaker Lane as drivers adjust.

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Dreams of the long-planned Yates Pizza Palace (3000 Duke Street) are likely dead as the owner of the stalled development has filed a permit to sign the location over to be used as a hub for food delivery, the Washington Business Journal reported.

The Business Journal reported that a change of ownership permit indicates that the pizza restaurant — formerly Generous George’s Positive Pizza & Pasta Place — will be owned by a company affiliated with Reef Technology, a firm that converts spaces into neighborhood kitchens.

Yates Pizza Palace had been in the works since 2014 when Jeffrey Yates Sr., owner of Yates Car Wash and Table Talk, purchased the space. Those plans came unraveled in 2018 when Yates Sr. died after a battle with bladder cancer. In 2019, his son, Jeffrey Yates Jr., said he planned to open the restaurant with his wife Kelly Yates in 2020 — which proved to be a singularly unfortunate timing in terms of opening a new restaurant.

The Busieness Journal noted that the permit indicated that the new space will be used for making and delivering goods, like ice cream or bakery items, but that there will be no seating.

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After initially submitting plans in January for review, developer Eleventh Street Development LLC is back in the city process to get final approval on a plan to convert a parking garage at 101 Duke Street into a series of townhouses.

According to the application there will be six, four-story townhouses broken up into three buildings. Each unit would also have a two-car garage attached via central alleyway. The demolition of the existing 101 Duke Street parking garage and the new project are scheduled for consideration at the Wednesday, Oct. 6, Board of Architectural Review (BAR) meeting

“The current structure was retrofitted into a parking garage in 1988 and the first level resides within the floodplain,” said Garrett Erdle, principal at Eleventh Street Development, in a letter to the BAR. “The plan is to construct six new townhouses, with attached garages, within the footprint of the current garage.”

There could be some salve for those worried about the loss of parking in Old Town: Hotel Indigo (220 S Union Street) across the street is currently in the process of opening up its underutilized parking garage to the public.

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No one was injured or arrested after shots were fired early Sunday evening (August 29) in the 4600 block of Duke Street in the West End.

The incident occurred at around 5:30 p.m. near the Shoppes at Fox Chase and the 4600 Duke Street Condominiums. A helicopter assisted in the search for the suspect.

“Evidence was recovered at the scene,” police tweeted. “No injuries were reported.”

There was also a two-car crash on Duke Street last night. There were no injuries, although traffic traveling west was temporarily shut down.

Via Google Maps

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