Washingtonian recently included three Alexandria restaurants in their food critic’s list of 19 favorite pizzas right now.
Washingtonian’s Executive Food Editor Ann Limpert included in her list “Stracci Bianca” at Stracci Pizza (106 Hume Avenue), the vodka pizza at Emmy Squared (124 King Street) and the white clam Frank Pepe Pizzeria Napoletana (3231 Duke Street).
According to the Washingtonian review of Stracci Pizza:
This Del Ray gem makes its own stracciatella cheese—hand-pulled mozzarella soaked in cream—and it’s best shown off on this Roman-style white pizza, simply accented with olive oil and flakes of Maldon salt.
According to the Washingtonian review of Emmy Squared, which also has two locations in D.C.:
The thick, soft, Detroit-style pizzas from this Brooklyn transfer can be a little…extra. This version is relatively straightforward—just sweet, creamy vodka sauce, basil, and pecorino. The sauce is also good on the Big Ang, which adds ricotta, Italian sausage, and banana peppers to the party.
According to the Washingtonian review of Frank Pepe Pizzeria Napoletana:
I’ve lined up outside this century-old New Haven institution for its coal-fired sheet-pan pizza countless times. And now there is one at Westfield Montgomery Mall! And in Old Town! This particular pie—one of their most famous—is thin, crispy, garlicky as hell, and loaded with fresh clams.
Liquor store thefts jumped more than 200% in Alexandria in 2023, according to the Virginia Alcoholic Beverage Control Authority.
There are six Virginia ABC stores in Alexandria. The store with the most incidents is the Arlandria store at 3815 Mount Vernon Avenue in the Del Ray North Shopping Center, which saw 43 incidents of theft last year, up from just eight reported incidents in 2022. The store with the highest amount of theft is at 501 Montgomery Street in Old Town North, which saw 23 incidents.
Virginia ABC said that there were a total of 100 reported thefts from Alexandria stores last year, versus 31 thefts in 2022, an increase of 222%. The increase in thefts isn’t just being felt in Alexandria, but throughout Virginia.
“Sometimes there were more than two thefts in one day,” an employee of the Arlandria store tells ALXnow. “They just walk in, take bottles and walk out. We don’t stop them, we just call police and they come in and review the security footage and sign insurance forms.”
Virginia ABC does not employ security guards in its network of 400 stores, and is undertaking a “multi-pronged approach to address retail and internal theft,” according to Pat Kane, a public relations specialist for Virginia ABC.
“No product in our store is worth risking the safety of our team members and customers,” Kane said. “Virginia ABC values its relationships with local law enforcement. Staff are trained to gather actionable information to generate usable suspect information and leads.”
Kane said the changes include:
- Emphasizing staff interaction with customers
- Minimizing the quantity of high-theft products that are placed on shelves at any one time
- Moving products for maximum visibility by staff members
- Enhancing camera systems
- Ensuring the sight lines of camera systems
- Lowering inventory levels at stores
- Adding additional in-store staff
The Alexandria Police Department said that liquor store thefts pose a significant risk to the public, and that any suspicious activity should be reported by calling 911.
“Larceny with intent to sell or distribute stolen products is a felony and can result in jail time,” said APD Communications Manager Tracy Walker. “APD is aware of this crime trend occurring nationally and within our community and we make patrol of these store areas a part of our daily field operations and the broader strategy to suppress retail robberies.
A man was shot in the leg in the bathroom of a McDonald’s in the Landmark area of Alexandria, and the Alexandria Police Department (APD) is on a manhunt for the suspect.
APD was notified of a fight in the restaurant when two holdup alarms were activated at around 6:15 p.m., according to the police scanner. Police say that the suspect and the victim know each other.
“Two adult males who knew each other were engaged in a fight that escalated when the shooting occurred,” APD Communications Manager Tracy Walker told ALXnow. “The victim sustained a non-life-threatening gunshot wound and was transported for medical treatment.”
No other suspect information was released.
The restaurant closed for the rest of the day after the incident.
Anyone with information about this incident can call the APD non-emergency line at 703-746-4444. Callers can remain anonymous.
Alexandria has been expanding some of its “no turn on red” restrictions this year and is now eyeing five intersections along Duke Street for new limits.
In a release, the City of Alexandria said the following intersections along Duke Street, between North Ripley Street and Jordan Street, are being considered for turn restrictions.
- Duke Street and North Ripley Street
- Duke Street and South Reynolds Street
- Duke Street and North Paxton Street
- Duke Street and South Pickett Street
- Duke Street and Shoppes of Foxchase entrance
Turn restrictions are already in place at the Duke Street intersections with North Pickett Street and Jordan Street.
“The proposal is part of the Duke Street Turn Calming project to implement near-term safety improvements on Duke Street, which is one of the City’s high-crash corridors,” the city said in the release. Since 2017, there have been over 150 crashes on Duke Street between Jordan Street and Ripley Street, over a third of which resulted in a fatality or an injury.”
The release noted that all 14 crashes involving pedestrians resulted in either injury or death.
“Improving safety on the City’s high-injury network is key to meeting its adopted Vision Zero goal of eliminating fatal and severe crashes by 2028,” the release said.
Earlier this year, the city added turn restrictions to intersections along Patrick and Henry streets.
Image via Google Maps
Once again, suspected car thieves have eluded Alexandria police by driving across state lines into Maryland.
At around 10:45 a.m., the Alexandria Police Department discovered a stolen red Kia Sorrento with D.C. tags in the area of Duke Street and Callahan Drive in the Carlyle neighborhood of the city, according to the police scanner. APD reported multiple suspects inside the vehicle.
Police followed the vehicle to an Exxon station in the 2800 block of Duke Street, and after refueling, the suspects eluded police by getting on Interstate 495 and driving across the Woodrow Wilson Bridge into Maryland. An APD officer said via scanner that they would contact Maryland law enforcement officials to follow-up.
The tactic is a familiar one for suspects. Earlier this month, would-be car thieves made a brazen getaway by driving across the Woodrow Wilson Bridge.
Anyone with information on the stolen vehicle can contact the APD non-emergency number at 703-746-4444. Callers can remain anonymous.
Improvements to the pedestrian experience at Duke Street and Dulany Street aren’t just surface level: the entrances to the nearby Duke Street Tunnel are also getting a minor makeover.
The Carlyle Council said construction is ongoing today (Tuesday) on new gates for the tunnel.
The tunnel is still open, but pedestrians are asked to use caution due to construction and cyclists are asked to dismount their bicycles before entering the tunnel.
The Duke Street Tunnel allows easy pedestrian access from the King Street Metro station to the Carlyle neighborhood, though some commentators on previous stories said they either didn’t know the tunnel existed or lamented that it has fairly limited hours.
The city is also eyeing changes to Duke Street above the tunnel to make the intersection more pedestrian-friendly. The city is considering removing one of the left turn lanes at the intersection with Dulany Street — right in front of the entrance to the Carlyle neighborhood — and replacing it with a pedestrian island.
Image via Google Maps
While the City of Alexandria is eyeing major changes to Duke Street west of Old Town, one change could be coming to the street right as it passes the Carlyle neighborhood.
The city could be swapping out one of the left turn lanes at the intersection with Dulany Street with a pedestrian refuge.
“Currently, there are two left-turn lanes that serve drivers traveling westbound on Duke Street and turning left onto Dulany Street into the Carlyle neighborhood,” staff said in a report (page 35) to the Traffic and Parking Board. “Staff has received past comments from residents and observed that the two left-turn lanes appear to be significantly
The report notes that dual left-turn lanes are relatively uncommon and typically reserved for intersections with extremely high left-turn volumes, as they create challenges such as:
- Limited visibility of pedestrians in the crosswalk.
- Greater number of conflict points, which carries an increased risk of crashes.
- Limited ability to allow for concurrent left-turn movements for both directions, which can impact intersection operations.
- Contribution to an overall auto-dominated street environment that can be intimidating for people walking and biking.
- Reduced space for other intersection design features.
The city created dual left-turn lanes at Eisenhower Avenue and Mill Road recently. The project was criticized by city leaders as being outdated and out of keeping with new Vision Zero standards, but by the point it came back for city review, it was too expensive to cancel.
At Duke Street, staff said the dual left-turn lanes are underutilized.
“Staff found that the volume of left turns is regularly less than 50 vehicles per hour during the peak period,” the report said. “Based on this analysis, dual left-turn lanes are not warranted, and one left-turn lane is sufficient to accommodate left-turning vehicles from westbound Duke Street to southbound Dulany Street.”
Instead, the report said the recommendation is to install a new pedestrian refuge area for the existing crosswalk, “a treatment that is shown to reduce pedestrian crashes at intersections by up to 46%,” the report said.
A pedestrian tunnel also runs beneath Duke Street, connecting the King Street Metro station to the Carlyle neighborhood.
The proposal is scheduled to go to the Traffic and Parking Board today (Monday) at 7 p.m. for review.
Image via Google Maps
The Alexandria Police Department (APD) said a woman was seriously injured when she was struck by a driver on Duke Street yesterday.
APD said around 9:46 a.m. on Sunday morning, officers responded to a collision involving a pedestrian at the Duke and Paxton Streets intersection.
“The adult female sustained serious but non-life-threatening injuries,” APD said.
Scanner traffic indicated the woman may have been hit and trapped under an SUV.
WOMAN RUNOVER BY SUV— Duke St at North Paxton St in Alexandria. Amazingly, she has was sounds like NLT injuries despite being completely run over and trapped under the SUV. #VATraffic @AlexandriaNow pic.twitter.com/Dy6Qzu1Pta
— Alan Henney (@alanhenney) October 22, 2023
The driver remained on scene and was cited for failure to yield, police said.
Notification: At 9:46 a.m. this morning, APD officers responded to a collision involving a pedestrian at Duke and Paxton Streets. The adult female sustained serious but non-life-threatening injuries. Driver remained on scene, cited for failure to yield. pic.twitter.com/JD1cd9tVXo
— Alexandria Police (@AlexandriaVAPD) October 22, 2023
Image via Google Maps
There is good news for those grumbling about potholes along King Street and Duke Street: repaving season will sweep over the two arterial roads this month.
Repaving work is scheduled to run this month from Tuesday, Oct. 10 to Friday, Oct. 27.
King Street’s eastbound side is being repaved from Janneys Lane to Russell Road, ending where the city is also working on a redesign of the intersection at the foot of the George Washington Masonic National Memorial.
Duke Street will also get some work from Dulany Street — just south of the King Street Metro station — to S. Patrick Street.
Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)-compliant ramps are also being added to Clyde Avenue and Cameron Mills Road.
As part of the repaving work, new stormlets are also being installed on King Street, Commonwealth Avenue, and a few other locations.
Residents on streets being repaved should receive a notice one week in advance of repaving. Temporary no parking signs will be installed on the blocks and vehicles on the street in work areas will be towed.
Here is a list of streets and concrete work scheduled to be completed by October 27. Work may be adjusted depending on weather, equipment, and other circumstances. Visit https://t.co/iT7QKwdUSR for more information. pic.twitter.com/O3jy2xxOut
— Alexandria Transportation & Environmental Services (@AlexandriaVATES) October 3, 2023
Anyone driving along Duke Street tonight should be warned that traffic might be heavier than usual.
Intermittent traffic stoppages are scheduled along westbound Duke Street between South Walker Street and the bridge over I-395, along with the westbound Duke Street off- and on-ramps.
“The traffic stoppages lasting up to 20 minutes each will occur between 10 p.m. Thursday and 4 a.m. Friday, Sept. 22 along westbound Duke Street,” the Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) said in an email, “as well as on the ramp from westbound Duke Street to northbound I-395 and on the ramp from northbound I-395 to westbound Duke Street.”
VDOT said drivers should expect delays and are advised to use alternate routes.
The repaving work is part of a project to fix up the bridge over I-395.
“The work is part of the project to rehabilitate the Duke Street bridge over I-395,” VDOT said. “The improvements will extend the overall life of the bridge and improve safety for drivers, bicyclists and pedestrians, and include replacing the concrete bridge deck and beams, upgrading the westbound sidewalk to a shared-use path, and widening the eastbound sidewalk.”
The project is scheduled for completion this winter.