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The massive Inova at Landmark project is headed to the Alexandria Planning Commission and City Council for final approval in March and the project could wrap by 2028.

The city released Inova’s development site use permit application last week and it includes new renderings for the 930,000-square-foot hospital campus. The Planning Commission’s public hearing on the project is on Tuesday, March 7, and the City Council public hearing will be held on Saturday, March 18.

Inova, which has held numerous public meetings on the project, wants construction to occur between 2024 and 2028. That schedule is subject to change, Inova’s attorney Cathy Puskar previously told ALXnow.

Inova at Landmark includes 675,000 square feet devoted to the new hospital, 130,000 square feet to a cancer center and 110,000 square feet to a specialty outpatient care center. The inpatient hospital is designed to be nine stories tall and includes a roof tower to hide hospital mechanical equipment that would make the structure 175-feet tall (16 stories).

Inova signed a 99-year ground lease for the property more than two years ago, and sent its first wrecking ball into the former Landmark Mall in May 2022. The old above-ground 550-space parking garage is the only structure that remains, and it will be retrofitted into the new hospital campus.

The project makes up a fifth of the total land use on the 52-acre West End Alexandria development. The city bought the 11-acre parcel of land for $54 million from The Howard Hughes Corporation in 2021, and Inova has a 99-year ground lease for the hospital land.

The project was designed by Ballinger and Ennead Architects, and is being managed by Inova.

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A D.C. man is being held without bond after an armed carjacking in the 400 block of S. Van Dorn Street on Dec. 16, 2022 (via Google Maps)

A 32-year-old D.C. man is being held without bond after an armed carjacking in the West End.

The incident occurred at around 7:30 a.m. on Friday, Dec. 16, when the male victim was walking to a construction job in the 400 block of S. Van Dorn Street. The victim parked his Toyota Tundra and walked a short distance when the suspect approached him from behind and pointed a handgun at him and demanded his property, according to a recently released search warrant affidavit.

The victim told police that the suspect stole his car, keys, phone, a chain necklace and a box cutter. Police tried chasing the stolen Tundra, but it eluded them.

“The vehicle refused to stop for numerous law enforcement officers,” police said in the search warrant affidavit. “In the process, the vehicle struck one vehicle that was stopped at an intersection.”

Donte Tavon Thomas was arrested near the abandoned Tundra under the Van Dorn Street Bridge, which is in the Carlyle area. Police also found a handgun with an extended magazine on the ground within “arms reach” of Thomas, according to the search warrant affidavit.

Thomas was charged with armed robbery, receiving a stolen firearm, use of a firearm in commission of a felony, providing a false identity to law enforcement, eluding police, and property damage hit-and-run.

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The City of Alexandria is looking at adding protected bike lanes (page 21) to Eisenhower Avenue and South Pickett Street in the Van Dorn neighborhood.

A report to the Transportation Commission last week reviewed some of the plans for adding protected bike lanes around the city. The plan, as recommended in the Complete Streets Five-Year Plan reviewed in June, includes adding these new bike lanes sometime in the next five years.

Protected bike lanes are facilities that are fully separated from vehicular traffic with a physical divider, like a curb, bollards or planters.

The protected bike lanes would run on:

  • South Pickett Street (from Duke Street to Edsall Road)
  • Eisenhower Avenue (from South Van Dorn Street to Holmes Run Parkway)

While that stretch of Eisenhower has traditionally been industrial areas and small clusters of local businesses, the area is gradually urbanizing with large swaths of new residential development planned.

According to a report filed at the Transportation Commission:

Staff have taken steps aimed to streamline decision-making regarding bicycle lane design and implementation. The adoption of the Curbside Prioritization Framework in the Alexandria Mobility Plan (AMP) helps staff identify where bike lanes would be a high priority. As part of this framework, bike lanes, among other items included in City plans, were identified as the highest priority use in all land use contexts.

The report said protected bike lanes are an important strategy for meeting the needs of riders of all ages and abilities.

Bike lanes have not always been fondly received in Alexandria: bike lanes were paired with a road diet on Seminary Road that stirred up some local controversy in 2019.

Image via Google Maps

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A D.C. man is in custody after an armed carjacking in the Landmark area on Friday, Dec. 16, 2022. (via Google Maps)

A Washington, D.C. man is in custody after an armed carjacking and eluding police in Alexandria’s West End on Friday morning (Dec. 16).

The incident occurred at around 10:30 a.m. in the 500 block of S. Van Dorn Street in the city’s Landmark area. Police said that the suspect brandished a handgun and that the 29-year-old male victim went to the hospital, but was not injured.

Donte Thomas, 32, was arrested about a mile away and charged with use of firearm while committing a robbery, buying/receiving a stolen firearm, eluding police, providing police with a false identification and failing to stop at the scene of an accident.

Thomas is being held without bond and goes to court on Jan. 23.

via Google Maps

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An industrial park on Vine Street, squeezed between the Van Dorn Street Metro station and the Beltway, could be replaced with a new mixed-use development — and a new potential connection to the Van Dorn Metro station.

The development plans, however, hinge on hopes that the Virginia Department of Transportation’s (VDOT) express lane plans don’t bleed over onto the site.

The development proposed is just a smidge south of the Alexandria border with Fairfax at the Van Dorn Street Metro station. Plans submitted to Fairfax County shows the current industrial park could be replaced with offices and a hotel on the west end of the site and apartments with ground-floor retail on the eastern end, per a map of the proposed development.

The project would build a new pedestrian access to the Metro from the south and a potential pedestrian/vehicular connection to the opposite side of the Beltway, though what form those connections could take are vague in the development plans.

The plans propose minimal on-site parking requirements both because it is so close to the Van Dorn Street Metro station and to encourage Metro use.

The main thrust of the amendment is a request that requirements for access across the Beltway be kept flexible as the development works around the VDOT’s plans for the area.

The amendment notes that the comprehensive plan is very specific in its recommendation of a bridge over the Beltway connecting the site to Oakwood Road, but that could be complicated by the VDOT plans to add express lanes on I-495. With the site sitting so close to the Van Dorn Street intersection, VDOT’s changes to the interchange — like potential road widening or toll infrastructure — could interfere with any plans to build a bridge at the site.

“The schematic in Exhibit A does not show the bridge from Oakwood Road across the Beltway because of the potential such an alignment may never materialize depending on the final HOT Lanes design,” the application said. “The comprehensive plan text proposed with this nomination, as described below, provides flexibility for how such access could be provided in the future.”

The application asked for flexibility to adapt transportation plans for the site to VDOTs plans for the corridor.

Image via Google Maps

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A woman was robbed in what police are calling a domestic incident on Nov. 26, 2022 in the 5700 block of Dow Avenue in the Landmark area. (Via Google Maps)

A 31-year-old Maryland man is being held without bond for allegedly robbing a 28-year-old woman in the Landmark area on Saturday night (Nov. 26).

Police said that the incident was domestic, and that it occurred at around 9:15 p.m. in the 5700 block of Dow Avenue.

A personal item was stolen from the victim, who was not injured, police said. The suspect was arrested a short time later and charged with domestic assault and battery and robbery from a person.

The Alexandria Sexual Assault Center and Domestic Violence Program is available 24/7 to listen and help at 703-746-4911.

“If you are a neighbor and know that an abusive incident is occurring, call the police immediately,” the city said. “Calling the police is simply the most effective way to protect the victim and children from immediate harm.”

Via Google Maps

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It’s been a busy week as the city announced progress on a few new policies that could give a financial boost to some Alexandrians in need.

One of the most notable is a pilot project testing out a Universal Basic Income pilot with $500 a month for local residents making less than half of the area median income. Local residents can apply for Alexandria’s Recurring Income for Success and Equity (ARISE) online.

Another funding request under consideration is $500,000 to a program that offers grants to minority-owned businesses. Minority-owned businesses were disproportionately impacted by the pandemic, and the program aims to offer support for those that may have been missed from earlier recovery programs.

  1. Alexandria seeking qualified locals to receive $500 a month for two years
  2. Pedestrian critically injured in Landmark crash
  3. No injuries after shots fired on Duke Street Sunday night
  4. Townsend Van Fleet, Alexandria City Council candidate and community leader, dies
  5. Jersey Mike’s to open in Alexandria Commons tomorrow
  6. Alexandria Hyundai gets approval to run in Del Ray until 2045
  7. Two crashes with serious injuries bookend Monday
  8. Meet the couple behind one of Old Town’s best Halloween displays
  9. Alexandria opens up about progress on Holmes Run Trail fix and Mount Vernon Trail widening
  10. City Manager Jim Parajon to discuss exchanging building heights for more affordable housing
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A pedestrian has been transported to the hospital with life-threatening injuries after being struck by a driver on Van Dorn Street this morning.

Alexandria Police spokesman Marcel Bassett said around 6:36 a.m. the police received a call about a woman struck by a car. The woman was transported to a hospital while the driver remained on the scene.

According to a release:

The North Bound lanes of Van Dorn Street between Pickett Street and Edsall Road are temporarily closed due to a car crash. The crash involved a pedestrian. The pedestrian was transported to the hospital with life-threatening injuries. APD is investigating.

As of 9:30 a.m., the northbound lanes of Van Dorn Street between Pickett Street and Edsall Road remain closed.

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Former National Tire and Batter (image via Google Maps)

A former National Tire and Battery (NTB) in the West End could be transformed into a used car dealership if the repair shop next door can get approval.

Koons of Alexandria has filed an application for a special use permit to establish a used car dealership at the former NTB building at 5800 Edsall Road, just off S. Van Dorn Street.

Koons of Alexandria also operates the repair center and car rental agency next door, which will remain there under the new proposal.

The application said the project would come with extensive interior and exterior renovations to the NTB building. The dealership would have around 50-100 cars at any given time, with some light repairs ongoing inside the building.

“With this proposal, the Applicant proposes interior and exterior renovations of the existing building to upgrade the building’s appearance, as shown in the enclosed plans,” the application said. “A total of 359 parking spaces are located on the Property and the neighboring 5800 Edsall Road site and are shared between the two buildings. The provided parking is more than sufficient to meet the needs of both buildings.”

The NTB building was built in 1995 and mostly stayed as a tire sale facility until December 2020, when NTB relocated elsewhere in the West End. In 2017 there were plans to turn it into a Land Rover/Jaguar dealership, but those ultimately fell through.

The project is scheduled for review at the Nov. 1 Planning Commission meeting.

Image via Google Maps

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Tentative location for Landmark pedestrian bridge (image via City of Alexandria)

The City of Alexandria is looking into building a pedestrian bridge over I-395 to connect the Landmark Mall site to neighborhoods west of the highway.

Last week, the Transportation Commission reviewed a potential grant application to the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) to provide funding to study the potential bridge.

The idea is to give West End residents better access to the large new development — including a new hospital and mixed-use district — currently under construction.

“The City is seeking technical assistance funding from the DOT to study the feasibility of a bicycle and pedestrian bridge over I-395 to connect the Landmark Mall site to the neighborhoods west of I-395,” a city memo said. “This will provide safe and direct access to jobs and amenities that will be available once West End Alexandria has been redeveloped.”

At the meeting, staff said without the bridge the only pedestrian access to the Landmark site for residents west of I-395 would be to either go down to Duke Street or cross on the Holmes Run Trail, which is currently still impassable following damage from a storm in 2019.

The bridge is recommended in several planning studies focused around the site, though members of the Transportation Commission said one of the challenges will be finding the right spot for the bridge in an area that’s a patchwork of private development. Transportation Commission member Melissa McMahon noted that the final bridge location could be more dependent on agreements with private land owners than any optimal connection.

The total cost of the study is $300,000, with a $240,000 grant request to the Department of Transportation and $60,000 in local matching funds. The Council is set to review the application at a meeting on Wednesday, Sept. 28. City staff said grant recipients are announced in early 2023 and, if approved, the study would start in 2024 and take about a year.

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