Tuesday, August 27, 1999


Meeting at the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association (NRECA), 4301 Wilson Boulevard, Arlington, Virginia, 22203-1860, Ellipse Conference Center (Room CC2), Free Parking for Membership Meeting, Garage Entry Up to 8:00 P.M. (See Details Below)

Membership Meeting (7:30 - 9:30 p.m.).


BVSCA Election Results

At our May 25, 1999, Annual Membership Meeting, the BVSCA members present elected by unanimous vote the Association's 1999-2000 officers and other representative positions, as follows: President, DeAndra Beck; Vice-President, Ben Axleroad; Treasurer & Secretary of Member Records, Jeffrey Green; Recording & Corresponding Secretary, David Ryan; Neighborhood Conservation Advisory Committee (NCAC) Representative, Theresa Smith; Alternate NCAC Representative, DeAndra Beck.

The Executive Committee is comprised of the 4 Officers, the NCAC Representative and Alternate NCAC Representative, and three At-Large Members, Mike Chircop, Ken Hughes, and Tom Sawner. Arlington County Civic Federation Delegates are John Massoud, David Ryan, Rohan Samaraweera, and Tom Sawner. Arlington County Civic Federation Alternate Delegates are Ben Axleroad, Richard Ellis, Valerie Preiss, and Ernest Ragland.

As the 1999-2000 Association year began in June, elected officers and other representatives assumed their positions beginning June 1. The Arlington County Civic Federation Delegates and Alternate Delegates assume responsibilities at the beginning of the Civic Federation's new membership year in September.

August 31 Meeting Agenda

7:30 pm Arlington Gateway site plan presentation

8:00 pm Virginia Square metro site plan presentation

8:30 pm Vanguard Services site plan presentation

9:00 pm Dog run siting discussion

9:30 pm Adjournment

At its June 28 meeting, the BVSCA Executive Committee voted to hold regular meetings at 7:00 pm, immediately prior to monthly BVSCA Membership meetings. BVSCA dues paying members may participate as observers in meetings of the BVSCA Executive Committee. Note: BVSCA Membership Meetings are held on the last Tuesday of each month from 7:30 pm to 9:30 pm at the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association (NRECA) building, 4301 Wilson Boulevard, in Room CC-2 of the Ellipse Conference Center. Free garage access is provided at NRECA's underground parking garage for BVSCA meeting attendees arriving between 7:00 pm to 8:00 pm only. After 8 pm, the garage's automatic exit device allows exit-only traffic.

Dog Days of August

County staff has identified a number of sites for dog runs throughout the county. When an organized group of dog owners approach the county prepared to sponsor a site in their area, county staff initiates the process of working with neighborhoods to find the most suitable site and garner neighborhood approval. BVSCA has been notified that a group of dog owners in our area has come forward prepared to sponsor a dog run. One possible site for this dog run as identified by county staff is adjacent to the pumping station on the west side of N. Kirkwood. Note: The west side of N. Kirkwood Street is within BVSCA boundaries.

Neighbors have expressed concern about this site, particularly given the implications for local wildlife, including a family of nesting foxes. An effort is underway to provide the county with alternative sites, including the space further north on N. Kirkwood, immediately below the I-66 off ramp. If you would like to hear more about this initiative or become involved, be sure to come to our August 31 BVSCA membership meeting and/or contact Mr. Chris Wadell at (703) 465-9500, or by email at acw30@aol.com.

Amassing Density

Ballston-Virginia Square residents have seen a disturbing trend emerging in recent months regarding development within our civic association boundaries. Developers, eager to capitalize on the booming prospects for development along the Rosslyn-Ballston corridor, have routinely submitted site plans to the county which far exceed the allowed density established by county zoning ordinances and Arlington County's General Land Use Plan. Like merchants at a casbah, the developers are raising the bar in expectation that these bonus density requests will be wheedled down to "acceptable" levels. The end result are bonus densities or zoning ordinance changes granted in exchange for community benefit packages. Community benefit frequently has been justified through minimally required contributions to Arlington County's Affordable Housing Fund. Sizable campaign contributions to the election funds of certain County Board members also seem to hold some Board members hostage to the wishes of local developers. Notable examples include recent County Board decisions on the 1020 North Quincy Street high rise residential development and the Vermont Courts townhouse development. While Chris Zimmerman - and more recently, Jay Fisette - provided dissenting votes that were consistent with BVSCA positions on these developments, other Board members have shown little interest in the impact on density within our civic association boundaries. It should be noted that massing density along the metro corridor is consistent with Arlington's planning goals, as is the development of blighted areas. While the benefits of appropriately managed density are clear, the cumulative effect of bonus density approvals and lax zoning standards can adversely impact our community with respect to inadequate parking, increased congestion, and diminished open space.

Steps to Pedestrian Safety

Pedestrian safety is becoming a very topical issue for our community. New high density development at Wilson Blvd. and Glebe Rd. (NRECA II and Ballston Point) and N. Fairfax Blvd. and Glebe Rd. (Arlington Gateway) will greatly increase foot and vehicular traffic at these two particularly complicated intersections. The Ad Hoc Committee on North Glebe Road Pedestrian Safety released a report on July 25, 1999, outlining steps that the county can take to improve access, visibility, timing, and safety of pedestrian crossings at these two intersections. The committee, which included representation from both the Ballston-Virginia Square Civic Association and the Bluemont Civic Association, will provide its findings and recommendations at a September 28 meeting to be jointly sponsored by BVSCA, Bluemont, and other neighboring civic associations. The County Board has already taken action on several recommendations by unanimously approving an amended site plan for the NRECA II expansion containing a community benefit package providing for some of the improvements at the Wilson Blvd. and Glebe Rd. intersection. BVSCA representatives are working to ensure that the amended site plans for Ballston Point (Wilson Blvd. and Glebe Rd., near Hechts) and Arlington Gateway (Fairfax Blvd. and Glebe Rd., across from Staples) include similar measures. This is of particularly importance since both site plan amendments include requests for bonus density and exceptions to county zoning restrictions. Our representative to the Ad Hoc Committee on North Glebe Road Pedestrian Safety is Mr. Ben Axleroad, who can be reached at (703) 525-3083.

Volunteer Opportunities

Help!!! The Ballston-Virginia Square Civic Association needs the support of interested neighbors who'd like to contribute time and talent to our organization, specifically in the following areas:

If you are willing to get involved - even on a sporadic basis - please contact DeAndra Beck at (703) 528-5126.

Miscellaneous News Items

YMCA. The YMCA has two new programs: Before & After School Enrichment (grades K-5) and Half Day Kindergarten. Please contact Patricia Skelding or Stephanie Taylor at (703) 525-5420.

Y2K Blues. Are you upgrading your printer? BVSCA would be glad to relieve you of your slightly outdated printer. The printer should be PC compatible, and color is optional. We do need the original printer software to facilitate installation. If you can help, please contact Jeffrey Green at (703) 276-2723. Note: BVSCA is not formally registered as a tax exempt, nonprofit organization, but we're happy to accept your contribution nonetheless!

Neighborhood Day. On Saturday, October 23, Arlington will celebrate its third annual Neighborhood Day. Neighborhood Day is an opportunity for people to foster community involvement with an activity or project in their neighborhood. BVSCA is looking for a volunteer (s) to help organize a neighborhood event. Anyone interested? If so, please call DeAndra Beck at 703-528-5126.

President's Prerogative

Arlington takes pride in its many civic activists, who spend countless hours working to advance the interests of our community. The Ballston-Virginia Square Civic Association has been fortunate to have two individuals residing within our neighborhood who have set a high standard for community activism. Mr. Ernie Ragland, outgoing President of BVSCA, and Mr. Richard (Dick) Ellis, outgoing Treasurer of BVSCA, served as officers of BVSCA for eight and nine years, respectively. (It would be remiss not to mention that Ernie's wife, Leslie, has been a coordinator extraordinaire, as evidenced by memorable holiday parties she facilitated in years past.) The talent and dedication that these individuals provided while working on behalf of BVSCA has been remarkable. I am confident that I can speak on behalf of the members of the Ballston-Virginia Square Civic Association to convey our gratitude to Ernie and Dick on jobs very well done.

DeAndra Beck
President, BVSCA

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