West Columbia Pike Coalition MeetingFriday March 22, 2018 7:30pm
Location: Arlinngton Mill 527 A & B
The purpose of the meeting was to suggest and discuss ideas for improvements along the Pike within the area from the Western Gateway beginning at the county line all the way through to the Village Center at George Mason Drive.
At the beginning of the meeting there were a few announcements which included information about events at the Arlington Mill Community Center and information about the Full Circle Montessori School see below. It was also announced that Columbia Hills Appartments will soon be completed. And that the $15million contract that covers work from the Western Gateway to Four Mile Run for water, sewer and sidewalks is well underway.
Christian Dorsey, Vice-Chair, Arlington County introduced the program for the evening.
Gary Mason lead the meeting.
Tell us what you like about living here
Share with us your vision for the future
Express your desires for future activities
Inform us of your interests/issues/concerns
The following is an overview of the suggestions and comments that were made during the meeting. I have placed the information in various groups which is not necessary in the order they were made.
The overall look and feel should be something like Adams Morgan in DC. The
architecture needs to be more diverse than what has already been built (the newer buildings on the Pike are beginning to look too much alike). The area should be much more colorful, with a lot more going on. More aesthetically pleasing , with fountains and green spaces.
We need to incoporate art into the Pike. One way this could be done is to include murals, controlled graffiti or street art along the lines of Banksy. This has already been done in Crystal City (see below). Suggestions included two major areas which were the end wall at Goodwill on Columbia Pike and Four Mile Run and the long wall at 5353 S. Columbia Pike. This wall is owned by the county and is a real eyesore. Other sugguestions included the outside of some businesses.
Cecilia Cassidy, Executive Director CPRO suggested using Graham Projects for the public art.
Other Street Art from Crystal City
Commerical propery needs to be more attractive. Lobby local businesses to beautify their areas
Busnesses that would bring more nightlife
Broader range of restaurants
Cafes with outside tables
Professionals with diverse services.
A good balance between day and night activities
Overall the area needs to be cleaner
We need more trash cans especially in Four Mile Run. Quite a few people that live in the neighborhoods pickup the trash in the Park while they are out walking but there are not enough trash cans and they are too far apart (which means we have to carry the trash for quite a while before being able to throw it away).
Cecilia Cassidy, Executive Director CPRO said that until recently there was just one person for the whole of Columbia Pike to clean up trash, sweep, rake leaves and mulch who worked Monday - Friday. At the moment we now have two people one whose hours include the week-end. This does not include Four Mile Run.
Coordinate with Baileys Crossroads and Seven Corners Revitalization baileyscrossroads.org
Events / Entertainment
More Cultural Events
Annual Signature Event
The Food Truck party was mentioned but it was suggested that the Signature Event be all day have a larger music venue and a better space, simular to the Blues Festival at Columbia Pike and Walter Reed which is held during June.
Flowers and Street Furniture etc
Street Furniture that is aesthetically pleasing
Install more benches along the pike.
Flowers at the edge of the road and in tubs along the sidewalk.
Include flowers in the median strip in the center of the road.
Replace and install more trash cans.
Enclose newspaper vending machines in an attractive box
We would be interested in getting street furniture similar to Rosslyn's benches, flower tubs flower containers, trash cans.
More home ownership.
Better looking houses at all price points.
Housing that will attract young people.
Lobby owners to fix up unattractive housing.
Park or Businesses
The parking lot at Four Mile Run and Columbia Pike needs to be replaced with either a park or a new building for businesses.
This lot is owned by the County
It was asked if they were any plans to upgrade Pike Plaza Shopping Center . We were told that the owners had no plans for changing this center or selling it in the foreseeable future. .
Trail via Carlin Springs
Although this was brought up during the meeting I have no comments or suggestions about the Trail.
We need the best in the region Public Transportation Network.
Buses extend Operating Hours
Buses should run into DC throughout the day but only one bus goes into DC via the Pike which is 16Y and that does not have any service between 9:00am and3:30pm.
Route: Columbia Pike and Four Mile Run to McPherson Square
Weekday Eastbound from 5:55am to 9:00am
Weekday Westbound from 3:30pm to 7:52
It does not make sense that the Pike has such limited service when Clarendon has a subway and bus service that both go into the DC throughout the day. Also the Pike has the most profitable lines so it also does not make sense that we get the worse service.
We also need a balance between cars and buses, particular in the area next to Arlington Mill Community Center on Dinwiddie. Often it is difficult to get around the buses particulally with the on street parking next to the center.