NRCA General Meeting Minutes
Thursday, May 15, 2014
The Atrium, 1530 Key Blvd.
The meeting was called to order by President Jennifer Zeien at 7:30 PM. Board members in attendance were Paul Derby, Jennifer Zeien, Katie Elmore, Mark Antell, Sylvia Kendra, and Terrence Brown.
1. Board Changes. Jennifer Zeien announced changes to the board. Landis Jones has retired and Brandy Schantz has been appointed board member. Brandy participated in the last board election, and she placed a very close third in the race.
2. Treasurer's Report. Paul Derby distributed the treasure’s report and stated that about 10 more membership registrations to break even on administrative costs.
3. Secretary’s Report. Sylvia Kendra stated that the minutes from the last general meeting were posted on the NRCA website. The minutes were approved with no changes.
4. Rosslyn Sector Plan Update (Realize Rosslyn). Framework document approved on April 12, 2014. Full write up can be reviewed on the Realize Rosslyn website: http://sites.arlingtonva.us/ro...slyn-plan-framework/
5. SPRC meeting regarding1400 Key Blvd./1401 Wilson. Katie Elmore had no updates – biggest point of contention is the garage door that is currently planned for entrance at Key Blvd. The NRCA role has ended and comm. Benefits recommendations have been submitted and are being considered. There is still opportunity for public input at the following county meetings:
• Transportation Commission: May 29, 2014 http://commissions.arlingtonva...ation-commission-tc/
• Planning Commission: June 2, 2014 http://commissions.arlingtonva...planning-commission/
• County Board hearing: June 14, 2014 http://commissions.arlingtonva...sion/board-hearings/
6. SPRC Meeting regarding Key Boulevard Apartment Site Plan. The last meeting, the room was against the development that AHC proposed. Issues are further explained in the SPRC website: http://projects.arlingtonva.us...oulevard-apartments/
7. Western Rosslyn Area Planning Study Working Group (WRAPS)/ http://projects.arlingtonva.us...dies/land-use/wraps/
The Arlington Public School (APS) system recently announced that they have plans for developing a multi-story urban school on the Wilson School property. Full report is on this Arlington Now link: http://www.arlnow.com/2014/04/...ilson-blvd-property/
A member of the Arlington neighborhood community, Westover, attending the meeting tonight expressed the following concerns with the APS plan:
Main concern is that it’s a mega project. The Urban school, current plan is an 8 story building, with a basketball court on the roof) plan is bigger than any in the county that will likely require 80% bussing. Although it is understood that student population growth is growing and existing schools are heavily relying on portable buildings to support growth.
A preferable use for the site would be a high school, where kids are older and can metro and walk farther. Given the tight space and lack of parking, one wonders, “What will back to school night look like?” “What will a theater night look like?” Are we creating major traffic/ transportation issues for Rosslyn? The final vote is expected to occur on June 17th.
Paul Derby talked about a similar experience he had with the development of a new urban school in a Minneapolis. Key issues that made it a success: It was designated as a Fine Arts magnet school, with voluntary enrollment / bussing. The planning time had a longer timeframe, allowing time for input from the community.
Actions for NRCA:
1. Send letters to APS. NRCA – should send a letter prior to decision. Mark Antell will to draft the letter.
2. Send a question to APA board candidates to ask their position about the school.
County board is not involved yet, and it appears that the school board is making decision unilaterally.
• Can’t imagine this will pass a transportation study. There is such a small number of children that live in Rosslyn, so we expect 80 – 90 % will need to be bussed.
• Recommend that we address APS as a group and ask that they take more time to think it out. There is not enough opportunity for community input. We expect enormous opposition.
• The right use is a choice program (magnet school) or a school for older kids.
8. Other News and Updates
• Friends of West Gateway Park. Katie Elmore reported on the last Gateway Park clean up. The group picked up litter and also met with than Arlington county Parks & Rec Office representative, Mr. Core. The group made a list of issues that needed to be addressed, such as broken lights, aging benches. Mr. Core confirmed that the fountain will likely never work again. Options for the fountain include: filling it in and creating a planter.
Next steps for NRCA: Follow up with a letter and work on a plan for next steps.
We need to remember that although Rosslyn property taxes have increased considerably, the tax dollars are not being invested in Rosslyn.
• Pedestrian Safety on Fort Myer Drive. This continues to be an issue.
• New ART service: Route 43
• State of Preservation in Arlington County. Mark Antell and Katie Elmore attended a panel discussion with the planning commissioner. The room was full of sympathetic folks to preservation. People feel attracted to a space because it creates a feeling of place. The county board doesn’t really consider historic preservation.
• Greater Greater Washington – website http://greatergreaterwashington.org/
• Post article – about the dangerous intersection. County decided to do an engineering study – look specifically at pedestrian and bike safety. Any talk of over/under pass is a community benefit from JBG.
• Next Events and Activities. 2014 meeting schedule available at http://community.northrosslyn.org/ou...vities/calendar.html
• Next General Meeting is September 25 - if you have a suggestion or want to chat – talk to us via the forum on the NRCA website.
• Summer Happy Hour will be planned soon.
• Urban Design Committee (UDC). Landis Jones departure has us looking for someone to replace him in the Urban Design Committee – Leonore Garcia has volunteered to be 2nd chair. UDC committee still needs to approve. UDC making decision for roof top signage -- - previous agreement said no roof top signs.
Comments from Audience: Rooftop signs are supported. If they are done in a nice way, I don’t see a problem. Need to conform to county ordinance.
Mark Antell indicated that he doesn’t like to see developers make an agreement with the community and then change later. It sets a bad precedent.
• Bus shelters on Moore street need to be moved – and they will reduce the amount of clear sidewalk from 16 to 10 ft.
Meeting adjourned at 8:55 pm.
I would like to replace Landis on the Urban Design Committee. Not that I, or anyone else, could truly replace Landis. Terri Prell
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