MINUTES OF NORTH ROSSLYN CIVIC ASSOCIATION GENERAL MEETING
May 19, 2011
The meeting was called to order by President Jennifer Zeien at 7:05 PM. Board members in attendance were Jennifer Zeien, Mark Antell, Paul Derby, Mort Friedman, and Landis Jones.
Representatives of the B.F. Saul Company (Mary Beth Avedesian, Lauren Keenan, and Attorney Tad Lunger) presented the company’s plans for the redevelopment of the recently acquired Colony House property. They plan to put an extended stay hotel on the site. Before they can file a site plan for 4.1 review, the GLUP must be amended to allow rezoning of the property from low-medium density (C-2; hotel height limited to 45’) to low hotel use (CO-1.5, maximum height 150’). The hotel will be LEED Silver. The representatives showed examples of other B.F. Saul projects. They stated that it is their intent to retain ownership of, and manage, the hotel, and that this is consistent with B.F. Saul’s practice. Viewed from the Lee Highway side, the building will have two levels of parking plus eight stories of guest rooms, all above grade; the total height above Lee Highway will be 105’. They claimed that the top of the hotel will be on line with that of the apartment building immediately uphill on Quinn. [N.B. According to the USGS map of the area, Quinn rises 65’ from Lee Highway to Key Boulevard]. The entrance will be off Quinn. B.F. Saul plans to run a shuttle bus from the hotel to the Rosslyn Metro station. They are negotiating with Marriott and Hilton Hotels to brand the building. They are filing for the GLUP amendment now and expect the re-use study to take six months, followed by three months for rezoning approval; then they will submit their proposed site plan for review.
A number of questions were asked by the attendees. Mark Antell asked whether, as is common practice, any community benefits, such as arrangements for use of the hotel pool, would be provided. The Saul representatives said they would be receptive to proposals regarding community benefits.
[N.B. There are two postings on the NRCA website in reference to the B.F. Saul proposal: (1) the graphics that accompanied the B.F. Saul presentation, posted by Mr. Derby on May 19; (2) additional information regarding the proposal, posted by Ms. Zeien on May 25.]
It was moved and seconded to approve the minutes of the February 3, 2011 NRCA General Meeting. The motion passed unanimously.
Mr. Derby presented the Treasurer’s Report. The Association numbers 33 paid members. A more complete report, including the Association profit and loss statement, balance sheet, membership roll and current bank statement, is posted on the NRCA website.
Mr. Antell has temporarily replaced Brad Nierenberg as Chair of NRCA’s Key Boulevard Apartments (KBA) Redevelopment Committee. He reported that the developer, AHC Inc., has submitted an initial 4.1 plan for Staff review and County acceptance (which is not the same as approval). Mr. Antell will review the plan shortly and report back to the NRCA Board [N.B. Mr. Antell’s notes on the AHC filing were posted on the NRCA website on June 1]. Ms. Zeien has sent a letter to the Board and other County officials, objecting to the submitted redevelopment plan; the letter is posted on the NRCA site. A KBA resident cited multiple examples of poor maintenance and stewardship by AHC: delayed repair of telephone lines cut during building maintenance, preferentially installing air conditioners in apartments that were visible off property, reducing maintenance staff to the point that the safety and cleanliness of the complex were compromised, and continuing to keep the KBA residents uninformed regarding AHC’s plans for relocation and redevelopment. It was suggested that the KBA residents attending the meeting provide their neighbors with the address of the NRCA site, where more information can be found. Roa Lynn said that the KBA is on a list of candidates for designation as a historic site.
Landis Jones invited the group to suggest community benefits associated with new construction in the area, in addition to the Colony House redevelopment. These could include wider sidewalks or the improvement or preservation of green space. This information would presumably be included in the North Rosslyn Conservation Plan.
The meeting adjourned at 8:30 PM. The next scheduled General Meeting of the Association is October 20, at 7:30 PM.
Mort Friedman, Secretary
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