Tag Archives: Pentagon City

An excellent neighborhood in Arlington County, Va. that mixes suburban and urban characteristics. I live there for 6½ great years and still miss it.

Bigger ice rink, longer season sought for Pentagon Row

County Board to Vote on Changes at Pentagon RowARLnow.com
Arlington County is going to vote of changes to Pentagon Row in my old Pentagon City neighborhood. The most welcome is a larger ice rink and a longer season for it.

The proposal includes plans to expand the length of the ice rink by 40 feet, add synthetic turf and add two 800 square foot freestanding retail structures. Approving the proposal would also add an additional month to the ice rink’s operating season, making it October through March, instead of November through March.

Synthetic turf? Not crazy about that, though I know somebody who might visit specifically because of that feature. Also, don’t they have enough retail that’s empty before adding more?

Sadly, I haven’t gotten out to the rink this year, I have probably run out of time. D’oh.

Digg This
Reddit This
Stumble Now!
Buzz This
Vote on DZone
Share on Facebook
Bookmark this on Delicious
Kick It on DotNetKicks.com
Shout it
Share on LinkedIn
Bookmark this on Technorati
Post on Twitter
Google Buzz (aka. Google Reader)

Recalling Virginia’s attempts to get a baseball team

Yesterday, Mr. Irrelevant linked to Unrealized Concepts section of StadiumPage.com prompting many of us to poke around. There is a treasure trove of information about ballparks that never were in this site that dates back to 1998 (and looks it).

Over at The Nats Blog, Will Yoder takes a look at the proposed Virginia stadiums and reminisces about growing up in Arlington and being part of the pro-stadium movement. After the failed attempt to land a team for Washington, D.C. in the 1991 expansion, Virginia was seen by several prospective ownership groups to be more attractive to MLB since it was not as close to Baltimore as D.C. This continued up until 2004 when it was obvious that there needed to be a solution to the Montreal Expos situation.

When it came to Virginia baseball I was not active like Yoder in pursuing it, never doing anything more than posting a link on the early version of my Web site. Despite growing up in Vienna, I always preferred the idea of a D.C.-based team. In 1991 when baseball was expanding, I went to one of the exhibition games in RFK Stadium — the COMSAT Baseball Classic. Ultimately, Florida and Colorado got picked over William Collins bid (the team would have been called the Washington Nationals). I also went the next year, in a block W Senators cap, seeing the Phillies and somebody else, maybe the Red Sox. My dad even took my brother and I out of school one Friday so that we could see the Yankees and Mets at RFK Stadium, but it was canceled due to a muddy field after a day of rain. We did get to see Collins “retire” Frank Howard‘s #33 though. They said it was going to be hung up in RFK Stadium. I’d love to see DC Sports Bog dig up the story on that sometime.

As the ’90s rolled along, the cause of D.C. baseball all but died. Collins shifted his efforts to Virginia and nearly bought the Astros, but they got a last minute stadium deal to stay in Houston. I did not pay too much attention to the prospects of baseball here, because I was attending Penn State and enjoying the resurgent Yankees. My only trip to RFK during the time was for the 1996 HFStival — I looked to see if Howard’s #33 was hanging up anywhere and it wasn’t.

After graduating from Penn State and moving into Pentagon City, I started getting interested in the prospects of baseball returning. Two locations in Pentagon City were considered for a ballpark: a still vacant plot along Army Navy Drive between Fern and Eads Streets and the existing location of Costco. If I recall correctly, Cafrtiz owned the Army Navy spot and had no interest in parting with it for a stadium. My wife recalls that we got something about the potential for a stadium slid under our door. I knew neither of those locations, nor the proposed Rosslyn one next to the twin towers, were non-starters. They wouldn’t have been bad spots, if not for being outside of D.C. and Arlington County‘s complete disinterest in them.

I would have ultimately supported a Virginia team, probably with the same enthusiasm as I have now if it had been in Arlington or Alexandria, but probably not as much if it were located all the way out by Dulles Airport since I live inside-the-Beltway. Thankfully, it didn’t happen that way. I can’t imagine many people from Maryland or even the District would be crossing the Potomac to see a Virginia team in any of those locations. Washington has more cachet than Virginia and frankly, despite living in the commonwealth since I was 2, I think of myself more of a Washingtonian than a Virginian. As half-assed as MLB’s placement of the Expos was, at least they put them in D.C.

ADDED: Dave Levy of WeLoveDC has a write-up about it too.

Digg This
Reddit This
Stumble Now!
Buzz This
Vote on DZone
Share on Facebook
Bookmark this on Delicious
Kick It on DotNetKicks.com
Shout it
Share on LinkedIn
Bookmark this on Technorati
Post on Twitter
Google Buzz (aka. Google Reader)

I thought the constant helicopters were a perk of living in Arlington

Arlington abuzz over low-flying helicoptersWTOP
Some Arlington County residents are unhappy about the helicopter traffic throughout the county. Wait a minute, I thought the helicopters were a perk of living in Arlington!

I lived in Pentagon City for 6½ years, in a building (The Potomac at Riverhouse) which is a block away from the Mixing Bowl — the I-395 Shirley Highway/VA 27 Washington Blvd interchange*; many helicopters fly over I-395 at a fairly low altitude throughout the day. I enjoyed all the helicopter traffic because helicopters are really cool. Sure, there is the whole “protecting us from threats” function of many of these helicopter trips, so liking them is akin to the “I ♥ Jet Noise — the sound of freedom” saying you here around Air Force bases and Naval Stations, but helicopters are great just for their own sake. Growing up, I lived in Vienna, under a higher altitude helicopter corridor and it was also great. I’m probably still in the same helicopter flight path where I work in Tysons Corner. Where I live now, the west end of Alexandria near I-395, has many of the same helicopters that Arlington does. I enjoy them and so does my son.

In fact, after the Pentagon was attacked and the pad was destroyed, I missed the constant helicopters flying around. It didn’t feel like home without them.

By the way, funny story about those helicopters. I knew somebody who lived in Riverhouse over 40 years ago. The helicopters were flying by back then too. Years later, he met a helicopter pilot and somehow they got on the topic of the flybys, specifically on Saturday mornings. The pilot volunteered that he flew lower than normal those days because there was a redhead on high floor who used to do her calisthenics with the blinds open and “nothing on but the radio.” Well, the pilot did not know that the radio was on, just that nothing else was.

*The original Mixing Bowl was the Shirley Highway (then VA 350) interchange with Washington Boulevard. It was rebuilt around 1971 and turned into one of the largest interchanges in the world. Unfortunately, The Post ignored this and started referring to the Springfield Interchange as the Mixing Bowl — one of the worst things they ever did.

Digg This
Reddit This
Stumble Now!
Buzz This
Vote on DZone
Share on Facebook
Bookmark this on Delicious
Kick It on DotNetKicks.com
Shout it
Share on LinkedIn
Bookmark this on Technorati
Post on Twitter
Google Buzz (aka. Google Reader)

Alleged Russian spies busted in Riverhouse

I had not yet read about the latest tale of alleged Russian espionage (The Post) when Fritz mentioned on Facebook that some of them lived in Riverhouse apartment complex in the Pentagon City neighborhood of Arlington. Based on the photos I’ve seen, they apparently lived in the building Fritz moved out of last week, The Ashley. I lived in the middle building of the complex, The Potomac, for 6.5 wonderful years. I’m not shocked spies lived there either, though maybe they should have lived a little further up Arlington Ridge Road…


Try to forget Sean Young was in that movie

See Fritz, you move out of Riverhouse and it all goes to hell.

I also grew up one street over from Robert Hanssen in Vienna; my brother and I had friends on that street and we used to ride our bikes through the park he got busted in. So, I guess after I move out of my condo, some spies will be busted in that complex too.

PREVIOUSLY: The No Way Out House

Digg This
Reddit This
Stumble Now!
Buzz This
Vote on DZone
Share on Facebook
Bookmark this on Delicious
Kick It on DotNetKicks.com
Shout it
Share on LinkedIn
Bookmark this on Technorati
Post on Twitter
Google Buzz (aka. Google Reader)