Arlington County invites the public to comment on the planned development of the vacant Wendy’s land at 2025 Clarendon Blvd.
Greystar Real Estate Partners proposes to transform the 0.57 acre lot about one block from the Courthouse metro station into a 16 story apartment building, with up to 231 residential units and 4,000 square feet of retail Retail.
Until Thursday, September 16, residents can comment on the land use – whether the building is to be used for apartments or offices – as well as the size of the building, architecture, transportation and open spaces.
Initially, the project was to be an office building, proposed by the former developer, Carr Properties. After receiving the go-ahead from the county council in 2015, the fast food restaurant was demolished in 2016, but the office building never materialized. Instead, the vacant lot was used as a staging area for 2000 Clarendon, a condo project across the street.
A representative for Greystar said in a presentation that Carr could not find a tenant for the office building. The new developer therefore turned to apartments instead.
“While a conversion from an office to residential use will always require some modifications to a building, we took a fresh look at the previously approved project, while modifying it to fit a residential floor plan and by adding a modest extra height, ”the representative mentioned.
For the new project, the county and Greystar are interested in commenting on the architecture.
Greystar and architect Cooper Carry liken the building to a ship, county planner Adam Watson said. At the “bow”, pointing west towards N. Courthouse Road, an “angular glass vessel” perched on marble-clad columns will rise above the square, while the facades along Clarendon and Wilson Blvd will be red brick, he said.
“We are really looking forward to hearing your thoughts and comments on what you would like to see in terms of signature gateway architecture on the site,” he said.
A 1,497 square foot public pedestrian plaza will be located under the columns at the intersection of Courthouse Road, Wilson Blvd and Clarendon Blvd. Greystar is looking to fill the retail space with a restaurant that can use the place for alfresco dining, according to a spokesperson.
In the basement, the new project includes a parking ratio of 0.32 spaces per unit, for a total of 74 spaces for residents, but no commercial parking, according to a staff presentation. There will be 252 secure bicycle parking spaces and eight visitor spaces.
At 16 stories and 165.5 feet tall, the project is much higher than the recommended maximum of 10 stories in the Rosslyn Urban Design Study in Courthouse. But Greystar has a plan to secure the desired height and density.
The project involves a 104,789 square foot transfer of development rights to Wakefield Manor, a small garden apartment complex located less than half a mile from the proposed development. Housing on N. Courthouse Road – featuring elements of art deco and modern design – has a historic easement, depending on the county.
Once the comment period is over, the county plans to hold virtual sitemap review committee meetings in October and November. Dates for committee meetings and final county council approval have yet to be determined.