2006-12-19, 09:55

Mixed use in Falls Church, Virginia

By: Jonathan Groner
Falls Church, Va., is an older, close-in suburb of Washington, D.C. Just five miles from Tysons Corner (see my Dec. 15, 2006 post), it's almost the mirror image of the Tysons area -- a bit dowdy where Tysons is glitzy. But Falls Church has a homey feeling and is a great place to live.

Mixed use might have a significant impact on the "feel" of Falls Church. I think that if done well, it would be a very positive impact. Here's a current newspaper clipping.

Atlantic Realty submits plan for Falls Church development

Katie Wilmeth, The Examiner
Dec 15, 2006

Falls Church - A proposal from Vienna-based Atlantic Realty Companies to build a mixed-use development along Route 7 in Falls Church could be the first step in transforming the city's disjointed downtown into a thriving commercial district, city officials said Thursday.

Atlantic Realty submitted its plans for the 5-acre development to the city on Wednesday and will go through an approval process that could take up to 18 months.

The plans -- which include a Harris Teeter grocery store, 500 apartments, 67 condos, a 180-room hotel and underground parking -- are part of a larger 22-acre development plan for Falls Church that is intended to create a "City Center" for the small city.

"We're hoping that this will be the centerpiece [of the overall development]," said Falls Church Mayor Robin Gardner.

The city's plan calls for development on the north and south sides of Route 7. Gardner said in addition to Atlantic's development, she'd like to see a proposal that includes some type of family entertainment, such as a venue for outdoor concerts or a movie theater.

A spokesman for Atlantic Realty said the firm hopes to break ground on the project by September 2007, complete Phase One by mid-2009, and complete the development by mid-2011.

Atlantic's development would be located on the south side of Route 7 in the 200 block of South Maple Avenue, which is the current site of Bowl America. The plans include space to build a new Bowl America.

In the last few years, Falls Church has seen multiple development projects beyond the 22 acres the city has allotted for a City Center, including several new condo and office projects along Route 7.


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