Main content
City of Alexandria Homepage
Friday, July 25  •  68°Fair Air Quality: Yellow
CloseWeather Forecast
Today: High 86° Low 68°
Mostly SunnyAir Quality: Yellow
Sat: High 92° Low 72°
Mostly SunnyAir Quality: Yellow
Sun: High 88° Low 71°
Scattered ThunderstormsAir Quality: Green
Mon: High 87° Low 63°
Scattered Thunderstorms
Tue: High 80° Low 60°
Partly Cloudy
City of Alexandria, VA City of Alexandria, VA
  • By Date
  • By Board

Whitestone (user 279) - Comments by Date

January 19, 2012

RE: Waterfront Small Area Plan and Zoning Text Amendment: Master Plan Amendment # 2011-0001, Text Amendment # 2011-0005

To the Honorable Mayor Euille, Members of City Council, City Manager, Director of Planning and Zoning:

We own 203 The Strand currently occupied by Chadwicks' Restaurant; 205 The Strand currently occupied by Potomac Riverboat Company, Idea Sciences, and Riverside Chiropractic; and 211 The Strand which is a surface parking lot and strip center currently occupied by Mystique Jewelers, Meals on Wheels, and Web Development Group.

1. Strikethrough needs to be applied to the following sentence on page 7 of Attachment V (Errata Sheet) to the January 17, 2012 memorandum from the City Manager to City Council: "On this block, the required use facing The Strand above the first floor is boutique hotel." As it reads now, without the strikethrough, hotel is a required use in the Cummings/Turner block.

2. City staff explained to the members of the Waterfront Plan Work Group in their December 8, 2011 meeting that there is no language in the Plan or Text Amendment limiting the number of hotels to three or the number of hotels per development site to one. (See our December 18, 2011 e-mail to City Council.) Neither the January 6, 2012 memorandum from the Director of Planning and Zoning or the January 17, 2012 memorandum from the City Manager to City Council recommends adding to the Plan or Text Amendment any actual language limiting the total number of hotels or the number of hotels per development site. This is not a trivial issue. Because of the multiple assertions that have been made, City Council needs to add actual language to the Plan regarding whether there is a limit, or whether there is not a limit, to the number of hotels or the number of hotels per development site. If City Council adopts the proposed Plan and Text Amendment, City Council will be adopting a Plan and Text Amendment without any language in them limiting the number of hotels or the number of hotels per development site.

John Whitestone
Matthew Whitestone

Whitestone (279) | User | January 20, 2012 - 12:23 AM | Waterfront Comment Board

December 18, 2011

RE: Waterfront Small Area Plan and Zoning Text Amendment: Master Plan Amendment # 2011-0001, Text Amendment # 2011-0005

To Mayor Euille, City Council, and Director Hamer:

We own 203 The Strand currently occupied by Chadwicks' Restaurant; 205 The Strand currently occupied by Potomac Riverboat Company; and 211 The Strand which is a surface parking lot and Strip Center currently occupied by Mystique Jewelers, Meals on Wheels, and Web Development Group. 211 The Strand, the surface parking lot and Strip Center, is referred to below as the 'Turner property' or the 'Turner parcel'.

December 8, 2011 Waterfront Plan Work Group meeting video at 3 hours 3 minutes:

Work Group member Wood: "... it is four hotels with 450 rooms and I just want to for sure say that's what the plan states and it could be amended or adjusted as we might suggest."

Director Hamer: "Right. And in our discussions -- our sort of off-line discussions -- what we talked about is the fact that ... we believe what the Planning Commission intended was to say a maximum of three hotels and a maximum of 450 rooms and that -- umm -- that's what the plan ought to reflect."

Work Group member Wood: "So the Cummings property [220 South Union Street, currently occupied by The Art League] we've heard about in the Indigo presentation. The Turner property is really the one that's interior in the center of the block -- that you showed in your diagram -- umm -- it's kind of like they're almost -- umm -- precluded at the moment -- umm -- I guess they could build a hotel in that space."

Director Hamer: "Well they could also build a hotel jointly with Cummings and it could be a single hotel as long as it didn't exceed the 150 room count -- they also have that option -- so they're not necessarily precluded from doing a hotel, they're just precluded from doing a separate hotel."

Work Group member Wood: "Uhh -- they're precluded from doing a separate hotel. Is that the way the current plan sits?"

Director Hamer: "No. I don't think it says that, but that's what it could say."

And at 3 hours 42 minutes:

Work Group member Olinger: "I have to ask a parallel question. Does the 450 hotel rooms have any standards? Now the 50,000 square foot restaurant number doesn't -- how about hotels?"

Deputy Director Moritz: "I think as we said there's an explicit limit on the size of the hotels, but Bob [Work Group member Wood] and Faroll sort of had an exchange where Faroll pointed -- ultimately said -- umm -- that that could be stronger -- that there seemed to be a popular perception that the limit was three hotels total but that the language isn't in there and so it could be added. And that we thought that would be okay -- staff thought it would be okay -- because we think it's consistent with what the Planning Commission intended."

We request answers to the following questions:

1. Is city staff now asserting that Planning Commission's recommendation for development pursuant to 5-504 (D) is that hotel use is a) limited to three hotels total and limited to one hotel per development site or b) limited to three hotels total with no restriction as to how many hotels per development site?

2. Is city staff now asserting that Planning Commission's recommendation is that a hotel on the Cummings parcel (220 South Union Street) precludes a separate hotel on the Turner parcel (211 The Strand)?

We also request that as soon as possible, and certainly prior to the January Worksession, this issue be memorialized in a memorandum similar to the May 6, 2011 memorandum which memoralized the 150 room per hotel limit. And request to be informed whether or not there will be such a memorandum.

John Whitestone
Matthew Whitestone

Whitestone (279) | User | January 20, 2012 - 12:20 AM | Waterfront Comment Board

Whitestone (user 279) - Comments by Board

Waterfront Comment Board

January 19, 2012

RE: Waterfront Small Area Plan and Zoning Text Amendment: Master Plan Amendment # 2011-0001, Text Amendment # 2011-0005

To the Honorable Mayor Euille, Members of City Council, City Manager, Director of Planning and Zoning:

We own 203 The Strand currently occupied by Chadwicks' Restaurant; 205 The Strand currently occupied by Potomac Riverboat Company, Idea Sciences, and Riverside Chiropractic; and 211 The Strand which is a surface parking lot and strip center currently occupied by Mystique Jewelers, Meals on Wheels, and Web Development Group.

1. Strikethrough needs to be applied to the following sentence on page 7 of Attachment V (Errata Sheet) to the January 17, 2012 memorandum from the City Manager to City Council: "On this block, the required use facing The Strand above the first floor is boutique hotel." As it reads now, without the strikethrough, hotel is a required use in the Cummings/Turner block.

2. City staff explained to the members of the Waterfront Plan Work Group in their December 8, 2011 meeting that there is no language in the Plan or Text Amendment limiting the number of hotels to three or the number of hotels per development site to one. (See our December 18, 2011 e-mail to City Council.) Neither the January 6, 2012 memorandum from the Director of Planning and Zoning or the January 17, 2012 memorandum from the City Manager to City Council recommends adding to the Plan or Text Amendment any actual language limiting the total number of hotels or the number of hotels per development site. This is not a trivial issue. Because of the multiple assertions that have been made, City Council needs to add actual language to the Plan regarding whether there is a limit, or whether there is not a limit, to the number of hotels or the number of hotels per development site. If City Council adopts the proposed Plan and Text Amendment, City Council will be adopting a Plan and Text Amendment without any language in them limiting the number of hotels or the number of hotels per development site.

John Whitestone
Matthew Whitestone

Whitestone (279) | User | January 20, 2012 - 12:23 AM

December 18, 2011

RE: Waterfront Small Area Plan and Zoning Text Amendment: Master Plan Amendment # 2011-0001, Text Amendment # 2011-0005

To Mayor Euille, City Council, and Director Hamer:

We own 203 The Strand currently occupied by Chadwicks' Restaurant; 205 The Strand currently occupied by Potomac Riverboat Company; and 211 The Strand which is a surface parking lot and Strip Center currently occupied by Mystique Jewelers, Meals on Wheels, and Web Development Group. 211 The Strand, the surface parking lot and Strip Center, is referred to below as the 'Turner property' or the 'Turner parcel'.

December 8, 2011 Waterfront Plan Work Group meeting video at 3 hours 3 minutes:

Work Group member Wood: "... it is four hotels with 450 rooms and I just want to for sure say that's what the plan states and it could be amended or adjusted as we might suggest."

Director Hamer: "Right. And in our discussions -- our sort of off-line discussions -- what we talked about is the fact that ... we believe what the Planning Commission intended was to say a maximum of three hotels and a maximum of 450 rooms and that -- umm -- that's what the plan ought to reflect."

Work Group member Wood: "So the Cummings property [220 South Union Street, currently occupied by The Art League] we've heard about in the Indigo presentation. The Turner property is really the one that's interior in the center of the block -- that you showed in your diagram -- umm -- it's kind of like they're almost -- umm -- precluded at the moment -- umm -- I guess they could build a hotel in that space."

Director Hamer: "Well they could also build a hotel jointly with Cummings and it could be a single hotel as long as it didn't exceed the 150 room count -- they also have that option -- so they're not necessarily precluded from doing a hotel, they're just precluded from doing a separate hotel."

Work Group member Wood: "Uhh -- they're precluded from doing a separate hotel. Is that the way the current plan sits?"

Director Hamer: "No. I don't think it says that, but that's what it could say."

And at 3 hours 42 minutes:

Work Group member Olinger: "I have to ask a parallel question. Does the 450 hotel rooms have any standards? Now the 50,000 square foot restaurant number doesn't -- how about hotels?"

Deputy Director Moritz: "I think as we said there's an explicit limit on the size of the hotels, but Bob [Work Group member Wood] and Faroll sort of had an exchange where Faroll pointed -- ultimately said -- umm -- that that could be stronger -- that there seemed to be a popular perception that the limit was three hotels total but that the language isn't in there and so it could be added. And that we thought that would be okay -- staff thought it would be okay -- because we think it's consistent with what the Planning Commission intended."

We request answers to the following questions:

1. Is city staff now asserting that Planning Commission's recommendation for development pursuant to 5-504 (D) is that hotel use is a) limited to three hotels total and limited to one hotel per development site or b) limited to three hotels total with no restriction as to how many hotels per development site?

2. Is city staff now asserting that Planning Commission's recommendation is that a hotel on the Cummings parcel (220 South Union Street) precludes a separate hotel on the Turner parcel (211 The Strand)?

We also request that as soon as possible, and certainly prior to the January Worksession, this issue be memorialized in a memorandum similar to the May 6, 2011 memorandum which memoralized the 150 room per hotel limit. And request to be informed whether or not there will be such a memorandum.

John Whitestone
Matthew Whitestone

Whitestone (279) | User | January 20, 2012 - 12:20 AM