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CRYSTAL CITY BUSINESS IMPROVEMENT DISTRICT CELEBRATES
MONUMENTAL YEAR AT ANNUAL MEETING
Arlington’s civic and business leaders join local residents to showcase recent accomplishments and discuss next steps for Virginia’s largest walkable community
CRYSTAL CITY, VA– June 14, 2019 – More than 200 local residents and leaders from the business and civic community gathered on June 10 for the Crystal City Business Improvement District’s Annual Meeting, held at 1225 South Clark Street in Arlington.
Led by BID President and Executive Director Tracy Gabriel, the annual meeting spotlighted the region’s many accomplishments over the past year and the BID’s main priorities for the rest of 2019 and beyond.
“While we are still in the early stages of this area’s reinvention, our longstanding plans are coming to fruition faster than anyone could have imagined just a year ago,” Gabriel said. “We showed that we possess the talent, the infrastructure and the transportation network that Amazon needed. Just as importantly, we offered a sustainable blueprint for smart growth that can aptly accommodate 25,000 Amazon employees, as well as all of the additional investment that its new campus will attract.”
Gabriel added, “While Amazon grabbed the headlines last year, they were only part of the story of our neighborhood. The greater Crystal City area continues to serve as a center for national nonprofits and associations.”
Gabriel noted that the BID has undertaken or is in the process of implementing a number of steps that will prepare the organization as well as the region for further anticipated growth. These measures include growing the BID team, moving into more modern and efficient offices, and creating an all-encompassing Strategic Plan that embraces Crystal City, Pentagon City and Potomac Yard-Arlington as a single downtown.
“An expanded BID will be able to promote the area’s identity as a vibrant, nationally-recognized urban center and help shape growth during a period of sustained investment in ways that unlock the area’s full potential while enhancing the quality of life for those who live, work and visit here on a daily basis,” she added.
The business portion of the meeting included the election of the BID’s new Board of Directors and ratified revisions to the BID Bylaws and Articles of Incorporation that will define new area-wide BID boundaries, pending Arlington County Board approval.
Arlington County Board Chair Christian Dorsey also touted the area’s ongoing renaissance. “The billions of dollars in investments that will come from the private sector, combined with public sector investments, is really going to transform the built environment. We are going to become more urban. We are going to become more walkable,” Dorsey said, adding that the changes will benefit both current and future residents and workers. “They are going to be a part of a modern, exciting, biophilic, sustainable neighborhood and a cultural magnet where all people will be connected to everything.”
Dorsey was followed by Amazon’s Global Head of Real Estate John Schoettler, who reiterated the company’s commitment to developing its second headquarters for the benefit of the entire region. “The type of environment we create is not just for our employees and their families but for the community as a whole,” Schoettler said. “When you place yourself inside of an urban center, inside of a city, you want to be very outward-looking and inclusive. That’s what Amazon wants to be.”
March of Dimes President Stacey Stewart explained to those assembled why her organization joined the recent wave of national nonprofit associations when it moved to Crystal City last year. When the decision was made to relocate to the DC region, Stewart said, “We found that there really was no better place that fit everything we were looking for than right here in National Landing. This has been an amazing opportunity for us to move into a fantastic space.”
Guests at the event were also treated to a pop-up performance by Crystal City’s award-winning Synetic Theater, which fuses classical elements of drama, movement, dance, mime, and music into a distinct form of physical theater.
About the Crystal City Business Improvement District
The Crystal City Business Improvement District (BID) is a public-private partnership established to promote the vibrant Crystal City business, retail, restaurant and residential community. As Virginia’s largest downtown, the Crystal City, Pentagon City and Potomac Yard - Arlington area consists of 18.6 million square feet of office space in a mixed-use, walkable urban center that includes more than 32,000 residents, over 5,800 hotel rooms, and nearly 500 restaurants and shops. More than $342 million in public infrastructure investment and over $4 billion of private projects are in the pipeline over the next five years. The BID is supporting the exciting transformation of Crystal City through placemaking, public art, transportation, economic development, events, and marketing/promotion. For more information, visit www.crystalcity.org.