1. Calling the Roll.
Mayor Euille called the meeting to order and the City Clerk called the roll. All members of Council were present, with the exception of Councilwoman Hughes, who was absent.
2. Public Discussion Period.
(a) Dr. Stephen Kauffman, 3450 N. Beauregard Street, representing the Beauregard Medical Center and its patients, spoke of the King Street/Beauregard project, which is scheduled to begin construction in 2011, and said the project will take away one-half of the parking spaces in front of the medical center, which will lead to the inability of his patients to park and for the Center to continue to practice in that area. He said the Department of Transportation hasn't been completely honest in their depiction of how it will go about, as in 2007, they produced a booklet that said no businesses would be impacted by it, and in 2009, there is an absence of that statement in the book. Dr. Kauffman said the biggest problem is they want to build the median strip along Beauregard Street, and they want to build two turn lanes on King Street. He said there is already a median on Beauregard Street and it allows perfect access into their medical clinic. Also proposed is a bicycle path, but the path stops before Braddock Road, so no one will be able to use the bicycle path to hook up with the W&OD trail in Arlington and access to the Northern Virginia Community College.
(b) Oscar Fitzgerald, 206 W. Monroe Avenue, vice chair of the Alexandria Library Board, asked Council to not significantly cut the library budget, as the library is a cheap investment, and last year the library suffered a $2 million cut, the largest budget reduction on a percentage basis of any City department. He noted the various community groups and citizens that use the libraries. He asked Council to keep the library doors open for maximum usage and the shelves stocked with the latest materials.
(c) Annabelle Fisher, 5001 Seminary Road, spoke of the meeting on the King Street Beauregard transportation intersection improvements on November 18, and she said the advertised public meeting did not start as a planned meeting by the engineering staff, who stated it was a meeting to talk one-to-one. She said the City staff filibustered and refused to answer questions from citizens and staff has swept the matter under the carpet for two years, and she thought the City would have had transparency in government. She said the proposal will allow u-turns at King Street and Beauregard in any direction, and consultants will be talking with the various businesses and condo owners about right-of-way property acquisition - buying up their land to make the project happen. She asked what has happened to the $500,000 the City paid to tear down the former hospital on King Street where a business deal would have been made to have the Alexandria School Board headquarters move to that site. She asked that there be other public meetings on the matter.
(d) David Caplan, 418 Queen Street, thanked Council for buying the hybrid trolleys for Old Town/King Street using stimulus grants, and he offered Council a challenge to take some of the elements that made the trolley so successful and apply that to other parts of the fixed route bus system, like Del Ray. He said it misses a great opportunity to better leverage the bus routes and bring in additional revenue to the system, and the DASH AT10 route would make a great demonstration project. Mr. Caplan said it runs every day from King Street to Potomac Yard via Mt. Vernon Avenue and it is one of the most productive routes in the DASH system, yet it runs only hours on weekends.
(e) Gary Carr, 218 Aspen Street, spoke of the needs for tracks at Frances Hammond and George Washington Middle School, and he asked the Council to fix the tracks at the schools.
(f) Rodger Digilio, 1110 King Street, president, King Street Gardens Park Foundation, a foundation that was set up to assist the City in operating the largest piece of public art in the City - King Street Gardens Park, said the Foundation tries to raise revenue that can support much needed improvements in the park and they had instituted a buy-a-brick campaign when the park was built, and the bricks and elements are still available for purchase. He said they are trying to raise $8,000 to allow the City to replace the irrigation system so they can make the park look more presentable.
(g) Amy Slack, 2307 E. Randolph Avenue, spoke about strategic planning for goal #1, and she thought about how it did a great deal to do outreach to people who are not engaged in the process. She said they have an entire industry which is vital to goal #1 - it is an industry that employs 800 people - and that is the taxi industry. She said she would like for the SBD, the ACVA, and Economic Policies to address the industry and do outreach to the industry. Ms. Slack said it is important to bring the providers into the system and make them realize how vital they are.
NEW BUSINESS ITEM NO. 1: Assistant City Manager Gates gave a status update on where they are on the Strategic Goal Planning Process.
REPORTS OF BOARDS, COMMISSIONS AND COMMITTEES
ACTION CONSENT CALENDAR
END OF ACTION CONSENT CALENDAR
REPORTS OF BOARDS, COMMISSIONS AND COMMITTEES (continued)
Planning Commission (continued)
3. SPECIAL USE PERMIT #2009-0066 (A)
REZONING #2009-0002 (B)
MASTER PLAN AMENDMENT #2009-0003 (C)
760 JOHN CARLYLE STREET AND 1800 EISENHOWER AVENUE
CARLYLE PLAZA (CARLYLE - BLOCK P)
Public Hearing and Consideration of a request to A) amend the Carlyle Special Use Permit approval and the Design Guidelines for Block P to remove lots 803 and 804 and floor area; B) rezone the subject properties from CDD #1 (Duke Street) to CDD #11 (South Carlyle); and C) amend the Eisenhower East Small Area Plan to update the development controls for CDD #11 and include design guideline for Block 26A (formerly Block P); zoned CDD #1/Coordinated Development District -1. Applicant: Carlyle Plaza LLC represented by Jonathan Rak, attorney.
PLANNING COMMISSION ACTION: MPA Resolution Adopted 7-0
SUP Recommend Approval 7-0
REZ Recommend Approval 7-0
City Council approved the Planning Commission recommendations.
REPORTS AND RECOMMENDATIONS OF THE CITY MANAGER
4. Public Hearing and Consideration of the Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) Proposed Route I-395 Direct Access Ramp Alternatives for the BRAC-133 Project at Mark Center. (#6, 11/21/09)
City Council received the final public testimony on the seven direct access ramp alternatives being considered by VDOT for their preliminary IJR analysis and adopted the following five recommendations from the Alexandria Transportation Commission: 1. direct staff to prepare a letter to Duke Realty encouraging Duke Realty to move with all speed to complete the local roadway improvements as approved by Council; 2. request VDOT to retain alternatives A1 and A2 which provide direct access from I-395 to the Department of Defense (DoD) garage; 3. request VDOT to work with City staff to evaluate additional alternatives to relieve traffic pressures on Seminary Road and to address traffic impacts from BRAC, provided that such alternatives meet the following criteria: A. do not harm the integrity of the Winkler Preserve; B. minimize disruption to all local residents from BRAC-133 traffic as well as from any potential solutions to such traffic; C. take into consideration a broader view of transportation issues in the corridor; and D. take into consideration the guiding principles of the Alexandria's BRAC-133 group when developing alternatives; 4. request VDOT to eliminate from consideration any access alternatives within their preliminary interchange justification report which would impact the land area of the Winkler Botanical Preserve; and 5. look at the Transportation Management Plan (TMP) when developing a final proposal and recommendation on the issues. (City staff was directed to draft a cover letter to accompany the motion, with the understanding that before the cover letter is finalized, that it be shared with Council to make sure the points are covered.)
ORDINANCES AND RESOLUTIONS
5. Public Hearing, Second Reading and Final Passage of an Ordinance to Amend and Reordain Sections 5-8-21 (Definitions), Section 5-8-22 (Abandoned, Unattended and Immobile Vehicles To Be Removed), Section 5-8-24 (Notice That Vehicle Has Been Impounded), Section 5-8-25 (Repossession of Impounded Vehicles; Towing and Storage Charges), Section 5-8-27 (Sale of Unrepossessed Vehicles; Proceeds of Sale), Section 5-8-28 Disposition of inoperable abandoned vehicles), Section 5-8-29 (Surrender of Certificate of Title, Etc., Where Motor Vehicle Acquired For Demolition; Records To Be Kept By Demolisher) and Section 5-8-30 (Delegation of Law Enforcement Authority) All Of Article C (Disposition of Abandoned, Unattended and Immobile Motor Vehicles) of Chapter 8 (Parking and Traffic Regulations) of Title 5 (Transportation and Environmental Services) of the Alexandria City Code. (#16, 12/8/09) [ROLL-CALL VOTE]
City Council passed the ordinance on motor vehicles. (ORD. NO. 4637)
6. Public Hearing, Second Reading and Final Passage of an Ordinance to Amend City Code Section 2-4-110 To Replace The High School Student Member of the Environmental Policy Commission With a Representative From the Alexandria Business Community. (#17, 12/8/09) [ROLL-CALL VOTE]
City Council passed the ordinance to replace the high school student member of the Environmental Policy Commission with a representative from the Alexandria business community. (ORD. NO. 4638)
7. Public Hearing, Second Reading and Final Passage of an Ordinance to Implement the Text Amendment to the Zoning Ordinance Regarding Public Disclosure in the Zoning Approval Process, As Recommended By The Planning Commission on November 5 and Approved By City Council on November 21. (#18, 12/8/09) [ROLL-CALL VOTE]
City Council passed the ordinance to implement the text amendment regarding public disclosure in the Zoning approval process. (ORD. NO. 4639)
8. Public Hearing, Second Reading and Final Passage of an Ordinance to Extend the Date of the 2009 Annual Review of the Taxicab Industry, As Required by City Code Section 9-12-31, From December 15, 2009 to June 15, 2010 To Allow Time For Staff To Consider Industry Input on Dispatch Requirements and the Driver Transfer Process. (#19, 12/8/09) [ROLL-CALL VOTE]
City Council passed the ordinance to extend the date of the 2009 annual review of the taxicab industry to allow time for staff to consider industry input on dispatch requirements and the driver transfer process. (ORD. NO. 4640)
9. Public Hearing, Second Reading and Final Passage of an Ordinance Implementing a Zoning Ordinance Text Amendment For Administrative Approval of Certain Signs in the Historic Districts, as Recommended By the Planning Commission on November 5 and Approved By City Council on November 21, 2009. (#20, 12/8/09) [ROLL-CALL VOTE]
City Council passed the ordinance implementing a Zoning Ordinance text amendment for administrative approval of certain signs in the historic districts. (ORD. NO. 4641)
REPORTS OF BOARDS, COMMISSIONS AND COMMITTEES (continued)
DEFERRAL/WITHDRAWAL CONSENT CALENDAR
Planning Commission (continued)
END OF DEFERRAL/WITHDRAWAL CONSENT CALENDAR
10. Consideration of City Council Schedule.
This item was removed from the docket.
11. Consideration of Convening an Executive Session Closed to the Public to Discuss the Potential Disposition of Publicly Held Real Property.
At 2:10 p.m., City Council convened in executive session, pursuant to Section 2.2-3711(a)(3) of the Code of Virginia for the purpose of discussion of the potential disposition of publicly held real property.
At 2:30 p.m., City Council reconvened the meeting.
City Council adopted the resolution pertaining to the Executive Session. (RES. NO. 2376)