County Manager Presents 3-Year CIP, Proposes November Bond Referendum

Published on May 19, 2021

County Manager Mark Schwartz has proposed a $1.25 billion three-year Capital Improvement Plan (CIP) that focuses on meeting Arlington's existing commitments, increasing infrastructure maintenance, and beginning investments in long-term plans and programs.

The three-year proposal follows a one-year CIP that was adopted last summer as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. The County anticipates returning to a traditional 10-year plan next year for FY 2023 — FY 2032.

"In this CIP, we were able to make more investments than we anticipated at this time last year, but our County—and our residents—are still facing longer-term economic uncertainty and this plan was built with that reality in mind," said Schwartz. "My proposal takes a more constrained approach that will continue to bridge us through the next year of budget deliberations and economic recovery."

The short-term CIP reflects immediate priorities, including bridge replacements and renovations, street safety improvements through Vision Zero, community conservation, technology infrastructure, and Metro funding.

The CIP also continues the investment into the County's stormwater infrastructure, with $95.9 million allocated for projects like the Cardinal Elementary School stormwater detention facility and the Spout Run and Ballston Pond watersheds.

Several parks and public facilities projects are included in the FY 2022-FY 2024 CIP, including:

  • Crystal City parks and public space
  • Bluemont Park tennis complex
  • Phase two of Alcova Heights construction
  • Synthetic turf replacements at Barcroft Park, Rocky Run Park, Wakefield High School and conversion of the TJ Upper Field
  • Roof and HVAC replacements to focus on solar installation
  • Upgrades to the courts and police complex
  • Arlington Boathouse planning and design

MORE: Review the Proposed CIP

For the second year in a row, Schwartz has also put forward a proposal for a bond referendum, asking voters to consider funding for many of the CIP projects when they go to the polls in November.

Included in the $62.535 million referenda are $20.7 million for Metro, $17.5 million for paving, $2 million for Neighborhood Conservation, and $9.73 million for courthouse renovations and courts and police building improvements. The referendum proposal also includes $5 million for renovation of the Bluemont Park Tennis Court complex replacement and $800,000 for planning the Arlington Boathouse project.

Arlington Public Schools is also underway with its CIP process. The APS superintendent has proposed a three-year CIP and a $23 million bond referendum for school kitchen renovations, entrance and security renovations and parking and a turf field at the Heights Building.

A joint work session with the County Board and School Board will be held June 9. APS will adopt its CIP on June 24.

Despite the fiscal constraints over the past 15 months, Arlington County has been able to continue many capital projects that are important to the community—and many will take important steps this year. Lubber Run Community Center and the Long Bridge Aquatics and Fitness Facility will open, construction is expected to be completed on Jennie Dean Park, and construction will begin on Fire Station 8.

Learn more about the Capital Improvement Plan

Timeline of CIP Process

May 18: County Manager Proposes FY 2022 — FY 2024 CIP

June 9: Joint County APS CIP Work Session

May-July: County Board CIP Work Sessions

June 29: Public Hearing

Week of July 12: Final County Board Markup

July 17: Adoption of FY 2022 — FY 2024 CIP & November bond referenda

November 2: Voter consideration of bond referenda