Virginia Square contains an interesting blend of education and arts in the midst of a largely residential neighborhood. Here you’ll find college campuses, businesses, apartments, single-family homes and expansive parks complete with picnic areas and athletic fields — all within blocks of the Virginia Square Metro station. The main branch of the Arlington Public Library, the Arlington Arts Center and campuses of George Mason University and The George Washington University are all located here. There also are a number of luxury residential developments, including the Lexington Square Condominiums, The Library Courts, The Gallery at Virginia Square, Virginia Square Apartments and Ballston Place at Lexington Park.
Private Development Projects
Planning at a Glance
The Virginia Square Metro Station Area covers about 190 acres and is a predominantly residential community and a center for cultural, educational and recreational activities. The FDIC office building is the largest in Virginia Square, with more than 500,000 square feet of office gross floor area. The George Mason University Foundation office building has just over 200,000 square feet.
The most recent Virginia Square Sector Plan was adopted by the County Board in December 2002 and established the vision to create and sustain a premier residential station area with multiple cultural, education and recreational amenities, including a university campus, an arts center, performance space, and numerous parks and open spaces. Specific goals include strengthening Virginia Square’s identity, improving pedestrian access, increasing transit use, providing services and retail to serve the community, attracting a diverse population and developing new parking solutions.
Virginia Square also has a number of special planning districts to focus on the needs of specific areas. These include a Special Coordinated Mixed-Use District adopted for the Market Common at Clarendon in 1982, the George Mason University/FDIC Mixed-Use District, the East End Special Coordinated Mixed-Use District and a Special Affordable Housing Districts for Pollard Gardens/Clarendon Courts and North Monroe Street Residential.
Urban Design and Guidelines for Future Development
Urban design deals with the relationship between buildings, sidewalks, streets, open space and people. The following urban design guidelines were created to encourage and support high-quality, private development in Virginia Square:
- Establish a unified streetscape by implementing the “Fairfax Drive Boulevard Concept, as the focus of development in the Station Area;
- Improve the role of the Community Facilities, such as the Central Library, Quincy Park, the Arlington Arts Center/Maury Park, the George Mason Metro Campus and neighborhood retail facilities through better pedestrian connections and increased visual awareness;
- Create a neighborhood identity for the individual areas around the Virginia Square Station Area and encourage quality development and redevelopment that increases a sense of neighborhood;
- Encourage the separation of the pedestrian and vehicular traffic by establishing distinct pedestrian walkways and plazas in special locations throughout Virginia Square and by completing the designated bike trails system;