Dear Friends,    

On Saturday, the County Board voted to advertise a Plan for Langston Boulevard. The final version of the Plan will be considered in November, but we spent more than 3 hours listening to speakers and considering the more than 180 page Plan which will be the corridor's first ever and will provide a vision and redevelopment plans for the corridor. I offered two amendments which were approved--learn more below. 

The Board also approved for advertisement a Historic resources plan for next month and the Forestry and Natural Resources Master Plan for December. We also recognized Domestic Violence Awareness Month, which I also touch on briefly below. 
With Arlington's Domestic Violence leadership and County Board Members--October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month. Learn more: Domestic Violence – Official Website of Arlington County Virginia Government (
The Langston Boulevard Plan has been the subject of some coverage in Arlnow and the Sun Gazette, and the County has been working on it over the past several years and these past few months in detail. The Plan has engaged the 14 civic associations for the neighborhoods along Langston Boulevard and incorporated the Langston Boulevard Alliance's priorities. Its vision is a revitalized green main street, and it will allow for the revitalization of this critical part of our community. 

On the process and what is coming next, our hearing and debate on Saturday was the first Board review of the final draft of the plan--it is known as a "Request to Advertise." In November, we will consider the final draft and pass a revised and final version of the plan with edits and changes, incorporating feedback. 

The debate and comments from the public focused in part on how much density should be allowed in the 180 plus page Plan for the road and block on either side of Langston Boulevard. It also focused on affordable housing and, in part, on a provision related to community spaces along the corridor, including the Lee Arts Center. I offered amendments on both these latter two issues, which were approved via Board votes. 

On affordable housing, I moved that we advance the time frame for consideration of the East Falls Church and Cherrydale Plans, which would allow for the consideration of redevelopment that could lead to additional affordable housing. The amendment is not a guarantee that the parking lot at the East Falls Church Metro will be redeveloped soon, but it does raise the possibility that the neighborhood and the County could take up the plan sooner, a critical step toward the goal of adding affordable housing to part of the County that has not had enough of it.

On the Lee Arts Center, I moved to strike language that said consolidation of community centers should be a goal of the plan. The Lee Arts Center needs significant work on the roof and its HVA system. It is not yet clear if a full rebuild or renovation of the site would be needed. My amendment struck out the consolidation language in the Plan, intending to keep alive the discussion we need about the space where the Lee Arts Center is located over the long term. I believe it should be public space. I hope community center space, open space, and affordable senior housing could all co-exist there.  
To listen to the staff presentation and Commission advice on the Plan for Langston Boulevard, go to 2 hours and 55 minutes through the above red play button and listen through 3 hours 30 minutes. Public comment and Board deliberation goes from 4:05 to 7:35.
The ongoing work this week and this past month has also focused on Domestic Violence and funding Metro, two critical issues for our community. This month is Domestic Violence Awareness month and I have been honored to serve as liaison seeking to follow Katie Cristol's excellent work on this issue:
This 6 minute 55 second video helps connect the dots between domestic violence and the overall anti-violence work that our country needs. 
On Metro, last night I participated in a committee meeting that brought home all over again why we must win on November 7th. The report was clear that Governor Youngkin's Secretary of Transportation has said there will be no state money to help with Metro's funding gap that starts next July. I believe Arlington and Northern Virginia must do more on Metro to help close the gap. We do benefit.

I also know that Metro drives Northern Virginia's economy which is a net exporter of revenue to the Commonwealth of Virginia's budget and the entire state's economy. We export more money than we import, by far. $1.5 Billion is the estimate of Metro's value according to the Northern Virginia Transportation Commission's analysis, of which I am Vice-Chair. 

We must win this election so that we are in a better bargaining position to force Governor Yougkin to come to the table for Metro's future. Metro matters so much to Arlington's economy.

So, I must ask: one Senate race has emerged over the last week as critical. Joel Griffin's, which I have written you about, but I now know is within 3 points in the polls, is where we can help. Mr. Griffin is in critical need of funds. Please go here if you are able: Joel Griffin — Donate via ActBlue This race is a two-for: Josh Cole for whom we raised most of our goal last week is in the House District that is fully inside Mr. Griffin's Senate seat.

Please help if you can. If we win, I and we will give each other a Virginia Senate that aligns with Arlington's values and Democratic values for the next 4 years. 

With a full and committed heart, 


PS. The other race that we are trailing by less than 3 points in, but we can win, is Senator Monty Mason's seat, if and only if you are able to help: Monty Mason — Donate via ActBlue
If you cannot contribute, but can canvass, please email me and I will connect you. 
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