In Clarendon, the Silver Diner project comes to fruition as sector plan revisions enter the home stretch | ARLnow


Plans and a possible construction schedule for the proposed redevelopment of Silver Diner in Clarendon are crystallizing.

Late last month, owner TCS Realty Associates and developer Donohoe Cos. filed their application documents for the “Bingham Center” project on a triangular parcel of land bounded by Wilson Blvd, 10th Street N. and N. Irving Street, across from Northside Social.

Half of the project would replace the Silver Diner and a retail building (3240 Wilson Blvd) with a 224-room hotel, complete with a rooftop bar, gym and patio. The other half would see a 286-unit residential building with 16,000 square feet of retail space replacing The Lot, two brick structures called “The Doctors Building”, an auto repair facility and surface parking.

Hotel and apartment building sites by TCS Realty Associates and The Donohoe Cos. (via Arlington County)

The project review process could take more than seven months, TCS Realty Associates President Tom Shooltz told ARLnow. Construction, which Donohoe will oversee as general contractor, could begin in the first or second quarter of 2023 and be completed around two years later.

“Now we come to the goal line,” he said.

The filings come as revisions to the Clarendon sector plan are expected to be finalized over the next four months. In response to a slew of short-term projects expected in Clarendon, Arlington County initiated a review of the 2006 plan last year.

This includes the Silver Diner/The Lot site on Clarendon Circle, as well as Joyce Motors and Wells Fargo/Verizon sites and redevelopment projects at St. Charles Borromeo Catholic Church, YMCA and George Mason University.

“Staff are currently preparing the draft Clarendon Area Plan Update Document,” Arlington County Planner Brett Wallace told ARLnow in a statement. “Staff posted materials online in early December that include draft recommendations, updated sector plan text and maps, and potential land use scenarios for 10th Street County-owned properties. “

Staff will then meet with the zoning committee in two weeks to review the proposed zoning changes before dates for the planning commission and county council public hearings are set.

Progress on the Silver Diner redevelopment project was based on revisions to the area plan.

“The Clarendon Sector Plan is very important to the overall development of Clarendon,” Shooltz said. “There are a few other projects in the works for this immediate part of Clarendon, so it made sense for the county and stakeholders to step aside to ensure the area plan reflects what we want to see for Clarendon.”

Despite COVID-19 delays and a timeline dictated by the sector plan, Shooltz says getting to this point has been smooth.

“We have a very sophisticated group of citizens who have gone through this process many times,” he said. “It was a pleasure to work with them and Clarendon will be a beneficiary of the review process.”

In addition to building Clarendon’s only hotel, the project would “create a new gateway to Clarendon and tie this area more closely to Virginia Square,” writes P. David Tarter, land use attorney at Tarter Nova. Law, representing the promoters.

The project includes the construction of a new 10th Road N., intended for community events, streetscape and infrastructure improvements and a new park next to the hotel, Tarter said.

On the same triangular lot, Orr Partners intends to replace the Joyce Motors Company building with 240 apartments and nearly 3,500 square feet of ground floor retail. County planners expect the county council to review the project before July.

St. Charles Church, meanwhile, plans to build a new church with underground parking and to lease part of its property to a development partner for apartments and a kindergarten on the ground floor. In September, Pastor Don Planty said work was continuing on concept designs and cost estimates so the church could start looking for a developer.

He said planning and permitting is expected to take about two years, followed by about two years of construction.


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