Thursday, June 17, 2010

Ft. Myer Heights playground renovations under consideration

The RAFOM Annual Meeting this past Monday night brought together many neighborhood residents and important local leaders.  The meeting occurred at Top of the Town, with views unfortunately diminished by fog and rain.  RAFOM Board Members briefly reviewed the past year's development and noted key upcoming matters.  Local officials were welcomed and they offered some brief remarks.  Some highlights:
  • RAFOM Vice-President Patricia Darneille reported that neighborhood signs should be up in a few months
  • RAFOM Board Member Stuart Stein reported that construction on the Clarendon St. side of Rosslyn Commons will begin this fall.  Construction on the 16'th St. side will be deferred, probably until the 2'nd half of 2011.
  • RAFOM Board Member Steve Campbell reported that heavy construction in Hillside Park should be finished in 1-3 weeks.  Renovations of the Ft. Myer Heights Park playground are in the early stage of consideration.  Steve encourages residents to share their views about renovating the playground.  One possibility is moving the playground to the back end of the lower park and extending the basketball court into a full court. I think these moves would damage the charm of the park.  It would make basketball play more serious, and lessen room for playing with dogs and tossing balls in the lower park.  It also might make sunbathers more self conscious. While our current playground isn't lavish, kids don't need lavish toys to have fun.  The last renovation of the park was excellent.  We don't need any further renovation.  Those are my views, which I expressed to Steve.  Other persons who want to share their opinions can send them to Steve at  "mitska at juno dot com".
  • RAFOM President Stan Karson reported that Board Member Soo Lee Davis is now serving in Afghanistan.  I wish her a safe and speedy return home.
  • Our Delegate to the Virginia Assembly Bob Brink attended the meeting.  He requested residents to fill out his State Government Priorities survey.  The survey asks important, practical questions.  It's a good chance to make your priorities known to your elected official.
  • County Board Member Walter Tejada noted that the County got a good price ($107 million versus expected $170 million) for moving forward with the Wakefield High School renovation.  He also discussed Arlington efforts to promote bicycle use, and he encouraged participation in discussing how Arlington will deal with new Virginia requirements for immigration status checks.
  • Capt. David Reiten, who has taken over as our District Two police commander, introduced himself to attendees. 
  • The new commander of the Joint Base Myer-Henderson Hall, Colonel Carl R. Coffman, introduced himself to attendees.  He noted that this week is the 250'th anniversary of the Army, so expect some celebration noise coming from Ft. Myer this Friday.
  • Mark Antell, Chair of the Arlington County Civic Federation's Executive Committee, greeted attendees and applauded RAFOM's active and civil participation in Arlington County public affairs.
The featured speaker was Sharon Percy Rockefeller, President and Chief Executive Officer of WETA TV/FM.  Video excerpts from her talk are below.

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