Thirty years ago, city planners envisioned Ballston as the new downtown hotspot of Arlington. Today their vision is coming to life.
Ballston is one of Arlington’s earliest communities, largely known as a popular retail spot ever since the Ballston Common Mall was built in the 1950s. It wasn’t until the Ballston-Mary Mount metro stop was added to the Orange line in 1979 that the area started supporting the development of commercial, office, and residential buildings, and the look and feel of Ballston began to change.
The neighborhood has grown tremendously since then, but it isn’t done growing yet. Ballston is simply booming. The neighborhood continues to welcome plans for mix-used buildings in order to fulfill the increasing demand for more residences, office space, and modern day retail options all in its relatively small 25 block circumference. There has never been a hotter place to buy or build in Northern Virginia than the up and coming city of Ballston right now.
A quick stroll down Wilson Blvd. showcases the dozens of approved projects currently under way throughout the neighborhood, like the long awaited upgrade of the Ballston Common Mall. The Ballston Quarter Redevelopment plan will add a new plaza and facade to the mall, improve the parking garage, and support interior renovations. Most importantly, the existing site of Macy’s department store will soon host apartments and condos as well.
The area around 11th St. and N. Glebe Rd. is also under construction due to Mary Mount’s approved plan to redesign the Blue Goose building for the University’s needs. However, soon there will also be a new 12-story residential building added to the block with over 250 units available along with nearly 11,000 square feet of public outdoor space. This corner is situated conveniently between the entrances to I-66 East and West, which will surely put it in high demand for those who work in and around the district but want to live the unique lifestyle that Ballston offers — half suburban, half metropolitan.
Lately, Ballston has been rivaling D.C. and other nearby neighborhoods with its personality. Eclectic food trucks line Stuart St. every afternoon, drawing large crowds of workers and residents each day for lunch. Fine dining options and trendy bars have been popping up on every block, and the neighborhood is more popular than ever for nights out on the town. Not to mention that there are an abundance of new companies — many technology startups in particular — that are eagerly choosing Ballston as a place to lay down roots. The influx of millennials has revitalized Ballston, and in turn Arlington, creating a hybrid community of business and pleasure.
Despite the big city feel of this modern day Ballston, merely blocks away are quiet residential neighborhoods made up of single-family houses. Manicured parks and bike trails dot the landscape. There are local community events like farmer’s markets and charitable fundraisers. It couldn’t be more different than the heart of Ballston, yet it is only just around the corner from all of the action.
Ballston is booming because it boasts the best of both worlds. It mixes quiet residential life with bustling city amenities, all within a few miles. You don’t even have to leave the neighborhood to experience that new restaurant everyone’s talking about or those brand new boutiques with the hottest new trends, and you can do it all in one evening and only have to walk a few blocks to be home, either in your modern, upgraded condo or your traditional family home. If you do want to leave Ballston, public transportation will take you anywhere you want to go. Thirty years ago, it was nearly impossible to imagine Ballston quite like this, but now we couldn’t see it as anything else.
If you’re interested in living in Ballston, let the Keri Shull team give you priority access to all the hottest new listings and buildings under construction. We’ve only given you a small preview of the planning commission’s commitment to building more residential buildings in Ballston — there are countless other residential projects under way that you just have to see to believe. Contact the Keri Shull team today to learn more about Ballston!