Around Town

West Falls development unveils restaurant, child care retailers, coming next year

A rendering of the West Falls development in Falls Church City, now under construction (courtesy Hoffman & Associates)

The development now under construction on Falls Church City’s former high school site has landed its first retail tenants.

Hoffman & Associates, the developer behind the nearly 10-acre West Falls neighborhood, announced yesterday (Thursday) that the restaurants SEOULSPICE, BurgerFi and Mason’s Famous Lobster Rolls will all open in fall 2024, along with the Spanish immersion preschool Tierra Encantada.

“West Falls will serve as a dynamic destination and vibrant community in the heart of West Falls Church,” Hoffman & Associates President Shawn Seaman said in a press release. “Each of these new businesses will bring something unique to the neighborhood, and we look forward to sharing more additions to this community in the near future.”

Tierra Encantada will occupy 10,000 square feet of space at 7131 Magnolia Street in the development’s retail corridor, which will be in the median of a new street called West Falls Station Blvd bisecting the neighborhood.

This will be the second of 15 locations that the early childhood education provider has planned for Northern Virginia. The first school opened in Alexandria last year, and a third one has been proposed near Ballston in Arlington.

“This early education and preschool program focuses on promoting early cognitive development and respect for diversity with a fully Spanish curriculum, a play-based learning model, and daily scratch-made meals from organic ingredients,” Hoffman & Associates said.

Here’s more on the three restaurants from the press release:

SEOULSPICE, a quick service restaurant known for its Korean comfort food, plans to open a new, over 2,000-square-foot location at 150 West Falls Station Boulevard. This will be SEOULSPICE’s eighth location in the DMV, expanding further into the Northern Virginia market and reinforcing the company’s commitment to serving delicious and nutritious gluten-free Korean cuisine.

BurgerFi, a popular fast-casual burger concept, will open a new over 2,000-square-foot location at 170 West Falls Station Blvd. With over 125 restaurants domestically and internationally, BurgerFi is a chef-founded concept offering a casual dining atmosphere with award-winning American cuisine. BurgerFi uses 100% natural American Angus beef with no steroids, antibiotics, growth hormones, chemicals or additives and offers a diverse menu including their award-winning vegetarian VegeFi® Burger, Wagyu Beef, Cage-Free “Fi’ed” Chicken Tenders and Sandwiches, Fresh-Cut Fries and Beer-Battered Onion Rings, Frozen Custard Desserts, beer, wine, and more.

Mason’s Famous Lobster Rolls will open at 235 West Falls Station Blvd with 1,375 square feet – its largest location yet. Mason’s Famous Lobster Rolls is the largest lobster roll brand in the U.S., bringing the luxury of lobster to all at an affordable price point and casual environment. Mason’s uses simple recipes and the highest-quality lobster sustainably sourced directly from Maine.

Planned for 1.2 million square feet of construction, West Falls is the biggest development project in Falls Church’s history.

In addition to 142,100 square feet of retail, it will include about 647 apartment and condominium units, 217 units of senior housing, a 146-room hotel, 326,100 square feet of office space, about 14,000 square feet of civic space, and an 18,000-square-foot community gathering space called The Commons.

The project broke ground in May 2022, and the first buildings are on track to be finished in fall 2024, though the senior living facility may be delayed after developer Trammel Crow dropped out of that part of project.

Hoffman & Associates told the Falls Church City Council in June that the first phase is expected to be substantially complete in January 2025. That includes the hotel, a multifamily condominium building, a medical office building, two parking garages, and an apartment building with a still-unidentified grocery store.

West Falls constitutes the city’s portion of a massive effort to revitalize the 40-acre West Falls Church Transit Station Area. The Fairfax County Board of Supervisors recently approved plans to overhaul both the Metro station property in Idylwood and Virginia Tech’s Northern Virginia Center campus.

“This larger development is intended to add an active and pedestrian-friendly area to the vibrant neighborhood that fosters community, sustainability and innovation,” Hoffman & Associates said.