Post Content
A new tenant has signed on in the four-story-building (via Moore & Associates)

Another big name in enterprise information technology is coming soon to Herndon.

Iron Mountain, a Boston-based company that provides records management, data backup and recovery, document management and data centers, plans to open a location at Worldgate Metro Plaza, according to Fairfax County permits.

The business is set to take up space at the plaza, which is located at 12901 Worldgate Drive.

Representatives for Iron Mountain did not return several requests for comment from FFXnow.

Worldgate Plaza was acquired in 2017 and includes a little over 325,000 square feet of space.

The business has locations across the country, but is headquartered in Massachusetts.

Photo via Moore and Associates

0 Comments
Fairfax County’s seal on the Fairfax County Government Center building at 12000 Government Center Parkway (file photo)

Local entrepreneurs now have a direct line to do business with Fairfax County.

On Aug. 1, the county launched an online portal that allows businesses to pitch a business idea, product or service to county agencies, departments and Fairfax County Public Schools. County agencies and departments can in turn take advantage of pitches that have already been vetted within the portal.

Wendy Lemieux, marketing coordinator for the Fairfax County Department of Economic Initiatives, says the program — which had a soft launch at the beginning of the month — is intended to increase supplier diversity.

By providing a consistent, business-friendly point of entry, organizations can now share information about their products and services with county agencies that may be potential customers,” Lemieux said. “This exposure will allow staff to see opportunities and reach out directly if they are interested. Electronic submission and circulation is intended to level the playing field and increase the opportunity for supplier diversity.”

The submission process for prospective vendors includes attending a free workshop, completing a form, and undergoing a review. Pitches are routed to county staff for review, and each submission is available to purchasing staff through the portal for one year.

The portal is for vendor-submitted proposals and does not conflict with the county’s legally mandated procurement process.

County officials hope the pitch process will boost equity for prospective suppliers by creating a standard and efficient process with relevant county staff.

Fairfax County Board of Supervisors Chairman Jeff McKay noted that many local businesses and entrepreneurs may be able to take advantage of the new portal.

“This portal offers a streamlined and user-friendly way to present business ideas, products, or services for consideration to county agencies, departments, and FCPS,” McKay wrote in a statement.

The soft launch of the program began Aug. 1. So far, no projects have been selected yet.

0 Comments
Midtown Jewelers at Reston Town Center (via Midtown Jewelers/Facebook)

For more than 10 years, a family-owned jewelry boutique has called Reston home. 

That will change in the fall of this year when Midtown Jewelers leaves Reston Town Center for a new location in the Town of Herndon. 

The business has collected several accolades, including best jewelry store by Washingtonian magazine and has frequently been given the couples’ choice award by Wedding Wire. 

The business, which offers on-site jewelry and watch repair, appraisal services, and a collection of jewelry is currently located at 11990 Market Street. The new location will be at 700 Lynn Street Suite B.

A company representative did not immediately return a request for comment.

Photo via Midtown Jewelers/Facebook

0 Comments
Weird Brothers’ current location in the Worldgate area is relocating (Staff photo by Fatimah Waseem)

Weird Brothers Coffee — a staple in the Town of Herndon’s coffee scene — is expected to relocate one of its locations in Herndon.

The coffee shop and roastery, a veteran-owned business that is managed by brothers Paul and Kenny Olsen, intends to move its Worldgate Metro Plaza location to Worldgate Centre.

According to co-owner Paul Olsen, the current Worldgate Metro Plaza location is expected to remain open until at least the end of October. It’s expected take up space that was vacated by Starbucks at 13035A Worldgate Drive in January 2021.

“We are currently still going through the permit process for the new Worldgate location,” Olsen wrote in a statement to FFXnow. “We have no idea how much longer it will be before we receive final approval to begin the buildout.”

Weird Brothers is a disabled-veteran owned small business that is dedicated to providing unique coffee and espresso. It was founded by the Olsen, who have had a life-long love affair with fresh roasted, quality coffee.

As the first coffee roaster in Herndon, Weird Brothers has locations and a roasting factory in the Sunset Park business center, Leesburg Village Center, and Worldgate Metro Plaza.

0 Comments
Bad Axe Throwing has vacated its Mosaic District space (staff photo by Angela Woolsey)

The former Bad Axe Throwing spot at the Mosaic District in Merrifield is being wiped clean.

Work to demolish Suite 190 at 2985 District Avenue has been underway for the past month, based on Fairfax County permits, as property owner EDENS prepares the space for a potential new tenant.

For those just itching to toss a hatchet or two, though, Bad Axe Throwing urges patience. The business is “actively pursuing a new location to open in the Fairfax area,” says Skylar Mills, the operations manager for the shuttered Mosaic District site.

“Fairfax is an amazing area and we are fully committed to finding a new, awesome location but it can take some time,” Mills said in an email to FFXnow. “Being an event based business, and axe throwing on top of that, narrows our options so we generally need to remain patient until the right space becomes available.”

Mills said she couldn’t comment further on a possible new location or reopening date but confirmed the company is “looking at any and all options in the broader area,” not just the Mosaic District.

Bad Axe Throwing started in 2014 amid a trend of axe-throwing bars that first took off in Canada before migrating to the U.S. in the late 2010s. After opening its first center in Ontario, it now has eight locations in Canada, dozens in the U.S., and two in the U.K.

The Mosaic District bar opened in September 2019 and reported success with over 600 visitors in its first weekend. However, it closed in the spring of 2020 when then-Gov. Ralph Northam ordered a shutdown of most businesses in Virginia in an effort to limit the coronavirus’ spread.

Bad Axe Throwing founder and CEO Mario Zelaya told FFXnow’s sister site, Tysons Reporter, that May that the company intended to reopen the Mosaic location when possible, though even then, a “long and difficult road to recovery” was expected.

The Mosaic District has added a few, mostly food-related tenants in recent months, including Shake Shack, the pizza eatery Pupatella and Pressed juice bar. The fast-casual Indian restaurant Rasa will open in the mixed-use neighborhood tomorrow (Saturday).

0 Comments
A photo of a street sign on Lee Highway (file photo)
A photo of a street sign on Lee Highway (file photo)

If it were up to a majority of local business and property owners, the Fairfax County portions of Routes 29 and 50 would simply adopt those numbers as their official names.

County staff revealed yesterday (Tuesday) the results of a survey asking business and property owners located on Lee Highway (Route 29) and Lee-Jackson Memorial highways (Route 50) what their preference for new names would be.

The survey provided five options for each road, but in each instance, the original route number won out, staff said at the Board of Supervisors transportation committee meeting.

For Lee Highway, about 55% of the 86 respondents chose Route/Highway 29 as the preferred new name. For Lee-Jackson Memorial Highway, more than 60% of the 62 respondents chose Route 50.

Several board members agreed that, in terms of efficiency and continuity, reverting back to the road number is probably the best route.

“Frankly, I’m not surprised by the responses to the name changes, if we were to move forward with those,” Board Chairman Jeff McKay said, adding later that “in terms of implications on businesses and people who live along these corridors…that would be the least intrusive and, frankly, easiest for drivers and commuters.”

Providence District Supervisor Dalia Palchik suggested the board consider aligning the roads’ names with neighboring jurisdictions to prevent further confusion among those driving in the region.

Springfield District Supervisor Pat Herrity asked whether the survey included a question about if the businesses and property owners wanted name changes at all. Staff said it didn’t due to a previous task force determination that the names should be changed.

The ongoing process of changing the names of the two major thoroughfares in the county began in 2020 when the Fairfax County History Commission unveiled a report that showed about 150 public sites in the county were named after Confederate figures or symbols.

Then, a task force was appointed specifically to review renaming Lee Highway and Lee-Jackson Memorial. That group recommended late last year to rename the two roads, and earlier this year, alternate names were recommended to the Board of Supervisors.

​​Outreach to businesses and property owners along these corridors was the next step.

Now, the Board of Supervisors needs to approve new names, commit to the costs associated with the changes, and submit a request to the Commonwealth Transportation Board. At this time, it’s unclear when all of that might happen.

The survey also inquired that if the name changes would result in any financial expenses for the businesses. For both highways, more than 70% of respondents answered yes, citing potential expenses related to legal documents, signage, and marketing.

In response, the committee discussed ways to help or reimburse businesses on these expenditures when the name changes do happen including a grant system and a reimbursement program.

Regardless of the final names, the county is responsible for paying the cost of updating signage and way-marking. The staff determined the overall cost could range from $1 million to $4.2 million.

The price will depend on which names are selected, with the cost increasing for longer names.

0 Comments
Visit Fairfax President and CEO Barry Biggar talks outside George Washington’s Mount Vernon for a tourism event (staff photo by David Taube)

Visit Fairfax is exploring the idea of a tourism improvement district, which could mean an added fee to hotel stays and other amenities.

The tourism organization’s president and CEO, Barry Biggar, said the proposal could go to the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors for a vote this September. The fee would go toward marketing the region, in accordance with a General Assembly law passed last year.

Biggar says southern Fairfax County will be targeted for the district, which would act on its own authority and set fees that could vary for different business types. It would mark a first for the county and could be a model for other areas, he said.

“That money then is collected, accumulated and used purely for the purpose of marketing, promoting the area…which collects the money, but also capital development and capital improvement,” Biggar told FFXnow.

The move could generate an estimated $1 million per year from hotels and restaurants, Biggar said.

It comes amid a county effort to revitalize and rebrand the Route 1 corridor. So far, that push has brought promises of bus rapid transit and a “Potomac Banks: Explore Fairfax South” tourism campaign with a discount pass for historic sites, partnering businesses and more.

“Only the hotels here in the area would be included, so that wouldn’t be added to a Tysons hotel,” Biggar said of the possible fee. “For a hotel, they may go, ‘We’ll do a dollar a room per night.’ For a restaurant, they may go…a half a percent of the total bill. For an attraction, you know, maybe 50 cents per admission.”

0 Comments
A sign outside Tysons Corner Center (via Google Maps)

Fairfax County is examining its signage rules to possibly allow bigger and brighter electronic signs.

Staff discussed the matter yesterday (Tuesday) during a Board of Supervisors’ land use policy committee meeting.

Dranesville District Supervisor John Foust questioned the goal of the review, which has been underway since March 2019, according to a staff report.

Staff told him the county’s existing ordinance is old and shopping centers want to be competitive. Casey Judge, with the county’s Zoning Administration Division, suggested that easing an application process could help businesses too.

The county has proposed simplifying and consolidating three application processes into one for nonresidential areas.

“We have an awful lot of sign pollution already,” Mason District Supervisor Penny Gross said. “I’m really concerned about some of this.”

She noted that even signs within buildings, such as lighted “open” signage, can distract drivers and other road users.

Businesses are also already allowed to install electronic signs in residential areas, according to the county.

Hunter Mill District Supervisor Walter Alcorn, the committee’s vice chair, said his office has received complaints about existing electronic signs in residential neighborhoods.

Alcorn said he’s not as concerned if a sign is in the middle of a commercial district, but he wants to find out more about how to manage issues near or adjacent to neighborhoods.

The committee’s chair, Sully District Supervisor Kathy Smith, directed staff to return with further recommendations for the board to consider.

A draft of changes could be developed this summer or fall. Public hearings are tentatively expected this winter or in early 2023 on any modifications to the county’s rules.

Photo via Google Maps

0 Comments

Morning Notes

Jean R. Packard Center at Occoquan Regional Park in Lorton (staff photo by Angela Woolsey)

FCPS Condemns Recent Mass Shootings — “Fairfax County Public Schools remains steadfast in our commitment to speak up and speak out against such acts of hatred and domestic terrorism. This past weekend, the Buffalo, New York, and Laguna Woods, California communities experienced unthinkable acts of violence. We grieve with the families who lost loved ones and are suffering.” [FCPS]

Metro Veers Into Another Safety Issue — “Metrorail repeatedly powered the electric third rail while workers were still on the roadway in recent weeks, bypassing safety procedures and putting people at risk of injury and death, according to a new report issued by the Washington Metrorail Safety Commission.” [DCist]

County Bus Workers Win Statewide Competition — “Fairfax Connector Operators and Maintenance Professionals excelled at the Virginia State Bus Roadeo last month…The Fairfax Connector/ Transdev Maintenance Team placed first in the maintenance team category and will represent the Commonwealth of Virginia in the International Bus Roadeo next year.” [Fairfax Connector]

Local Vietnamese Community Recognized — A Virginia Historical Marker recognizing the significance of Vietnamese immigrants in Northern Virginia will be dedicated at Eden Center in Falls Church on next Tuesday (May 24). The community was nominated by Mary Ellen Henderson Middle School students last year as part of a statewide Asian American and Pacific Islander History Month contest. [City of Falls Church]

Descano Left Out of Virginia Violent Crime Task Force — “Commonwealth’s attorneys Buta Biberaj, of Loudoun County; Amy Ashworth, of Prince William County; and Steve Descano, of Fairfax County, told WTOP they were unaware a task force was being assembled until Youngkin’s news release Monday. All three prosecutors are progressive Democrats.” [WTOP]

Food Trucks Pop Up at Courthouse — “NEW! Starting TOMORROW, 5/18 food trucks will be visiting the Courthouse Grounds THIS week, from 11:30am-2:30pm to offer lunch options.” [Fairfax County Circuit Court/Twitter]

Lake Anne Parking Lot to Close Next Week — “The Lake Anne Park parking lot will be closed off next week due to required warranty work, starting on May 23 through the 25th (weather dependent). A contractor will be seal coating and restriping the entire lot. Any vehicles left overnight will be towed.” [Reston Association/Twitter]

Sale of Tysons Broadcasting Company Approved — Tegna stockholders voted yesterday to approve a sale of the Tysons-headquartered company to investment firm Standard General. Expected to close in the second half of this year, the $5.4 billion deal will turn the broadcaster, which owns 64 TV stations in 51 markets across the country, into a private company. [Deadline]

“Wheel of Fortune” Coming to Tysons — “‘Wheel of Fortune Live!,’ a new live stage show, is kicking off a tour in September that includes a stop at Capital One Hall…Guests can audition to go on stage and will have the chance to spin a replica of the iconic wheel and solve puzzles to win prizes, including $10,000 and trips to Paris and Hawaii. Audience members will also have the chance to be randomly selected to win cash and prizes.” [Inside NoVA]

It’s Wednesday — Rain overnight. High of 72 and low of 52. Sunrise at 5:55 am and sunset at 8:19 pm. [Weather.gov]

0 Comments

Morning Notes

A Virginia Department of Transportation truck at the intersection of Route 1 and Popkins Lane in Groveton, where traffic signals were flashing (staff photo by Brandi Bottalico)

Metro Leaders Step Down — Metro General Manager and CEO Paul Wiedefeld and Chief Operating Officer Joe Leader resigned, effective immediately, last night (Monday) after the transit agency pulled 72 operators for failing to recertify. Wiedefeld had been set to leave on June 30 but says he wanted to “provide a more timely transition to Interim General Manager Andy Off.” [WMATA]

Mosby Woods Residents Split Over Possible Street Renamings — “The increasingly diverse neighborhood named after Confederate army battalion commander John S. Mosby…is another battleground, with the [Fairfax] City Council set to decide in June whether nine streets in Mosby Woods should be called something else.” [The Washington Post]

Pipe Replacement to Disrupt Wolf Trap Area Traffic — “Lawyers Road (Route 673) just south of Carhill Road will have one lane of alternating traffic in each direction via flagging Tuesday, May 17 through Wednesday, May 18, between 9 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. each day to replace a stormwater pipe…Through traffic will be detoured via Garrett Street, Trott Avenue, Vale Road, Hunter Mill Road and back to Lawyers” [VDOT]

Police Share Details on I-95 Crash — “The woman who died in last week’s fatal three-vehicle crash on Interstate 95 in Springfield, Virginia, was identified Monday by Virginia State Police….Speed and driver distraction are being investigated as contributing factors in the crash.” [WTOP]

Herndon IT Company Bought for $4.2B — “Herndon information technology contractor ManTech International Corp. (NASDAQ: MANT) said Monday morning it has agreed to be acquired by D.C. private equity powerhouse The Carlyle Group Inc. (NASDAQ: CG) in an all-cash transaction valued at $4.2 billion.” [Washington Business Journal]

Decision Nears on Lake Accotink Dredging — Fairfax County will make a final decision “in just weeks” on how to address sediment build-up in Springfield’s Lake Accotink. The options currently on the table would transport the sediment to a nearby industrial park or pipe it to Wakefield Park, where it would then be taken to a quarry via I-495, raising environmental and traffic concerns. [ABC7]

Reston Association’s Pool Season Underway — “Our Pools season has officially started! Check out these scenes from opening weekend at North Shore and Lake Audubon! Thanks to all who came out! We’re ready to have an amazing summer at the Pools!” [RA/Twitter]

Bear Sightings Might Become More Common — “Due to warmer weather, bears are beginning to move throughout the county. Be safe by securing your trash cans and bird feeders, reducing the likelihood of on of our hairy friends popping up in your community.” [Pat Herrity/Twitter]

It’s Tuesday — Clear throughout the day. High of 73 and low of 58. Sunrise at 5:56 am and sunset at 8:18 pm. [Weather.gov]

0 Comments
×

Subscribe to our mailing list