This is a commentary by Ronald D. Paul, president of EagleBank.
While Washingtonians are accustomed to seeing cranes and “open for business” signs abound in the downtown, Capitol Hill, West End, Dupont Circle and Columbia Heights neighborhoods, new business and housing activity in the Virginia suburbs from Alexandria to Reston have reached a crescendo of late.
Indeed, young professionals and new parents are seeking enclaves such as Ballston, Courthouse and Clarendon like never before — and businesses and retail are responding.
For the foodie group, neighborhoods from Del Ray to Clarendon now boast such popular new eateries as Caffe Aficionado, Circa, Fuego Cocina, Pizzeria Paradiso, Tin Cup, Jaleo, Matchbox, Cava, Sweet Green and Hank’s Oyster Bar. MOM’s Organic Market has also planted a flag in Alexandria, Herndon and the Mosaic District, Northern Virginia’s most recent and extensive mixed use retail, office and housing development.
As far west as Ashburn (near Dulles International Airport), new housing and retail are also thriving. Jumbo Jungle, a new laser tag entertainment center for kids, teenagers and young adults just opened a store that is pulling in tech-savvy young people from across the area. And Cross Fit Gym provides a state-of-the-art fitness resource for Fairfax residents. Youngsters seeking private school education in grades K-8 have a new option in the Edlin School in Reston, the newest entry into the area’s independent school ranks.
Tyson’s (as it is now known) is a behemoth of commercial and residential building, hotel expansion, retail growth and institutional development. Inova Health System recently announced plans to build a $252 million cancer center and George Mason University is hosting ever-larger classes as well as summit meetings that attract global policy leaders, scientists, economists and public intellectuals.
New housing is also springing up with force in Northern Virginia. Evergreene Homes is building residential units above retail space in a mixed-use “live/work” project in Lansdowne Town Center. Half of the units in that project are sold and settled. Arlington’s monumental luxury Turnberry Tower is virtually sold out, and in nearby Clarendon/Ballston/Courthouse new construction projects such as Station Square, Odyssey, Clarendon 1021, the Continental, 1800 Wilson and the Hartford offer modern luxury high-rise residences in price ranges from $250,000 to more than $1 million.
Indeed, the strength of the Northern Virginia market has led us at EagleBank to substantially expand our branches, team members and resources. And we see no abatement in demand for residential and commercial lending services and customer service throughout the Northern Virginia region.
In the days and months ahead, Northern Virginia will continue to lead an economic recovery and a lifestyle renaissance that is among the brightest in the state.