What's Next for Columbia Pike?

With the addition of 2,400+ multifamily units and 300,000+ square feet of retail space, the Columbia Pike neighborhood has seen a real development wave over the past 10-15 years, bringing with it changes in landscape and a more urban, mixed-use environment. But what does that actually mean for the neighborhood? Despite all of the positive momentum, the commercial market along Columbia Pike has experienced its share of ups and downs in that time, something that's not uncommon in communities that have seen this kind of change. 


Following guidance from the County Board, AED retained a third-party consultant, HR&A Advisors, to produce a technical, data-driven study that would provide a broad understanding of the market conditions and identify opportunities for the Pike and its revitalization into the next decade. HR&A’s analysis generated nine central findings related to commercial product types, including hospitality, retail, and office, the corridor’s demographic composition, and global retail trends. These findings found that Columbia Pike is a relatively healthy, neighborhood-serving commercial market experiencing the typical fluctuations associated with its ongoing transition from an auto-oriented throughway to a series of pedestrian-focused nodes.


While the overall summary is positive, HR&A identified several action items for Arlington County and Columbia Pike stakeholders to contemplate in the short term as they seek to continue revitalizing the corridor.


The recommendations include refocusing a branding effort on a node-based strategy rather than the entire corridor, providing further flexibility in the Form Based Code for additional ground floor business types (e.g., breweries, coworking, maker spaces) and enhancing support for businesses threatened by displacement from redevelopment.


Read the complete study to learn more about plans for Columbia Pike.

Topic: Economic Update
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