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Michael Lee Pope

Stories by Michael Lee

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Prosecutor's Report Clears Officers of Criminal Wrongdoing in February Shooting

Unlike Fairfax and Arlington authorities, Alexandria prosecutor shares report with public.

Seven different officers shot 37 rounds at Alexandria man Taft Sellers last February during a standoff in the city's West End, hitting him five times.

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Landmark Neighborhood Braces for Drastic Redevelopment

11-acre site to become urban village with retail, residential and entertainment.

When West End resident Daniel Daughtry's watch broke, he did the same thing people across the country do — he headed for the local mall.

Bike to the Future: Alexandria Rewrites Rulebook for Cyclists

Bicycles will now be allowed on sidewalks outside core business zone.

Do bicycles belong on the street or on the sidewalk?

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Study Shows $54 Million Retail Gap Along Richmond Highway Corridor

Supply is not meeting demand in Mount Vernon.

Supply is not matching demand along Richmond Highway, according to a new study from the Southeast Fairfax Development Corporation.

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Arlington Urban Agriculture Task Force Chickens Out

Panel members fail to reach consensus; submit three separate reports.

The Urban Agriculture Task Force laid an egg.

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Alexandria Leaders Search for Alternative to Alternative B

City officials to reconfigure design for Potomac Yard Metro station.

For years, city officials and Deleware-based CPYR have been planning to build a Metro station known as Alternative B — a design that would allow direct access from land owned by the developer to a new Metro station.

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Combat Veteran Takes on Former City Councilman in House of Delegates Race

First-time candidate challenges freshman delegate.

Jeffrey Engle is no stranger to combat. The Army veteran spent 11 years in the service, including deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan. Now that he has taken a medical retirement from the military, he's ready for a different kind of fight.

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Northern Virginia Democrats Spoiling for a Fight Against Republican Incumbents

13 first-time candidates ready to take on incumbents across the region.

He may be taking the summer off from his role as host of the Daily Show, but Jon Stewart is playing an important role in the Democrats’ campaign for the House of Delegates this fall.

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Reevesland Recommended to Become Learning Center

Task force recommends transforming historic house into learning center.

Judy Norton reaches into a patch of sprawling oregano at Reevesland to pull off the top of a plant about to bloom. Searching across the thick green mound, she finds another. Then another. She's trying to keep the plant healthy by preventing it from blooming.

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Considering the Alternatives Along the Richmond Highway Corridor

Long-awaited transit study to determine the future of land-use along Route 1.

After years of waiting, the Richmond Highway corridor may finally be receiving the attention of state leaders.

On the Campaign Trail

Turnout for Tuesday's primary was abysmally low, with only 140,000 participating in the voting.

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Establishment Wins Democratic Primary

State senators beat out first-time candidates for lieutenant governor and attorney general.

Two first-time candidates had a hard time beating back the establishment this week, as two state senators won the Democratic nomination for lieutenant governor and attorney general Tuesday night.

Panel to Evaluate Middle Schools

School Board creates committee to take a look at reorganization.

Consider the scenario: Two eight-grade students get into a fight in the cafeteria of Hammond Middle School.

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Dreams Taken Away: Julian Dawkins Remembered as Hard Worker with Sense of Humor

Arlington Sheriff's deputy charged with murdering 22-year-old Alexandria man.

Just a few hours after Alexandria police charged an Arlington Sheriff's deputy with murdering Julian Dawkins, hundreds of friends and relatives packed Antioch Baptist Church on Queen Street for an emotional funeral.

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Hen-Pecked Arlington Officials to Consider New Rules for Urban Agriculture

Should neighbors have to consent to backyard chickens?

Arlington County Board members are about to either lay an egg or be considered chicken.

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Tea Party Ticket

Republican convention selects conservative slate of candidates for November.

Perhaps the biggest sign that the Tea Party has taken control of the Republican Party of Virginia was the yellow Gadsden flag emblem that appeared on placards distributed by supporters of Jeannemarie Devolites Davis, who was one of seven candidates vying to be the nominee for lieutenant governor last weekend at a raucous convention in Richmond. Davis, who represented Fairfax County for a decade in the General Assembly, has a reputation as being a moderate.

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Office Vacancy Hits Historic High in Alexandria

City officials blame Base Closure and Realignment Commission.

The crush of rush hour traffic at Mark Center is not the only headache caused by the Base Realignment and Closure Commission.

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Uncertainty Haunts Jefferson-Houston Groundbreaking

Questions linger as officials prepare ceremonial shovels.

City leaders and school officials are about to break out the ceremonial shovels and turn the earth at Jefferson-Houston School, the long-troubled facility near the King Street Metro station.

Business Matters

Former Alexandria Mayor Kerry Donley is looking for a new gig. Ever since United Bankshares announced that it had entered into an agreement to acquire all the outstanding stock of Virginia Bancorp back in January, the writing has been on the wall.

Council Notebook

It's official. The Alexandria City Council is against expanding operations at a hazardous materials facility on the West End of the city near the Van Dorn Metro station and just a few hundred feet from Tucker Elementary School.

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Mount Vernon Estate Wins $100,000

George Washington's home snags second place in Partners in Preservation contest.

After all the votes were counted, George Washington did not win — at least not this time.

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Will Arlington Food Trucks Be Able to Park Longer Than Two Hours or After 8 p.m.?

County officials to consider creation of vending zones that would allow more flexibility.

It's shortly after 1 p.m. on a beautiful spring day in Rosslyn.

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School Board to Reconsider Middle School Reorganization

Members ask superintendent to evaluate four years of middle school data.

When students arrived at Hammond Middle School for the first day of classes in the fall of 2009, they were stepping into three different schools: Hammond 1, Hammond 2 and Hammond 3.

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Personality Conflict on the Richmond Highway Corridor

Do residents want to be suburban, exurban or urban?

This summer, residents in Mount Vernon will welcome a new Costco to the Richmond Highway corridor — a big-box retailer with a huge parking lot that will exemplify the kind of suburban and exurban development that has dominated far-flung reaches of the metropolitan region.

Business Matters

A quiet stretch of Eisenhower Avenue is about to get a new lease on life — nightlife, to be exact.

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Alexandria City Council Approves Historic Tax Increase

After ousting two Republicans, all Democratic council hikes tax rate four cents.

Members of the Alexandria City Council unanimously supported a historic four-cent hike in the tax rate this week, raising the average residential property tax bill $314 to $4,888.

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Horse Trading at City Hall as Council Members Approach Budget Deadline

Warwick Pool to remain open for the short term; holiday lights to stay dim during the summer.

The Warwick Pool is likely to stay open for another year, although what happens beyond that is a mystery. But the holiday lights along King Street will likely go dark during the summer months, despite one councilwoman's longtime quest to persuade her colleagues otherwise.

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Should Some Businesses Be Taxed at a Higher Rates Than Others?

Lee District Supervisor clashes with his own advisory group over BPOL taxes.

Why should consultants be taxed at a higher rate than contractors? Is it fair to hit up businesses that do research and development for twice as much as retail merchants?

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A Firehouse Mystery: Who Vandalized Two Antique Dalmatian Statues?

Two separate statues damaged on opposite sides of Old Town in late-night crime.

Ever since they were donated to the two Old Town fire stations a few weeks ago, the antique Dalmatian statues have stood as silent witnesses to the life of Alexandria's firefighters.

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Federal Officials Audit T.C. Williams to Follow $6 Million in Federal Funds

Three-year program dubbed school 'persistently lowest achieving.'

For two days this week, a team of federal officials from the U.S. Department of Education were in Alexandria to follow the money.

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Two Hour Vendors: Arlington County Doubles Time Allowed for Food Trucks

One-hour restriction spiked; expanding vending zones is next on the menu.

Every hour, food-truck vendor Amir Mohammed would have to shut down his propane tank, and get behind the wheel of Baba's Big Bite food truck to find a new parking space.

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Athenaeum Wants Your Vote to Fund Restoration in Online Contest

Leaders at the Old Town landmark suggest voting early and often.

Do you love the Athenaeum? If the answer is yes, executive director Catherine Aselford is asking for your vote.

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Alexandria Set to Exceed Debt Ceiling, Raising Concerns About Bond Rating

City leaders say borrowing is necessary to finance future of Alexandria.

Alexandria is about to hit the roof, literally.

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Newly Elected School Board Members Clash Over Raises for Teachers

Now budget heads to City Hall, where council members will determine appropriation.

School Board members traditionally try to present a unified front to City Hall, where members of the Alexandria City Council have the final say over how much money is transferred to the Beauregard Street headquarters of Alexandria City Public Schools.

Business Matters

Del Ray is known as the place where Main Street still exists. Now it's also a place where adults can eat sushi without the threat of hearing a crying baby.

Council Notebook

Once upon a midnight dreary, while Alexandria Poet Laureate Amy Young pondered weak and weary.

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Federal Money for Streetcars Derailed; Arlington Leaders Vow to Press Ahead Anyway

Critics call for independent cost-benefit analysis; county manager refuses to answer questions.

Plans for Arlington officials to receive federal money for a proposed $250 million streetcar line have been derailed, although county leaders say they are pressing ahead anyway.

Massive Resistance from an Eyewitness

Civil rights pioneer explains segregation to diverse group of students.

As the students assembled in a conference room at Campbell Elementary School, it was clear that the Rev. James M. Kilby had his work cut out for him. How would a 71-year-old civil rights pioneer explain massive resistance to this diverse crowd of students — a group that included not only whites and blacks but also Hispanics and Indians?

West End Rezoned

Council approves plan to demolish thousands of garden apartments.

Like many of the residents who live along Beauregard Street, Salam Jawad is unsure about the future. Since he came to America last year, he's been trying to find his way in a new culture and a new environment.

New Class, Old Divisions

Demographic data for T.J. class of 2017 show lack of diversity at governor's school.

Even as federal regulators look into a civil-rights complaint about the lack of diversity at Thomas Jefferson School for Science and Technology, recently released demographics show that the number of black and Latino students is dropping. According to a report released last week by Fairfax County Public Schools, 8 percent of students who apply are Hispanic while only 3 percent of those who are accepted are Hispanic.

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Hunting Towers Sold

New owners tell city leaders they will preserve affordable housing.

For years, people who live in the twin towers at the southern edge of Old Town have lived with a sense of dread.

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Alexandria Leaders Engage in Risky Business at Potomac Yard

City taxpayers are about to assume financial risk for new Metro station.

Alexandria taxpayers are about to gamble on the future, rolling the dice on development at a former railroad yard to fund a new Metro station.

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Coalition Wages War on Brick Sidewalks in Old Town

Group calls for action now, before more brick sidewalks are installed in new development.

They may be charming, but many people say Alexandria's brick sidewalks have become a dangerous burden. Now they are asking City Hall to do something about it.

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Massive Resistance in Warren County Explained to Diverse Arlington Crowd

Civil rights pioneer explains segregation to fourth-grade students.

As the students assembled in a conference room at Campbell Elementary School, it was clear that the Rev. James M. Kilby had his work cut out for him.

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Thousands of Families are Living with Uncertainty on the West End

City Council to consider plan that would demolish hundreds of low-end garden apartments.

On the windswept streets of the city's West End, many poor and Latino residents say they are living with a sense of uncertainty.

Hunting Towers Sold

New owners tell city leaders they will preserve affordable housing.

For years, people who live in the twin towers at the southern edge of Old Town have lived with a sense of dread. That's because their landlord is the Virginia Department of Transportation, which purchased the buildings during construction of the Woodrow Wilson Bridge.

War on the Waterfront

Iron Ladies file another lawsuit challenging city's efforts to upzone three sites.

When the dispute between Old Town and City Hall was at its height last year, 20th Century Fox movie "Iron Lady" was in the theaters celebrating the life of former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher. So when Old Town residents April Burke, Beth Gibney and Marie Kux filed a lawsuit against the city, the trio was dubbed the "Iron Ladies" — a tip of the hat to the steely determination of the former prime minister.

The Indispensable Library

$40 million facility now taking shape at Mount Vernon Estate; opening set for September.

Drivers zooming along Mount Vernon Memorial Highway are seeing history in the making. There, nestled in the thick woods of George Washington's estate, is a construction zone that will shape how future generations will view a figure historian James Thomas Flexner dubbed "The Indispensable Man."

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Mount Vernon Estate Moves Closer to Opening Indispensable Library

$40 million facility to open in September.

Drivers zooming along Mount Vernon Memorial Highway are seeing history in the making.

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Debate About Public-Private Partnerships Will Have Lasting Consequences in Arlington

Second bid not required by guidelines adopted by Arlington County Board members last year.

Arlington County will make "best efforts to promote robust competition" and "strive to have more than one proposal" under consideration for the public-private partnership to construct a streetcar on Columbia Pike.