A long-awaited revitalization may soon be coming to Annandale, but with it will come the end of a longstanding community icon.
A rezoning proposal has been submitted to Fairfax County to redevelop the property that currently hosts the AMF Annandale Lanes bowling alley at 4245 Markham Street.
“The new proposal for redevelopment of the site includes a 12-story multi-family residential rental apartment building named ’Markham Place,’ with a 6,000-square-foot restaurant at street level and up to 310 elegant new apartment residences enjoying on-site amenities not available in other Annandale apartment communities,” said Webb Companies President John Farmelo. “Planned improvements in this Leeds Silver design include green landscaped space at street and terrace levels, underground residential and commercial parking, and premier architectural design and materials.”
According to Farmelo, the rezoning proposal hopes to rezone the property from a “planned commercial district” to a “planned residential mixed-use district.”
“With the submittal to Fairfax County of an application for rezoning, the Webb Companies and Southern Management Corporation are partnering to begin the process of bringing exciting improvements to the site at 4245 Markham Street in central Annandale,” he said.
Mason District Supervisor Penny Gross (D), said a meeting of the Annandale Commercial Business District Planning Committee is scheduled for 1 p.m. Tuesday at the Mason District Center, 6507 Columbia Pike in Annandale.
“There was a similar submission about seven years ago, just before the economy went south, that never got off the ground,” she said. “It would be very exciting to see a town center concept there now.”
Farmelo said that for right now, a town center concept is many years away. “We own some other properties adjacent to the bowling alley site, but many are currently tied up in long-term leases,” he said. “Those leases currently preclude us from significant development, but if some other property owners were to come onboard, maybe.”
Farmelo said his idea has not initiated any resistance from Bowlmor AMF, the owners of the longstanding bowling alley who recently took over the Annandale facility in June after AMF Bowling Worldwide went into Chapter 11 bankruptcy in November 2012.
“I know that bowling alley has been there since the 1960s and that it is a community feature, but we think what we are offering is more attractive and I hope that bowlers can see that, and find other lanes nearby,” said Farmelo.
Messages left for Bowlmor AMF executives were not immediately returned.
Gross said she is excited about the proposal.
“Southern Management Corporation owns the Parliaments Apartments in Annandale, but this is their first redevelopment foray into Fairfax County,” she said. “They have developed some beautiful properties in Maryland, including the Maryland Live! Casino in Arundel Mills, and I think they could do wonders here.”
Farmelo is also excited by the prospect.
“We hope that this project will usher in the revitalization of Annandale,” he said.