A map of the National Landing redevelopment in Arlington and Alexandria, with Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport and the Potomac River in the background. (JBG Smith)

The Crystal City Business Improvement District (BID) could soon be known as (and it’s a mouthful) the “Crystal City, Pentagon City and Potomac Yard at National Landing” BID.

Arlington County Board members on March 21 set a public hearing for April 18 to rename the district to align it with expanded boundaries that were approved late last year, and also to incorporate a name (National Landing) that county leaders and Amazon have been using to brand the area.

The clunky name is an acknowledgment that while “National Landing” has its place, the existing names of the three separate communities (Crystal City, Pentagon City and Potomac Yard) that make it up are not going anywhere.

County staff’s support for the change is grounded in the expectation that “future marketing and branding efforts (including signage and placemaking efforts) will continue to promote the individual neighborhood names alongside the area-wide ‘National Landing’ brand,” said Katie McConnell of Arlington Economic Development in a memo to County Board members.

“Those areas want to maintain their identities,” County Board Chairman Libby Garvey added. “That’s important.”

The Crystal City BID was created by the Arlington government in 2006. Commercial properties within its boundaries are assessed a tax surcharge, with the funds being used to support marketing and community events.

Last September, County Board members expanded the BID’s catchment area by 76 percent, incorporating some adjacent areas of Pentagon City and Potomac Yard. Some major parcels, however, were left outside the boundaries, including Macy’s, Nordstrom, the Ritz-Carlton, Pentagon Row and Fashion Center at Pentagon City, when owners of those parcels expressed little interest in being included.

The April 18 public hearing is likely to be a pro-forma affair, but is required to make the renaming final.

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