Waycroft Woodlawn: A center of quiet

Business,Katie Wilmeth
Waycroft Woodlawn is one of those neighborhoods you wished you live in.

It has quiet, tree-lined streets. It has an active and friendly civic association. The neighbors celebrate major holidays every year with family friendly get-togethers. And you can walk to bustling Ballston.

In short, the North Arlington neighborhood allows for the quintessential suburban experience, without giving up any of the conveniences that come with city life.

“I’ve remarked to a couple of people, ‘I think I could leave $100 on my dashboard overnight and it would still be there in the morning.’ That’s the kind of neighborhood it is,” said George Cecchetti, vice president of the Waycroft Woodlawn Civic Association and a resident of the neighborhood for more than 20 years.

Waycroft Woodlawn, which is bounded by Glebe Road to the east, Interstate 66 to the south, George Mason Drive to the west and 17th Street to the north, is a quaint neighborhood of more than 500 homes. Most of the houses — a mixture of Cape Cods, ramblers, Colonials and cottages — were built between the 1930s and 1950s. Homes typically sell in the mid-$600,000 range but larger new houses built during the past five years or so often fetch as much as $1.5 million.

Throughout the years, the neighborhood has seen several major additions that have made it an important part of Arlington, including the Virginia Hospital Center, I-66 (which cuts through the southeast corner of the neighborhood), a hospice and nearby Glebe Elementary.

But for the people who live in Waycroft Woodlawn, the neighborhood is simply home and the center of life, as evidenced by its active civic association. In fact, the association has one of the highest memberships in the county, said Cecchetti, who also serves as its membership chair.

The civic group plans a number of parties throughout the year, including an annual Fourth of July party held at Lacey Woods Park. The park, located on the corner of George Mason and Washington Boulevard, is the backdrop for neighborhood events throughout the year. In the summer, for example, the civic association brings in local musical acts and neighbors spend the evening picnicking and listening to music. The association also organizes a holiday party and a Halloween party each year.

Of course, the neighborhood isn’t all about parties. With the hospital and I-66 both within its boundaries, Waycroft Woodlawn has found itself in the center of local politics on a number of occasions. The civic association worked closely with the hospital when it expanded to ensure that the resulting additional traffic wouldn’t disturb the neighborhood and consulted on the aesthetics of the new wing (note the tranquil “Healing Garden” across the street). And the association has been vocal on traffic and noise issues surrounding I-66.

Neighbors also do their part to stay involved with the hospice that sits across the street from the hospital. In some years, the hospice has been the location for the neighborhood holiday party, and neighbors also host seminars at the hospice. Recent topics include gardening and a question-and-answer session with local police.

Though it’s likely the police aren’t needed too often if $100 bills really are safe on the dashboard.

Top Reasons to Live in Waycroft Woodlawn

It’s really, really quiet
Waycroft Woodlawn may be a hop, skip and a jump away from D.C., but the neighborhood enjoys a quiet existence because of its proximity to a hospital and a hospice. Unlike nearby neighborhoods that are treated to late night sirens on their way to the hospital, the ambulances have to turn down the sound once they’re near the hospital.

Strong Civic Association
As Cecchetti noted, Waycroft Woodlawn has one of the most active civic associations in Arlington. In addition to party planning, lobbying local government officials and working with the hospital and hospice, the association oversees a listserv for neighbors and publishes a monthly newsletter. The civic association even has members dedicated to issues such as emergency preparedness and traffic calming.

Proximity to everything
With I-66 as one of Waycroft Woodlawn’s boundaries, residents can be in the District, on the toll road, the Dulles Access road or the Beltway in minutes. Glebe Road, another boundary of Waycroft Woodlawn, makes for easy access to Ballston, which boasts a Metro stop, a shopping mall and an ice rink, dozens of restaurants and nightlife venues and a Whole Foods. A bike path, Metro and ART (Arlington Transit) buses also offer extra transportation options.

Those Christmas Lights
For anyone who has ever done a self-guided tour of North Arlington’s Christmas lights in December, you’ve probably stumbled upon the cottage on Abingdon Street. For years the light blue cottage has been home to a winter wonderland that draw neighbors from Waycroft Woodlawn and beyond. Complete with a blow-up snow globe, Santa and his sleigh and even a “naughty” and “nice” list in the house’s bay window, the home is a sign that the holidays have arrived for many in Arlington.

Waycroft Woodlawn at a Glance

August 2008   
Average sold price for homes sold in zip code 22205: $781,527
Average list price for homes sold in zip code 22205: $809,280
Average days on market for homes sold: 130

August 2007
Average sold price for homes sold in zip code 22205: $714,131
Average list price for homes sold in zip code 22205: $735,353
Average days on market for homes sold: 33
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