ARLINGTON, VA-The Arlington Main Post Office development, a unique 316,000-sf mixed-use project that is the brainchild of the US Postal Service and Philadelphia-headquartered Keating Development Co., has garnered the attention and approval of every Arlington County department necessary to get the $75 million endeavor up and running. “This complex,” says Arlington County Board chairman Paul Ferguson, “will demonstrate how public and private entities can come together to produce community benefits.” Now that the development team has gotten the thumbs up from local authorities, groundbreaking for the Dorsky Hodgson + Partners-designed project can proceed as scheduled in the spring of next year.

Located in the bustling Clarendon community, the Arlington Main Post Office project will take up two city blocks fronting Washington Boulevard. When all is said and done, the historic post office and distribution facility property will have been redeveloped to include a three-story office structure, a 194-unit apartment tower, street-level retail space and a subterranean parking garage to accommodate well over 500 vehicles. The post office and another historic structure, the Dan Kain Trophies Building, will be preserved and serve as the centerpiece, of sorts, for the project.

“The art deco design of the historic buildings and the unique character of the Clarendon area were clearly inspirations,” Dorsky Hodgson Washington Office partner Sandy Silverman notes. “Our design strategy reflects the eclectic atmosphere of the community, provides a truly unique mix of uses and preserves the history of the area.” Architectural firm Oehrlein & Associates assisted Dorsky Hodgson in maintaining the historical integrity of the buildings.

“The post office design focuses on the historic preservation of the exterior and interior public areas in the front of the building, but also adds new, modern postal facilities in the rear of the building,” Silverman tells “Our design takes the renovation of the post office one step further with the inclusion of an underground postal distribution facility, which will serve three zip codes and house as many as 84 mail trucks.”

Assuming all goes as planned, redevelopment of the property will conclude in 2006, at which point it will serve as home or office–perhaps both–to about 850 individuals.

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