BUSINESS

Ballston’s ‘Blue Goose’ building to be torn down as neighborhood modernization gets underway

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ARLINGTON, Va. (WJLA) – Arlington’s Ballston neighborhood is undergoing a total transformation, with new restaurants and condominiums popping up, but now some of its most well-known buildings are getting a makeover—including Marymount University’s “Blue Goose.”

Marymount University's "Blue Goose" in Ballston. (WJLA)

It’s easy to bash the Blue Goose, a 1960s building once used by the CIA.

“That building looks like it was built in 1950s Russia,” said Spencer Vliet, who works in Ballston.

“We make fun of that building all the time. I mean, it’s just a funny thing to look at,” said Chris Urteaga, who also works nearby.

You won’t have to look at the Blue Goose after January, when it’s torn down.

“If you put an Instagram filter on top of an actual building, that’s kind of what this monstrosity looks like,” said Nancy Iacomini, with the Arlington County Planning Commission, seems to be one of few people who appreciate the Blue Goose.

“There’s probably more people that have a taste for hot Thai food than necessarily for the Blue Goose,” she said.

While Iacomini would prefer more nods to history in the area, like the old diamond canopy on the new JBG building, the concept design for Ballston reflects what the millennials who work there really want.

“Any development is great and any modernization is great,” Urteaga said.

Ballston BID CEO Tina Leone raves about the coming transformation of the mall into a town center.

“What they’re proposing is absolutely life-altering,” she said.

The plan also calls for the modernization of a dated Metro plaza that Leone called dark and scary.

As for the Blue Goose, it will be migrating to the history books.

“Even if you don’t love it, it’s memorable,” Iacomini said.

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