Arlington, Virginia, is a thriving, large census-designated place in Arlington County. If it were to be incorporated, it would be the fourth-largest city in the Washington, D.C. metro area with a population that, as of 2014, topped 229,000. Arlington sits on the southern bank of the Potomac River, directly across from Washington. It is bordered by the city of Falls Church and Fairfax County, as well as the city of Alexandria.
Arlington’s history is tied in with that of the nation’s Capital. Virginia donated the parcel of land that would eventually become Arlington to the national government to make up what was being developed as the District of Columbia. In 1801, after moving the Capital from its temporary home in Philadelphia to D.C., the government organized the land as a subdivision of the District named Alexandria County. The land was ceded back to the state of Virginia in the 1840s due to issues involving congressional representation and the freedom of slaves. In the 1920s, to avoid confusion with the adjacent city of Alexandria, the county (and coterminous CDP) was renamed Arlington.
Because of Arlington’s close proximity to Washington, several national agencies are headquartered there. They constitute major employers in Arlington. These include the Department of Defense at the Pentagon, Drug Enforcement Administration, Transportation Security Administration (TSA), and Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA). Also located within county boundaries is Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport. Altogether, Arlington is the wealthiest county in the nation based on median household income. Coincidentally, it also has the highest concentration of singles in the metro area.
Arlington’s neighborhoods are organized around public transportation stops, a strategy that the government has been implementing for decades now. These neighborhoods are intended to be mixed-use, with a combination of pedestrian and transportation-oriented community spaces. These “urban villages” include Rosslyn (home of Turnberry Tower, the tallest residential building in the Washington metropolitan area), Clarendon, Courthouse (where, as the name suggests, the county court is located), and Aurora Heights. The county’s rich history means that many of the garden-style apartment buildings and neighborhoods are considered historically significant and are on the National Register of Historic Places.
Arlington has the highest population density in the Washington metro area. Among the 50 newest U.S. cities, Arlington has the second-largest amount of roommates living together, just behind San Francisco. CNN Money ranked Arlington has the most educated city in America, with over one-third of the population holding graduate degrees. In 2009 it was ranked second behind nearby Loudoun County for the county with the highest percentage of adults aged 25-34 earning over $100,000 annually. It has the lowest unemployment rate of any county in Virginia.
To learn more about life in exciting Arlington, Virginia, get in touch with a qualified real estate agent today!