The Week Ahead….

2016-11-30-17-12-35

The Week Ahead….

by Larry Janezich

Monday,  December 5

  1. Capitol Hill Restoration Society Historic Preservation Committee meets at 6:30pm, Kirby House, 420 10th Street, SE.
  2. The 257th Army Band – which presented the summer concert in Lincoln Park last August (See here: http://bit.ly/2avOXb4) will present “The Holidays In Concert,” Monday, December 5, at 7:00pm at Holy Comforter Church, 1257 East Capitol Street, SE.  Free admission but please bring a non-perishable food item.
  3. ANC6C Alcoholic Beverage Licensing Committee meets at 7:00 \pm at Kaiser Permanente Capitol Hill Medical Center, 700 Second Street, NE.

Agenda not available at press time.

Tuesday, December 6

  1. ANC6B Planning and Zoning Committee meets at 7:00pm, at St. Coletta of Greater Washington, 1901 Independence Avenue, SE.

Among items on the draft agenda:

316 10th Street SE, Historic Preservation application for concept/two-story cellar rear addition.

417 4th Street SE, Historic Preservation application for concept/3-story rear addition and roof deck.

515 7th Street, SE, Historic Preservation application for concept/two-story plus basement carriage house.

1237-1/2 C Street SE, Zoning Adjustment application, Cluss Alley LLC, application for special exceptions under the alley width requirements of and the rear yard requirements to subdivide a lot and permit the conversion of an existing building into two one-family alley dwellings at premises 1237 (rear) C Street, SE.

417 4th Street, SE, Zoning Adjustment application, for a special exception and a variance to permit the construction of a three-story rear addition to an existing three-unit apartment house in the RF-3 Zone at premises 417 4th Street, SE.

Rock ‘n Roll 2017 – Discussion with Diane Romo Thomas about plans for the 2017 United Airlines Rock ‘N’ Roll Marathon to be held on March 11, 2017

  1. ANC 6C Planning, Zoning, and Economic Development Committee meets at 7:00pm, Capitol Hill Medical Center/Kaiser Permanente, 700 Second Street, NE.

Among items on the draft agenda:

Burnham Place (project to deck over tracks north of Union Station) (non-voting) – Status update from the developer concerning the expected review process and schedule for the project to deck over the tracks & construct numerous new structures.

108-110 8th Street, NE, revised Historic Preservation application for concept approval for the construction of a three-story rear addition and new one-story garage with attached studio.

18 8th Street, NE, Historic Preservation application – for concept approval for the construction of a two-story rear addition.

725 L Street, NE, Zoning Adjustment application for a special exception to allow the addition of a one-story sunroom to an existing one-family dwelling in the RF-1 Zone at premises 725 L Street NE

434 3rd Street, NE, revised Historic Preservation application – for concept approval for the construction of a new two-unit building on a vacant lot. The Committee expects the property owner to attend and provide information concerning the adjacent property at 229 E Street, NE.

434 3rd Street, NE, Zoning Adjustment application for variances from lot area requirements, lot occupancy requirements, and rear yard requirements to permit the construction of a three-story flat at premises 434 3rd Street, NE,

  1. ANC 6C Parks and Events Committee meets at 7:00pm, Kaiser-Permanente Capitol Hill Medical Center, 700 Second Street, NE.

Among items on the draft agenda:

NoMa Parks – Brief update from NoMa Parks Foundation concerning the status of NoMa parks.

DDOT Urban Forestry Administration – Discussion with Steve McKindley-Ward, Urban Forestry Administration, DDOT, concerning DC tree maintenance, tree spaces and building a better tree canopy in the District of Columbia.

Rock N’ Roll Marathon – Discussion with Diane Romo Thomas about plans for the 2017 United Airlines Rock ‘N’ Roll Marathon to be held on March 11, 2017.

Wednesday, December 7

  1. ANC6B Transportation Committee will meet at 7:00pm, at Hill Center, 921 Pennsylvania Avenue, SE.

Among items on the draft agenda:

Discussion on regulations on temporary public space permits (Emergency No Parking)

Presentation:  DC Pedestrian Council, Sonia Conly, Ward 6 Representative

Alley Street Naming in 6B09

Thursday, December 8

  1. ANC6B ABC Committee will meet at 7:00pm, at Hill Center, 921 Pennsylvania Avenue, SE.

Among items on the draft agenda:

Capitol Lounge, 229 Pennsylvania Avenue, SE, renewal of Class C Tavern license with entertainment, dancing and summer garden endorsements (continued from November 2016).

The Brig, 1007 8th Street, SE, renewal of Class C Tavern license with entertainment endorsement.

The Stanton, 319 Pennsylvania Avenue, SE, renewal of Class C Tavern license with entertainment and sidewalk café endorsements.

Report on the Status of ANC 6B License Renewal Protests: Good Stuff, Bearnaise, and We the Pizza; Hank’s on the Hill; CH Tandoor; and Cava.

  1. ANC6A meets at 7:00p, at Miner Elementary, 601 Fifteenth Street, NE.

Among items on the agenda:

Recommendation:  The ANC protest the request for an Entertainment Endorsement by Ben’s Chili Bowl/Ben’s Upstairs unless the establishment agrees to a Settlement Agreement that prohibits Entertainment on the roof deck and sidewalk cafe

Recommendation re Zoning Adjustment application for 600 9th Street, NE – that ANC6A write a letter to BZA in support of the application of the owners of 600 9th Street, NE, for variances from the non-conforming structure requirements, the lot occupancy requirements, and the rear yard requirements, to permit the location of multiple decks over an existing rear-attached garage, on the condition that owners supply letters of support from neighbors.

Saturday, December 10

  1. Santa Arrives on Barracks Row. Saturday, December 10, 1pm to 3pm
  2. Capitol Riverfront Holiday Tree Decorating and Lighting Ceremony. Saturday, December 10, 3pm to 6pm.  Location: Canal Park.

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100 Plus Residents Turn Out for Community Meeting on Capitol Hill Shootings

100 Plus showed up for last night's community crime meeting at St. Coletta's of Greater Washington

100 Plus showed up for last night’s community crime meeting at St. Coletta’s of Greater Washington

Council Member Charles Allen and ANC6B Commissioner Denise Krepp, organizer of last night's meeting

Council Member Charles Allen and ANC6B Commissioner Denise Krepp, organizer of last night’s meeting

Interim MPD Chief Peter Newsham

Interim MPD Chief Peter Newsham

100 Plus Residents Turn Out for Community Meeting on Capitol Hill Shootings

by Larry Janezich

City officials and MPD met with a crowd of more than 100 Capitol Hill residents last night at St. Coletta’s  to discuss recent shootings on Capitol Hill, one of which resulted in the incidental death of 16 year old girl.

Update:   circa 10:20pm Tuesday night. 

Saeve Evans – wanted as person of interest in murder of 16 year old Breyona McMillian – has turned himself in to MPD tonight.

With respect to the latter, which occurred the day after Thanksgiving near 12th and I Streets, SE, Interim Police Chief Peter Newsham said, “We’re very confident we can bring some of the people” responsible for the death of Breyona McMillian into custody.  Of the two shootings on Saturday, November 19, near 15th and A Streets, SE, he was less confident, saying police “did not have a lot of leads” on those.

Three ANC6B Commissioners – Krepp, Chao, and Jayaraman – were on hand to ask what else the residents and the ANC could do to discourage crime in the community, to express their constituents’ frustration over having yet another meeting on crime, and to assert that the residents were doing their part by calling 911 and installing cameras.  Krepp had called last night’s meeting at St. Coletta’s after the shootings at 15th and A Streets.

Councilmember Charles Allen, saying that the killing of Breyona McMillian “shook the Potomac Gardens community,” credited Mayor Bowser’s press conference Monday night with generating tips on the killing.  Allen said he’d had conversations with District 1 MPD officials to determine how the deployment of officers would change and what MPD’s strategy is for disrupting and eliminating the activity leading to the shootings.

In response, Newsham tried to reassure residents.  He gave a PowerPoint presentation with statistics indicating a substantial drop in violent crime in the First District this year through November compared to the same period during 2015.  He said that the number one thing the community can do is to continue to work with police: for its part, the MPD has increased the number of patrols and special units in Capitol Hill with a focus of getting illegal guns off the streets.  He cited four recent gun arrests and four gun recoveries.

During the question and answer period, residents questioned why police aren’t more aggressive in intervening with a group of men and juveniles who gather on corners in the area of 15th and A Streets, SE.  One resident said he had complained for “months and months and months” to police about public use of cannabis and the sale of drugs by the group.

Newsham said that police could only intervene if individuals were observed doing something illegal and that police response too often turns into a “cat and mouse game that does not do any good,” where the illegal activity stops before police can get close enough to observe it.  He went on to say in seeming contradiction, “If you’re willing to participate – if you say ‘I saw that person in those clothes smoking marijuana’ we could make an arrest.”  But, he noted, police can arrest someone for smoking marijuana in public and the odds are that person will be out the next day.

For some residents, more cat and mouse game would be just fine.  “I want these people to be uncomfortable,” said one young mother who has encountered weed smokers near 15th and A with her daughter.  Allen seemed sympathetic to this approach, saying that one of the strategic things MPD could do is to specifically target these blocks and figure out what we can do in terms of charges – even minor ones – to get prosecutors and courts to issue stay away orders.  Allen noted that DC has no anti-loitering laws which were deemed unconstitutional by the Supreme Court and that “MPD has to use the tools they have more effectively.”  Allen also cited the problem with prosecutors – DC has no District Attorney – most crimes are prosecuted by the U.S. Attorney’s office, over which the City Council has no oversight.

Several concrete suggestions on moving forward came out of the meeting.  These included Allen’s pursuit of legislation providing penalties for tampering with GPS bracelets, his support for funding for Commissioner Daniel Chao’s effort to make the pocket parks near Potomac Garden positive spaces, and budgetary support for MPD to help retain and recruit police officers in the face of the losses incurred through a “retirement bubble.”  Another idea was to install speed bumps on I Street, SE, which Chao called a long-term hotspot that he had complained to police about numerous times.  Deputy Chief Reese of the DC Housing Authority said that additional cameras would be installed near 12th and I Streets, SE, in the next two or three weeks.

Other measures which residents can take include taking advantage of DC’s Private Security Camera Incentive Program http://bit.ly/2gEXX0S and continuing to participate in meetings like the one last night.  Police want to hear from residents what they can do to be helpful.  Several residents and officials stressed the importance of community involvement to address the systemic problems, helping to launch youths into productive activities through programs such as the Little Lights organization at Potomac Gardens and Eastern High School’s mentoring program.  http://www.littlelights.org/

Newsham attributed much of the violent crime to illegal guns and repeat offenders.  He asked residents to consider the question of penalties being handed out by the courts, saying that –“Speaking as Pete  Newsham – in my opinion, nothing is worse that arresting someone for a violent crime and then having them commit a violent crime after release.”  Krepp, at the suggestion of one resident, agreed to write a letter which residents could use as a model to express these concerns to the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

Editor’s Note.  ANC6B Commissioner Daniel Chao has asked CHC to help circulate the Go Fund Me link below for costs associated with Breyona McMillian’s  burial services.  Chao says her father passed a year ago from cancer and her mom needs all the help she can get to ensure a proper burial.

https://www.gofundme.com/justice-for-bre?ssid=816671258&pos=1

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The Week Ahead…..Four Shootings (two deadly) in 9 Days Alarm Capitol Hill – Public Safety Meeting Monday

The holiday season arrives at Eastern Market. Saturday, November 26, 2016, circa 9:00am.

The holiday season arrives at Eastern Market. Saturday, November 26, 2016, circa 9:00am.

View of the Hine Project from in front of Hill's Kitchen. Saturday, November 26, 2016, circa 9:15am.

View of the Hine Project from in front of Hill’s Kitchen. Saturday, November 26, 2016, circa 9:15am.

The Architect of the Capitol continues construction of the Inaugural Platform on the West Front of the U.S. Capitol. The slender structure seen against the shadow center left, is the center camera stand for the pool television cameras, the pool still photographers, and the official video and still photographers. The steel scaffolding to the left will support covered broadcast positions for radio and social media news personnel. The steel scaffolding to the right will support tiers of television cameras above, and more live radio broadcast and social media positions below. The wooden framing to the lower right of the center camera stand marks the location where the President will take to oath of office. (Click to enlarge)

The Architect of the Capitol continues construction of the Inaugural Platform on the West Front of the U.S. Capitol. The slender structure seen against the shadow center left, is the center camera stand for the pool television cameras, the pool still photographers, and the official video and still photographers. The steel scaffolding to the left will support covered broadcast positions for radio and social media news personnel. The steel scaffolding to the right will support tiers of television cameras above, and more live radio broadcast and social media positions below. The wooden framing to the lower right of the center camera stand marks the location where the President will take to oath of office. November 27l 2016, circa 3:00pm. (Click to enlarge)

The Week Ahead…..Four Shootings (two deadly) in 9 Days Alarm Capitol Hill  – Public Safety Meeting Monday

by Larry Janezich

Saturday, November 19 – Two separate shootings at 15th and A Streets, SE

Friday, November 25 – homicide at 12th and I (Eye) Streets, SE

Sunday, November 27 – Shooting at 600 block of L Street SE near the Capper Community Center (See recent post here:  http://bit.ly/2fL8Fpy)  Update:  at 10:01pm Sunday night, police have termed this shooting a homicide:  “At approximately 12:44 pm, members of the First District heard the Sounds of Gunshots in the area of the listed location. Upon arrival, members located an adult male and adult female suffering from multiple gunshot wounds. The female victim was transported to a local hospital for treatment of non-life threatening injuries. The male victim was transported to a local hospital where all lifesaving efforts failed and he was pronounced dead.”

  1. ANC Commissioner Krepp will host a public safety meeting with Councilmember Allen, with participation from Acting Police Chief Newsham, on Monday, November 28, at 7:30pm. Coletta’s of Greater Wasington, 1901 Independence Avenue, SE.  Co-hosted by ANC6B Commissioners Chao, Ridge, and Jayaraman.

According to Krepp, the original purpose of the meeting was to address the two shootings that occurred on the 1500 block of A Street SE last Saturday and the increase in violent crime, trash, loitering, and other problems in the area.  The meeting has now been expanded to address the tragic murder at Potomac Gardens.

MPD is offering a reward of up to $25k to anyone that provides information which leads to the arrest and conviction of the person or persons responsible for any homicide committed in the District of Columbia. Anyone with information about this case is asked to call the police at 202-727-9099.  Or text anonymously to 50411,

Krepp has invited representatives from the DC Housing Authority, the Community Action Group, SE Market, and 7-Eleven to participate in the meeting.

  1. ANC6a Community Outreach Committee meets at 7:00 pm, Maury ES (multi-purpose room), 1250 Constitution Ave NE (enter from 13th Street, NE).

Tuesday, November 29

ANC6D Executive Committee meets at 7:00pm in Hill Center to set the agenda for the meeting of the full ANC on Tuesday, December 13.

Wednesday, November 30

  1. Eastern Market Community Advisory Committee (EMCAC) meets at 7:00pm, in the North Hall of Eastern Market. There will be a special presentation on the Eastern Market Main Street project by Manuel Cortes.

Thursday, December 1

  1. Police Service Area (PSA) 107 public meeting at 7:00pm, Southeast Library, lower level, 403 7th Street, SE.
  1. 10th Annual Ward 6 Brickie Awards, The Apolo, 600 H Street, NE. RSVP: http://www.charlesallenward6.com/2016_brickies

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Capitol Quarter Community Center – Key to Mixed Income Community – a Ship without a Captain

Capitol Quarter Community Center at 5th and L Streets, SE

Capitol Quarter Community Center at 5th and L Streets, SE

The Center has a full sized regulation high school basketball court, the use of which awaits an operator for the Center.

The Center has a full sized regulation high school basketball court, the use of which awaits an operator for the Center.

Likewise, the 3,600 square feet of first floor space allocated for a day care center.

Likewise, the 3,600 square feet of first floor space allocated for a day care center, part of which is pictured here during Saturday’s open house.

The playground for the day care center is currently being used as part of the after school program.

The playground for the day care center is currently being used as part of the after school program.

Bruce DarConte and Emily Franc with a check for $36183 for purchasing equipment presented to the Community Center on Saturday.  The funding comes from the benefits and amenities package the community received from CSX as compensation for the impact of reconstruction of the CSX tunnel.  DarConte is Founder and President of Near Southeast Community Partners, http://www.nscpartners.org/  a 501c3 nonprofit – which is the vehicle through which CSX Tunnel Community Benefits are distributed to the community.  Emily Franc heads up Anacostia Riverkeeper  http://bit.ly/2fhwkxp

Bruce DarConte and Emily Franc with a check for $36,183 for purchasing equipment presented to the Community Center at Saturday’s open house.  The funding comes from the benefits package the community received from CSX as compensation for the impact of reconstruction of the CSX tunnel.  DarConte is Founder and President of Near Southeast Community Partners, http://www.nscpartners.org/  a 501c3 nonprofit – which is the vehicle through which CSX Tunnel Community Benefits are distributed to the community.  Emily Franc heads up Anacostia Riverkeeper  http://bit.ly/2fhwkxp

Capitol Quarter Community Center – Key to Mixed Income Community – a Ship without a Captain

Critical Component Meant to Tie Community Together Is Stalled by Red Tape

By Larry Janezich

Many see lack of Congressional representation as responsible for Metro’s failure to maintain its infrastructure but in areas where the city has complete autonomy, it makes the similar mistake of privileging glitzy programs over essential infrastructure.  Two examples are the Energy Generating Sidewalk Unveiled in Dupont Circle last Friday  http://bit.ly/2g8Idqt  and the free charging stations/WiFi Soofa Bench pilot project reported here http://bit.ly/2eamJXG on Capitol Hill Corner.  Meanwhile, the city can’t find funds for operating the Arthur Capper Community Center in Capitol Quarter, the city’s largest mixed income housing project which lies  between the Navy Yard and Capitol Hill.

Saturday, the DC Housing Authority (DCHA) held an open house for the new Community Center at 5th and L Streets, SE, but DCHA has launched a ship without a captain.  Currently, there is no operator to provide or contract for the programming that would fulfill the intended purpose of the facility, and it’s not clear under what circumstances such an operator could be engaged, and if one is found, whether the arrangement could be successful.  Funding to construct the facility was provided by DC tax exempt bonds, but no funds were provided for operating the facility, which was intended to be self-sustaining.

Capitol Hill Corner asked DCHA if the center could be transferred to and operated by DC Parks and Recreation, and the reply was, “Budget constraints for the District prevent them from absorbing this center into their budget.”

DCHA broke ground on the community center in August of 2014, and issued an Request for Proposals (RFP) soliciting an operator in October, 2014.  One of those responding which drew initial enthusiasm from DCHA was Capitol Commons Management, Inc. (CCM)  – a coalition of community businesses who wanted to run the facility and provide programs for a fee which  would not only sustain the center, but would also allow the offering of other free programs.   The CCM member organizations included:  Capitol Hill Day School, United Social Sports, Sports on the Hill, and Capitol Hill Arts Workshop.

Despite initial positive reaction on the part of DCHA, in August, 2015, CCM was told the project could not be implemented as described in the RFP.  DC’s Chief Financial Officer nixed moving forward on the basis of the RFP, citing legal restrictions under public financing which precluded a private-public partnership allowing for outside management of the center.

Eight months later, after no way around the restrictions could be found, CCM wrote to DCHA, “The restrictions precluded funding sources that CCM had anticipated for start-up costs as well as future funding and development options for ongoing operations and capital costs. Thus, the restrictions largely mooted the financing and planning assumptions in the Proposal ….  In addition, the new restrictions severely undermined any autonomy in developing programming and operations to achieve the vision and mission described in the Proposal.”  On May 6, 2016, the CCM Board of Directors voted unanimously to withdraw its proposal from DCHA.

Thus ended, what would seem to have been an ideal community-based solution, tying together not only the mixed income aspects of Capitol Quarter, but also linking Capitol Quarter to the neighborhoods north of the freeway.

The community center is widely viewed as a critical element of the emerging community replacing the 23 acre former Capper/Carrollsburg public housing project lying between the SW Freeway and the Navy Yard – now called Capitol Quarter.  The original Arthur Capper Recreation Center was demolished in 2007, but a down economy and lack of funding prevented the construction of a new community center until 2014.  The building was completed in 2016.

DCHA told Capitol Hill Corner, “We opened in July under a temporary conditional Certificate of Occupancy for a summer youth program….We are currently in a startup phase, offering only the after school program under a license agreement with the provider.”  The afterschool program for children is  operating under a license agreement with the Community Services Foundation.

Moving forward, DCHA says it “…will be using public solicitations to invite community based individuals and organizations to provide a wide range of recreational and enrichment activities at the Community Building.”  This could occur as early as next month and the solicitations will provide options for one time, short term or long term opportunities.  Activities are expected to include basketball, indoor soccer, arts and crafts, dance and exercise classes, computer lab, homework help, sewing and quilting classes, chess, etc.  In addition, the building will house a full service child care center and will be available for meetings, birthday parties and other individual uses and events.

DCHA is currently the operator, and says, “We are now working to insure that we meet the requirements of the funding source which was tax exempt bonds.  The IRS requirements for facilities funded this way are directing and controlling how we proceed with bringing in outside organizations to allow the facility to fully achieve its potential to serve as a catalyst to bring a new, growing and diverse neighborhood together as an integrated community.

According to ANC Commissioner Meredith Fascett, DCHA is writing a position description for an RFP to find an operator for the center.  Part of the difficulty is determining the nature of the relationship between the operator and DCHA.  Fascett said that the vision of the operator will be critical, “I think this is a very important neighborhood asset to tie together the larger community.  We need a thoughtful operator to manage programs while keeping the larger mission in mind – that of building a cohesive, inclusionary mixed income neighborhood.”  Fascett sees the planned first floor day care center as being the “anchor” around which the other services can be built.   She hopes that the day care component will be operational by next September.

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The Week Ahead…. (precious little) …. And photos from the week past

On Wednesday last, the Chesapeake Room reopened as Ophelia's Fish House on Barracks Row - 501 8th Street, SE.

On Wednesday last, the Chesapeake Room reopened as Ophelia’s Fish House on Barracks Row – 501 8th Street, SE.  Sunday, November 20, 2016. 

This was the scene Sunday afternoon in DCanter Wine Boutique on Barracks Row, at 548 8th Street, SE, c. 3:45pm.

This was the scene Sunday afternoon, November 20, 2016, in DCanter Wine Boutique on Barracks Row, at 548 8th Street, SE, c. 3:45pm.

Barracks Row, from 8th and Pennsylvania Avenue, SE, looking south.  November 20, 2016, mid-day.

Barracks Row, from 8th and Pennsylvania Avenue, SE, looking south. Wednesday, November 16, 2016, mid-day.

Capitol Hll BID began decorating the Eastern Market Metro Holiday tree in the large circle garden at Eastern Market Metro Plaza’s Northeast quadrant.  The tree honors BID’s founding President, George Didden, III.

Capitol Hll BID began decorating the Eastern Market Metro Holiday tree in the large circle garden at Eastern Market Metro Plaza’s Northeast quadrant. The tree honors BID’s founding President, George Didden, III.  Wednesday, November 16, 2016. 

The Hine Project, from 8th and Pennsylvania Avenue, SE, November 16, 2016, mid-day.

The Hine Project, from 8th and Pennsylvania Avenue, SE, Wednesday, November 16, 2016, mid-day.

Eastern Market, Saturday, November 19, 2016, circa 8:45am.

Eastern Market, Saturday, November 19, 2016, circa 8:45am.

The Week Ahead…. (precious little) …. And photos from the week past

By Larry Janezich

The Week Ahead….

The week ahead is quiet.

Monday, November 21

CANCELLED.  ANC6A Transportation and Public Space Committee meeting.  Scheduled for 7:00pm at Capitol Hill Towers, 900 G Street, NE.

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Hill East Boys and Girls Club Development is back on track – Here’s A Rare Look Inside– Photo Essay

Hill East Boys and Girls Club in back on the track and headed for redevelopment.

Hill East Boys and Girls Club, 261 17th Street, SE, is back on the track and headed for redevelopment.

To enter though the door, you sign a waiver absolving the city government of responsibility, don a mask to protect against mold.  Flashlights are provided by DMPED.

To enter though the door, you sign a waiver absolving the city government of responsibility and don a mask to protect against mold. Flashlights are provided by DMPED.

Through the door, you enter the building's lobby.

Through the door, you enter the building’s lobby.

Stepping out of the lobby you're immersed in gloomy stairwells on the way to lower levels.

Stepping out of the lobby on the north side of the building you’re immersed in gloomy stairwells on the way to the lower level.

The lower level reveals the swimming pool.

On the lower level on the north end of the building lies the empty swimming pool.

Headed through what was once maybe a locker room toward the basketball court on the south end of the building.

Headed through what was once maybe a locker room toward the basketball court on the south end of the building.

The basketball court.  Note the basket of copper pipes collected by metal thieves who have recently broken into the building.  (Separate post on this to follow.)

The basketball court. Note the basket of copper pipes collected by metal thieves who have recently broken into the building. (Separate post on this to follow.)

Back down stairs on the south side of the building to the lower levels, the group came upon the creepy single light on in the building - a dim florescent - leaving city engineers puzzled.

Back down stairs on the south side of the building to the lower level, the group came upon the creepy single light in the building – a dim florescent – leaving city engineers puzzled.

Back up stairs, through rooms filled with debris.

Back up stairs, through rooms filled with debris.

To the auditorium and theater on the north end, above the swimming pool.

To the auditorium and theater on the north end, above the swimming pool.

Up more stairs to an opening to the roof, with the floor below slick with moisture and  pigeon droppings.  Neighbors say swarms of mosquitoes arise from pools of water on the roof.

Up more stairs on the north end to an unprotected opening to the roof, with the floor below slick with moisture and pigeon droppings. Neighbors say swarms of mosquitoes arise from pools of water on the roof.

Moving back to the south end of the building, an upper floor gallery wall displays the signatures of basketball greats Michael Jordan and Shaquile O'Neal...and actor Tom Cruise who filmed scenes for "Minority report" nearby,

Moving back to the south end of the building, an upper floor gallery wall displays the signatures of basketball greats Michael Jordan and Shaquile O’Neal…and actor Tom Cruise who filmed scenes for “Minority report” nearby.

The wall opposite the famous autographs show one of several murals decorating the walls which speak to the former activities of the facility.

The wall opposite the famous autographs show one of several murals decorating the walls which speak to the former activities of the facility.

Upper floor, south side.  Pool table with pool balls long gone to a private collection.

Upper floor, south side. Pool table with pool balls long gone to a private collection.

ANC6B Commissioner Daniel Ridge (in helmet) and DMPED C0-Project Manager Dion Townley discuss steps going forward in the RFP process after the tour.

ANC6B Commissioner Daniel Ridge (in helmet) and DMPED C0-Project Manager Dion Townley discuss steps going forward in the RFP process after the tour.

Hill East Boys and Girls Club Development is back on track – Here’s A Rare Look Inside– Photo Essay

By Larry Janezich

Friday afternoon, ANC 6B Commissioner Daniel Ridge and two DMPED Project managers, Dion Townley and Anna Shapiro, led a group of nearby neighbors on a tour of the just-begging-to-be-developed Hill East Boys and Girls Club.  Last September, during a Hill East walk-about by the Mayor http://bit.ly/2cl30XW, Bowser pledged to work with CM Allen and the Deputy Mayor for Planning and Economic Development (DMPED) to move the stalled project forward.  A previous effort by the Department of General Services (DGS) to redevelop the building failed owing in large part to unhappiness in the community that the plan did not include mixed housing.  That was the direct result of DGS’s standard 25 year lease limitations which precluded private financing, leaving Low Income Tax Credit Housing financing as the only option.  Under DMPED, the lease can be much longer; the land for the Hine Development was leased to Eastbanc for 99 years.

Co-Project Manager Anna Shapiro told the group that there are no preconceptions regarding how the building could be repurposed, but, “DMPED is in business of creating jobs, economic development and affordable housing.  We need to leverage the economic value to do the renovation.”  She added, “If there is historic value we’ll work with Historic Preservation.”

According to CM Charles Allen, the new development scheme will unfold under the provisions of the “OUR Request for Proposals” (RFP) procedure.  DMPED anticipates two public meetings – one in late January and one in late February to receive input from the community.  DMPED will then write and release an RFP in March or April.  After four to six months for review – during which ANC6B would weigh in with its recommendation – DMPED would make a selection.

After the tour, Ridge said he was not wedded to the idea of converting to a housing project and speculated that a community center along the lines of Hill Center would add a lot to the community.  Former ANC Commissioner Frances Campbell, long active on this issue, is pressing for the project to be developed into senior and affordable housing, both of which are becoming scarce in Hill East.

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Chik-Fil-A – Maryland Avenue NE – Opens In March 2017

ANC6A Economic & Zoning Committee, Chaired by Brad Greenfield (far left) hears from Chik-fil-a representatives: John Martinez, Development Manager, is center.

ANC6A Economic & Zoning Committee, Chaired by Brad Greenfield (far left) hears from Chik-fil-A representatives: John Martinez, Development Manager, is center.

More than 30 concerned nearby neighbors Showed up for the Chik-fil-a presentation.

More than 30 concerned nearby neighbors Showed up for the Chik-fil-a presentation.

Chik-Fil-A – Maryland Avenue NE – Opens In March 2017

Neighbors Express Concern about Impact of Traffic on Neighborhood

by Larry Janezich

ANC6A’s Economic Development and Zoning Committee, chaired by Resident Commissioner Brad Greenfield, heard an “informational presentation” Wednesday night from Chik-Fil-A representatives on the opening of the company’s latest DC outlet at 1401 Maryland Avenue, NE.

John Martinez, Chick-fil-A Development Manager, told an ANC6A Committee and more than 30 nearby neighbors that the restaurant will open in “March” (he sounded hopeful).

The new restaurant is a matter of right development and no additional zoning approvals are necessary.  The venue is 100% drive through and walk-up with limited outside seating only.  The restaurant will open at 6:00am for breakfast and close at 10:00pm, six days a week, and close on Sunday.

More than 30 neighbors of the restaurant turned out for the meeting in Sherwood Recreation Center to express concerns about how the development will affect their neighborhood, given the popularity of the sandwich chain.  Of most concern was entrance to and exit from the site and how the expected traffic congestion will affect nearby resident’s access to G Street.  In addition, residents raised concerns about traffic safety issues and the difficulty of finding parking, as patrons of Checkers often parked in the neighborhood to eat.  (Afterward, neighbors complained, the wrappers would get thrown out the window, littering the street.)

Ckik-fil-A representatives were quick to offer assurances that as problems arose, they would be addressed and promised to “look at” ways to mitigate potential traffic issues.

One issue which did not seem to receive enough attention was rodent management.  Although the company is having trash picked up six days a week, has a contract with a pest control company, and is demolishing and rebuilding the trash storage area with three brick walls and gated composite doors, it does not appear to be rodent proof under the “best operational procedures” being pushed by ANC6B for Barracks Row.  Given the higher volume of patrons, more trash, and excess food likely to be generated by the site, it seems that this concession for a corporation this size – one who professes to want to be a good neighbor is a reasonable one.

Martinez left the attendees with:  “When we come into a community, we want to be part of the community.  We’re absorbing information – we’re a sponge – we’ll react where we can.”

All well and good.  Still, as reassuring as “react where we can” appears to be, it provides no real commitment to the community.  And the ANC is powerless to effect any control over the restaurant, absent a requirement for other city agency approvals.  This will leave residents with one avenue of redress if there are problems – complaining to the city’s regulatory agencies, whose record of enforcement shows evidence of consistently giving the benefit of the doubt to the commercial enterprise.

The community suggested company representatives come back to give an update during the construction period, and a re-appearance before the committee was tentatively scheduled for January.

 

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Hine Update – Tenants Move into North Building in January

The Hine Project's North Building

The Hine Project’s North Building

Hine Update – Tenants Move into  North Building in January

Project’s First Office Building Tenant: Provider of “Co-Workspace”

By Larry Janezich

At last week’s ANC6B meeting, Commissioner Steve Hagedorn submitted her report on the status of the Hine project.   The report said that contractors have told community stakeholders that seventeen people are currently being vetted for the “affordable” rental units in the North Building and new tenants who have been approved will start moving in “after December 31.”  Half of those being vetted are over 55.

Since the North Building was built with Low Income Tax Housing Credit (LITHC) funds, the North Building has units designated “affordable” and half are reserved for seniors 55 and older.  The LITHC program effectively limits apartment’s availability to those earning a fraction of the Area Median Income (AMI), which in DC is about $109,000.   The actual amount of income is determined by a number of variables and choices the developer makes regarding how the financials of the project are structured.

According to a pop up which appears when you visit the the Stanton-Eastbanc marketing website for North Building rentals (http://770cstreet.com/):

The last question offers a link to a form to fill out if an applicant is over 55.

The tenant selection process is handled by a property management company that developers routinely hire to manage affordable housing projects.  The availability of the units and associated income limits is advertised, prospective tenants apply, and the management company selects tenants based on the same criteria any tenant must meet with the goal of providing stable long term occupancy.

Commissioner Hagedorn also reported that Stanton-Eastbanc is in negotiations with retail tenants for the first floor of that building and expect that they will be moving in and beginning operation in February.  There is additional retail space available in the basement of the North Building.

As for the South Building scheduled to be delivered in 2017, the report on the development had some new information unlikely to be welcomed by the owners of townhomes on the east side of 8th Street, across from the development.  Developers revealed they plan to have “party rooms” and roof terraces all along the top of the 8th Street side of the building.

Separately, the project’s first office tenant was signed earlier this year, as reported in September by Washington Business Journal.  That tenant, The Yard, has leased 31,500 square feet of the 150,000 square foot office building.  The company rents private offices, conference rooms, “open co-working” (like when Peregrine tables are all filled with people using laptops), and dedicated desks on a temporary basis to smaller companies needing work space or, perhaps, seeking a prestigious Capitol Hill business address.  As “perks” they offer high-speed wi-fi, coffee & tea, printing, receptionist services, and storage.  The company is based in New York – the Hine Project will be its first DC location.  See their website here:  http://bit.ly/2fXrq7C

(An earlier version of this post incorrectly attributed the Hine report to Commissioner Diane Hoskins.)

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The Week Ahead….

Approaching Twilight, West Front, U.S. Capitol Building, c. 4:50pm, November 13, 2016

Approaching Twilight – Construction of the Inaugural Platform, West Front, U.S. Capitol Building, c. 4:35pm, November 13, 2016 (click to enlarge)

The Week Ahead….

By Larry Janezich

Monday, November 14

  1. ANC6D meets at 7:00pm at 200 I (Eye) Street, SC.

Among items on the draft agenda:

Presentation – Update from DPR on Amidon sidewalk; SW Duck  Pont

Presentation – New Farmer’s Market partnership, 1917 :  FRESHFARM and Capitol Riverfront BID

11th Street Bridge Park Update

New alcohol beverage license for Takorean

Renewal of alcohol beverage license for Ziegfeld’s/Secrets

Renewal of alcohol beverage license for The Bulpen I and II

Renewal of alcohol beverage license for Penthouse

Update on The Wharf

Tuesday, November 15

  1. ANC6A Alcoholic Beverage Licensing Committee meets at 7:00pm, at Sherwood Recreation Center, 10th and G Streets, NE.

Among items on the agenda:

Renewal of alcohol beverage license for Nomad Hookah Bar, (1200 H Street NE)

Renewal of alcohol beverage license for The Haymaker (1015 H Street NE)

Discussion of request for Entertainment Endorsement by Ben’s Chili Bowl/Ben’s Upstairs (1001 H Street NE)

  1. CHRS Board of Directors meets at 6:30pm, Capitol Hill Townhomes, 750 6th street, SE.

Wednesday, November 16

  1. ANC6A Economic Development & Zoning Committee meets at 7:00pm, Sherwood Recreation Center, 10th and G Streets, NE.

Among items on the agenda:

Kingman Park Historic District: Request by residents to make Kingman Park and surrounding areas a historic district

1401 Maryland Avenue, NE: Informational presentation on the new Chic-Fil-A restaurant that is being built at the location of the old Checkers on Maryland Avenue.

  1. Police Service Area (PSA) 106 meets at 7:00pm, at 200 I (Eye) Street, SE.

Residents are invited to provide input to police on illegal activity in their neighborhoods.

Thursday, November 17

  1. Police Service Area (PSA) 108 meets at 7:00pm, Liberty Baptist Church, 527 Kentucky Avenue, SE.

Residents are invited to provide input to police on illegal activity in their neighborhoods.

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Veterans Day Observance, Folger Park – Photo Essay

American Legion Kenneth h. Nash Post No. 8 sponsored a Veterans Day Observance – “Courage” – honoring all those who served, on Friday, November 11, in Folgers Park.  The annual event featured The Marine Drum and Bugle Corps “The Commandant’s Own” who, over the years have supported Post No. 8 in numerous military ceremonial observances.

The Presentation of Colors by the United States Marine Corps Color Guard

The Presentation of Colors by the United States Marine Corps Color Guard

The United States Mairine Corps Bugle and Drum Corps, just prior to The National Anthem

The United States Marine Corps Bugle and Drum Corps, just prior to The National Anthem

Herman "Rip" Preston, Jr., Commender Kenneth H. Nash Post No. 8, welcomes the crowd and remembers the veterans.

Herman “Rip” Preston, Jr., Commander Kenneth H. Nash Post No. 8, welcomes the crowd and remembers the veterans.

Laying of the wreath by Commander Preston and guest speaker E. Maquel Marshall, U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs

Laying of the wreath by Commander Preston and guest speaker E. Maquel Marshall, U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs

Taps.

Taps.

A crowd of more than 100 gathered in Folger Park to remember and commemorate U.S. veterans and their service to the country.

A crowd of more than 100 gathered in Folger Park to remember and commemorate U.S. veterans and their service to the country.

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