Monthly Archives: April 2016

The Week Ahead….

The Hine Project’s North Building – controversial because it will house almost all of the Hine Project’s affordable housing (which should be distributed throughout the project) begins to take shape on what will be the re-opened C Street between 7th and 8th Streets, SE.  The first floor of the North Building will be retail.  The residential units above will be affordable housing for seniors.

The Hine Project’s North Building – controversial because it will house almost all of the Hine Project’s affordable housing (which should be distributed throughout the project) begins to take shape on what will be the re-opened C Street between 7th and 8th Streets, SE. The first floor of the North Building will be retail. Half the residential units above will be affordable housing for seniors.

The Week Ahead….

Monday, April 11

  1. ANC6D meets at 7:00pm at 1100 4th Street, SW, DCRA 2nd Floor meeting room.

Agenda not available at press time.

  1. ANC6B Outreach & Constituent Services Task Force meets at 7:00pm, at Hill Center. Director Melinda Bolling of DC Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs will attend.

Among items on the agenda:

Occupancy permits for businesses in Capitol Hill residences.

Tuesday, April 12

  1. ANC6B meets for its April monthly meeting at 7:00pm at Hill Center.

Among items on the Agenda:

Councilmember Charles Allen will provide a community update and take questions.

Ms Tamara Robinson, Public Affairs & Voter Outreach Specialist, DC Board of Elections, will give a presentation about the upcoming DC Primary on June 14th and demonstrate new voting equipment.

Consent calendar (non-controversial items)

Liquor license renewals for:  Rose’s Luxury, Sizzling Express, Aatish on the Hill, Acqua Al 2, Young Chow Asian Restaurant, Trattoria Alberto, Nooshi Capitol Hill.

Zoning issues for 605 G Street, SE; & Pizza on Barracks Row, Pineapple & Pearls on Barracks Row, Rose’s Luxury, Beuchert’s.

Regular Calendar (items not resolved in committee)

Southeast Market, 1500 Independence Avenue SE.  Change from wine and beer liquor license to wine, beer, and spirits license.

Capitol Hill Club, 300 First Street SE, renewal of club license.

Hunan Dynasty, 215 Pennsylvania Avenue, SE. Renewal of liquor license.

Good Stuff Eatery, 303 Pennsylvania Avenue, SE.  Renewal of liquor license.

We, The Pizza, 305 Pennsylvania Avenue, SE.  Renewal of liquor license.

Bearnaise, 313-315 Pennsylvania Avenue SE.  Renewal of liquor license.

Café 8, 424 8th Street SE, renewal of liquor license.

U.S. Capitol Power Plant, 25 E Street, SE. Fence over 42” high.

1101 Pennsylvania Avenue, SE, (Frager’s Hardware site).  Concept/additions and infill.

  1. PSA 104 meets at 7:00pm at Ludlow Taylor elementary School, 659 7th Street, NE, with Lt. Brian Murphy.

Among items on the agenda:

Assessment of PSA Problem Solving in the last 30 days

PSA 104 Crime Report and statistics

DC Attorney General Report

US CSOSA Report

Presentation by Christopher Dye, Administrator, Private Security Incentive Program, Office of Victim Services and Justice Grants.

(Pending issues from last meeting:  Prostitution on K Street and nearby area, DC Protective Services support at Office of Aging, Tree Trimming on K Street, NE, for safety security reasons; Nuisance issues.

Wednesday, April 13

  1. ANC6C, meets at 7:00pm, Heritage Foundation, 214 Massachusetts Avenue, NE

Among items on the agenda:

Presentations by:  Director of Unified Communications (911, 311)—Karima Holmes; Streetcar update—Sean Moore.

Liquor license renewals for:  Wunder Garten, 150 M Street NE, Addis Ethiopian Restaurant, 707 H Street NE, Bistro Italiano update, 320 D Street NE.

4th and M Streets NE, proposed bike lanes

51 N Street NE, mixed use development, paving, ADA curb ramp, curbs, gutters, benches, etc.

Ethiopic Restaurant, 401 H Street NE, enclosed sidewalk cafe

K Street NE traffic study

Capitol Crossing, I-395 air rights, ZC 08-34 F, minor modification to previously approved PUD

Central Armature Works, 1200 block of 3rd Street NE (nonvoting), planned PUD

Thursday, April 14

  1. ANC6A meets at 7:00pm in Miner School, 601 Fifteenth Street, NE.

Among items on the agenda:

Presentations:

Rappaport & WC Smith – H Street Connection Redevelopment, 901 H Street, NE.

MPD Fifth District Commander William Fitzgerald

Office of Unified Command Director Karima Holmes

DC Streetcar Team’s Sean May and DDOT representative

Regular calendar:

920 – 922 H Street, NE.  Request for variances to allow the construction of a mixed use building with a restaurant and nine residential units, with restrictions.

  1. CHRS Zoning Committee meets at 7:30pm, at Kirby House, 420 10th Street, SE.

Saturday, April 16

  1. Liberty Baptist Church outreach to Potomac Gardens: Reverend Anthony Owens and the congregation from Liberty Baptist Church will be introducing themselves to Potomac Gardens on Saturday, April 16, from 11:00am thru 2:00pm.

Sunday, April 17

  1. Anacostia River Festival:

All events from 1:00pm to 5:00pm are “free and family-friendly.”  For more information, go here:  http://bridgepark.org/anacostia-river-festival  Access: Free shuttles from Anacostia and Eastern Market Metro Stations; free parking at Maritime Plaza (1201 M Street SE) and the Anacostia Metro Station (with free shuttle service to the Park), and free bike valet at the Park.

Comments Off on The Week Ahead….

Filed under Uncategorized

The Identity Politics of Indigenous Artist Gregg Deal – At The Fridge

There Is No Plan B

There Is No Plan B

Gregg Deal at The Fridge Last Sunday

Gregg Deal at The Fridge Last Sunday

Not Confident About Immigration Reform

Not Confident About Immigration Reform

The Fridge Owner and Curator Alex Goldstein and Gregg Deal (standing) at Last Sunday's Artist Talk

The Fridge Owner and Curator Alex Goldstein and Gregg Deal (standing) at Last Sunday’s Artist Talk

Deal Created the Mural on the Wall of The Fridge in June, 2015

Deal Created the Mural on the Wall of The Fridge in June, 2015

 

The Identity Politics of Indigenous Artist Gregg Deal – At The Fridge

by Larry Janezich

Gregg Deal is a Pyramid Lake Paiute artist and activist.  His current show at The Fridge through May 1, “There Is No Plan B” raises questions regarding the complex identity of indigenous people as it exists within Western culture. Deal talked about his work at an artist’s talk last Sunday at The Fridge: his art is calculated to start a conversation about the complex social-cultural identity of indigenous people and how they are viewed.  Gregg says, “When you can facilitate conversations through art, you can change lives.”

Gregg told the audience, “I’m not a Native American artist – I’m a contemporary artist that happens to be Native American, and this [my art] is my experience.”  Commenting on the contemporary nature of indigenous arts, Deal says, “There’s a place in my heart for more traditional things indigenous people make…but there’s a large number of indigenous people who are contemporary artists and contemporary art is important because it expresses something – your art is your life.  Often times a statement is being made that relates back to being the person you are.  One obstacle we face as indigenous people is proving you exist – contemporary art is a good way to do that.”

Trained as an oil painter, then print as a maker and graphic designer, Deal’s art is the result of combining everything he has ever done. He says, “Every artist has things he draws from.  The thing that got me started was social media manipulation.”  His work spans an array of media, including visual art, murals, print work, performance art, time lapse videos, and conceptual art.  See his website, here:  http://greggdeal.com/

Deal was one of the group of Native Americans who confronted a panel of Washington DC football fans supporting their team’s name on the Daily Show in September, 2014.  Deal says that the Daily Show created a new context to have a conversation about the controversy over the team name using comedy – “laughing about it changes minds – art does the same thing.” For the WaPo account of that event, go here:  http://wapo.st/1TC6ylr

Deal just finished a three-month stint as artist-in-residence at the Denver Art Museum and has recently relocated his family to the Denver area.  To watch an interview with Deal done during his tenure as an artist in residence go here: http://bit.ly/1N0WUY6

For details on “There Is No Plan B” and for more on upcoming events at The Fridge, go here:  http://bit.ly/1VHnzef

Comments Off on The Identity Politics of Indigenous Artist Gregg Deal – At The Fridge

Filed under Uncategorized

The Week Ahead….Touché – Formerly XII Lounge – in Trouble with ANC6A (See Wednesday)

 

Touche, at 1123 H street, NE, was formerly the troubled XII Lounge

Touché, at 1123 H Street, was formerly XII Lounge

The Week Ahead….Touché – Formerly XII Lounge – in Trouble with ANC6A (See Wednesday)

by Larry Janezich

Monday, April 4

  1. Capitol Hill Restoration Society Historic Preservation Committee meets at 6:30pm, in Kirby House, 420 10th Street, SE.
  2. ANC6C ABC Committee meets at 7:00 pm at Kaiser Permanente Capitol Hill Medical Center, 700 Second Street, NE.

Among items on the agenda:

Wunder Garten, 131 M Street, NE – License relocation request and other related items.

Addis Ethiopian Restaurant, 707 H Street, NE.  Settlement restriction reconsideration request.

Update – Bistro Italiano, 320 D Street, NE.  Summer garden request withdrawn.

  1. EventsDC Community Meeting to reveal results of its “RFK Campus Redevelopment Study”. 6:30pm to 8:30pm, at he Convention Center, 801 Mount Vernon Place, NW.

Tuesday, April 5

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

Among items on the agenda:

605 G Street SE. Susan Hillberg (owner).

&pizza, 400 block 8th Street, SE.   Modification of BZA Order.

Elaine’s One (Pineapple & Pearls), 715 8th Street, SE, new sidewalk café.

Rose’s Luxury, 717 8th Street SE, retractable awning.

Beuchert’s, 623 Pennsylvania Avenue, SE, new sidewalk cafe.

U.S. Capitol Power Plant, 25 E Street, SE, fence over 42” high.

Frager’s Hardware site, 1101 Pennsylvania Avenue, SE, concept/additions and infill: Perseus Realty LLC, Adam Peters, Head of Development

  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 agenda:

Committee updates concerning new and pending issues.

KIPP DC/Brentwood Hamilton Athletic Field – Discussion with the District Department of Parks and Recreation and KIPP DC concerning the development of the Brentwood Hamilton athletic facilities by KIPP DC.

NoMa Parks – Discussion concerning the Community Conversation 3.0 and other issues involving NoMa Parks.

  1. Representatives from Mayor Bowser’s office will lead a community walk and talk in ANC district 6b07 beginning at noon at Harris Teeter at 1350 Potomac Avenue, SE, then to 13th, K, and 12th Streets, SE. Representatives from DPW, DCRA, DPR, DDOT, DCHA, MPD and CM Allen’s Office will participate.  ANC6B Commissioner Daniel Chao says this walk is intended to show what the city has done and is doing – and identify what remains to be done to address concerns.  Chao asks those wishing to attend to RSVP, or – for those unable to attend – to send questions, comments or concerns to him at:  daniel6b07@anc6b.org

Wednesday, April 6

  1. ANC6B Transportation Committee meets at 7:00pm at Hill Center.

Among items on the agenda:

Update on the Status of the 17th & 19th Streets Pedestrian Safety Project: Mr. Dahir, DDOT 17th Street Project Manager.

Presentation by Washington Gas on “ProjectPipes”.

Presentation by the Amalgamated Transit Union, Local #1764.

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

Agenda not available at press time.

  1. Alcohol Beverage Regulation Administration will hold a hearing on ANC6A’s protest of Touché’s  (the former XII H Street Lounge) application for a liquor license renewal. Jay Williams, ANC6A ABC Committee chair will represent the ANC before ABRA.  He will cite multiple complaints about noise from the venue’s roof deck.  According to Williams, the ANC tried and failed to negotiate a new settlement agreement addressing community concerns with Touché , resulting in the decision to protest the renewal.  For the 2014 post with details on why XII had its license suspended and the representations of the club’s new owners go here:  http://bit.ly/1ZXZBvD

The hearing will be at 4:00pm at the Reeves Municipal Center, 2000 14th Street, NW, S400, Washington, DC 20009 Frank D. Reeves Municipal Center

Thursday, April 7

  1. ANC6B’s Alcohol Beverage Control Committee will meet at 7:00pm, in Hill Center.

Among items on the agenda are the following:

Southeast Market, 1500 Independence Avenue, SE, change from Retailer B (wine and beer) to Retailer A (wine, beer, and spirits).

Rose’s Luxury, 717 8th Street, SE, renewal of Class C Restaurant license.

Sizzling Express, 600 Pennsylvania Avenue, SE, renewal of Class C Restaurant license

Aatish on the Hill, 609 Pennsylvania Avenue, SE, renewal of Class C Restaurant license.

Acqua Al 2, 212 7th Street, SE, renewal of Class C Restaurant license.

Capitol Hill Club, 300 First Street, SE, renewal of Class C Club license.

Young Chow Asian Restaurant, 312 Pennsylvania Avenue, SE, renewal of Class C Restaurant license.

Hunan Dynasty, 215 Pennsylvania Avenue SE, renewal of Class D Restaurant license.

Good Stuff Eatery, 303 Pennsylvania Avenue SE, renewal of Class D Restaurant license.

We, The Pizza, 305 Pennsylvania Avenue SE, renewal of Class C Restaurant license.

Bearnaise, 313-315 Pennsylvania Avenue SE, renewal of Class C Restaurant license.

Trattoria Alberto, 504 8th Street SE, renewal of Class C Restaurant license.

Café 8, 424 8th Street SE, renewal of Class C Restaurant license.

Nooshi Capitol Hill, 524 8th Street SE, renewal of Class C Restaurant license.

  1. The Metropolitan Police Department will host a meeting with the U.S. Attorney for the District of Columbia at 7:00pm at the First Police District, 101 M Street, SW. Members of the United States Attorney’s Office and the First Police District will discuss matters of mutual interest on crime and the criminal justice system including the outcomes of recent arrests and convictions.  Residents will have an opportunity to weigh-in regarding upcoming sentencing dates and issues affecting our community.
  1. Police Service Area (PSA) 107, with Lt. Eddie Fowler, meets at 7:00pm, Southeast Library, lower level.
  1. Friends of Southeast Library (FOSEL) meet at 5:30pm, Southeast Library, lower level. Anyone interested in joining FOSEL or volunteering to help with the monthly book sales at Southeast Library is urged to attend.

 

Comments Off on The Week Ahead….Touché – Formerly XII Lounge – in Trouble with ANC6A (See Wednesday)

Filed under Uncategorized

First Lady Lunches at Radici Near Eastern Market – Photo Essay

First Lady Michelle Obama was one of a group of women who attended a birthday luncheon for an unnamed friend at Radici near Eastern Market Sunday afternoon.

A sign at Radici appeared this morning announcing an unusual mid-day private event on a busy Sunday morning.

A sign at Radici appeared this morning announcing an unusual mid-day private event on a busy Sunday morning.

After the arrival of the First Lady, the celebrity alert attracted a large crowd of Sunday market goers.

After the arrival of the First Lady, the celebrity alert attracted a large crowd of Sunday market goers.Click to enlarge.

Security, as they say, was tight.

Security, as they say, was tight.

The pay-off for those standing in the chilly temperatures came at 3:30 pm, in the form of a glimpse of the First Lady - in the cream colored suit - exiting Radici's

The pay-off for those standing in the chilly temperatures came at 3:30 pm, in the form of a glimpse of the First Lady – in the cream colored suit – exiting Radici’s

This was the scene inside just after the First Lady departed.

This was the scene inside just after the First Lady departed

Enrico  Sasso, whose wife Bridget along with business partner Phil Friedman of Salsarita's Fresh Cantina, told CHC Michelle Obama "had a good time."  Asked what was on the menu, he smiled and said, "Some things are confidential."

Enrico Sasso, whose wife Bridget along with business partner Phil Friedman of Salsarita’s Fresh Cantina owns Radici, told CHC that Michelle Obama “had a good time.” Asked what was on the menu, he smiled and said, “Some things are confidential.”

Visit Radici’s website here:  http://www.radici-market.com/

Visit Radici’s website here:  http://www.radici-market.com/

4 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized

& Pizza Caught Trying to Pull a Fast One on Barracks Row

The future home of & Pizza on Barracks Row remains boarded up after a stop work order, but construction may resume shortly.

The future home of & Pizza on Barracks Row remains boarded up after a stop work order, but construction may resume shortly.

& Pizza Caught Trying to Pull a Fast One on Barracks Row

by Larry Janezich

Capitol Hill residents who welcome & Pizza’s opening on Barracks Row – scheduled for last August – have been wondering at the lack of activity since a “Stop Work Order” was posted on the site last summer.

Michael Niebauer of Washington Business Journal raised some eyebrows on March 17 when he tweeted “some serious issues with the & pizza buildout of its barracks row building. Back before the BZA now.”

As it turns out, & Pizza had proceeded with construction on the site, not only without permits, but in disregard of the restrictions in the BZA order incorporating “best operating practices” reached after months of negotiations with ANC6B and nearby neighbors.  The ANC and neighbors were able to wrest those concessions from & Pizza in exchange for providing & Pizza with a 7 year exemption from the ban on additional fast food outlets on Barracks Row.  In its final form, the agreement was considered by ANC6B to be the gold standard for operating practices for future restaurants opening on Barracks Row, and a desired goal for existing restaurants.  See here:  http://bit.ly/1SpRDWE

The “Stop Work Order” took & Pizza back to the drawing board after neighbors and the ANC took a close look at what & Pizza was up to.  Over the next six months, ANC representatives and concerned neighbors met with CEO Michael Lassiter and & Pizza representatives to reach an agreement which satisfied the spirit of the BZA order and which would allow & Pizza to move forward.

On March 10, & Pizza requested a modification of the BZA order to reflect the new agreement. The request came apologetically:

“And pizza regrets the confusion and miscommunication that resulted in our beginning construction without the requisite permits and not in accordance with the terms of the original order. We have moved past working with those associated with that decision and have paid the fines related to the infraction.”

Calling the modification to the BZA order minor, & Pizza was apparently hoping for a quick administrative review and approval.  BZA scheduled a hearing on the matter, and since & Pizza had failed to notify ANC6B in a timely matter, the hearing was scheduled before ANC6B would have an opportunity to weigh in.

Commissioner Chander Jayaraman, unhappy with the lack of transparency, pushed for an ANC6B review prior to the BZA hearing.  He wanted & Pizza to explain to the ANC and the community why they began construction without permits, and why their construction differed from the BZA order.  At his prompting, ANC6B Chair Kirsten Oldenburg appeared in person before DCRA and pressed for a delay in the hearing date so that the ANC could publically review the process.  Jayaraman followed up with a letter of his own to BZA, which reads in part:

“I want to express my concern and dismay at the lack of transparency with respect to the pizza case. I strongly object to the BZA taking any action on this case before ANC 6B has had an opportunity to opine on the revisions to the BZA order.

We have not been notified of the latest request and have not been consulted nor provided the opportunity to comment on the changes they are seeking to the BZA order. In fact, the applicant has not contacted or met with current ANC commissioners on this case since a stop work order was placed on their establishment for illegally beginning construction without permits and without adhering to the specifics enumerated in the BZA order. I’m certain, however, the changes the applicant is proposing are not minor modifications but rather substantial changes to the existing order [g]iven their actions in violating district regulations and attempting to circumvent the regular process of the ANC.”

The hearing was postponed, and last Thursday night, ANC6B’s Executive Committee placed the case on the agenda for the April meeting scheduled for April 12.  Before that, however, the issue will come up for a preliminary review before ANC6B’s Planning and Zoning Committee which meets at 7:00pm, next Tuesday, April 5, at St. Coletta’s of Greater Washington.

So.  What is actually going on here?

Someone at & Pizza authorized proceeding with illegal construction which flouted the BZA order.  And while DCRA will issue a stop work order if prompted, the fact is, that once illegal commercial construction is complete, DCRA seldom requires that it be torn out.  The usual procedure is for the offender to pay a fine and then conduct business as usual.

Former ANC6B Planning and Zoning Chair, Francis Campbell, who was asked to help negotiate a new agreement, said regarding construction without a permit, “This was a mistake.  There is no excuse for that.”  He gives credit to & Pizza for admitting they were wrong and for working to come into compliance with the intent of the BZA order, even to the extent of agreeing to his suggestion that as a show of good faith they renew their exemption from the Barracks Row fast food ban after five years instead of the seven as stated in the original BZA order.

In support of & Pizza’s claim that the modifications are minor, the BZA’s on line case file shows two word-for-word identical letters of support for & Pizza.  Both letters – one from Pure Barre and one from Metro Mutts – who are the tenants of the building adjacent to & Pizza on the south side, contain the sentence: “I regard the &Pizza request as extremely minor and I commend them for agreeing to the new terms.”  One of Capitol Hill’s major commercial real estate holders – Maurice Kreidler – owns the building housing the two tenants, the & Pizza site, and the adjacent Barracks Row Starbucks.

Adding a layer of irony to the story, Jayaraman says he learned in talking to the Office of Planning (OP) that the agency uses the & Pizza case as a training example illustrating how ANCs can use a BZA order to mitigate the impact of restaurants on nearby neighbors.

Update:  Editor’s Note:  The previous version of this post contained some inaccuracies regarding BZA procedures.  CHC regrets the error.

 

6 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized