Monthly Archives: March 2019

Councilmember Allen Talks Traffic, Crosswalks, and Parking in ANC6A

ANC6A heard CM Charles Allen Miner School last Thursday night. L-R  Commissioners Mike Soderman, Stephanie Zinny, Brian Alcorn, Phil Toomajian, Chair Amber Gove, Sondra Phillips-Gilbert, Ruth Hudson,  Marie-Claire Brown, ANC Executive Assistant.  

Councilmember Allen Talks Traffic, Crosswalks, and Parking in ANC6A

by Larry Janezich

Councilmember Charles Allen appeared before ANC six a last Thursday night, as part of his tour of Ward 6 ANCs to update them on City Council business affecting the ward.  In Q&A afterward, residents wanted to talk about traffic safety.  A resident asked Allen how to get more MPD officers to make traffic safety a priority.

Allen replied that traffic enforcement was only part of the solution to traffic and safety issues, and that a lot had to do with redesign, referring to four way stops and restoring of obliterated crosswalks.  He said we are paying now for the failure of decades-old plans to build highways to move people in and out of the city – citing Maryland Avenue and C Street, SE, as examples.  (Ed. Note: The city would have paid a price had those highways been built. Witness how the SW Freeway divided the city.)

With respect to enforcement, Allen said the goal is to be a safe and just city.  He talked about the reduction in traffic stops for minor offenses, “where a lot of bias is played out,” and efforts to refocus policing on enforcing speed limits and the blocking of bike lanes.  “Tension always exists in enforcement,” he said, “we want to reduce it and I believe we can do this.”

Allen said we are still striking out in pushing DDOT to restore intersection striping destroyed by street work – “In intersections all over our neighborhood crosswalks are gone.” Allen has threatened to organize the community to restore the intersections on their own, though Director of the DDOT has asked him not to do this.  Allen said “Here’s his chance.  Get the crosswalks done, or we’re going to do it.”  He said we need a “Crosswalk Palooza” – and that all it would take is some $20 gallons of paint, rollers, a leaf blower, orange vests, and volunteers…I don’t believe we’ll go to jail.”

Another resident wondered what could be done about the traffic app WAZE which finds alternate routes out of the city through neighborhood streets, resulting in high-speed traffic in the community.  Allen said that WAZE is a private entity, and “we can’t force them to stop – yet”.  But it was a question he would take back to DDOT.

Parking issues came up in connection with the expansion of Maury School’s playground at the expense of school parking – funds Allen had gotten for the school.  The ANC sent a letter to DDOT requesting neighborhood street parking permits for some eight school personnel who lost parking on school grounds. The permits would allow them to park on streets within the school zone boundaries from 7:00am until 6:00pm.  Concerns were raised by a commissioner regarding the need to ensure “we are not creating a monster” or establishing a precedent, and that it needed to be understood that any similar request would be considered on a case-by-case basis and would not be a matter of right.

CM Allen said that the move should be considered as an exchange of value – that the community as a whole would benefit from residential use of the playground.  Allen says that under the law, it will be the ANC (and thus the community) who has the power to give up parking spaces on the street.   He said his goal was to find a balance of the needs of the community, and street parking for teachers in this instance was a good use of public space.  When the vote came, the Commission agreed, unanimously.

Residents also pressed Allen on the process for getting speed bumps on residential streets – (here’s a link to city guidelines https://bit.ly/2TPlkgE).  One commissioner suggested that the number of signatures needed on a petition to request a speed bump had been lowered below the 75% of residents on the affected block as stated in the guidelines.  More difficult to answer were questions regarding controlling the independent construction trucks driving through Hill East on 11th Street, whose pay depends on how many trips they can make to and from the construction site.  (MPD is working with residents of Hill East with mixed success to enforce violations of the developer’s stated access and egress routes for the Donatelli/Blue Skye Development on Reservation 13.)

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The Week Ahead…ANC Taskforce Tackles Barracks Row Issues. Also, More on K Street Bikelanes

ANC6B’s Alcohol Beverage Control Committee met on February 7 to discuss the process for upcoming restaurant liquor license renewals. Restaurant licenses are up for their every-three-year renewal this spring. Tavern licenses will be up for renewal in the fall. Among the licenses coming up in April: Bullfrog Bagels, Trattoria Alberto, Montmartre, and others.

The Week Ahead…ANC Taskforce Tackles Barracks Row Issues. Also, More on K Street Bikelanes

By Larry Janezich

Monday, March 18

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

Among items on the draft agenda:

Discussion of Commissioners’ prioritized list of “pedestrian/traffic safety issues” as submitted to DDoT.

Update on intersection at 9th Street, L Street and West Virginia Avenue, NE – Emily Dalphy DDoT.

Consideration of a protected bicycle lane connecting NE and NW on K Street, NE, as part of the K Street “road diet” – Emily Dalphy, DDoT & Keya Chatterjee.

Consideration of request from Maddox Engineers & Surveyors Inc. for support of their permit application to extend eight driveways through public space to allow access to the alley lots located behind the 17 Solar Condo property at 410-417 17th Street, NE.

Eastern Market Metro Park Advisory Committee meets at 10:00am, 200 I Street, SE, First Floor Community Room.  (Location is one block from Whole Foods Market on H Street, SE.)

Agenda:

Continued consideration of redesign of Eastern Market Metro Park.

Join Mayor Muriel Bowser for the 2019 State of the District Address on Monday, March 18 at 5:30pm.

The State of the District Address will be held at the University of the District of Columbia’s Theatre of the Arts, located at Connecticut Ave and Windom Place NW.

Tuesday, March 19

Cancelled:  ANC6A Alcohol Beverage Control Committee usually meets on this date at 7:00pm at Sherwood Recreation Center, 10th and G Streets, NE. 

ANC6B’s New Barracks Row Main Street Working Group chaired by Commissioner Brian Ready, meets at 7:00pm, Hine Project, 700 Pennsylvania Avenue, SE, ground floor conference room. 

Among items on the draft agenda:

Election of the Co-Chair of the Barracks Row Working Group.

Listing the top challenges for operations on Barracks Row Main Street.

Event Collaborations for 2019.

Ideas for the improvement of the 400 block of 8th street.

Possible Future Agenda Items

How Barracks Row can take better advantage of our alternate modes of Transportation.

Marketing Barracks Row Main Street to the Greater Washington Region.

Collective Snow Removal.

Eastern Market Metro Park Transportation Study Review.

CHRS Board of Directors meets at 6:30pm, Capitol Hill Townhomes, 750 6th Street, SE, 2nd floor board room.

Agenda not available at press time.

Wednesday, March 20

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

Among items on the draft agenda:

1433 G Street, NE – Application for special exceptions from the nonconforming structure requirements, the lot occupancy requirements, and the minimum rear yard setback requirements, to construct a two-story rear addition to an existing principal dwelling unit in the RF-1 Zone.

1348 Constitution Avenue, NE – Application for special exceptions from the lot occupancy requirements, and from the nonconforming structure requirements, to construct a rear addition to an existing, attached principal dwelling unit in the RF-1 Zone.

Event:  Open Mic Storytellers at 7:00pm, the Corner Store, Corner of 9th Street and South Carolina Avenue, SE.

Saturday, March 23

Event:  John Westmoreland in Concert, 6:45pm, The Corner Store, Corner of 9th Street and South Carolina Avenue, SE.

A songwriter and musician who’s performed nationally and internationally, John Westmoreland is an eclectic artist. His guitar playing is masterful on both the electric and nylon string guitar, and his voice is a deep baritone with shades of Leonard Cohen. Weaving together threads of Americana, folk, world, jazz, and rock, John has found his way to a unique and entrancing sound that draws the listener within.   Tickets are $20.  See here:  http://www.cornerstorearts.org/CornerStoreArts/EventsCalendar.html  

 

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ANC6C Butts Heads with Residents Over K Street NE Bike Lane and Parking

ANC6C met Wednesday night. L-R Commissioners Robb Dooling, Mark Eckenwiler, Chair Karen Wirt, Christine Healey, Jay Adelstein, and Joel Kelty

ANC6C Butts Heads with Residents Over K Street NE Bike Lane and Parking

by Larry Janezich

Wednesday night, a group of residents from K Street, NE, showed up at ANC6C’s March meeting to oppose implementation of DDOT’s plan to add bike lanes on K Street, NE, west of 6th Street, NE. The move would result in the loss of many residential parking spaces and affected residents are up in arms. During DDOT’s comment period for the plan, residents submitted a petition with 170 signatures opposing the project, reinforcing what one resident told the ANC Wednesday night, “90% of the people on K Street want parking and not a bike lane.”

The ANC heard the objections, and then voted to send a letter to the Mayor, reiterating their support of the project expressed in a previous letter (see link below) sent to DDOT in February. The vote was 5 – 0 – 1, with Commissioner Joel Kelty abstaining.

DDOT has proposed designs for K Street, NE, that includes removal of rush hour parking restrictions and addition of bike lanes west of 6th Street, NE. See here: https://bit.ly/2TNThxe

At a special meeting of the ANC’s Transportation Committee on the K Street “road diet” last month, objections from residents included the reduction in parking, worsening traffic conditions, loss of loading space for elderly residents, a lack of engagement with the community, and a lack of data on auto and bike volumes.

Supporters of the changes say K Street is a unique street in the neighborhood because it only extends from Florida Avenue to Mt. Vernon Square and it is important to have bike lanes on K Street to make that connection to downtown. Commissioner Dooling emphasized the need to encourage alternate means of transport, especially in light of the 4,000 new residential units in the pipeline for Northeast. Committee Chair Kazmierczak shared a letter from 45 families of students in area schools in support of the bike lanes. See committee report here: https://bit.ly/2udARat

At the committee’s recommendation, the ANC subsequently sent a letter to DDOT in February, urging quick implementation of the changes with minor modifications and urging DDOT to look into creative solutions for mid-block loading. https://bit.ly/2u8OkQY That letter was referenced in the letter ANC6C voted to send the Mayor on Wednesday night.

The tension between gentrification and parking/traffic issues continues to emerge as a hot topic in all of Capitol Hill’s ANC’s and came up at ANC6D’s March meeting on Thursday night. Report to follow.

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District Dogs’ New Navy Yard Location Now Open at 1221 Van Street, SE. 

District Dogs Opened Saturday, March 9

District Dogs’ New Navy Yard Location Now Open at 1221 Van Street, SE.

by Larry Janezich

Monday night, there was considerable neighborhood interest in making the redesign of the Eastern Market Metro Park more dog-friendly.  Some of those expressing interest will welcome a new dog care facility near Nationals Park, at 1221 Van Street, SE, #110.

Last Saturday, District Dogs opened its new facility which includes four play areas, private boarding suites, a full-service grooming salon, and a curated retail boutique.

Additional special features include:

  • Four playrooms ensure safe play for dogs of all ages, sizes, and energy levels.
  • 6 HVAC systems provide the ability to control temperature and air flow on a zone basis.
  • Dedicated water supply with industrial-grade drainage systems in each playroom allows for easy deep cleaning and disinfecting.
  • Protect-All Flooring offers premium underfoot comfort that is soft on joints while providing superior traction for safe and fun playtime.
  • FUNiture play structures keep dogs entertained and engaged for hours of play.

An expanded menu of services, includes daycare, overnight boarding, grooming and salon services, dog walking and pet sitting.

Clients will be able to book services starting last Saturday, March 9th.

For more information or to book a service, visit District Dogs online or contact info@districtdogs.com.

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ANC6B Calls for City Council to Suspend CM Jack Evans from Committee Posts

ANC6B met last night at Hill Center. L-R: Commissioners Jerry Sroufe, Denise Krepp, Steve Holtzman, Brian Ready, Chair Chander Jayaraman, Kasie Clark, Kellie Waud, Jennifer Samolyk, Corey Holman, Kirsten Oldenburg.  All except Sroufe and Oldenburg supported the Evans Resolution.  Both explained their opposition – see below at end of post.  

ANC6B Calls for City Council to Suspend CM Jack Evans from Committee Posts

by Larry Janezich

Councilmember Jack Evans is under fire – pay to play allegations that he used his office and prestige for private gain.  Last night, ANC6B  voted 8 – 2 for a resolution calling on the DC City Council to temporarily suspend CM Jack Evans from the Committee on Finance and Revenue which he chairs, and as a member of the Committee on Judiciary and Public Safety.  The resolution was introduced by Commissioner Denise Krepp.

The resolution is similar to a resolution passed unanimously by ANC1C (Adams Morgan) last week.  The initial language appears to have been the handiwork of Commissioner Erin Palmer, ANC4B (far Northwest).  Rachel Kurzius of the DCist reported last week that some 15 ANC commissioners have signed on to an open letter calling for removal of Evans from his chairmanship of the finance committee.

Evans is the focus of a federal investigation by the U.S. Attorney and the FBI, an investigation by WAMAT’s ethics officer, and perhaps the District’s D.C. Board of Ethics and Government Accountability.  City Council Chair Mendelsohn has resisted demands for a special investigation by an entity of the Council in light of these other probes.

Hine Developer Among those subpoenaed by Feds

On March 8, the Washington Post reported federal subpoenas directing the preservation of documents and communications related to Evans had been issued to the DC Council and the office of Mayor Bowser.  Also on the list of those subpoenaed are the Hine developer Anthony Lanier and Eastbanc, and Hine development partner, Colonial Parking.  Others include the law firms Squire Patton Boggs and Manatt, Phelps and Phillips, Evan’s consulting firm, Exelon, Willco Construction, EagleBank, the electrical design firm M.C. Dean, and Digi Outdoor Media.

The DC City Council has scheduled a vote on a resolution of reprimand for Evans next week.

Prior to the vote, Oldenburg said she would oppose the resolution, saying that the matter was better left handled by the Council.  Afterward, Sroufe said that he thought the resolution was outside the realm of ANC matters and would have no impact on the Council’s decision.  He said, “There are things closer to home that we could be addressing.”

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Safety and Maintenance Top List of Resident Concerns on Plan for Eastern Market Metro Plaza

About 50 residents and park users turned out for last night’s meeting of ANC6B’s Liveable Community Taskforce meeting at The Corner Store on the redesign of the Metro Park Plaza

Current members of the ANC6B Taskforce include Chair Steve Holtzman (standing), seated to his right, Commissioners Jerry Sroufe and Brian Ready.  Also pictured at far left is community activist Carl Reeverts.

Latest DGS design concept for Eastern Market Metro Plaza.  ANC6B has uploaded a copy on the ANC6B website, accessible here: https://anc6b.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/03/2019-03-06_CFA-Presentation_Final.pdf The core projections of what is being proposed for the parcel 1 park are on pages 25-26 of the document.

Safety and Maintenance Top List of Resident Concerns on Plan for Eastern Market Metro Plaza

by Larry Janezich

The Dept. of General Services (DGS) design team will present its final concept for the Metro Plaza Park to the community on April 3rd.  The plan calls for breaking ground on Parcel 1 where the playground is located, with the goal of opening it in the summer of 2020.  Last night, ANC6B’s Livable Community Taskforce – chaired by Commissioner Steve Holtzman – met to make sure the park’s users have input to make the park work for residents. Holtzman said that the design process had been flawed – especially regarding engaging residents adjacent to the park and those who would use it most –  and that tonight’s meeting was a last minute effort to address their pragmatic and functional concerns.

Chief among those concerns were how to activate the park – largely as a way to address existing safety concerns – and how to maintain it.  Long time park supporter and activist Carl Reeverts explained how over the years, many efforts to rally neighbors to maintain the park ended in failure, owing to a loss of enthusiasm and lack of community leadership.

Holtzman noted that there is nothing in the public plan about maintenance and security, and there was broad consensus in the group to ask the city to provide funding for maintenance and upkeep.  A suggestion to establish a ”Friends of the Park” organization elicited a show of hands from some 15 attendees willing to participate.

The main way to activate the park will be the fenced children’s playground and splash pad on the north side of Parcel 1.  The playground will be located in an area where substance abusers and drug dealers currently hang out and sometimes harass passersby – especially women – as they walk through the park.

Suggestions on how to improve the playground included seating for parents who want to watch their children, a shade structure or tree canopy, and an entrance other than off the main walkway.

Holtzman acknowledged that a playground is not the sole answer to activating the park, and many who attended the meeting voiced support for a dog park or dog run.  Holtzman asked those interested to form a committee to make specific recommendations to the Taskforce.

Other suggestions included adding more tables and chairs, chess tables, a community garden, more green space, a water fountain and spigot, and benches and trees to line the diagonal walk.

A discussion of using the park for special events produced suggestions including movie nights, bands, and other events, but also raised the question of how much event space would be used, given the lack of resident interest in using Lincoln Park for events.

Several residents expressed the desire to just get the project started and finished – adding that the result may not be perfect, but it’s better than what we have now.  Holtzman assured the group that tonight’s meeting would not interfere with the project’s timeline.

The Taskforce will carry the resident’s concerns and suggestions to the Eastern Market Metro Plaza Advisory Group, appointed by DGS to provide input on behalf of the community.  ANC6B has been concerned that the Advisory Group did not function well as a venue for residents and park users to provide input into the process.  ANC6B Chair Chander Jayaraman charged the Liveabilty Taskforce with being ANC6B’s vehicle for conveying resident input to DGS.

 

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The Week Ahead…CM Charles Allen at ANC6A and ANC6D. Metro Plaza Community Meeting Monday

A high rise looms over the tennis courts in Garfield Park. March 8, circa 6:30pm.

The Week Ahead…CM Charles Allen at ANC6A and ANC6D – Metro Plaza Community Meeting Monday

Monday, March 11

ANC6D meets at 7:00pm, 1005 5th Street, SE, (Capper Community Center). 

Among items on the draft agenda:

Public Safety Report- First District MPD (PSA 103, PSA 105 & PSA 106) Capt. Mongal, Capt. Dorrough, Lt. Lavenhouse.

Councilmember Charles Allen visits to discuss the City Council and Ward 6.

Letter to DCRA to Deny a Parking Permit for Contractor Dumpster on 4th Street.

Letter to Charles Allen RE Air Quality and the Negative Health Impacts on the Residents in Old Southwest.

Letter to the Public Service Commission to Require/Mandate Pepco to monitor EMF Levels as part of the Capitol Grid Project .

Letter to DDOT RE Concerns (traffic, air quality, etc.) about Frederick Douglass Bridge Project on the lives of the residents of Southwest.

861 New Jersey Ave Public Space Construction Permit Application.

Presentations

DDOT Transportation Operations and Parking Plan (TOPP) Update.

ABC Committee

Holiday Inn Capitol, 550 C Street, SW – new restaurant license w/Entertainment, 2 summer                              gardens, 1 sidewalk cafe: new Cooperative Agreement.

Spirit Cruises, Alexandria, VA – Amendment 1 to Cooperative Agreement for Additional Boat #8: Miss Josephine.

Punch Bowl Social, 1250 Half Street, SE – new restaurant license w/Entertainment + 2 sidewalk cafes & summer garden: new Cooperative Agreement.

Pop Social, 470 L’Enfant Plaza, SW – new tavern license w/Entertainment, Dancing, Cover Charge + stipulated license.

Development, Planning, and Transportation Committee

501 I Street SW/The Bard presentation – Zoning application.

Remarks – Amidon Bowen PTA & United Neighbors of SW.

501 I Street, SW – Public Space Construction Application

Cambria Hotel – Public Space Application.

Community Meeting on Metro Plaza Redesign – ANC6B’s Livable Communities Task Force – meets at 7:00pm at The Corner Store, 9th and South Carolina Avenue, SE. 

Agenda:

Community meeting on the redesign of Eastern Market Metro Plaza, with focus on Parcel 1 – the park and playground between 8th and 9th Streets, and Pennsylvania Avenue and D Streets, SE.  For more information, see here:  https://bit.ly/2HcmpZ5

Tuesday, March 12

ANC 6B will meet at 7:00pm at Hill Center, 921 Pennsylvania Avenue, SE.

Among items on the draft agenda:

Consent Calendar:

Planning & Zoning Committee

124 11th Street, SE – Historic Preservation application, concept/rear and rooftop additions.

124 11th Street, SE – Zoning adjustment application, Special Exception from the lot occupancy requirements, to construct a one story rear addition and a two story accessory building to an existing attached principal dwelling unit.

1639 Potomac Avenue, SE – Zoning adjustment application, Special Exceptions to construct a two-story rear addition to an existing, attached principal dwelling unit.

522 6th Street, SE – Historic Preservation application concept/two-story rear addition.

1225-1227 Pennsylvania Avenue, SE – Zoning adjustment application, Special Exception to construct a second-story addition on an existing one-story commercial use building.

360 7th Street SE; The Eastern Wine Bar – Public Space Permit application for a new sidewalk café unenclosed.

Transportation Committee

Letter to Councilmember Allen with Comments on the Transportation Benefits Equity Act of 2019

Letter to the DDOT Public Space Committee with Comments on the Second Draft of the Small Cell Design Guidelines

Non-consent Calendar items:

Planning & Zoning Committee

620 C Street, SE – Historic Preservation application – concept/one-story rooftop.

209 C ST SE – Historic Preservation application –  Plans to alter the front areaway within public space.

201 East Capitol Street SE; Folger Shakespeare Library; Public Space Construction Permit for public space improvement including new main entrances, gardens, street trees, removal of curb cuts.

Wednesday, March 13

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

Among items on the draft agenda. 

Presentations

Ward 6 member of the DC Board of Education—Jessica Sutter.

DC Sun, solar panel installation—Michaela Meehan.

Transportation and Public Space Committee

Café Fili, 701 2nd Street NE, application 10712570 for unenclosed sidewalk café.

Proposed rulemaking, proper behavior in bike lanes.

Greater Greater Washington Bus Priority Resolution.

Folger Library, new accessible entrances and visitor amenities.

Verizon, 120 7th Street NE, parking issues.

Planning, Zoning, and Economic Development Committee

Verizon, 120 7th Street NE, illegal construction.

224 C Street NE, Zoning adjustment – Special Exception to add a second floor rear addition.

429 5th Street NE, Historic Preservation application – concept approval for a three-story rear addition and one-story rooftop addition.

2019 Council oversight hearings, topics for ANC6C testimony.

707 H Street NE, potential Bureau of Zoning Adjustment appeal, certificate occupancy.

Alcoholic Beverage Licensing Committee

Brothers Burger Bar, LLC d/b/a Aroma, 707 H Street NE, new restaurant application.

Environment, Parks, and Events Committee (Joe McCann

Capitol Hill Classic Marathon, Sunday, May 19, including ban on parking along route.

New Business

Initiative 77, Board of Elections error—Mark Eckenwiler

Thursday, March 14

ANC6A meets at 7:00pm, Miner Elementary, 601 15th Street, NE. 

Among items on the draft agenda:

Councilmember Charles Allen visits to discuss the City Council and Ward 6.

Transportation and Public Space

ANC6A letter of support to the District of Columbia Homeland Security and Emergency Management Agency (HSEMA) for the 2019 Capitol Hill Classic race (May 19), which benefits the Capitol Hill Cluster Schools.

ANC6A letter to DDOT identifying high-priority areas with traffic/pedestrian safety issues, as follows:

  1. 0-400 blocks of15th Street NE
  2. Intersection of East Capitol Street, Massachusetts Avenue and 11th Street NE
  3. 0-400 blocks of 17th Street NE
  4. 0-400 blocks of 10th Street NE
  5. Intersection of 10th and East Capitol Streets NE
  6. 19th Street and Constitution Avenue NE
  7. 8th and D Streets NE
  8. 8th and G Streets NE
  9. 8th and F Streets NE
  10. 100-400 blocks of Tennessee Avenue NE
  11. 14th and G Streets NE

ANC6A reuest to the District Department of Transportation (DDOT) to establish a Daytime School Parking Zone for Maury Elementary School with boundaries identical to the Maury Elementary School boundary zone; hours of operation from 7:00am to 6:00pm; permits provided only to District Government employees working at the Maury site. The request would be conditional on approval of the variance request by DCPS/DGS to reduce on-site parking below the minimum 21 spaces required by zoning regulations; commitment by DCPS/DGS to convert a portion of the planned parking lot to play space; and conversion of the west side of the 200 block of Twelfth (12th) Place NE to Resident Only Parking.

Old Business

1511 – 1515 A Street NE – ANC6A letter of support to BZA for a special exception to subdivide the existing lot and construct three (3) new, attached flats in the RF-1 Zone on the conditions that the developer make best efforts to obtain letters of support from neighbors at 1507, 1509, and 1515 A Street NE; revise the final design to include consistent massing with design of the cornices; that the developer conduct a shadow study; and that the current owner withdraws the appeal currently pending before the Office of Administrative Hearings related to prior zoning of the property.

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Here’s DGS’s Latest Design for Eastern Market Metro Park – Community Meeting Monday

Latest DGS design concept for Eastern Market Metro Plaza (see link below for the complete design package)

Here’s DGS’s Latest Project Design for Eastern Market Metro Park – Community Meeting Monday

by Larry Janezich

Last Thursday, ANC6B received a copy of the latest DGS project design – including significant changes in the design of the park and children’s playground between 8th and 9th Streets and Pennsylvania Avenue and D Street.

The core projections of what is being proposed for the parcel 1 park are on pages 25-26 of the document. ANC6B has uploaded a copy on the ANC6B website, accessible here: https://anc6b.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/03/2019-03-06_CFA-Presentation_Final.pdf

On Monday night ANC6B’s Livable Communities Task Force (charged with oversight of the Plaza redesign project), chaired by Commissioner Steve Holtzman, will hold a community meeting at 7:00pm at The Corner Store, 900 South Carolina Avenue, SE (corner of South Carolina Avenue and 9th Street).  The focus will be on the park and playground – pictured above and designated in the plans as “Parcel 1.”

According to Holtzman, “There will be no formal presentations. Instead the meeting will serve as a lightly-structured forum for community members to come together for a pragmatic discussion of their priorities for the Parcel 1 Park in advance of the April 3rd public presentation of the final concept plan for the DGS-led Eastern Market Metro Park Plaza (EMMPP) project. The meeting will also be an opportunity to share views on the Parcel 1 design with ANC6B commissioners to help inform the ANC’s eventual formal review of the Eastern Market Metro Park Project.”

The agenda will include discussion of the following issues:

Overall impressions of the new design

Children and The Playground (placement within parcel, design, components, accompanying adults, safety )

Multi-Generational uses of the Park (desired activities, types of recreation, social interaction, special needs)

Dogs and their human friends (how great is the demand? Any special focus needed? Any scope for a dog run?)

Design and utilization of green space: (functionality, esthetics, security, maintenance/sustainability, viability/demand for a community garden space?, lawns vs. astro-turf vs what? )

Accommodating special events in parcel 1 (pros & cons, options and implications for space utilization)

Keeping the Park Safe (eyes on the park – how can the space be kept active during the day and the evening)

Making it OUR space (installing community art, naming the park, User Associations, Friends of the Park, etc.)

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EatBar Says Goodbye to Barracks Row – Hello to 1401 PA Avenue

EatBar at 415 8th Street, SE

EatBar Says Goodbye to Barracks Row – Hello to 1401 PA Avenue

by Larry Janezich

A pair of tweets Friday afternoon from EatBar – part of the Michael Babin’s multi-faceted Neighborhood Restaurant Group – announced the restaurant’s departure from Barrack Row.  Its last day will be Friday, March 15.  The tweet hints at a future venue on Capitol Hill, and that venue is going to be part of the food hall comint to CAS Riegler’s huge mixed use project at 1401 Pennsylvania Avenue, SE.  See Washingtonian’s report here:  https://bit.ly/2SWrZjE

The loss is a double one – not only for the nearby community, but also for the troubled 400 block of Barracks Row.  ANC6D has established a new Taskforce to address Barracks Row issues.  The first meeting will be at 7:00pm on Tuesday, March 7, in the ground floor conference room of the Hine Project, at 700 Pennsylvania Avenue, SE.  The purpose of the group is to identify and drill down on the retail challenges on Barracks Row, especially the 400 block.

@EatbarDC

19h19 hours ago

It is with great sadness that we share this news: EatBar’s last day of service will be Friday, March 15th. EatBar holds a special place in our hearts (so nice we did it twice!) as it does for so many of you. We hope you will visit us over the next week to say goodbye 👋😥

It has been a pleasure to serve in the #CapitolHillNeighborhood, and we will miss our dear friends @ChikoFRC @RosesLuxury @HanksOysterBar ++. Fear not, we have more in store for @redapronbutcher & Capitol Hill…

3:17 PM – 8 Mar 2019

Here’s a complete list of Neighborhood Restaurant Group’s venues:

The Evening Star, Birch & Barley, Red Apron Butcher, The Partisan, Iron Gate, Bluejacket, Columbia Firehouse, Vermilion, Buzz Bakery, Red Apron Burger Bar, Owens Ordinary, B Side, Churchkey, Planet Wine Shop, Rustico, Hazel, The Sovereign, Eat Bar, Arcadia.

 

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City Takes Over Management of Eastern Market’s 7th Street Saturday Flea Market

300 block of 7th Street, SE, circa 7:00am,, March 9.  The Saturday Flea Market will resume under city management next weekend.

City Takes Over Management of Eastern Market’s 7th Street Saturday Flea Market

By Larry Janezinh

Last Wednesday, Eastern Market Community Advisory Committee and Eastern Market vendors received an email from Eastern Market Manager Barry Margeson announcing that the Department of General Services “will begin managing the 300 block of 7th Street on Saturdays in the same way that we manage the 200 block and the plazas around the market. We are putting out a call for vendors tomorrow and the first days of vending will be on the weekend of March 16th and 17th.”

As reported here https://bit.ly/2MzPPjK on CHC, DGS terminated the license of Saturday flea market operator Carol Wright in January after Wright had failed to sign a new contract, and announced it would put out a Request for Proposals for a new Saturday flea market manager for the 300 block of 7th Street.  That RFP was issued February 7.

On February 27, Margeson told the Eastern Market Community Advisory Committee (EMCAC) that there had been responses to the RFP, (though apparently only one met RFP criteria) and an answer would be given to that applicant on Monday, March 4.

According to Sunday Flea Market Operator Mike Berman, the one response to receive consideration for DGS was his, and he had laid out a detailed plan for organizing, staffing, and recruiting vendors for the market.  He said the answer he received from Margeson on March 4 was a rejection.  Berman told CHC that the terms of the RFP were prohibitive, and that he had attached an addendum to his proposal – as requested if an applicant took exception to the RFP criteria.  His main concerns, he said, were the $3300 a month rent (up from $2000), the six month limitation on the license, and the restriction that sales be limited to “locally made arts and crafts, antiques and imported handcrafts from other countries”.  Berman said he had expected DGS to respond to his addendum with an opportunity to enter into negotiations.  Instead, DGS announced its intent to manage the Saturday flea market itself.

For the record, the portion of the weekend flea markets on the newly opened C Street between 7th and 8th Street, are being operated independently from DGS, under a separate contract with the Hine developer.  Saturday flea market manager Carol Wright continues to operate that market though Berman says that for him, operating the flea market on C Street doesn’t work without the 300 block of 7th Street.

Readers of CHC may recall the previous attempt by Eastern Market to take over the weekend flea markets.  In August of 2015, DGS abruptly announced that DGS would take over management of the weekend flea markets on the 300 block of 7th Street.  Weeks later, that plan was cancelled after the community rallied in support of the weekend flea market operators, and – reportedly – intervention of the office of the Mayor.   See here:  https://bit.ly/2VJl672 and here: https://bit.ly/2SRRUJd

Berman is concerned about the future of his Sunday market operation on 7th Street.  His license runs until June, but has no provision for renewal.  He says he’d like to stay on 7th Street, but “if they take it away from me, I’ll have to pull out of the space on C Street.”

(To view the RFP and Berman’s response, click on “Library” at the top of the CHC home page.)

Gerald Sroufe, the new ANC Commissioner representative on EMCAC, said that he had no comment about the merits of the new management plan, but that he was surprised at the decision making process.  “I understand EMCAC’s role to be advisory only, but I am concerned that there was no public discussion of the possibility of a management change of this nature at any EMCAC meeting since the process intended to find a new manager for the 300 block was initiated a month ago – including the most recent meeting on February 27.”

CHC reached out to DGS for comment and received the following reply from DGS Public Affairs Specialist, Donna Harris:  “DGS is committed to maintaining safe, clean vendor spaces at and around Eastern Market.  Recently, the contractor who managed 30 spaces on the block on 300 7th Street, S.E. surrounding Eastern Market on Saturdays gave notice to DGS that they would no longer manage the spaces.  DGS released a Request for Proposals for bidders to apply to manage the spaces on Saturday.  DGS received only one response and it did not meet the RFP requirements.  Herein, DGS is now managing these 30 spaces on Saturday.”

 

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