The Week Ahead – & News You May Have Missed
by Larry Janezich
Long time Eastern Market Vendor Dies – Eastern Market Manager Barry Margeson announced at Wednesday’s Eastern Market Community Advisory Committee meeting, the death of David Fowler of Sunnyside Farms. Fowler was a fifth generation farmers’ line farmer who grew up selling produce at Eastern Market. He was 73 and suffered from heart failure. Margeson credits Fowler as being instrumental in getting the Amish and Mennonite farmers to sell their products at Eastern Market. Margerson said Fowler knew just about everyone and just about everything about Eastern Market – “he was a connector who puts people together.”
New Restaurant Coming to Pennsylvania Avenue – Celebrity Restaurateur Spike Mendelsohn (We the Pizza, Good Stuff Eatery, and Santa Rosa Taqueria) has leased a fourth space on the 300 block of Pennsylvania Avenue, SE. The former Lustre Cleaners is scheduled to become the latest addition to the Mendelsohn galaxy. There’s no current info on the theme, and timing is uncertain, as the owners wait for permits to go through the city.
DC Pays Out $3 million for Sexual Harassment/Assault Settlements over 5 years – At ANC6B’s meeting last Tuesday, Commissioner Denise Krepp highlighted the fact that DC has paid out $3 million in sexual harassment settlements between 2015 and present in a proposed letter to CM Mendelsohn in support of removing a limitation on application of the FOIA in the FY 2020 Budget. Krepp said that without the broader application of FOIA applicability, residents would not have known about the $3 million in payments or the decline in parking enforcement on Capitol Hill or MPD’s policies for reviewing body camera video.
City Official Gets Grilled by ANC6B on Traffic Deaths – Deputy Mayor Lucinda Babers came to ANC6B to brief the Commission on the Mayor’s 2020 budget, and wasn’t expecting to get raked over the coals by Commissioner Corey Holman about the DC’s failure to protect the city’s residents from vehicular violence in the current auto-friendly environment. Holtzman cited the recent deaths on or near Capitol Hill of outspoken critic of the city’s road safety policy, Dave Salovesh, who was killed, allegedly by the driver of a stolen mini-van on April 19. A month later, on Saturday, May 18, an SUV struck a light pole at the intersection of 12th and K and Florida Avenue, NE, damaging the white “ghost bike” memorial placed there last month to honor Salovesh. The driver of the SUV fled the scene. As of May 14, 122 people had been killed by vehicles in the city. Traffic safety policy will be discussed at 6B Commissioner Kirsten Oldenburg’s Transportation Committee on June 5, and at a meeting on June 10 of Ward 6 ANC reps being coordinated by 6B Commissioner Denise Krepp.
Insight Developers Update on Community Benefits – Sarah Davidson, of Insight Property Group, briefed ANC6B last Tuesday on the public benefit commitments Insight made in exchange for zoning adjustments increasing height and density limitations for Lockwood – their residential project in the 1300 block of E Street, SE. Those benefits include granting a lease for an existing townhouse on the 1300 block of E Street in perpetuity, for free, to Capitol Hill Village for the benefit of Capitol Hill’s senior population; working with two other developers who have similar public benefit obligations to improve landscaping at Potomac Avenue Metro; and recasting Lady Bird Park, next to Peter “Bug” Matthews’ Shoe Repair Academy. Community input is still being sought on the latter; among the ideas being considered are a community garden, a dog park, and passive green space.
New Charter School Will Succeed Caesar Chavez – Nima Farshchi, Director of Operations at Digital Pioneer Academy, announced that the charter school has applied to the DC School Board to open a computer oriented middle school in the space formerly occupied by the Caesar Chavez Charter School at 709 12th Street, SE. The school provides STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) training to kids living in underserved areas of the city.
Ted’s Bulletin Liquor License Renewal Postponed – The owners of Ted’s Bulletin got roughed up a little by ANC6B Chair Chander Jayaraman and nearby residents, who went after the restaurant for not living up to the alley cleanliness and rodent control requirements which were contingencies attached to their liquor license. The commission postponed the license renewal for a month to give the restaurant a chance to clean up its act. (District Soul, whose license renewal was delayed last month on issues of noise, trash, and odor control, will come back before the ANC in May to demonstrate that those issues have been addressed.)
A New Southeast Library? – Finally, Neal Gregory, President of the Friends of Southeast Library, asked CM Charles Allen at Allen’s community office hours on Friday, if he would consider seeking new funds – or re-directing funds destined for the renovation of Southeast Library – to build a new library, possibly at the site occupied by the old Frager’s store on the 1300 block of E Street. Community activists Pat Taylor and Jill Lawrence have been pushing the idea of reserving the current library – the Carnegie building at Eastern Market Metro Plaza – for children, and building a new library for adults elsewhere on Capitol Hill. Gregory pointed out to Allen that after the proposed renovation, the Southeast Library will still not have enough space. Allen was non-committal, saying he would have to talk to DC Library before supporting the idea. An request for proposals for renovating the Southeast Library was scheduled to be issued this coming week.
The Week Ahead…
Monday, May 20
ANC 6A Transportation & Public Space Committee Meets at 7:00pm, Capitol Hill Towers, 900 G Street, NE.
Among items on the draft agenda:
Review of report from DDOT on list of high-priority safety locations.
Prepare to implement plan (approved by Commissioners at 5/9 meeting) to identify additional bike share station locations (and bike/scooter racks) and ascertain public support for same.
Prepare to implement plan (approved by Commissioners at 5/9 meeting) to create an initial list of local/local intersections where 4-way stops are desirable (but do not already exist).
Consideration of potential curb cut request at 808 13th Street, NE.
Discussion of potential tracking system for requests to DDoT.
Discussion of what role ANC can play in addressing conditions leading to recent cyclist deaths.
ANC6A Community Outreach Committee meets at 7:00pm, Eastern High School, Parent Center, 1700 East Capitol Street, NE.
Among items on the draft agenda:
Eastern High School Grant
Tuesday, May 21
ANC6A Alcoholic Beverage Licensing Committee meets at 7:00pm, at Sherwood Recreation Center (10th and G Streets, NE.
Among items on the draft agenda:
Discussion of renewals of the following licenses:
Quara Ethiopian Fustion Restaurant, 818 H Street, NE, restaurant license.
DC Conscious Café, 1413 H Street, NE, restaurant license.
Gallery O on H, 1354 H Street, NE, club license.
Maketto, 1351 H Street, NE, restaurant license.
Red & Black, 1210 – 1212 H Street, NE, restaurant license.
Discussion of request for change in hours by RedRocks, 1348 H Street, NE.
ANC6B Barracks Row Working Group meets at 7:00pm, 700 Pennsylvania Avenue, SE.
Presentation: Jennifer McCahill from the Mayor’s Office of Nightlife & Culture.
- New Marketing Plans for the Main Streets
- The Marines Summer Event Collaboration
- Additional Ideas for Improvements
Possible Future Agenda Items
- How Barracks Row can take better advantage of our alternate modes of Transportation
- Collective Snow Removal
- Eastern Market Metro Park Transportation Study Review
- The incident of broken windows on 8th Street
- Updates on current projects
3 responses to “The Week Ahead….& News You May Have Missed”
I love this idea of putting a library at the old Frager’s site on 1300 E St SE. Is there any realistic chance of making this happen?
Council Member Allen has long stated that he is entirely in favor of the DC Public Library’s current renovation plan. The plan rejects the Amy Weinstein plan to create a large underground room under 7th Street, lit by skylights and good lighting, as current construction knows how to do. DCPL rejects this underground plan on grounds of its possible $18.5 million cost, and disruption during its building.
Current renovation plans leave the SE library without the increased space it needs — at least double, and preferable triple, its current 8000 sqf. space.
It seems that CM Allen’s young children are perfectly fine with the current library. But other children need (1) adequate permanent space for important group work with leaders; (2) adequate increased shelf space so they can actually see and use a lot of books for ages pre-school through high school; (3) adequate reading space and computers dedicated to grade school child and HS student use; (4) adequate space for exciting programs (many, not just one a month or fewer) for older, sophisticated kids. The current library has no space for any of these essential childhood activities, and almost no space for adult quiet work.
Mr. Allen says he wants to “discuss” Pat Taylor and Jill Lawrence’s plea to consider a new space for a SE Library for adults with DCPL’s current Director, Mr. Reyes-Gavilan; who himself speaks glowingly of the wonderful renovation that will occur – in the existing space – but zero plausible details to back up his claim.
Our SE neighborhood has more readers than ALMOST ANY OTHER DC LIBRARY, and it is much too small. We have a larger readership than the new renovated NE library. Further, the budget for this SE renovation is $23.5M. We could afford to buy and outfit a larger building AND renovate the electrical and plumbing and elevator and bathroom needs at the existing library.
PLEASE, council member Allen, do do do think outside the box in which our library is currently trapped.
The E St Frager site is privately owned, right, and easily turned into housing, I suspect, so it seems like that would DC many millions to purchase?