Monthly Archives: May 2019

The Week Ahead… & 9th St SE Condo Project Delayed Plus Some News You Probably Missed

Last week, DC Library received responses from design/build companies interested in renovating the Southeast Library.

The Week Ahead… 9th St SE 20 Condo Project Delayed Plus Some News You Probably Missed

By Larry Janezich

9th Street’s Proposed 20 Condo Unit delayed – Last week, ANC6B Planning and Zoning chair Corey Holman announced that the Historic Preservation Office has deferred the case at 417 9th Street, SE, because of an incomplete initial application. The move puts off ANC6B’s consideration at least until June.  CHC reported on the condo project here:

Update on Renovation of Southeast Library – Last Wednesday, the period closed for receipt by DC Library of the responses to its Request for Qualifications – a request for expressions of interest from design/build companies who are qualified for and interested in the $23.5 million renovation of Southeast Library.  DC Library is being close-mouthed about the number of responses, but they will invite some or all of those responses to respond to the forthcoming Request for Proposals.  The project’s time like anticipates the issuing of a Request for Proposals in early spring of 2019, the selection of a design/build team in the spring of 2019, design kick-off in the summer of 2019, closing for construction in early 2021, and re-opening in Fall of 2002.  The community will have an opportunity for input during the design kick-off phase.  See CHC report on the first community meeting last November, here:

Capitol Hill Group Ministry re-names itself – On April 24, Capitol Hill Group Ministry formally changed its name to Everyone Home DC.  Fifty years ago, the organization was founded as a grassroots response by several Capitol Hill churches to collectively address challenges faced by their congregants and communities, and since the 1980s, it’s been focused on meeting the needs of people experiencing homelessness. The new name reflects its core purpose: for everyone in DC to thrive and have quality housing.  The name change will be accompanied by a new logo and website, live as of Thursday, April 25, see here:

The Week Ahead…

Monday, May 6

ANC6C Alcoholic Beverage Licensing Committee meets at 7:00pm, Kaiser Permanente, 700 2nd Street, NE.

Items on the draft agenda: 

Alcohol Beverage License renewals

Nando’s Peri-Peri, 411 H Street, NE.

Nuevo Cucino, 320 D Street, NE.

Duet,  601 2nd Street, NE.

Phoenix Park Hotel & Dubliner,Inc., 520 North Capitol Street.

Washington Court Hotel, 525 New Jersey Avenue, NW.

The Wydown, 600 H Street, NE.

Cane, 403 H Street, NE.

The Alibi, 237 2nd Street, NW.

Cafe Berlin, 322 Massachusetts Avenue, NE.

Hyatt Regency Washington, 400 New Jersey Avenue, NW.

La Loma, 316 Massachusetts Avenue, NE.

Momoyama, 231 2nd Street, NW.

DC Harvest, 517 H Street, NE.

Fancy Radish, 600 H Street, NE.

Fare Well, 406 H Street, NE.

Hikari Sushi & Sake Bar, 644 H Street, NE.

Po Boy Jim, 709 H Street, NE.

Whole Foods Market, 600 H Street, NE.

Hyatt Place Washington DC/US Capitol, 33 New York Avenue.

INDIGO-Indian food on the go!, 243 K Street, NE.

Seoul Spice, 145 N Street, NE.

East St Café, 50 Massachusetts Avenue, NE.

Bon Appetit, 600 New Jersey Avenue, NW.

Hotel George/Bis, 15 E Street, NW.

Bistro CaCao, 320 Massachusetts Avenue, NE.

The Monocle, 107 D Street, NE.

Courtyard by Marriott Washington DC/US Capitol, 1325 2nd Street, NE.

Streets Market, 51 M Street NE.

NOONTIME CANTATA SERIES:  Washington Bach Consort season finale – Capitol Cantata Series for St. Peter’s Church on Capitol Hill, 313 2nd Street, SE.  12:10pm

Cantata: Wir müssen durch viel Trübsal in das Reich Gottes eingehen, BWV 146

Tuesday, May 7

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

Among items on the draft agenda:

Discussion of Comprehensive Plan + Conservation Districts – Director Andrew Trueblood, Office of Planning.

Update on Potomac Ave Metro Plaza Redesign – Sarah Davidson, Insight Property Group.

302 South Carolina, SE; Zoning adjustment application – Special Exception to construct a two-story rear addition to an existing, attached principal dwelling.

717 6th Street, SE; Historic Preservation Application, Concept: 3 story addition.

915 East Capitol Street, SE; Historic Preservation Application – Permit: demolition and reconstruct rear addition, no change in footprint.

203 rear 3rd Street SE; Historic Preservation Application – Concept: one story addition at rear.

Wednesday, May 8

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

Among items on the draft agenda:

Alcoholic Beverage License Renewals (see Monday above for list of applicants appearing before the ANC6C Alcohol Beverage Licensing Committee).

40 Patterson Street, NE—Presentation of concept public space plan for mixed use development, including curb cuts, loading, bike racks, streetscape, covered utility vaults.

Verizon, 120 7th Street NE—Discussion of parking on public space with Verizon.

Dave Thomas Circle, Florida Ave Multimodal Project NE, and Vision Zero.

520 Groff Court, NE, Zoning Adjustment Application for exceptions and variances to construct a two story addition of an existing principal dwelling unit.

520 Groff Court, NE, Historic Preservation application for a two-story addition.

Logan School, 215 G Street, NE, Historic Preservation Application for concept for modernization and addition.

111 Massachusetts Avenue, NW, Zoning Application – Modification of a PUD revising building footprint, ground floor, penthouse, and exterior façade.

Union Station expansion—Discussion of draft Section 106 Assessment of Effects.

Board of Elections, proposed new precinct— Commissioner Eckenwiler.

ANC6B Transportation Committee will meet at 7:00pm in the Conference Room, Ground Floor, The Yard, 700 Pennsylvania Ave SE.

Among items on the draft agenda:

Comments on the FY19 pave plan asking for removal of the 1300 block of E Street, SE.

 Discussion on PaveDC, the DDOT Paving Plan.  A follow up request given this ask for the pavement ratings of all local and federal blocks in ANC6B.

Notice of Intent: Installation of All-way Stop Control for 8th & A Street SE Intersection.

Thursday, May 9

ANC6B Alcohol Beverage Control Committee meets at 7:00pm in the Conference Room, Ground Floor, The Yard 700 Pennsylvania Ave SE.

Among items on the draft agenda:

Alcohol Beverage License Renewals (except as noted):

7:00 PM

Las Placitas, 1100 8th Street, SE.

Taco City DC, 1102 8th Street, SE.

Tio Javier, 514 8th Street, SE.

Cafe 8, 424 8th Street, SE.

Folger Shakespeare Library, Trustees of Amherst College, 201 East Capitol Street, SE.

Talay Thai Restaurant, 406 1st Street, SE.

Tortilla Coast, 400 1st Street, SE.

Capitol Hill Club, National Republican Club of Capitol Hill Inc., 300 1st Street, SE.

Hunan Dynasty, 215 Pennsylvania Avenue, SE.

Kenneth H Nash Post 8 American Legion, 224 D Street, SE.

Sonoma, 223 Pennsylvania Avenue, SE.

Santa Rosa Taqueria, 315 Pennsylvania Avenue, SE.

Good Stuff Eatery, 303 Pennsylvania Avenue, SE.

We, The Pizza, 305 Pennsylvania Avenue, SE.

8:00 PM

Radici, 301 7th Street, SE.

Boxcar Tavern, 224 7th Street, SE.

Tunnicliffs Tavern, 222 7th Street, SE.

Eat Brgz, 250 7th Street, SE; New Class “CR” Restaurant Application.

Hanks Oyster Bar,  633 Pennsylvania Avenue, SE.

La Plaza Mexican Restaurant, 629 Pennsylvania Avenue, SE.

Mr. Henry’s, 601 Pennsylvania Avenue, SE.

Acqua al 2/Suna/Harold Black Bar, 212 7th Street, SE.

Hill Center, The Old Naval Hospital Foundation, 921 Pennsylvania Avenue, SE.

La Lomita Restaurant, La Lomita, Inc., 1330 Pennsylvania Avenue, SE.

Emilie’s, 1101 Pennsylvania Avenue, SE.

9:00 PM

Sushi Hachi, 735 8th Street, SE.

Torai Grill & Sushi, 751 8th Street, SE.

Chiko, 423 8th Street, SE.

Ophelia’s Fish House, 501 8th Street, SE.

Finn McCools, 713 8th Street, SE.

Medium Rare Barracks Row, 515 8th Street, SE.

Ted’s Bulletin, 505 8th Street, SE.


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Frager’s Hardware Set to Open Tomorrow, Friday, May 3, on Pennsylvania Avenue

Frager’s Hardware returns to Pennsylvania Avenue on Friday.  Click to enlarge.

Employees crash to stock shelves prior to opening.

A so-far sign-less red awning marks the location of “Foliage by Frager,” one door away from the hardware store.

Kristin Sampson, manager of Foliage by Frager’s and gardener extraordinaire readies for tomorrow’s opening.

A rear door to Foliage by Frager’s allows access to the garden center which itself allows access to the hardware store through a rear door.

Over at Frager’s on E Street, SE, employees move stock to the Pennsylvania Avenue location.

Aisha Bryant, manager of Frager’s Pennsylvania Avenue outlet.  Photo credit: Frager’s.


Frager’s Hardware Set to Open Tomorrow on Pennsylvania Avenue

by Larry Janezich

Frager’s management told Capitol Hill Corner they expect to open at their new location at 1115 Pennsylvania Avenue, SE, tomorrow, Friday, May 3.  The store was expected to open earlier this spring.

There will be two components of the opening – the hardware store proper, and its associated garden-center storefront (Foliage by Frager) one door away on the other side of Kabob & More.  The hardware store will be under the management of Aisha Bryant and Foliage by Frager will be overseen by Kristin Sampson.

Passage through Foliage by Frager will permit access to the garden center in the lot behind the store – which, in turn, will allow passage into the rear of the hardware store.  The entrance to the garden center on 12th Street will remain.

Meanwhile, over at Frager’s blue building at 1323 E Street, SE, a skeleton crew staffed the store as other employees transferred stock to the new location.  It’s unclear what plans building owner John Weintraub has for the site once Frager’s vacates.

Frager’s is owned by Gina and Marc Friedman’s of A Few Cool Hardware Stores – the latest of their 12 locations, and part of Ace Hardware Co-operative.  They have a 25 year lease on the store.

The iconic Frager’s Hardware was destroyed by fine in June of 2013, as reported and photographed by CHC: and here:  Perseus Realty purchased the site in for development of a mixed use building in October 2015.  Washington Business reported then the developer had paid $5.7 million for the location.


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Suspects I.D.’d In Potomac Metro Homicide – More Details Emerge


MPD 1st District Commander Morgan Kane (center) addresses resident concerns regarding the homicide at Potomac Avenue Metro. At left is Metro Transit Police Captain Steven Boehm. At right is Robert Pittman, Chair, 1st District Citizens Advisory Council.

Residents gathered at Liberty Baptist Church for last night’s crime meeting.

Suspects ID’d  In Potomac Metro Homicide – More Details Emerge

By Larry Janezich

At last night’s community meeting on crime at Liberty Baptist Church, MPD First District Commander Morgan Kane distributed flyers on two suspects who are wanted in connection with the homicide last Sunday night at Potomac Avenue Metro Station.  Warrants have been issued for the two 18 year old teens – Xavier Culbreth is wanted for homicide and Jada Smith for armed robbery.  Anyone with information is asked to call MPD Homicide Branch at 202 645 9600 or text the tip line at 50411.  There is a reward for up to $25,000 for anyone that gives police information that leads to the arrest and conviction of the person/people responsible for the killing.

The victim, 40 year old Jamal Ferrell, died Sunday night as the result of stab wounds received on the down escalator at the Potomac Avenue Metro Station where he may have been attempting to flee his pursuers, not realizing that the station was closed.  The gate at the bottom of the escalator was locked, the last train having departed at 11:20pm. MPD and Metro Transit Police received a 911 call at 11:42pm.  Transit Police responded, and found Ferrell suffering from stab wounds.  He was transported to an area hospital and pronounced dead after life-saving efforts failed.  Once the case was declared a homicide, MPD took over the investigation.

Kane told some 30 Hill East residents that the killing “rattled you, and it rattled us.”  She said it was not clear why the victim was running down into a locked Metro station and that police had information that there may have been an attempted robbery – MPD has video and witnesses.

The victim did not have a local address, and Kane said that there’s nothing to suggest that the assailants knew the victim.  She said she could not discuss information about the weapon.  Detectives are investigating a motive for the crime.

One attendee said she had heard screaming on Sunday night, but had not called 911, assuming it was kids.  Kane told her she should not “beat yourself up over what you could have or should have done.”

That exchange opened up a discussion exposing the tension that exists between residents concerned about over-policing and residents who follow police advice to call 911 when they see something suspicions.  One attendee said that the danger is that some people are criminalized more than others – children have been victimized – and “we need to carefully consider what the threshold is for calling 911.”

Another said that residents are told to call 911 and turn over our concerns to the police – “I want to think it’s okay to leave here knowing it’s okay to be wrong and to trust the MPD.”  A resident on the other side responded, “I disagree wholeheartedly.”

Kane said that “We have to respond when we get a call.  We always try to do it in the most compassionate way. Sometimes we get it right – sometimes we get it wrong.”  She said, “Call us and let us figure out what’s going on.”

She said she is anxious to have an eye-to-eye discussion on issues regarding the potential for over-policing, and that she is anxious to find a community partner to identify groups to participate.

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Neighbors Dismayed at Plan for 20 Unit Condo Building Just Off Barracks Row

Initial concept design for a proposed 20 condo unit at 417 9th Street, SE, adjacent to Distad’s Service Station and across from Hill Center.

Here’s an architectural rendering of the footprint.

Evan Muchai, at left, Associate Partner for Acquisitions & Development, District Quarters. At right are the project architects from Architecturefirm.

Here’s a view of Tried Stone Church of Christ from in front of Little Pearl on the grounds of Hill Center. The church is a former synagogue.

Neighbors Dismayed Over Plan for 20 Condo Building Just Off Barracks Row

by Larry Janezich

Last night, the development company District Quarters unveiled plans to raze the Tried Stone Church of Christ across 9th Street from Hill Center to construct a 23,000 square foot, four story plus a penthouse, 20 unit condo building with three surface parking spaces. The building is a block from Barracks Row’s retail, restaurants, and fire station. The project will be built “by right” under city regulations, meaning that there will be virtually no opportunity to change the scale or massing of the project. Since the church is a non-contributing structure in the Historic District, it can be razed, but the new building is subject to Historic Preservation review.

Evan Muchai, Associate Partner for Acquisitions & Development for the developer, revealed the initial concept for the project to about a dozen neighbors who gathered in the basement of the church.  The meeting to solicit feedback was called on what seemed to be unusually short notice, and only one week before the developers appear before ANC6B’s Planning and Zoning Committee to ask for its support of their Historic Preservation Application for the proposed concept.

Neighbors who attended the meeting were taken aback at the scale of the project – substantially higher than adjoining townhouses – and raised a number of concerns including scale, massing, parking, rodent and trash issues, impact of demolition and construction, HVAC issues, and light.  Muchai noted the concerns and said he would “get back to you” regarding how and if the company could address those concerns by next Monday.

Neighbors were dismayed at the prospect throwing up to an additional 17 parking vehicles into the mix in the hunt for parking in the neighborhood, where they say it is difficult if not impossible to park now.

Muchai said that under city regulations, they need to provide only three parking spaces, adding that they would like to provide more parking for their potential owners but held out little hope that more parking could be provided on site, although he said they would “look at it.”

When residents asked if the developer would agree to make condo residents ineligible for Residential Parking Permits allowing street parking, the developer said that in reality the city doesn’t enforce those contractual agreements between seller and purchaser.  He added, “We want to provide parking for people who live here – we don’t expect to ask people to give up parking.”  The developer downplayed the likelihood of adding 17 vehicles to the parking mix, saying that with close proximity to Metro people drive less and that he was a prime example, not having owned a car in four years.

Justifying the scale of the project, the developer said that without the proposed height and density, the project is not economically feasible.   One attendee said that the project was akin to “trying to fit a big peg into a limited lot – it’s not a fit – the lot and the neighborhood infrastructure doesn’t support this amount of density. It’s going to be a nightmare.”

District Quarters has not yet purchased the building, which is under contract, and contingent on getting approval for the building.

The developer’s timeline anticipates closing on the sale in June or July, followed by 3 to 5 month’s design work.  Construction would start in September and last 12 – 13 months, followed by a 3 to 5 month period for sales.  Muchai said the units will be mostly two-bedrooms or one bedroom and a den, with a few one-bedroom apartments and priced from $400,000-$1 million.

The building seems to be on a fast track for approval – the developers will appear before the Capitol Hill Restoration Society Historic Preservation committee next Monday, May 6 for concept review, and the next night will ask ANC6B Planning and Zoning Committee to support the Historic Preservation Application for the concept.  The committee’s recommendation will be considered by the full ANC a week later, on May 14.  The application then comes up before the Historic Preservation Review Board on May 23.

Residents complained that the process was “much too telescoped” and that the “compressed nature of the timeline undercuts the effort to work with us.”  They indicated they would carry their concerns to the various review venues going forward.  One resident pleaded, “Don’t forget there are people here – who want to live out their lives here. This is a really big thing to them – to all of us.”

District Quarters is a small development company by industry standards.  They develop residential units in the District – their website shows a number of projects between 2 and 9 units, and the current proposal appears to be their largest to date.  See here:


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