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Harris Teeter Is Days from Closing – No Answer Yet as to Why

Shelves are being emptied at the Jenkins Row Harris Teeter though no deep discounts were on offer on January 10. Photo: Hilary Russell

Harris Teeter Is Days from Closing – No Answer Yet as to Why

by Hilary Russell

Posted January 11, 2021

Many Hill residents were surprised and disappointed to learn that Harris Teeter is closing their store in Jenkins Row, 1350 Potomac Avenue, SE.  The 121 people employed here were not told the reason for this decision.  A December 6 corporate press release cited only “careful consideration and strategic market review.”  The media representative has not yet responded to questions on what factors were considered and whether the review centered on the new Safeway store at 14th Street, SE. Some Hill residents have opined that the competition between the two stores helped to assure higher-quality produce and service.

Harris Teeter’s original, projected closing date – on or before January 22 – is now January 15 for the grocery store and January 18 for the pharmacy.  Outside signs refer customers to the Harris Teeter at 401 M Street, SE, less than a mile away, and to another store at 1201 First Street, NE, but nearby residents who don’t own a vehicle aren’t likely to consider these to be “convenient locations.”

The store opened in May 2008. The owner of the building, except for its condos, is Edens, a major retail real estate owner, operator and developer.  Edens has regional offices in five states as well as in Union Market, where the company owns and has been developing numerous buildings. 

Its Director of Communications and Public Relations quickly and courteously responded to the question on any plans for the soon-to-be vacated Harris Teeter space:  “Nice to meet you. Unfortunately, I do not have any information to share at this time. Feel free to circle back in a few weeks.”  Capitol Hill Corner will follow up and continue to inform the community.    

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Week Ahead …Some Photos from the Past Week & ANC Highlights

Last Tuesday night, the ANC6B Planning and Zoning Committee unanimously approved a request for a letter of support for an application for Historic Landmark Designation from the.  The Seafarers Yacht Club at 1950 M Street, SE.  The nomination is co-sponsored by DC’s Historic Preservation Office who says that what’s important here is not the architecture of the facility, but the history of the club.  Founded in 1949, it is the oldest African American Boating Club in the country.  The application now goes to the full ANC at their January meeting next Tuesday, where it is expected to pass without objection.  Here’s a link to the Club’s website:  https://www.seafarersyachtclub.com/   
Last Wednesday, US Capitol Police Chief Thomas Manger told the Senate Rules Committee – which oversees the department – the steps taken to prevent another attack on the Capitol like the insurrection on January 6, 2021.  Among the measures are expanded intelligence operations, expansion and more intensive training of its civil disturbance unit, and tightening its relationships with other area police and security agencies.  The current authorized police force of 2000 is running a deficit of several hundred officers, and Manger wants to hire 280 officers per year for the next three years to make up the current understaffing and address future attrition.  He did not ask for authorization to increase the force beyond current limits – but that request could be made when the next legislative appropriations bill comes up in 2022.  Photo: C-SPAN.

On the eve of the anniversary of the January 6 insurrection at the US Capitol, members of the broadcast media are set up at the Senate “Swamp Site” (so named for its perpetually muddy conditions before installation of flagstones) in connection with massive broadcast coverage of commemoration of the event the next day.

The Senate Russell Office Building is shrouded for on-going restoration work. The flag flies at half staff in honor of former Senator Harry Reid, D-NV.

Additional security measures prior to the anniversary of January 6 were not so obvious, but a closer look revealed a (presumably temporary) security fence at the top of the stairs on the West Front of the Capitol. (A reader points out the fence has been up for a couple of months.)

A view to the West about 5:30pm on January 5:  Mackerel sky and crepuscular light.   

Week Ahead …Some Photos from the Past Week & ANC Highlights

by Larry Janezich

ANC Highlights

  • CM Charles Allen appears at all four ANC meetings to update on the ANC redistricting process.

Monday, January 10

ANC6D will hold a virtual meeting at 7:00pm

To join the meeting, go here:  https://www.anc6d.org/virtualmeeting/

Among items on the agenda: (6D is coy about posting its proceedings and the expanded draft agenda was not available a press time.)

  • Councilmember Charles Allen will update on ANC redistricting process.
  • Pepco Capital Grid Program Update.
  • DDOT Update on I Street Se/SW Safety Program

Alcohol Beverage Control Committee

  • 100 M Street, SE. Pink Taco.  Application for a new Retailer’s Class “C” Restaurant liquor license
  • & Pizza 1210 Half St SE. Application for a new Retailer’s Class “C” Restaurant liquor license.

Election of Officers

Tuesday, January 11

ANC6B holds a virtual meeting at 7:00pm.

To join the meeting, go here:  https://bit.ly/3JVtrP5

Among items on the draft agenda:

Presentations:

  • Councilmember Charles Allen – Update on the ANC redistricting process.
  • Department of Parks and Recreation – Briefing about upcoming activities, programs, and services.

Alcoholic Beverage Control Committee

  • 319 Pennsylvania Avenue, SE, ZOCA & Crush. Application for new Retailer’s Class “C” Restaurant liquor license. 
  • 721 8th Street, SE. Rose’s at Home Catering.  Application for a new Retailer’s Class “C” Restaurant liquor license.
  • POSTPONED UNTIL JANUARY 25 SPECIAL MEETING. 500 8th Street, SE.  As You Are.  Application for new Retailer’s Class “C” Tavern liquor license. 

Planning and Zoning Committee

  • 1247 E Street, SE. Zoning Adjustment Application.  Modification of Significance to include general retail, service, and office uses in addition to the restaurant use within an existing, semi-detached, two-story with cellar, apartment house. 
  • 1950 M Street, SE. Historic Landmark Nomination for The Seafarers Yacht Club.  Nominated by the owner – Seafarers Yacht Club – and DC Historic Preservation Office. 
  • 133 Kentucky Avenue, SE. Historic Preservation and Zoning Adjustment Applications.  Special Exception to construct a rear addition to an existing, attached, two-story principal dwelling unit.
  • 751 10th Street, SE. Historic Preservation and Zoning Adjustment Applications. Special Exception to construct a two-story rear addition and a two-story accessory garage, to an existing, semi-detached, two-story, principal dwelling unit.   
  • 310 9th Street, SE. Historic Preservation Application.  Concept review to build a rear addition to row house not visible from street, and no alley rear of property

ANC6B 2022 Bylaw Changes

Election of Officers: Chair, Vice Chair, Treasurer, Secretary, Parliamentarian

  • Gottlieb Simon, Former Executive Director for the Office of Advisory Neighborhood Commission to Facilitate.

ANC6B Community Service Award

Wednesday, January 12

ANC6C will hold a virtual meeting at 7:00pm

To join the meeting, go here:  https://anc6c.org/hot-topics/

Among the items on the draft agenda:

Election of Officers

  • Gottlieb Simon, Former Executive Director for the Office of Advisory Neighborhood Commission to Facilitate.

 Election of Committees and committee members

Presentation:

  • Councilmember Charles Allen will update on ANC redistricting process.

Transportation and Public Space Committee

  • 518 E Street, NE – Revised public space application.
  • 1st Street and New York Avenue, NE – Capitol Point North project, new public space application.

Planning, Zoning, and Economic Development Committee

  • 327 Constitution Avenue, NE. Historic Preservation Application. Concept approval, 2nd story and attic addition to rear.
  • 638 East Capitol Street NE, Zoning Application Adjustment. Three story rear addition to existing four-story dwelling. 
  • Proposed rulemaking. ZC 21-10, parking and loading—Proposed amendments.

Thursday, January 13

ANC6A will hold a virtual meeting at 7:00pm.

To join the meeting, go here:  https://anc6a.org/community-calendar/ 

Among items on the draft agenda:

Presentation: 

  • Councilmember Charles Allen will update on ANC redistricting process.
  • DC Water Lead Free DC Initiative – Emanuel D. Briggs, Manager, Community Outreach, Office of Marketing and Communications

Election of Officers.

Election of members and leaders of the permanent Committees for 2022.

  • Economic Development and Zoning Committee – Brad Greenfield (Chair), Jake Joyce, Tim Drake, Michael Cushman, Sam DeLuca, Daniel McPhetters, Roberta Shapiro.
  • Transportation and Public Safety Committee – Maura Dundon (Chair), Jeff Fletcher, Caitlin Rogger, Hassan Christian, Andrew Burnett, Shaun Lynch.
  • Alcohol Beverage Licensing Committee – Mona Hatoum (Co-Chair), Ian Stanford (CoChair), Erin Sullivan, Joe Krisch, Kara Hughley.
  • Community Outreach Committee – Roni Hollmon (Chair), Gladys Mack, StephanyThangavelu, Marc Friend, Jason Gresh, Sarah Bell.

Consent Agenda

  • Resolution to increase the funding of Cure the Streets, the DC Office of Neighborhood Safety and Engagement (ONSE) and violence interrupters at large.
  • 647 16th Street, NE. ANC6A a letter of opposition to BZA for special exception zoning relief to allow construction of a third story and rear addition, and convert to a flat, an existing, attached, two-story with cellar at principal dwelling unit.
  • 909 Kent Place, NE. ANC6A send a letter of support to BZA for special exception zoning relief to construct a one-story, rear addition to an existing, attached, two-story with basement, principal dwelling unit on condition that the applicant make best efforts to get letters of support from the neighbor to the west and a neighbor to the rear of the property.

Community Outreach Committee

  • Resolution in support of the Restore Act.

Economic Development and Zoning

  • 308 11th Street, NE. Letter of support to HPRB for the construction of an existing one-story garage to be rebuilt and expanded into a two-story carriage house, and the third-floor addition and roof deck at the principle dwelling unit. 

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Rose’s Luxury Home Catering Will Offer New Dining Space on Barracks Row

Rose’s Home Catering will offer on site dining at 721 8th Street, SE, also the home of She Loves You Flower Shop.

Rose’s Luxury Home Catering Will Offer New Dining Space on Barracks Row

by Larry Janezich

Last Thursday the ANC6B Alcohol Beverage Control Committee voted unanimously to support a restaurant liquor license for Rose’s at Home Catering operating at 721 8th Street, SE, in back of the space occupied by She Loves Me Flower Shop.  The address is one door south of Rose’s Luxury and Pineapple & Pearls.  Owner Aaron Silverman leased 400sf at the front of the first floor to a professional friend who opened the She Loves You Flower Shop to help reactivate the street during the day.

Silverman plans on using the building’s second story for an event space seating 20 as well as collaborating with the lessee of the flower shop to host dinner parties for 8 – 10 within the flower shop as well as having six seats in the space under the arches in front.  That space qualifies as a summer garden (instead of a sidewalk café) since it’s enclosed by the building.  You can see the Rose’s at Home catering menu here:  https://www.exploretock.com/rosesathome/

The liquor application now goes to the full ANC6B at its February meeting next Tuesday where it likely to receive the unanimous support of the commission.  

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ANC6B Postpones Vote on License for LBGTQ Barracks Row Bar ‘As You Are’

Here’s an image showing the proximity to E Street neighbors of the proposed As You Are Bar on Barracks Row.

And the other side of the street.

ANC6B Postpones Vote on License for LBGTQ Barracks Row Bar As You Are

by Larry Janezich

Late last night, ANC6B Chair Brian Ready announced that ANC6B would hold a virtual ANC Special Call Meeting on Tuesday, January 25, at 7:30pm, to vote on a tavern license application for As You Are, the LBGTQ Bar which expects to open on Barracks Row in March.  The application had been expected to face an ANC vote next Tuesday.  For info on how to join the January 25 Special Call Meeting, go here:  https://anc6b.org/   Under ANC6B bylaws any three commissioners can require a special meeting of the ANC. 

Last Thursday, the ANC’s Alcohol Beverage Control Committee held a hearing on the license application but it was the consensus of commissioners that more work needed to be done to allay concerns raised by nearby neighbors about the operations of the establishment.  The Committee voted unanimously to refer the application to the full ANC meeting on Tuesday to allow commissioners, owners, and neighbors time to continue to work on a Settlement Agreement which spells out restrictions and conditions under which recipients of a liquor license can operate their establishments. 

According to Ready, the stakeholders were unable to reach an agreement on Saturday and the vote was postponed to allow more time for negotiations.  He said neighbors remain open to discussing how to resolve outstanding issues.  An agreement leading to a vote to support the license on January 25th would allow As You Are to meet its goal of a March opening. 

The Settlement Agreement becomes attached to the license and is legally enforceable by the Alcohol Beverage Regulation Administration.  One of the concerns is that even if the commissioners and neighbors give the benefit of doubt to the owners of As You Are and accept their professed intentions to be a good neighbor, the Settlement Agreement conveys along with the license to a new owner should As You Are close or relocate, and that new owner may be less inclined to be a good neighbor.  As You Are is applying for a tavern liquor license which would allow later hours of operation – until 3:00am – and allow serving less food than the restaurant liquor license held by previous occupants of the site. 

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ANC Alcohol Committee Hearing on Barracks Row Tavern License Turns Contentious – Virtual Meeting Chat Function Faulted

ANC6B’s Alcohol Beverage Control Committee met last night. Here’s a shot of the virtual meeting shortly after they convened and before they took up the Tavern license application for “As You Are” coming to Barracks Row.

ANC Alcohol Committee Hearing on Barracks Row Tavern License Turns Contentious – Virtual Meeting Chat Function Faulted

by Larry Janezich

Posted January 7, 2022

ANC6B’s ABC Committee held a virtual meeting last night on the Tavern Liquor License application for “As You Are” the LBGTQ bar coming to the Barracks Row at the location formerly occupied by District Soul Food and before that, Banana Café.  More than 100 tuned in a meeting which turned, at times, contentious.  It ended hours later, with no resolution but with a plan for commissioners to meet with residents and owners over the weekend to try to hammer out a Settlement Agreement to address neighbor’s concerns before next Tuesday’s full ANC meeting.  City regulations provide for the ANC to weigh in with an opinion on approval of liquor licenses.  A Settlement Agreement is a signed agreement between the owners and the ANC which sets out how the establishment will operate and becomes part of the license after approval by the Alcohol Beverage Regulatory Commission.  The application for a tavern license instead of the restaurant license held by previous occupants of the site means the new venue could stay open later and serves less food than a restaurant. 

Nearby residents have long bemoaned the interruption to their sleep patterns and quality of life caused by late night departing patrons of previous restaurants on the corner of 8th and E Streets, SE.  They fear later hours and less food will send even more inebriated bar goers reeling into the streets even later than before.  Supporters of the LBGTQ community from all over the city vocalized their support for the proposed tavern.  The owners demonstrated the excessive measures they have taken or plan to take to alleviate neighbor concerns including state of the art soundproofing and safety monitors governing conduct of patrons which will include reminders to be respectful of the neighborhood upon departure. 

While discussion during the meeting was civil enough, the same could not be said for some of the comments in the chat function which afforded attendees the opportunity to comment freely on the comments and motivations of discussion participants.  Following some blunt declarations by nearby residents about their feelings on the proposed business, some supporters of the proposed tavern took to the chat function to criticize and characterize in personal and unflattering terms the opponents of the tavern license and their comments, provoking in return a response from some of the nearby residents. 

After a unanimous vote to refer the license application to the full ANC next week in hopes that a compromise could be reached before then, Chair Brian Ready said he had anticipated the chat degenerating into trolling and cautioned attendees about their responsibility to maintain civil discourse during the meeting.  Following that, commissioners discussed whether the chat remarks were part of the official record of the meeting, subject to public dissemination.  It seems clear that the chat is not, and raises the question whether the chat function should be activated during virtual meetings.  Since the ANC meetings are conducted according to Roberts Rules of Order – which did not anticipate this technological advance – the chat function appears to violate the rule that no person can speak until recognized by the chair and – last night at least – the rule that prohibits personal remarks during debate. 

At best, ANC meetings follow Robert’s Rules only in the loosest sense, and most commissioners in the four ANCs CHC follows closely are only vaguely familiar with them.  The advent of virtual meetings – which appear to be on the verge of becoming standard operating procedure after resumption of in person meetings by the city council and ANCs – has resulted in the prolongation of ANC meetings by hours – sometimes starting at 7:00pm and going past midnight.  Observation suggests the time could be shortened considerably by greater knowledge of and adherence to Robert’s Rules.  This would undoubtedly work to the benefit of the commissioners, the participants, the community, and the journalists who cover these meetings. 

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Mayor Bowser Holds Situational Briefing

Mayor Bowser at today’s Situational Briefing

Mayor Bowser Holds Situational Briefing

by Larry Janezich

Posted January 6, 2022

Mayor Bowser held a Situational Briefing today, January 6, and made the following points:

  • Those who have received two doses of the Pfizer vaccine can get a booster after 5 months.
  • Those who have received the Johnson & Johnson vaccine can get a booster after 2 months.
  • Those who have received two doses of Moderna vaccine can get a booster after 6 months.
  • Today, those 12 – 15 who have received 2 doses of the Pfizer vaccine can get boosted if their second vaccination was on or before August 6, 2021.

There are four ways to get tested for Covid 19 – but do not go to a hospital.

  • Get free rapid test at 1 of 9 libraries – now including SW Library (see below).
  • Get a PCR test at 1 of 36 Test Yourself DC Sites: https://coronavirus.dc.gov/testing
  • Go to walk up PCR test sites at firehouses or the DCD/FEMA test site at Judiciary Square https://coronavirus.dc.gov/testing
  • Get an appointment with your health care provider.

As of January 15, proof of one vaccinations and ID will be required for those 18 plus at:

  • Restaurants, bars, nightclubs
  • Indoor cultural and entertainment facilities
  • Exercise and recreation establishments
  • Indoor event and meeting establishments.

As of February 15, proof of full vaccination and ID s for those 18 plus will be required.

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Ward 6 Arborist Talks About Trees: DDOT Works to Clear Storm-downed Branches

Alex Grieve, Ward 6 DC Urban Forestry Arborist, appeared before ANC6C’s virtual meeting of the Environment, Parks and Events Committee Tuesday night. Photo: Larry Janezich

Ward 6 Arborist Talks About Trees: DDOT Is Working to Clear Storm-downed Branches

by Hilary Russell

Alex Grieve, DC Urban Forestry Arborist in the northeast section of Ward 6, appeared before ANC6C’s Environment, Parks and Events Committee virtual meeting on Tuesday night to answer tree-related questions – coincidentally, just after Monday’s snowstorm.  Grieve assured that DDOT contractors were busy clearing roads and sidewalks impinged by storm-damaged trees.

Grieve’s division, housed within the DC Department of Transportation (DDOT), is the primary steward of some 175,000 public trees that line the city’s streets and sidewalks.  He inspects such areas and encourages emails from interested citizens who would like the Urban Forestry Division to come up with a remedial planting plan.  He can be reached at alexander.grieve@dc.gov and at 202-671-5133, and welcomes communications from Capitol Hill residents on the following topics:

  • Tree boxes: Technically, a permit is required to plant a tree in a tree box – preferably a large tree that contributes to DC’s canopy. Neighbors are required to maintain tree boxes, but without disturbing tree roots or adding plants with thorns or those that grow taller than 18 inches. Call 311 to report a tree box that needs a tree or a tree box that could be enlarged, thereby contributing to less impervious pavement. Installing permeable material over a sidewalk tree’s bulging roots has similar impact, but DDOT’s Sidewalk Division, not Urban Forestry, handles such requests.
  • Watering of public trees: DDOT contractors plant trees and are responsible for watering and maintaining them for at least the first summer, while Casey Trees (the non-profit organization established in 2001 to restore, enhance, and protect the tree canopy of Washington) waters the trees they plant for the first three years. Urban Forestry works to hold their contractors to their warranties and encourages neighbors to water needy trees that are less than three years old. Mature public trees do not need to be watered.
  • Troubled trees. Urban Forestry limits treatments to Gingko trees (to prevent fruit) and to American Elm for Dutch Elm Disease. The division tracks outbreaks of other diseases, such as crepe myrtle bark scale, and can recommend resources, such as the hiring of an arborist or a University of Maryland extension agent. There is a database of trees marked for removal and their level of priority, but it does not include schedules.

The discussion touched on challenges posed by private developers in reaching the 40 percent goal for the city’s tree canopy.  Grieve stated that the laws protecting current and heritage trees are difficult to implement and often the agency can’t protect private trees that obstruct a development plan.  He also acknowledged the challenge of communicating across a department as large and complex as DDOT as well as a tangle of agencies that deal with trees, such as DC’s Department of Energy and the Environment and the National Park Service.

Their website https://ddot-urban-forestry-dcgis.hub.arcgis.com provides more answers to more questions, along with current data on trees and tree-related plans in Ward 6.

Following is a chart showing distribution of current and projected tree plantings by ward in FY 2022.

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The January 3 2022 Snowstorm – Photo Essay

The city awoke to thundersnow and the sound of snapping tree branches.
A shopper on 10th Street, SE, from North Carolina Avenue.

The passing of the storm, circa 3:30pm, Eastern Market Metro Plaza Playground.

The US Capitol Police closed the Capitol Grounds to sledding, citing concerns over falling branches. Crews cleared the East Front Plaza after Congress briefly convened to postpone business until tomorrow.

The LOC’s Neptune Fountain.

Hope springs eternal for those who patiently wait. Photo: Paris Suzzane Singer

And patience is sometimes rewarded. Photo: Paris Suzzane Singer

A skier returns home late afternoon – perhaps from the Mall where skiers head after a snowstorm.
Maybe not one for the record books, but still….

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The Week Ahead…and Some Photos from the Past Week

On New Year’s Eve, the flags at the US Capitol were at half-staff in honor of former Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-NV, who died on December 28.  The cause of death was pancreatic cancer.

On New Year’s Day, Neighborhood Firehouse Engine 8 at 1520 C Street, SE, distributed rapid Covid tests.  People started lining up at 9am for the distribution which began at noon.

Pupatella announced last September they were opening a new pizza restaurant at 3rd and Massachusetts Avenue, NE, in the former Romeo & Juliet’s.  A look inside though suggests that the build-out is not going as rapidly as the owners might wish. They have five outlets locally, and here’s a link to the Dupont Circle restaurant’s menu:  https://bit.ly/31mgIDy

ICYMI, here’s a shot of the holiday tree gracing the main hall at Union Station. 

And here’s a look at the lower level food court, in business, with tables separated by an appropriate distance. 

Here’s a shot of some street art on Constitution Avenue, NE, opposite the Dirksen Senate Office Building that’s been up for a while but which escaped CHC’s notice until now.  The building appears to be in private hands. It’s the work of French artist “JR” and part of his “Inside Out Project” – which, according to the website – “… helps individuals and communities to make a statement by displaying large-scale black and white portraits in public spaces. Through their “Actions,” communities around the world have sparked collaborations and conversations.”  One gets the feeling that placement, like timing, is everything. The portraits look into Senators’ office windows in the building across the street.  See more here:  https://www.insideoutproject.net/en/about#section-jr

The Week Ahead….

by Larry Janezich

Tuesday, January 4

ANC6B Planning and Zoning Committee will hold a virtual meeting at 7:00pm. 

To join the meeting, go here: https://anc6b.org/calendar/               

Among items on the draft agenda:

  • 1247 E Street, SE. Zoning Adjustment Application – Modification of Significance to include general retail, service, and office uses in addition to the restaurant use within an existing, semi-detached, two-story with cellar, apartment house.  (This is the renovated building kitty corner from Peter Bug’s Shoe Academy at 12th and E Streets, SE.
  • Historic Landmark Nomination for The Seafarers Yacht Club, 1950 M Street, SE. Nominated by the owner – Seafarers Yacht Club – and DC Historic Preservation Office.  
  • 133 Kentucky Avenue, SE. Historic Preservation and Zoning Adjustment applications for Special Exception to construct a rear addition to an existing, attached, two-story principal dwelling unit. 
  • 751 10th Street, SE. Historic Preservation and Zoning Adjustment applications for Special Exception to construct a two-story rear addition and a two-story accessory garage, to an existing, semi-detached, two-story, principal dwelling unit.
  • 310 9th Street, SE. Historic Preservation Application, Concept review for a proposal to build a rear addition to a row house not visible from street with no alley rear of property.

ANC6C Environment, Parks and Events Committee will hold a virtual meeting at 7:00pm.

To join the meeting, go here:  https://anc6c.org/hot-topics/

Among items on the draft agenda: 

  • A presentation from a representative of DC Urban Forestry to answer tree-related questions.

Wednesday, January 5

ANC6B Transportation Committee holds a virtual meeting at 7:00pm.

To join the meeting, go here: https://anc6b.org/calendar/               

Among items on the draft agenda:

  • Discussion of proposed ANC6B testimony on Southeast Boulevard.
  • Other Issues to consider in 2021

ANC6C Planning, Zoning, and Economic Development Committee will hold a virtual meeting at 6:30pm.

To join the meeting, go here:  https://anc6c.org/hot-topics/

Among items on the draft agenda:

  • 327 Constitution Avenue, NE. Historic Preservation Application for concept approval for second-story and attic addition to existing one-story rear portion of main row dwelling (two stories plus attic).
  • Proposed Zoning Commission rulemaking re parking and loading. In the wake of its October 18, 2021 hearing on the topic the Zoning Commission recently published proposed amendments to the regulations governing requirements for parking and loading.

Thursday, January 6

ANC6B Alcoholic Beverage Control Committee will hold a virtual meeting at 7:00pm.

To join the meeting, go here: https://anc6b.org/calendar/                

Among items on the draft agenda:

  • 319 Pennsylvania Avenue, SE. ZOCA & Crush – application for a restaurant liquor license.
  • 721 8th Street, SE. Rose’s at Home (catering) – application for a Retailer’s Class “C” Restaurant license. 
  • 500 8th Street, SE. As You Are – application for a Class “C” Tavern license. 

ANC6C Transportation and Public Space Committee will hold a virtual meeting at 7:00pm. 

To join the meeting, go here:  https://anc6c.org/hot-topics/

Among items on the draft agenda:

  • 518 E Street, NE. Public Space Application.   The committee will revisit a public space construction permit application at which proposes to replace the existing leadwalk, retaining wall, and existing gate. The combined height of a fence and retaining wall may be no more than 42” tall. The fence must be at least 50% open.
  • Capitol Point North project) at 1st Street, NE & New York Avenue, NE. Public Space Application  for approval of a temporary curb cut to facilitate parking/loading access in the event that the two phases of a certain mixed-use project at Square 671 are not constructed sequentially (i.e., Phase B is developed prior to Phase A). The proposed curb cut would be temporary, and the final construction – regardless of timing – would ultimately provide access from N Street NE for both phases of the project.

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How the Barracks Row Popeyes Fell Through the Cracks at DC Department of Health

The former Popeyes on Barracks Row after closure in early November.
The former Barracks Row Popeyes today.

How the Barracks Row Popeyes Fell Through the Cracks at DC Department of Health

By Larry Janezich

Posted December 28, 2021

ANC6B invited the Food and Safety and Hygiene Division of the DC Department of Health to its December 14 meeting to talk about restaurant inspections.  Ivory Cooper, Food Technologist at the DC Department of Health, gave a lengthy presentation on the DC food safety inspection process and FDA guidelines. 

After the presentation, ANC6B Chair Brian Ready, referred to the “elephant in the room” – the early November closure of the Barracks Row Popeyes, not as the result of conditions discovered by DC Department of Health, but only after a video by a deliveryman showing a rampant rat infestation inside went viral on Tik Tok and Twitter.  The now-closed restaurant was in Ready’s Single Member District and Ready asked Cooper how often his agency inspects restaurants.

Cooper said that the number of inspections is based on how at-risk the Department regards an establishment.  Restaurants are ranked 1 through 5, and the intent, he said, is to inspect those in categories 4 and 5 four times a year, and those in categories 1 – 3, two or three times a year.  He said, “We reach that benchmark in some cases,” and cited staff shortages as a reason they do not. 

Ready said that the issue at the Barracks Row Popeyes was “not new” and had existed for some length of time and wondered if the restaurant had been inspected often enough.  He noted that the restaurant had passed inspection and the public didn’t know what conditions were like until the video was aired.  “What are you doing to make sure this doesn’t happen again?” he asked.

Cooper said, “We can only cite what we see – our ability to inspect has been limited by the pandemic and when that happens, a site can get out of control.  The inspection is based on the moment we go in.  It can be clean today and different tomorrow.  We can only cite what we see when we’re there.  We may miss things or when we go, there may not be a problem.  Any time the public reports an issue, we respond within two business days.  An inspection is only a snap shot – we are on site one to one and a half hours – five hours out of 365 days.  A restaurant can get away with a lot.” 

Commissioner Alison Horn asked if inspections are random and whether restaurants get advance notice of inspections.  Cooper replied that inspections are random, but proximity of inspections at other places can be a tip off and so can timing – the knowledge that a restaurant will be inspected every four months. 

Cooper gave the address of a public website where residents can see which restaurants have violations.  https://dc.healthinspections.us/?a=Inspections

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