The Week Ahead….& Orangetheory Fitness Arrives at the Hine Project Next Month

Coming Soon: Orangetheory Fitness will open in the Hine Project in about six weeks. The venue offers 60-minute workout sessions split into intervals of cardiovascular and strength training with heart rate monitors to track intensity. For more, see here: http://capitolhill-dc.orangetheoryfitness.com/

The Week Ahead….& Orangetheory Fitness Arrives at the Hine Project Next Month

Monday, June 18

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

Among items on the draft agenda:

Notice:  Previously announced request by On the Rocks (1242 H Street NE) to offer valet parking has been indefinitely postponed.

Notice:  Public meeting on reconstruction of the Hopscotch Bridge (Unit – 200 Block of H Street, NE) on Thursday, June 21, 6:00 – 8:00 pm at Northeast Neighborhood Library Meeting Room, 330 7th Street, NE.

Public space permit application for installation of staircase and ADA ramp for Eliot-Hine Middle School, 1800 Constitution Avenue, NE.

Consideration of public space permit for sidewalk café for DC Diner at 802 13th Street, NE.

Tuesday, June 19

ANC6A Alcoholic Beverage Licensing Committee meets at 7:00pm, Sherwood Recreation Center, 10th and G Streets, NE. 

Among items on the draft agenda: 

Discussion of a new establishment, Smokin’ Pig, 1208 H Street, NE – potential transfer of license from Touche, 1123 H Street, NE, and request for a stipulated license while the placard is pending.

Presentation by David Batista on behalf of new establishment opening in the Apollo development on H Street NE.  Note: Establishment is located in ANC 6C, but adjacent to ANC 6A.

Capitol Hill Restoration Society Board of Directors meets at 6:30pm, Capitol Hill Townhomes, 750 6th Street SE, second floor board room.

Wednesday, June 20

ANC6A Economic Development and Zoning Committee meets at 7:00pm at Sherwood Recreation Center, 640 10th Street, NE.

Among items on the draft agenda:

518 9th Street, NE and 816 E Street, NE – Request for a special exception to permit two existing primary buildings on a single record lot in the RF-1 Zone.

1016 Massachusetts Avenue, NE – Request for special exceptions to construct a third-story rear addition to an existing principal dwelling unit in the RF-1 Zone.

1318 Constitution Ave, NE – Request for a special exception under to construct a rear roof deck and access stairwell in the RF-1 Zone.

121 Tennessee Avenue, NE – HPRB Review of a request to construct a rear addition to an existing nonconforming structure in the Capitol Hill Historic District.

1511 A Street, NE – Request for lot occupancy relief for new construction of two adjoining lots (two units each).

Thursday, June 21

Sector 2 (PSAs 104, 107, 108) Community Meeting at 7:00pm and a location to be announced. 

 

Comments Off on The Week Ahead….& Orangetheory Fitness Arrives at the Hine Project Next Month

Filed under Uncategorized

Noteworthy:  Flea Markets, Tavern Licenses/other Barracks Row Issues & Dockless Bikes and Scooters

ANC6B met last Tuesday at full strength. Barracks Row issues figured prominently on the agenda.

Noteworthy:  Flea Markets, Tavern Licenses/other Barracks Row Issues & Dockless Bikes and Scooters

by Larry Janezich

Noteworthy:

Saturday and Sunday Flea Markets at Eastern Market

The Department of General Services has extended the licenses of the Saturday and Sunday flea market operators to continue the flea markets on the 300 block of 7th Street for an additional six months.  The intent had been to move those operations to the newly re-opened C Street between 7th and 8th Streets by now.  Controversy over how to provide for the survival of Eastern Market as a food market while accommodating the needs of the outside merchants and retailers in the areas surrounding the market has stymied those seeking a compromise.  CM Charles Allen got the city to budget $300,000 for the Office of the Deputy Mayor for Planning and Economic Development to develop a five year strategic plan to determine how best to ensure the future of Eastern Market and determine the best use for the Eastern Market special use area encompassing all of the areas around the market where retail activities occur.  An additional $25,000 will be used to develop a security plan for the 200 and 300 blocks of 7th Street; the favored approach seems to be securing the access points to that portion of 7th Street with pop-up bollards.

Tavern Licenses on Barracks Row

Word is that Orchid, the new LBGT venue on Barracks Row, will apply to change its restaurant liquor license to a tavern license (the difference:  you don’t have to serve food with a tavern license).  ANC6B has been skeptical of supporting applications for tavern licenses on Barracks Row, but recently recommended that ABRA approve a tavern license for the new “Barracks Lane” restaurant coming to the space formerly occupied by Las Placitas.  The owner of the new restaurant explained he will operate as a restaurant, but a tavern license would allow him to reduce the paperwork and number of annual reports the city requires of holders of a restaurant liquor license.  ANC6B restricted the hours of operation in the settlement agreement for “Barracks Lane” to make the property less attractive for use as a tavern in the event the license conveys to a different owner in the future.  “Barracks Lane” hopes to open in about six weeks.  See here:  https://bit.ly/2JXCN0j

400 Block of Barracks Row

ANC6B Commissioner Jennifer Samolyk, chair of the commission’s Constituent Services and Community Outreach Committee, will hold a meeting to discuss issues related to the 400 block of 8th Street.  The block has been plagued with drug and panhandling problems.

Dockless Bikes and Scooters

The city has extended until August the trial period for the operation of dockless bikes and electric scooters to operate on city streets.  The Department of Transportation is seeking community feedback.  Jason Star, Regional Manager for Limebike, appeared before ANC6A last Thursday to encourage residents to provide feedback on the program.  He said the company is interested in determining the number of people using dockless bikes and scooters as well as the diversity of ridership, i.e., who in the community is using dockless bikes when other transportation options don’t exist.  In response to a question about disabled bikes, he said the company is improving its ability to retrieved trashed or vandalized bikes and providing better locks to prevent theft.  The scooters’ top speed is 14.6 mph and riders have to have a driver’s license to rent them.  He sees the answer to complaints about scooters operating on residential sidewalks as one of education, while noting that DC law prohibits riding scooters on sidewalks in business districts.  To provide feedback, go here:  dockless.bikeshare@dc.gov

3 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized

The Week Ahead…Early Voting at Sherwood Recreation Center, 640 10th St. NE, M-F, 8:30am – 7:00pm

The Joy of Dance – trickier when you’re balancing a watermelon – but Aminata Phillips made this look easy last Tuesday morning near Eastern Market Metro. She learned this from her grandmother in Sierra Leone.

The Week Ahead…Early Voting at Sherwood Recreation Center, 640 10th St. NE, M-F, 8:30am – 7:00pm

by Larry Janezich

Monday, June 11

ANC6D meets at 7:00pm at 1100 4th Street, SW, second floor conference room.

Among items on the draft agenda:

Presentation:  Executive Office of the Mayor/DDOT – All Stars Game on July 17

Presentation:  DDOT Planning Update – New Circulator Route, Capitol Bikeshare Expansion into 6D07

Presentation:  Restaurant Opportunities Center – Candace Cunningham

Presentation:  Save Our Tips – Kevin Wrege

Presentation:  Frederick Douglass Memorial Bridge Project Update

District Hardware and Bike, 730 Maine Avenue, SW – Request to update liquor license Community Agreement re outside and Sunday hours.

Aslin Beer Garden, 1299 First Street, SE – new Tavern liquor license for outdoor beer garden with food trucks.

Holiday Inn, 550 C Street, SW – new retail liquor license to permit consumption off licensed premises.

Del Mar, 791 Wharf Street, SW – Amendment to liquor license to permit third summer garden.

250 M Street, SW – Zoning Application, modification of consequence.

DC United Noise Mitigation Plan.

Cambria Hotel – Transportation Study for Q Street, SW.

Resolution to DDOT – Parking impacts during Jefferson MS’ Modernization.

Resolution t DDOT – 2nd Street, SW, cycle track.

Resolution to DDOT – Traffic Calming Study – N Street, SE, between Sought Capitol and First Street, SE

Resolution to DDOT – 600 Block of M Street, SW.

Author Talk with Elliot Carlson, 7:00pm, Southeast Library, Lower level

Stanley Johnston’s Blunder: The story of a Chicago Tribune reporter who may have exposed a vitally important US naval secret during WWII.  Carlson discusses the book, which draws on recently released 75 year old grand jury testimony.

Tuesday, June 12

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

Among items on the draft agenda: 

Presentation:  Crown Castle presentation about the addition of “small cell” solutions on existing right-of-way infrastructure to improve the quality of wireless service throughout the District.

Barracks Lane Restaurant, 517 8th Street, SE (formerly Las Placitas) – New Application for a Retailer’s Class “C” Tavern license with a sidewalk café endorsement.  Seating for 99 + 12 seats on sidewalk café; Proposed Hours: Sun. — Thurs. 10 am – 1:30 am; Fri. — Sat. 10 am – 2:30 am; Sidewalk Hours: 10 am – 12 Midnight.

232 South Carolina Avenue, SE – Historic Preservation Application for a revised concept/front and side porch.

14 7th Street, SE – Historic Preservation Application for a concept/one-story addition at side-court.

526 8th Street, SE (Shakespeare Parking lot) – Historic Preservation Application for a concept/ new three-story mixed use building.

322 8th Street, SE – Zoning Adjustment Application for a special exception to construct a second story and roof deck addition to an existing accessory structure.

322 8th Street, SE – Historic Preservation Application for a concept/ construct second-story addition at existing one-story garage.

237 10th Street, SE – Historic Preservation Application for a concept/ new one-story garage.

237 10th Street, SE – Zoning Adjustment Application for a special exception to expand an existing rear deck addition to an existing principal dwelling unit and construct a rear accessory garage.

Letter to relevant parties regarding Kingman Park and the historic designation process.

Letter from Commissioner Waud regarding Potomac Gardens artist grant.

Letter regarding solar project at Congressional Cemetery.

Wednesday, June 13

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

Among items on the draft agenda:

Fancy Radish, 600 H Street, NE – Class C restaurant liquor license addition, request for extended hours.

Kogod Liquors, 441 New Jersey Avenue, NE – class A retail liquor license renewal and addition to allow tasting.

Union Kitchen Grocery, 538 Third Street, NE – neighbor complaints about noise issues.

Union Market streetscape.

NoMa/Mt. Vernon Triangle Bicycle Network Study.

Liaison Hotel, 415 New Jersey Avenue, NW – construction, application.

212 A Street, NE – Historic Preservation Application for concept approval, rear and side additions, new garage.

637 E Street, NE – Historic Preservation Application concept approval for new basement entry.

NoMa Parks Foundation, status on park projects and underpass installations.

Urban Farming, involving the community in nature, nutrition, and healthy eating.

Thursday, June 14

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

Among items on the draft agenda:

Presentation:  DDOT presentation responding to requests for All Way Stop at 8th and D Streets; traffic calming on the 400 – 600 blocks of 10th Street, NE; and an update on C Street (regarding the latter, see below agenda item).  Derek Voight, Traffic Operations and Safety Division and Lee Goodall, Community Engagement Manager

Presentation:  LimeBike dockless bikeshare.  Jason Starr, D.C. General Manager.

Presentation:  Initiative 77 presentation.  Ryan Aston, Restaurant Workers of America.

Recommendation re Dangerously Delicious Pies: ANC6A protest the request by Dangerously Delicious Pies (1339 H Street, NE) for expansion to its second floor with outdoor seating unless a signed settlement agreement is submitted prior to the protest date, which requires the roof deck to be closed at 11:00 pm on weeknights and 12:00 am on weekends, with a three-month trial period where the ANC agrees to revisit the hours after that period has expired. If such a Settlement Agreement is reached, the ANC will submit a letter in support of a stipulated license for the substantial change.

Recommendation regarding DDOT Rehabilitation of C Street: ANC 6A send a letter to DDOT asking them to alter their plan for the C Street, NE, Rehabilitation project to revert it back as much as possible to what was presented to the community in February of 2018.

Recommendation re 220 14th Place, NE: ANC6A send a letter of support to for a Zoning Adjustment for an exemption from the lot occupancy requirements and from the rear yard requirements to allow construction of a rear addition to an existing nonconforming structure in the RF-1 Zone, on condition that the applicant makes their best effort to get a letter of support from 224 14th Place, NE

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

Comments Off on The Week Ahead…Early Voting at Sherwood Recreation Center, 640 10th St. NE, M-F, 8:30am – 7:00pm

Filed under Uncategorized

On Barracks Row:  Eyeing Millennials, Investor Will Develop/Redevelop Three 8th Street Properties

The Shakespeare Company parking lot at 526 8th Street, SE.  For background on the creation of Nooshi’s iconic mural, see CHC post here:  https://bit.ly/2sIg65C

 

The Shakespeare Rehearsal Space at 507 8th Street, SE, also includes Shakespeare’s costume design studios.

 

The former Phase 1 at 525 8th Street, SE.

 

Here’s the rendering of the concept/plan for the Shakespeare parking lot at 526 8th Street, prepared for the Historic Preservation Review Board.  The third story will be set back 42 feet from the front of the building.  A concept/plan is intended to indicate the massing and scale of a project rather than accurately depict how the building will appear upon completion.  The orange building is the location of Garrison’s restaurant – behind and above is Nooshi.

On Barracks Row:  Eyeing Millennials, Investor Will Develop/Redevelop Three 8th Street Properties

by Larry Janezich

Tuesday night, Chris Martin of Martin-Diamond Properties, unveiled a concept/plan for development of the last empty lot on Barracks Row – the Shakespeare parking lot at 526 8th Street, SE.  Appearing before ANC6B’s Planning and Zoning Committee in support of an Historic Preservation Application for a proposed new three-story mixed use building, Martin introduced himself to commissioners as the owner of the former Phase 1 tavern at 525 8th Street and said that he has a contract pending for the purchase of the Shakespeare Rehearsal Space at 507 8th Street, SE.  Martin-Diamond is a partnered with an international investment company specializing in developing retail properties targeting Millennials.

Martin, who said he was excited to be part of the development of Barracks Row,  later told Capitol Hill Corner that he did know what tenants might occupy the retail spaces the new building will provide.  He said they could be dry goods retail, offices, or a  restaurant.   Martin also said that he was uncertain what would emerge from the renovation of the Shakespeare Rehearsal Space, assuming that purchase goes through.  The former Phase 1 (and AXNO cider bar pop up) is undergoing extensive renovation and is up for lease as a restaurant.  The timeline for the parking lot and rehearsal space development is uncertain because both are currently under lease to the Shakespeare Company.

Nearby neighbors – residents of G Street – whose properties back up to the Shakespeare parking lot, raised concerns regarding what impact the new structure would have regarding traffic in the alley which they use to access garages.  They had other concerns about the lack of notification of the project and lack of communication with the developer.  In order to allow time for the residents to meet with the developer, the Committee voted unanimously to take “no position” on a recommendation for the full ANC6B which will consider the case at its June meeting next Tuesday, June 12.

Martin-Diamond Properties LLC, is an “urban retail specialist” headquartered in Delaware with an office in DC.  It has partnered with NW1 Partners, a real estate investment advisory firm focused on small cap value-added property investments in the US, UK, and Europe.   NW1 raised $175 million this year to invest in Washington, DC, retail outlets focusing on Millennial demographics.  Martin-Diamond’s job will be to find and manage real estate opportunities; in March, they purchased the Georgetown Theater building on Wisconsin Avenue.   NW1 is headquartered in London and Chicago.

1 Comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Here’s a Photo Progress Report on Five Major Capitol Hill SE Developments

Here’s a Photo Progress Report on Five Major Capitol Hill SE Developments

by Larry Janezich

There are five major residential or mixed use projects under construction in Capitol Hill SE, not counting the redevelopment of the Southeast Safeway which hasn’t really started yet.  The five projects will provide some 514 residential units to Capitol Hill’s housing stock.  Below are photos of where construction stands as of yesterday, coupled with renderings of how the projects will look when finished.

The development of Frager’s Mixed Use Project is well underway. (click to enlarge)

As completed.  The original Frager’s site on the 1100 block of Pennsylvania Avenue SE, is being developed by Persus Realty.  It will be mixed use retail/residential, with 30 to 40 high-end one, two, and three bedroom condo units, weighted heavily to the larger units intended to accommodate families.  Frager’s Hardware will occupy 8,500 square feet of the retail space. 

 

Current status of Watkin’s Alley. 

Completed.  Opal LLC is developing Watkins Alley on the 1300 block of E Street, SE – a 43 unit condo project. 

Current status of Lockwood Apartments.

On the same 1300 block of E Street, Insight Development is building the Lockwood apartment complex – 145 1, 2, and 3 bedroom units.  

 

Developers have just started on Capitol Courts. 

SGA Architects’ plans for Capitol Courts on the former Frager’s Garden Center in the 1200 block of Pennsylvania Avenue, SE, call for a 117 unit mixed use development.   Some 100 of the 119 units will be 400 square foot “junior bedrooms” – there will be a few one bedrooms and larger units.  The plan for Capitol Courts includes 5,000 square feet on the ground floor for a specialty foods and deli outlet featuring principally prepared food.

 

Here’s what 1401 Pennsylvania Avenue looks like today.  

When completed.  At 1401 Pennsylvania Avenue, SE, CAS Riegler is building a mixed retail/apartment project with a strong retail component – 19,000 square feet “Class A” retail and 174 residential units.  There have been reports that CAS Riegler plans a “mini-Union Market” for the first floor retail of the building. 

 

 

1 Comment

Filed under Uncategorized

The Week Ahead…..

ANXO: The Barracks Row pop up Cidery & Pintxos Bar which opened in the former Phase 1 space at 525 8th Street appears to have relinquished the spot which is currently for lease and under extensive renovation.

The Week Ahead….

By Larry Janezich

Monday, June 4

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

Among items on the draft agenda:

Fancy Radish, 600 H Street, NE, extension of operating hours for restaurant license

Kogod Liquors, 441 New Jersey Avenue, NW, tasting endorsement for retailer’s license.

Union Kitchen Grocery, 538 3rd Street, NE, discussion of noise issues.

Discussion of marijuana related establishments as potential ABL Committee business

CHRS Historic Preservation Committee meets at 6:30pm at Kirby House, 420 10th Street, SE.

Tuesday, June 5

Second Ward 6 Candidate Forum at 7:00pm, Westminster Presbyterian Church, 40 I Street, SW. 

Here’s a link to CHC’s coverage of the first candidate’s forum on May 1. https://bit.ly/2sz8Jxi

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

Among items on the draft agenda:

232 South Carolina Avenue, SE – Historic Preservation application, revised concept/front and side porch.

14 7th Street, SE – Historic Preservation application, concept/one-story addition at side-court.

526 8th Street, SE – Historic Preservation application, concept/new three-story mixed use building.

322 8th Street, SE – Bureau of Zoning Adjustment application for special exception to construct a second story and roof deck addition to an existing accessory structure.

322 8th Street, SE – Historic Preservation application, concept/ construct second-story addition at existing one-story garage.

237 10th Street, SE – Bureau of Zoning Adjustment application for special exception to expand an existing rear deck addition to an existing principal dwelling unit and construct a rear accessory garage.

237 10th Street, SE; Historic Preservation application for concept/ new one-story garage.

ANC 6C Parks & Events Committee meets at 7:00pm at Kaiser Permanente Medical Center, 700 2nd Street, NE.

Among items on the draft agenda: 

NoMA Parks Foundation – update on status of pending parks projects and underpass installations.

Urban Farming – 6C Resident Sarah Dachos will talk about urban farming in the District.  Sarah works with the THEARC Farm, which is an urban farm operating as a community project of Building Bridges Across the River and was developed to involve our community in nature, nutrition, and healthy eating. The farm consists of 25 raised beds, 8 in-ground rows, a culinary herb garden, medicinal herb garden, an eighteen-tree orchard, community compost bins, a hoop house and a pollinator garden.  For more information, please visit: http://thearcdc.org/thearcfarm

Wednesday, June 6

ANC 6C Planning, Zoning, and Economic Development Committee meets at 6:30pm at Northeast Library, 7th and D Streets, NE. 

Among items on the draft agenda:

212 A Street, NE – Historic Preservation application for concept approval for new rear and side additions, and to demolish existing and construct new garage.

719 3rd Street, NE – Historic Preservation application for concept approval for new basement entry and alterations to basement window.

637 E Street, NE – Historic Preservation application for concept approval for new basement entry.

2nd & K Streets, NE – Discussion of ANC recommendation to the Zoning Commission on whether to set down for public hearing the request of Lean Development to change the zoning of four lots on the moderate-density commercial and production/distribution/repair to a mix of moderate-density mixed use and medium-density, compact mixed-use development with an emphasis on residential use.

ANC6B Transportation Committee meets at 7:00pm in the first floor conference room (hallway to the right as you enter) at 700 Pennsylvania Avenue, SE

There is one item on the draft agenda: 

Southeast Blvd & Barney Circle Study Traffic Analysis.

Watkins Market Resumes – 3:30pm – 7:30pm – 13th & E St, SE next to Peter Bug’s Shoe Academy.

Market will begin June 6 and continue every Wednesday through October.

Thursday, June 7

ANC6B Alcoholic Beverage Control Committee meets at 7:00pm at Hill Center, 921, Pennsylvania Avenue, SE. 

Among items on the draft agenda: 

Barracks Lane Restaurant, 517 8th Street, SE (formerly Las Placitas) – new application for a tavern license with sidewalk café endorsement.   Seating for 99 + 12 seats on sidewalk café; Proposed Hours: Sun. — Thurs. 10am – 1:30 am; Fri. — Sat. 10am – 2:30 am; Sidewalk Hours: 10am – 12 Midnight.

Discussion on compliance with settlement agreements.

ANC6C Transportation and Public Space Committee is scheduled to meet at 7:00pm at the Kaiser Permanente Medical Center, 700 Second Street, NE. 

Among items on the draft agenda:

Discussion of Union Market Streetscape – As the Union Market area continues to transition from a commercial warehouse and wholesale market district to a mixed-use activity center, the roads crossing through the neighborhood are seeing a corresponding increase in pedestrian and bicycle traffic. However, the existing streetscape does not support these changing transportation patterns.   As a condition of a PUD in the area DDOT collaborated with area developers, business owners, Gallaudet University, and the DC Office of Planning to draft Union Market Streetscape Guidelines to update roadways and public spaces throughout the area for future use. However, these guidelines were drafted and published in October 2017 without neighborhood outreach and ANC input. The Committee would like to discuss current streetscape conditions in the area, short-term solutions to increase pedestrian and cyclist safety, and longer-term improvements to the new streetscape guidelines.

Discussion of NoMa / Mount Vernon Triangle Bicycle Network Study – DDOT recently concluded a study of bicycle infrastructure and ridership patterns in the NoMa and Mount Vernon Triangle areas. The study looked at the region between 6th St NW and 6th St NE, and K St to M St. Current bicycle facilities in the NoMa area primarily follow north-south corridors, and DDOT wanted to explore ways to improve east-west connectivity through safe, convenient, and low-stress routes. DDOT released a report that outlined existing conditions, evaluated bicycle infrastructure in the context of other DC multimodal plans (e.g. Move DC), highlighted known ridership patterns, and provided recommendations for new bicycle infrastructure.

Friends of Southeast Library (FOSEL) meet at 5:30pm at SE Library, lower level. 

1 Comment

Filed under Uncategorized

The Week Ahead….and Photos from the Vietnam Memorial 

Memorial Day, May 28, 2018, The Vietnam Memorial, circa 3:20pm.

The Week Ahead….and Photos from the Vietnam Memorial

by Larry Janezich

The Week Ahead…

Tuesday, May 29, 2018

ANC6B Executive Committee meets at 7:00pm in Hill Center to set the agenda for the full ANC6B meeting on June 12 in Hill Center.

Comments Off on The Week Ahead….and Photos from the Vietnam Memorial 

Filed under Uncategorized

An attack on one is an attack on all – Help DCist get up and running…

An attack on one is an attack on all – Help Dcist get up and running…

by Larry Janezich

When DCist was shut down last November by its owner Washingtonians lost an important source of community news.  News reports pointed out that the closure happened days after employees voted to unionize.  See WaPo story here:  https://wapo.st/2saROkK

Three public radio stations – including the local station WAMU – are helping to bring it back but they need assistance.  DCist has launched at Kickstarter page to raise $75,000 to get the site up and running.  For more information and to donate, see here: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1685005597/lets-relaunch-dcist-together?ref=498376&token=6142aa5b

 

 

Comments Off on An attack on one is an attack on all – Help DCist get up and running…

Filed under Uncategorized

New Player Says Eastern Market Is in Trouble – Releases Report on How to Save It

Ellen Opper-Weiner, President of Eastern Market Preservation and Development Corporation, releases a report on how to save Eastern Market.

Not everyone agreed the Market needs saving – pictured is Joe Snyder, an artist and street vendor whose business would suffer if one of the report’s recommendations – the opening of 7th Street to traffic on weekends – is implemented.

New Player Says Eastern Market Is in Trouble – Releases Report on How to Save It

By Larry Janezich

Last Tuesday morning, a new non-profit community organization – Eastern Market Preservation and Development Corporation (EMPDC) – held a news conference to release a report it commissioned from an expert in urban markets, listing a series of recommendations (see below) for saving Eastern Market as a food market.  The organization – currently with half a dozen or so members – is headed up by longtime community activist Ellen Opper-Weiner, who said, “The merchants and vendors at Eastern Market are an essential part of the Capitol Hill community.  Their businesses are being run into the ground by a bullying management who threatens retaliation when concerns are raised as opposed to addressing problems brought to its attention.  Eastern Market needs our support.”  A link to the group’s website and petition is here:  http://bit.ly/2s5vOsh

To that end, the group commissioned a study at a cost of $6,000 plus $2,100 in associated expenses, to bring in an outside expert – Aaron Zaretsky, executive director of Public Market Development, Inc., who the report states, has consulted on historic market operations for 40 years.  Zaretsky conducted 20 formal hour-long interviews with Eastern Market principals over four days in March of 2018, as well as “many informal discussions with a variety of tenants, residents and customers”.  Despite several attempts, he said, he was not able to interview current market management.

In related developments, at Wednesday night’s meeting of the Eastern Market Community Advisory Committee (EMCAC) – established by the city to provide oversight and advice on the Market – Chairperson Donna Scheeder announced that $300,000 from the Eastern Market operating funds derived from Market revenues would be transferred to the Deputy Mayor for Planning and Economic Development (DMPED) to fund a long term strategic plan for the Market and its associated Special Use Area comprising the close-by streets and plazas where Market-related activities occur.  She also said that $25,000 would be transferred to the city’s budget to fund a security study anticipating the possible use of bollards to protect the Market and street vendors from vehicles on weekends.

At that meeting, Opper-Weiner told EMCAC about the new Eastern Market Preservation group and said they wanted to work with EMCAC for the benefit of the Market.  EMCAC board member Chuck Burger (who represents Capitol Hill’s micro Chamber of Commerce – CHAMPS – on EMCAC) said he had been interviewed for the report, and agreed with much of it.  “I don’t have a problem with the report”, he said, but was concerned that the public might confuse the new group with EMCAC given the similarity of the two groups’ logos.  He went on to say, “The report is a positive thing and should be put in the pool of ideas. “

The list of Zaretsky’s 29 recommendations – some of them new, some of them familiar, and some of them controversial include the following:

Immediately transfer management of the market to a temporary placeholder.

Contract Market management to a non-profit entity with a 12 member governing board with positions for market representatives, community representatives, and business experts, with designated seats for minority representation.

Open 7th Street and C Street to vehicular traffic seven days a week.

Move the weekend flea markets elsewhere.

Reconfigure the layout of the South Hall food merchants’ stalls and move refrigerated units to the basement to increase retail space.

Provide more special events and target programs for special populations such as ethnic food festivals and senior days with 10% off.

Strictly limit outside market vendors to artists and craft makers who create their own products.

Do not allow people who are not producers to sell at the market and do not allow real farmers to sell products such as oranges that are never locally produced.  Do not allow farmers who were grandfathered in 1997 to pass that right to their relatives.

Relocate the event functions of the North Hall to the Hill Center and fill the North Hall with complementary fresh food production and fresh food uses.

Fine any merchant or employee who parks on the street within two blocks of the Market.  Cancel all current tenant parking spaces in alleys or streets adjacent to the Market.

Efforts should be made to recruit additional African American vendors.

Provide fair, long term leases with Market tenants as soon as new management entity is formed.

Resist the temptation to offer uniformly upscale offerings.  Intentionally appeal to a racially and economically diverse customer mix.

The report states that the South Hall merchants (all but one were interviewed) were highly and universally critical of the current market management.  The report emphasizes that statute requires the city to contract with a nonprofit to manage the Market and that states that the market manager “should have experience operating an historic urban fresh food or farmers’ market”.  Asked for reaction to the report, representatives of South Hall merchants said they had not read the report and were uncertain whether merchants would take a position on the recommendations.

A link to the report with the complete list of issues and recommendations is here:  http://bit.ly/2kl0qS4

 

24 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized

Brick Lane Restaurant to Open on Barracks Row

The former home of Las Placitas on Barracks Row

Brick Lane Restaurant to Open on Barracks Row

By Larry Janezich

Brick Lane restaurant has applied for a liquor license for a new outlet located at 517 8th Street – the space formerly occupied by Las Placitas.  @Eat_DC  first reported the move on Twitter yesterday and a second source confirmed it.

The eatery will be Brick Lane’s second, their restaurant at 1636 17th Street, NW, opened in March of 2016.  The menu of that restaurant features a diverse selection of comfort food.  See their website, here:  http://bit.ly/2x5X1A0

4 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized