I hope you are all staying safe and healthy during this time.
I first want to thank all of you who have contacted me and otherwise been helpful to the neighborhood in this last month. I appreciate all of the calls, ideas, feedback, suggestions, and reports. While the primary role of a Commissioner is to weigh in on cases related to zoning, alcohol licensing, public space, and such, I do enjoy helping neighbors navigate our government, and most the most rewarding part of this role is helping make connections with other neighbors. It has been heartwarming seeing and hearing all the ways you have been pitching in to help out during this crisis. Again, thank you.
The ANC 2B Zoning, Preservation, and Development (ZPD) Committee meets on May 6 at 7:00 p.m. The full ANC 2B will meet on Wednesday, May 13 at 7:00 p.m. Both meetings will be conducted via video conference. To receive agendas directly, sign up here. More on our upcoming meetings below.
With all of the news, ideas, studies, articles, suggestions, email groups, and social media posts out there, the number one consistent source of information locally is coronavirus.dc.gov. As we all are navigating this crisis together, and sometimes have different opinions, and sometimes see inconsistencies with how some are interpreting guidance, I have been working to stick to what is provided at coronavirus.dc.gov.
With the upcoming Primary Election on May 22 through June 2 and Ward 2 Special Election on June 16, all District officials are recommending voting by mail. I received one of the first ballots and have already voted in the Primary Election. While D.C. may not have a significant impact on national politics, our future Ward 2 council member will have a direct, lasting impact on local issues. Read more to request your mail-in ballot here: dcboe.org/Request-Your-Ballot-by-Mail
Believe it or not, only about 52.7% of neighbors in our ward have completed the 2020 Census. This is lower than the national average. The census is incredibly important on making sure we are counted, and the funding we receive from the government is based on census data. If you haven’t completed it yet, visit dccensus2020.dc.gov.
17th St NW and Corcoran St NW
Thank you for your reports, questions, and suggestions involving the encampments on 17th and Corcoran. I have been relaying information and reports to the Department of Human Services, the Office of the Deputy Mayor for Health and Human Services, and the Mayor’s Office either by phone call or email about once a week. I also periodically communicate with our Ward 2 liaison with Council Chair’s office and MPD. I understand that the District and its nonprofit partners are continually and regularly engaged with neighbors experiencing chronic homelessness, and the role I have taken in this is to make sure all relevant government officials and agencies are advised on neighborhood sentiment.
I have heard many ideas, suggestions, plans, stories, and feedback. Overwhelmingly, everyone wants to be safe and everyone wants our neighbors to have shelter and care.
- If you are experiencing or see an emergency, call 911 immediately.
- If you have a concern or report that is not an emergency, call 311 or report through 311.dc.gov.
- If you have a non-emergency report directed specifically to MPD, you can fill out a report online.
- If you want to report an encampment directly, email email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Sidewalk Extension Plan
On April 20, Mayor Bowser announced the extension of sidewalks around essential businesses. A group extended the sidewalk in front of Agora and JR’s Bar, and the Mayor and DDOT are planning on more official ways to make more pedestrian space around businesses. I received a lot of feedback about this initiative, and I worked with Commissioners Downs and Cunningham near 17th and P as well as Commissioner Sampson near 18th and S to provide the Mayor and DDOT with a compendium of all of the requests from neighbors and businesses. The most requested location, which we highlighted, were the blocks with businesses on 17th Street, where people have had more difficulty traveling with sufficient space from others while patronizing our local groceries, pharmacies, and take-out food options.
I look forward to DDOT implementing additional pedestrian space.
Small Business Support
If you’re able and willing, I strongly recommend ordering take-out from our local businesses. In the last week I picked up donuts from Mikko, got dinner from Duke’s, and ordered pizza from Paradiso. One of the reasons we live here is the proximity and walkability to neighborhood establishments. Almost all of them are struggling. Some of them, like Sushi Taro, have already sadly fallen victim to this pandemic. Again, if you’re able to, I strongly recommend supporting our local economy where you can.
Future ANC Meetings
On April 23, 2020, the ANC 2B held its first meeting remotely. As the vast majority of regulatory items have been delayed, there was essentially only one minor agenda item. The meeting in April was effectively a successful test to make sure we can conduct future meetings online through the duration of this crisis. If you’re not signed up to receive ANC 2B agendas, you can subscribe here.
Wednesday’s Zoning, Preservation, and Development Committee meeting, which works with applicants and neighbors in advance of full ANC meetings, meets tomorrow and will discuss these three projects:
- 1416 15th Street NW – Application for a special exception from the maximum lot occupancy requirements to construct a two-story rear addition to an existing attached principal dwelling (BZA #20258) (2B05)
- 2152 Florida Avenue NW – Concept / addition to multi-family building (HPRB #20-317) (2B02)
- 1826 16th Street NW – Concept / two-story addition with roof deck at rear; new windows (HPRB #20-308) (2B09)
The draft agenda for the full ANC 2B meeting next Wednesday will be published likely tomorrow evening.
DC Water Main Replacement Project
DC Water is replacing some water mains to “help improve water quality and system reliability, increase water pressure in some areas, and maintain adequate flows throughout the system.” The areas impacted are in the above map and are expected to start at the 1400 block of T Street NW on Monday, May 11. This includes excavation of the street. If you need more information, I can connect you to DC Water directly.