Near Southeast DC: Past News Items
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Small Retail Bays Getting Prepped on Yards Park Boardwalk, Forest City Looking for Tenants
Feb 1, 2011 11:11 AM
Eagle-eyed Twitterer @kpbrady alerted me yesterday
to doors and windows being installed in the lower level of the overlook at the Yards Park
, in the bays along the boardwalk that were designed to be retail spaces.
I contacted Forest City, and they've told me that they are intending to have "seasonal tenant offerings" in these spots starting (hopefully) this year. There are 4 to 6 of these spaces (depending on how layouts and done), ranging from 366 to 506 square feet, and Forest City is anticipating they would be used for refreshment/light food sales and/or recreational equipment rentals--but they're open to discussing other uses. If you have your heart set on one (for perhaps a banana stand or some other offering), contact Brenda Temple at Forest City at (202) 496-6600.
Eventually the (currently naked) Lumber Storage Shed will be a retail pavilion, and later phases call for two additional retail buildings to be constructed just to the east of the shed (see the renderings
way down at the bottom of my Yards Park page). And there will be ground-floor retail space at the Foundry Lofts
just to the north of the park when that building opens later this year, not to mention 46,000 sq ft of retail space at the Boilermaker Shops
Events News: Chocolate City, Sensorium
Jan 28, 2011 1:10 PM
Two events on the horizon (one near, one far) that might be of interest:
* On February 2 at 8 pm, Arlington Independent Media
is hosting a showing of Chocolate City
, the 2007 documentary by Ellie Walton and Sam Wild about families who were displaced by the redevelopment of Capper/Carrollsburg
. There will be a conversation after the screening with Walton. (It would be interesting to know whether any of the families portrayed in the movie have since come back to the area by moving into any of Capitol Quarter
low-income units, since the movie was filmed and completed before any of the construction at CQ started.) Tickets are $6
, and the movie begins at 8 pm at the Artisphere, 1101 Wilson Blvd., in Arlington. (h/t reader P)
* Coming to the Yards Park
in April is Sensorium
, a "culinary and sensory experience featuring creative atmosphere and cutting-edge production." According to the press release
, this will be a "sophisticated 12-course culinary production" from Executive Chef Bryon Brown, founder of Artisa Kitchen
and the DC Supper Club series. A temporary structure (called a "geodesic dome" by the producers, but described to me by the BID as a tent) will be set up on the eastern side of the park, just south of the Trapeze School's tent, and there will be audio/visual and performance elements woven through the 12-course meal. (Cirque du Soleil meets Top Chef?) Each show will have only 30 tickets available, with two seatings per day (5:30 and 9 pm), running for six weeks beginning on April 12. Tickets are $150, but are discounted to $125 for the first four shows.
Tuesday Tidbits: Harry's, NatsFest, Yards Park, Etc.
Jan 18, 2011 3:04 PM
Some recently Tweeted
items, and a few new ones, worth wrapping up into a quick post:
* Last week I heard from the owners of what will soon be the Harry's Reserve
"upscale" wine and spirits store at New Jersey and I, saying that they hope to be open by February 1.
* This year's NatsFest at the baseball stadium
will be held on March 30
, the day before the Opening Day home game against the Atlanta Braves. The schedule of events is still to come, but hopefully the decision to better tie in the event to the hoopla surrounding the start of the season won't be offset by it being on a Wednesday, when it's harder for kids to be there. (Especially kids who may already be playing hooky the next day!)
* The Yards Park
web site now has information about renting space
for public, private, or community events. And if you wander through the calendar
, you can see what events might be on tap for this year, though the main calendar
shows what's been confirmed, such as the Capitol City Beer Festival on May 28, the previously discussed
DC Music Festival on May 7, the MetroDash obstacle course race
on July 9, and a monthy Art Market.
* Stephen Strasburg, working on his degree while rehabbing
, has written a thesis on the effects new stadiums have on neighborhoods, with a focus on Nationals Park
. If he was looking for information on what the neighborhood looked like "before,"
I hope he found it! (And no, the thesis isn't available anywhere.)
* The National Capital Planning Commission will be looking at the final 11th Street Bridges
site and building plans at their February 3 meeting
. Gosh, I hope they like where the bridges themselves are placed in the designs!
* Off-topic, but the hunt seems to be back on
for a new DC United stadium location, with one of the potential spots being across South Capitol Street at Buzzard Point in Southwest. (Please note that I said Buzzard Point. There is no s on the end. In case you missed 642 tweets about it today.) SWill has some additional information
And, coming on Thursday (I hope), my 2011 State of the Hood roundup of the past 12 months' worth of activity, and what might be on the horizon. (I'm telling you this to force myself to actually get it done.)
Tidbits: Floating Bridge, 11th Street Bridge Closures, Water Taxis, Beer Garden
Jan 4, 2011 11:07 AM
A few small items that might be of interest:
* The National Capital Planning Commission
at its Thursday meeting should be approving
the design of the 611-foot-long floating bridge to connect the Yards Park
with Diamond Teague Park
. The "delegated action" document
says that the bridge will also include an 81-foot-long platform that will be used as a "marine environmental education center" -- the platform is necessary to span three underground pipes at the DC Water pumping station. At the BID annual meeting in December, it was said
that construction on the bridge could begin this spring. (UPDATE
) And construction is expected to take 6-8 months.
* If you drive into downtown DC across the 11th Street Bridges
late at night/early in the morning, be advised that the ramps from northbound I-295 and 13th Street, SE, will be closed
between midnight and 5 am on both Friday, Jan. 7 and Monday, Jan. 10 to allow for work with overhead steel girders. But the South Capitol Street Bridge will be open for your Anacostia crossing pleasure.
* There hasn't been much apparent movement by American Water Taxi
to get started with its planned service between Georgetown, the Southwest Waterfront, and Teague Park
, but an update on their web site within the past few weeks says that "Focus groups and working group meetings to start in January."
* The agenda
for the Jan. 11 ANC 6B meeting includes an item on the "Resolution of the Bavarian Beer Garden [Liquor] License Protest." Does this mean that the ANC and the folks wanting to open the beer garden at 8th and L have gotten the voluntary agreement hashed out, after all the concerns recently expressed
? We shall see.
DC Music Fest Coming to Yards Park on May 7
Jan 3, 2011 9:47 AM
Another DC arts festival is being inaugurated at the Yards Park
-- this time it's the DC Music Fest
, scheduled for May 7, 2011. With plans to "showcase some of the best artists and bands of the Washington, DC and surrounding areas," the event already has a lineup of 12 bands, three singer/songwriters, and 1 DJ on two stages. Other local artists who want to play at the event can submit themselves
at the web site until February 1, and a panel of judges will choose which acts will be added to the lineup.
According to On Tap
, tickets will be $25.
Back in October, the first RiverFrontFest
debuted on the streets just north of the Yards Park, offering a day of local art and music.
2010 Capitol Riverfront Annual Report; Connector Between Teague and Yards Coming in 2011?
Dec 14, 2010 2:27 PM
The Capitol Riverfront BID
just wrapped up its 2010 Annual Meeting, which certainly seemed to be the largest of them so far. The big part of the meeting is the unveiling of the Annual Report
, chock full of statistics and photos. I'm not going to summarize it, mainly because I've been writing all year about most of the news and data contained in it, and also because if you're truly interested in the neighborhood you should read it yourself. :-)
There were two items in Michael Stevens' remarks that I thought were of note, though:
* Apparently an agreement has been worked out with DC Water
(aka WASA) that will allow the "connection" between Diamond Teague Park
(across from Nationals Park
) and the Yards Park
to be built, starting this spring. In the past, a floating bridge has been discussed as how this connection would be completed, but have asked the BID for more info and will post when I know more.
* In discussing the many parks of the neighborhood, Michael Stevens said that they are "hoping" that Canal Park
will be completed in 2011--though, as he said that, the slide being displayed showed 2012 as the expected completion date. Given that the park is supposed to take 12-14 months to build, it would seem to be unlikely that the entire park would be ready before the end of next year, though perhaps some portions of it might be able to be open sooner.
Here's the slides used
by Michael Stevens during his remarks; the information on the connection between Teague and the Yards is on pages 22-24, with a rendering showing a walkway out over the water, looking exactly like an extension of the boardwalk at the Yards. The proposed project is listed as "a partnership among Forest City Washington, DC Water and the Office of the Deputy Mayor for Planning and Economic Development." And, on slide 27, Canal Park is listed with a delivery date of 2012.
Additional Areas of the Yards Park Now Open
Oct 17, 2010 10:17 AM
With thanks to reader Mike for the tip, I can pass along that some additional portions of the Yards Park
are now open: the "River Street Gardens" on the eastern side is now available for your perusal, with its more shaded benches and even some lounge chairs; and, along with it, the boardwalk is completed all the way to the fence at the Navy Yard. (Still no word on when access to the Navy Yard's riverwalk for the general public might happen.) There's still some construction being done north of the Gardens (south of the Trapeze School), but the showiest parts of the 6-acre spread's first phase are now all finished.
If you're pondering whether to make another visit to the park, all I can tell you is--if the weather today is anything like it was on Saturday, you won't be disappointed. My goodness gracious, what a fabulous tableau. So of course I had to take a pile of new photos
--mainly to get shots of the new areas, but also just to take advantage of the bluest clearest sky I've seen in a long time.
The Anacostia Waterfront, Seen from On High
Sep 26, 2010 1:44 PM
With the opening of the Yards Park
, I've needed to get up to the southeast viewing platform at Nationals Park to update my photos of the Anacostia's Near Southeast riverfront
, and thankfully I chose this weekend's sunny Saturday to do it. The before-and-afters seen above of the Yards Park footprint are pretty cool, and I've posted enlarged versions of these shots on my Yards Park
page (scroll down about five photos to see them). The other before-and-afters of the southeast platform views are here
It was just a smidgen over three years ago that I first got to look out at the Anacostia River from this vantage point, on a very memorable day while the stadium was under construction, and it's a spot that I really like returning to. With Diamond Teague Park
and the Yards Park completed, and Potomac Avenue and First Street reconstructed, the view has certainly changed, even if there isn't the overwhelming amount of redevelopment that had been envisioned. (And that includes the still-untouched tracts of land at Poplar Point on the other side of the river.)
So, just for the heck of it, I tossed together a single collage
, looking from USDOT and the Navy Yard all the way around to South Capitol Street and Buzzard Point, capturing nicely what this entire stretch of waterfront looks like in the fall of 2010. It's a view that won't change much until the RiverFront/Florida Rock
concrete plant site starts getting redeveloped (whenever that might be), but it's still a nice image to have.
And if you want to know what the Capital Bikeshare station at First and N across from Nats Park looks like, here you go
Photo Gallery of the Yards Park After Dark
Sep 25, 2010 11:28 AM
It took me a while to get there, but I finally visited the Yards Park
after dark last night, with camera in hand
(but not a tripod, so be forewarned about the quality of some of the shots). I think the biggest surprise was how much of a presence Nationals Park
is, from its lights to the sounds of the crowd cheering (and they had a lot to cheer about last night). I didn't stay around to watch the final ballpark Friday Night Fireworks of 2010 from the Yards, but I have no doubt that it's a great vantage point, and will be there in April 2011 to check it out myself.
Free Tickets to RiverFrontFest for Hood Residents
Sep 21, 2010 1:32 PM
I wrote over the weekend
, a new arts and music festival that will be held on Saturday, Oct. 9, on Fourth and Water streets near the Yards Park
. While tickets are $12 in advance and $15 at the door, the organizers are offering complimentary tickets
for residents of Near Southeast. The tickets are limited to two per resident, and proof of residency with ID must be shown. The tickets can be picked up any time between now and Oct. 9 at either Justin's Cafe or Cornercopia, though both businesses ask that if possible people avoid coming to get tickets during the busy 11 am to 2 pm rush times. Here's the flyer with details on the free tickets
, which you'll probably also see being handed out in the various apartment buildings in the neighborhood over the next few days.
Back from the Midwest; A Few Events This Week
Sep 20, 2010 9:39 AM
I'm back from spending the past week wandering around Ohio (Columbus, Cincinnati, Cleveland) and then spending some time in the Detroit area, where my husband grew up
and where I lived
for a few years as a tyke many years ago. If I was sent back in time 10 years and told to be a city blogger again but that I couldn't do Near Southeast, I would gladly have chosen to document the decay (and perhaps eventual return
) of Detroit, because it's really on a scale that is hard for people to understand unless they've spent a lot of time driving all around the city (and not just on the freeways). It also means I would have spent the past 10 years eating plenty of Detroit Pizza at Buddy's
and having far easier access to a bazillion breakfast options (at the Coneys
and other "family dining" establishments) than we'll ever have in the DC Metro area. Plus there's the cider mills
We also very much enjoyed Columbus, particularly the Short North
and German Village
neighborhoods (and driving through the Ohio State campus in my University of Florida-festooned car--ha ha
!), and my husband also noted the bars and restaurants in the Arena District
and asked if that's what will eventually be coming to Half Street. (I then asked him if he ever reads my blog.) Downtown Cincinnati has some great "old stock" storefronts and signage (which we're always big fans of), but we also enjoyed the Kentucky towns of Covington and Newport
, right across the river from Cincy's two stadiums. It helped that our hotel was three blocks from the massive Covington Oktoberfest celebration
. And yes, we ate chili
. Cleveland was mainly a pilgrimmage to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame
for me, but we did wander around to eat in the Tremont
and Ohio City
neighborhoods, and took a peek at Shaker Heights
(Are you as worn out from our vacation as I am? We do tend to cover a lot of territory.)
I don't think I deprived you of any big news while I was gone, so, instead, we'll look ahead at a few events this week:
* Today begins the Nats' final homestand of the 2010 season, against the Astros, Braves, and Phillies, with the final home game on Wednesday Sept. 29 at 7:05 pm. And note that this Thursday's game (Sept. 23) against the Astros is a 4:35 pm start, and Saturday's game (Sept. 25) against the Braves is at 1:05 pm. Then you can start looking ahead to the 2011 Nationals schedule
, where they get an Opening Day home game on March 31 against the Braves.
* Tomorrow (Tuesday, Sept. 21) is ANC 6B's monthly meeting (delayed a week to avoid coinciding with the election), and the agenda
includes CSX's plans for an archaeological dig at Virginia Avenue Park. The meeting is at 7 pm at the People's Church, 535 8th St., SE.
* Thursday is the Washington Area Bicyclist Association's "Moonlight Ride at Yards Park", which includes an 11-mile ride starting from the Park at 8:30 pm heading west to the Potomac River, and a 6-mile ride starting at 9 pm that will go east over the Anacostia River into Anacostia Park and Historic Anacostia. The rides are free and open to the public, but they ask that you register in advance.
* And, looking ahead a bit, the newly redesigned
" residential/retail/grocery development on the southeast corner of 4th and M in the Yards will be presented to the National Capital Planning Commission on Oct. 7
I guess I should also be mentioning the launch of Capital Bikeshare
today, with two locations in Near Southeast, at New Jersey and M by USDOT, and what the map says is another station at First and N, SE, by Nationals Park
(which I had heard wasn't coming until next spring).
, Pedestrian/Cycling Issues
, CSX/Virginia Ave. Tunnel
, Nationals Park
, Stadium Events
, Virginia Ave Park
, The Yards
, Yards Park
First 'RiverFrontFest' Coming on Oct. 9
Sep 18, 2010 3:35 PM
A new arts and music festival is coming to "space adjacent to the" Yards Park
next month, named RiverFrontFest
(my years of journalism training prevent me from calling it the "First Annual"). On Oct. 9 from 11 am to 7 pm, this event will feature "independent, creative artists and musicians in a fun, vibrant, family friendly setting," which is scheduled to include demonstrations from Trapeze School New York
, a breakdance competition, and three stages of bands. There will also be local food and arts and crafts vendors.
Tickets are $12 in advance and $15 at the "door" (fence?); proceeds raised through the event will benefit local organizations including the Earth Conservation Corps
, Kids Set Sail
, and Living Classrooms
If you're a performer
who would like to participate, or an vendor
/other organization wanting to get involved, or someone wanting to volunteer
at the event, the web site has the details, as well as "Festival Vision" page
that describes a pretty wide-ranging bar that the organizers are trying to reach.
[It's taken a while, but I think i've puzzled out the "space adjacent to the Yards Park" designation--they say they'll be closing down Fourth Street and Water Street (the "Street" that runs between the Lumber Storage Shed and the Foundry Lofts) as well as "using an adjacent large green space," so I'm thinking this is more over by the Trapeze School and on the streets than anywhere on the park footprint.]
The Capitol Riverfront BID is one of the sponsors, but is not running the event, unlike many of the other parks/arts/happening events around the neighborhood over the past few years. (In fact, it's kind of hard to tell who *is* running it.)
Yards Park Opening Weekend Thread: Your Thoughts?
Sep 10, 2010 12:40 PM
The three days of opening festivities
for the Yards Park
are getting underway this afternoon, and so now everyone who wants to check out the nearly six acres of waterfront goodness will get their chance. The weather now looks kind of iffy for Sunday, but today and Saturday were forecasted to be pretty dang nice (except for the clouds that rolled in about an hour ago!), so while there's a ton of activities on tap, be sure to also just take some time to wander the grounds on your own.
And remember that the park isn't done yet--still to come over the next few years will be the renovating of the Lumber Storage Shed into a retail space, along with the construction of two smaller retail pavilions on the grassy lawns just to its east and eventually a marina. The bottom of my Yards Park page
has the details, and you can also learn about the under-construction Foundry Lofts
apartment building just to the north of the park, and the Boilermaker Shops
retail building, which Forest City is now publicly saying
is 60 percent pre-leased.
My husband and I bought our house on the southern edge of Capitol Hill in 1995, and there were many times in those first few years that we'd stand on Third Street, looking south under the freeway through a neighborhood we rarely ventured into
, and talk about how we could see the Anacostia River flowing by. "Wouldn't it be great," we'd say, "if someday we could be able to walk from our house down to the waterfront, and stroll along the river?" (In the early days, such musings would usually be followed by a beat of silence and then peals of cynical laughter.) But a mere 15 years later (heh heh), we'll be doing just that, probably twice, both late this afternoon and again in time for the Nats Park fireworks to see the park at night for the first time.
With that, I leave the rest of the Yards Park-ing up to you guys. What do you think?
[But, as an advance response to anyone commenting on the current size of the dog run at the park, I'll pass along this statement from Forest City: "We certainly want to be sensitive to the needs of our four-legged friends and their human companions in The Yards Park. As Forest City finalizes its negotiations with DC Water and the District Government, we look forward to working with the community to expand the dog park, if the park is able to expand westward in the future."]
Reminders for a Slew of Upcoming Events
Sep 9, 2010 2:17 AM
It's a busy next few days, so here's a reminder of what's on tap. (Of course, you could just look at my Events Calendar
* Today (Thursday) is the "Transportation Day
" events that are part of the Anacostia Waterfront Initiative's 10th anniversary celebration
. Get thee down to 1301 M Street, SE (site of the offices for the 11th Street Bridges
project) for the kick-off at 10 am with DDOT director Gabe Klein, and/or attend the open house until 2 pm, which includes bus tours of current AWI transportation projects (like, say, the 11th Street Bridges
). Circulator buses will be shuttling to and from the Navy Yard Metro station.
If you're wanting to know more about the Anacostia Waterfront Initiative
and what's been accomplished up to this point, here's a spiffy "10 Years of Progress
" booklet with all sorts of details.
* Friday brings the start of the Yards Park
Grand Opening Weekend, starting at 3:30 pm, along with a full slate of events all day Saturday and a few more on Sunday as well--here's the specifics on all the activities
for all three days. (UPDATED
with a new more detailed flyer showing all the events.)
* The Nats are at home
against the Marlins, playing at the usual 7:05 pm Friday and 1:35 pm Sunday times, along with a somewhat rare 1:05 pm Saturday start. It's Fan Appreciation Month, with all sorts of promotions and offerings
* Sunday, Sept. 12 is the Fourth Annual Youth River Sports Day
put on by the Anacostia Community Boathouse, now at their new home just up river from the Sousa Bridge. It runs from 11 am to 3 pm, and is free and open to the public.
* ANC 6D returns from its summer recess on Monday, Sept. 13. The agenda
hasn't been released yet, but rumored items include the grant the BID is applying for to beautify
the New Jersey Avenue "entrance" to the neighborhood, along with what I hear might be a presentation on a possible renaming of the Navy Yard Metro station. While I haven't heard what the new name might be, I imagine that some variant of "Navy Yard / Nationals Park / Capitol Riverfront" will be on the table. Which means that my last chance to convince people to rename the neighborhood Near Capitol Ballpark River Yards
is probably passing by.
Yards Park Before and Afters (and a Moonlight Ride)
Sep 8, 2010 12:47 PM
As promised, I've updated my Yards Park page
to incorporate some before-and-after photos to highlight the transformation of this patch of land from a bunch of nothingness to a waterfront destination. But I'd also suggest looking through my Expanded Yards Park archive
for a more complete set of photos that really show how these five acres have changed since 2005. (And I'll be adding more pairs to the expanded archive this weekend, having missed a few spots in my recent visits.) They really are a pretty striking batch of photos, if I may say so myself....
And, in other Yards Park-related news, the Washington Area Bicyclist Association (with the BID and Forest City) is sponsoring a "Moonlight Ride at Yards Park
" on Sept. 23, which includes an 11-mile ride starting from the Park at 8:30 pm heading west to the Potomac River, and a 6-mile ride starting at 9 pm that will go east over the Anacostia River into Anacostia Park and Historic Anacostia. The rides are free and open to the public, but they ask that you register in advance
so that they know how many people to expect. (There's also discounted tickets available for that afternoon's 4:35 pm game at Nats Park versus the Houston Astros, if you want to watch a game with your fellow cyclists before heading out on the ride.)
Yards Park Ribbon Cutting Ceremony Photos
Sep 7, 2010 2:55 PM
The weather gods smiled on the Southeast Waterfront today, with an absolutely picture-perfect day for inviting scads of dignitaries down to the Yards Park
to make some speeches and cut a ribbon. Here's my quick photo gallery of the event
, with photos not only of politicians wielding scissors but also plenty of shots of the park itself. I will soon update my Yards Park page
with real before-and-afters, but that will take some time.
The 5.5-acre park, a $42 million partnership between the city, the feds (who owned the land until this morning), and the BID (which will be responsible for the upkeep and programming), is very simply like nothing else anywhere in DC. It not only has the pedestrian bridge and the light tower and the water features to gawk at, but it has so many different spaces for strolling, sitting, hanging out, playing, or just staring at the river, with its views all the way down to the Potomac River and further to Alexandria. There were many references during the remarks to Chicago's Millenium Park, and all involved with the creation of the Yards Park clearly see its potential as a "destination" attraction. The BID will be working hard to provide a lot of activities to draw people in, and down the road (if the reality ends up matching the vision), when the Lumber Shed becomes a retail-and-restaurant spot with river views, and the Foundry Lofts
and Boilermaker Shops
just to the north of the park open and become attractions in their own right, this could be quite a jewel in the city's crown.
Add to that the eventual building of a floating boardwalk that will connect the Yards Park to Diamond Teague Park
by the baseball stadium
, making it an easy stroll along the river to go back and forth between the two venues, and you can start to imagine the fans streaming out of the ballpark on Friday nights to watch the post-game fireworks firing off above the Anacostia River from the Great Lawn or the boardwalk. (I'm told that the boardwalk is in the design stages, though there's no timeline for when it might be built.)
As for the area east of the park, I'm hearing that there is "progress" in working with the Navy Yard to open its boardwalk (that leads to the Display Ship Barry and 11th Street), but again, no timeline on that.
There was a lot of media present today (especially since both Mayor Fenty and Vince Gray were in attendance), so I'll update this post with whatever stories appear. UPDATE:
Here's the press release from the mayor's office
. Also there's ABC7's report
, which also is about today's other Anacostia River event, where council members (but not Mayor Fenty) showed up to sign a pledge to work with the Environmental Protection Agency to clean up six designated toxic sites along the Anacostia, which include in Near Southeast the Navy Yard, the Yards/Southeast Federal Center, the Washington Gas site east of 11th (more on that from Fox 5
, including that the Anacostia Riverkeeper
and Anacostia Watershed Society
groups are concerned that monies from the city's tax on plastic bags are so far not being directed toward cleaning up the river).
Also, it sounds like the fences at the park will be closed again for the next few days while they get some finishing touches done (the eastern end of the park is still being worked on), but it will then have its Grand Opening Weekend
starting Friday at 3:30 pm. And then I can get some nighttime photos, because apparently the park's lighting is something to be seen.
(I've also gotten--and forwarded along--some e-mails from residents grousing about what they see as the less-than-adequate size of the dog park on the park's western edge; I've asked Forest City for more information about the current and future plans for the dog park, and will post about it when I hear back.)
Looking Back at the Pre-Yards Park Waterfront
Sep 6, 2010 1:25 PM
Tuesday morning at 10:30 am is the grand opening ceremony for the 5.5-acre Yards Park
along the Anacostia River, and if you're planning on getting down there for Tuesday's event, or for some of the many weekend offerings
, or just for a visit on your own (or if you've already sneaked a peek, like some people
), take a moment to appreciate just what a change has come to this formerly barren spot by checking out the photos I took in August 2005 along Third
streets during a visit to what was at that time still the Southeast Federal Center
You may be so new to the area that you don't even remember the days of the Lumber Shed's salmon-colored tin exterior, or Building 160 before the work started to turn it into the Foundry Lofts
. But what I remember most about that quick visit five years ago (other than how hot and hazy and dusty it was) was thinking about how great it would be to be able to have such a big portion of riverfront available for people to visit and use, instead of having it hidden far behind a red brick wall and lots of cyclone fences. And, even though the site had been tidied up a bit (as shown in the photo below) by the time of the park's groundbreaking ceremony in May 2009
, there's also a few photos in that bunch that you'll appreciate even more after you see what this stretch of waterfront has become
(Don't worry, I'll be putting together a real before-and-after set, but I'm waiting until the park is officially opened, and mostly clear of construction workers and debris, before I create that gallery.)
Anacostia Waterfront Initiative Turns 10, Celebrates with a Series of Riverside Events Next Week
Sep 3, 2010 11:57 AM
The Anacostia Waterfront Initiative
, the wide-ranging approach via city and federal investments to revitalize the Anacostia River and its environs, is celebrating its 10th birthday, with a series of events next week
tied to the riverfront. Some of them you're already aware of, like the dedication ceremony at the Yards Park
on Sept. 7 followed by the "grand opening weekend
" of events Sept. 10-12. But there's also some other happenings, including an "Anacostia Conservation Service Event" at Diamond Teague Park
at 9 am on Sept. 8, a "transportation open house and tour
" at the 11th Street Bridges
project office on Sept. 9 from 10 am to 2 pm, along with other events at Kingman Island, Marvin Gaye Park, and the Southwest Waterfront.
[And, should my feelings be hurt that the postcard advertising the celebration that came to our house was addressed to my husband and not me? What, I haven't demonstrated enough interest in the river? :-) ]
Just received a flyer about the Sept. 9 Transportation Day
--it will start with a kick-off at 10 am with DDOT director Gabe Klein, then the open house until 2 pm, which includes bus tours of AWI transportation projects. Parking is limited at the open house site (over at 13th and M, SE), so they'll be running Circulator buses to there from the New Jersey Avenue Navy Yard Metro station entrance.
Sneak Peek of the Almost-Open Yards Park
Aug 27, 2010 12:23 PM
What a gorgeous morning. A morning perfect for taking photos. Perfect for taking photos along the Anacostia riverfront. At a park
that's less than two weeks from opening. And so here's a gallery of Yards Park photos
, with construction work still very much in evidence but with the site looking in pretty good shape. At more than 5.5 acres, there's a lot of park to photograph, so I left a lot of good shots on the cutting room floor, but hopefully this gallery will give you a good idea of what you'll see when the park has its Grand Opening Weekend
One other piece of news to pass along--I was told today that it's expected that work will begin on the Boilermaker Shops rehab
by the end of this year. As with the Foundry Lofts
(which is getting restarted now), work on that much-anticipated retail space will take a year or so. (If you need a Yards primer, see my project page
Tiny Followups For Yesterday's ANC/Yards Park Posts
Aug 19, 2010 12:10 PM
Guess I should have been lazy (er, lazier than usual) and waited 24 hours on each of my posts yesterday, because there's small tidbits to add on both:
* While the Yards Park "official opening weekend
" is set for Sept. 10-12, invitations have now begun landing in mailboxes for a ribbon cutting/dedication ceremony on Sept. 7.
* There is now at least one challenger to ANC 6D07
incumbent Bob Siegel--according to the DCBOEE
, Capitol Quarter resident Bruce DarConte has filed his paperwork to run. And I'm hearing rumors of at least one more resident planning to jump into the race as well.
In other non-followup news, eagle-eyed readers might notice in my DC permit feeds
an approved public space/excavation permit for its planned 1111 New Jersey office building
site. But don't read too much into it--there's still no announced plans to start construction anytime soon.
Oh, and a PS: The Top Chef DC
episode filmed at Nats Park
back in the spring is coming up next week (Wednesday, Aug. 25, at 10 pm, on Bravo). It appears to be a stadium-food challenge, with the "
cheftestants" cooking and serving in the various food bays along the concourse.
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