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* The need for additional traffic signals and stop signs based on pedestrian and vehicular patterns (and recent accidents);* Neighborhood traffic circulation patterns including one way street circulation and freeway access and turning movements onto the freeway frontage roads;* How the CSX tunnel reconstruction will impact traffic flow and SE/SW freeway access/egress;* Existing and future parking demand and the proposed parking supply to meet that demand;* On street parking strategies and supply for commercial, residential and visitor populations;* Optimum Circulator routes and hours of operation;* Recommended routes for bike lanes that tie into the Riverfront Trail system;* The optimum route for a streetcar line in the M Street right of way and how it would service the Buzzard Point subdistrict; and* How M Street is designed and works as a multi-modal transit corridor while exhibiting a high quality of design in the public realm.Gosh, I'm just not sure if residents will be interested in any of these! If perchance a reader or two might have an idea or data point for the above items, feel free to discuss in the comments.Note that this study doesn't quite seem to match the overarching Near Southeast/Southwest combined traffic study that got some discussion late last year, but perhaps there's more going on than what's mentioned in the DDOT report.DDOT is also proposing that non-gameday parking rates at the multispace meters between South Capitol and 2nd Streets from the freeway to M Street go up to $6 for three hours (first hour $1.50, second hour $2.50, third hour $3). Plus, the boundaries of the parking zone will move eastward to 11th St. SE from 9th St.By the way, if you have a fab idea for how some of the proceeds from the parking revenue can be spent on the aforementioned non-automotive transportation improvements, you can submit a written proposal to DDOT (further information on page 26 of the report). And if you want background on how the Performance Parking Pilot came into existence back in 2008, my Stadium Parking page can help with that.
Vote for Summer Movies, and Yards Park Events Gearing UpMar 7, 2011 2:55 PMWith "Academy Award Movies" having been the winning theme for the Capitol Riverfront BID's 2011 summer outdoor movie series, the BID is now asking people to vote on which Academy Award movies should be screened. The series starts on May 26, and will once again be on Tingey Plaza, at New Jersey and Tingey just behind the USDOT building. (Last year's screening location, the Canal Park footprint, will be unavailable this summer because the locusts have arrived, dogs and cats are sleeping together, and it appears that construction is about to get underway.)While the movie series isn't being held at the Yards Park (just a smidge to the north of it) the BID is working on an ever-growing list of events that will keep the park hopping through the year:* Kicking off the slate, there will be a Family Fun Day on April 2 from 11 am to 4 pm, in conjunction with the National Cherry Blossom Festival. According to the press release, activities at the free event will include sake tasting and a Japanese beer garden by Mie N Yu, lantern making, sushi from Nooshi Sushi, a moonbounce, and more. (Then everyone can take a leisurely walk down M Street to the Southwest Waterfront for the Fireworks Festival, which actually starts at 1 pm and runs until the fireworks kick off at 8:30 pm.) This is also the day of the first Saturday home game of the year at Nationals Park, just two blocks to the west, starting at 1:05 pm against the Braves.* Sensorium, the "culinary and sensory experience" announced a while back, starts its multi-week run on April 12.
* The previously mentioned DC Music Fest on May 7 has now announced its lineup.* While the summer movies will be on Thursday nights, the park will also host a free summer concert series on Friday nights from 6 to 8 pm, kicking off on May 13 and running through August 19. This will be in addition the the lunchtime concert series that the BID has run for the past three years, and is expected to feature music ranging from jazz and blues to rock and reggae. (If you're a food provider and you want to serve at the concerts, here's the RFP.)* July 9 will see MetroDash, the "country's premier obstacle race series," which includes obstacles such as tire flips, rope swings, 15-foot cargo net climbs, wall jumps, monkey bars, the "strongman shuffle." You can sign up here (if you dare), though the web site doesn't seem to be responding right now.There are also plenty of private events already on the park's calendar, so if you were thinking about throwing your own shindig there, you won't be alone.UPDATE, 3/20: According to their web site, the May 7 DC Music Fest has been cancelled, "due to lack of funding and sponsorships."
BID Summer Movie Survey; 225 Virginia Kick-OffFeb 13, 2011 11:22 PMTwo very small items to start off the week:* The BID has posted a survey to find out which movies people are interested in seeing during the summer's Outdoor Movie Series, scheduled for Thursday nights beginning May 26. (The movies have moved back to Tingey Plaza behind USDOT, since Canal Park will presumably be under construction.) They're offering two themes to choose between: Summer Vacation Movies and Academy Award Winners.* StonebridgeCarras has e-mailed invitations to VIPs (a list that doesn't include moi) announcing a "ceremony to celebrate the official beginning of the redevelopment" of the former Post Plant, aka 225 Virginia Avenue, aka 200 I St., SE. It's scheduled for Tuesday, Feb. 15, at 10:30 am at the corner of 3rd and Virginia, with Mayor Gray and other luminaries expected to be in attendance. Will the Bobcats now parked on site then start punching out the walls from the inside, as was the case when the old Capper Seniors building was demolished? Of course, in the case of the Post Plant, they're only "de-skinning" it, not bringing down the entire building. You can see a rendering of the new building on my project page.
'Water Pylons' Coming to New Jersey Ave. UnderpassJan 10, 2011 3:22 PMIn its latest newsletter, the Capitol Riverfront BID reports that it has received a 2011 Public Art Building Community Grant to spruce up the underpass where New Jersey Avenue crosses under the Southeast Freeway. The installation is called "Water Pylons," and will "transform the underpass into a modern representation of water that announces New Jersey Avenue as a gateway to the Capitol Riverfront community."The 18 freeway support columns will be painted with reflective paint in various shades of blue, and four LED lights will help to illuminate both the art and the underpass. The BID says that the "painted blue pylons will reference the neighborhood's waterfront in an abstract theme that is distinct and surprising, but not distracting to motorists or pedestrians."There will be public meetings on the project this spring, with installation expected to be finished by September.
Residents Day at Holiday Market SaturdayDec 16, 2010 11:07 AMThe BID wants to remind neighbors that Saturday is Residents Day at the Holiday Market at 1100 New Jersey Avenue. It will run from 10 am to 3 pm, and in addition to the lineup of craft exhibitors, Christmas greens, and live music at lunch time, there will also be empanadas, free coffee and pastries from Starbucks, free doggie treats from Metro Mutts, the Eat Wonky and Dangerously Delicious Pie trucks and.... The Red Hook Lobster truck at lunchtime. (The footsteps you hear are my husband's, as he races to be first in line.)
2010 Capitol Riverfront Annual Report; Connector Between Teague and Yards Coming in 2011?Dec 14, 2010 2:27 PMThe 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.UPDATE: 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.
Upcoming Calendar of Events (Through Dec. 17)Dec 6, 2010 10:46 AMThis is a painful post for me to write. (No, seriously--I hurt my left thumb last week, and typing doesn't help.) But I will power through to bring you news of upcoming events, all while wondering why Decembers are always so busy with public meetings--because it's not like we don't we have enough to do already....ADD: Oops. Tonight (Dec. 6) is the 4th Annual Livable Walkable Community Awards, at Arena Stage at 6:30 pm.* Tuesday (Dec. 7) is the second Marine Barracks site search public forum, in Eastern Market's North Hall. I can't find the agenda for it, but the CIMP web site describes it thusly: "Session 2 will begin with at 5:00 pm with an open house where information will be provided in displays, and subject matter experts will be present to discuss various aspects of the CIMP with a facilitated discussion to authenticate community development objectives to begin at 7:00 PM." You can see the draft community objectives handed out at last week's meeting, and read my summary of that session, as well as the scads of posts through the past year of this process.* Wednesday (Dec. 8) is the neighborhood meeting with DC Public Schools interim chancellor Kaya Henderson on the movement to reopen Van Ness Elementary at 5th and M, SE. The meeting is at 6 pm (note the time change) at the Courtyard by Marriott at New Jersey and L, and while no decision on reopening the school will be announced, DCPS will be talking about the preliminary findings from the survey they did this fall about whether there would be enough students to justify reopening the school. Read my previous posts for details.* On Thursday (Dec. 9) the ANC 6B ABC Committee will meet at 7 pm at the Southeast Neighborhood Library at 403 7th St., SE, and it will be taking up the new liquor license application for the Bavarian Beer Garden at 8th and L, SE. It's looking to be a 99-seat tavern, with an additional 200 outdoor seats in summer, and would operate from 11 am to 2 am Sunday through Thursday and 11 am to 3 am on Fridays and Saturdays. There's also apparently the possibility of live entertainment. The application will also be taken up by the full ANC at its regular meeting on Dec. 14 at 7 pm at 535 8th St., SE.* Monday (Dec. 13) is ANC 6D's monthly meeting--the agenda should be out later this week.* Tuesday, Dec. 14 is the BID's Annual Meeting, at 11:30 am at 100 M St., SE. There will be a keynote address by George Hawkins, general manager of DC Water, plus the BID will release its 2010 Annual Report and State of the Capitol Riverfront.* The BID also launches its Holiday Market on the 14th, running daily through the 18th on the sidewalk outside of 1100 New Jersey Ave., SE, across from the Navy Yard Metro station. "Shop the market for wool sweaters and mittens, homemade soaps, jewelry, antique maps, wreaths and holiday greenery, paintings, and much more!" See the flyer for more details, or the latest BID newsletter.* Also on the 14th is the aforementioned ANC 6B monthly meeting, which includes a report by Michael Stevens of the BID on the Lower 8th Street Visioning Process report that's being submitted to the Office of Planning. (This will also be presented to the ANC's Planning and Zoning Committee on Dec. 7 at 7 pm at 535 8th St., SE.)
Kaplan Looking for Law School Space in Near SoutheastNov 29, 2010 12:26 AMFrom Monday's WaPo Capital Business: "Real estate developers and brokers in Southeast Washington say that Kaplan has been looking for office space suitable for the opening of a law school near the Washington Nationals' baseball stadium."Speaking on condition of anonymity because they are not authorized by Kaplan to discuss the company's plans, the sources say Kaplan hired the real estate brokerage firm Jones Lang LaSalle and has been seeking up to 130,000 square feet in the Capitol Riverfront Business Improvement District, around the Nationals' park, so it can open a law school there in 2013."There's not much additional meat in the story, other than saying that Akridge (which owns the Half Street block northwest of the ballpark) is one of the developers vying for Kaplan's attentions. There's certainly a number of planned office buildings that could accommodate 130,000 square feet, and maybe the credit markets have shaken out enough that a lease taking 50 percent-ish of a building would be enough to get a construction loan. But there's also the issue of whether some proposed federal aid rules might hamper Kaplan's plans for expansion. [Full disclosure: Kaplan is owned by the Washington Post Co., my corporate overlords in my non-JDLand real life.]We shall see....
A Few Pre-Turkey Day Bullet PointsNov 23, 2010 1:48 PMI imagine it'll be pretty quiet around these parts for the rest of the week. So here's a few recently Tweeted items -- and one new one -- to make it look like I haven't completely given up blogging:* It appears that the owner(s) of multiple lots along the 700 block of L Street (the brown apartment buildings plus the corner lot where the beer garden is headed) has sold half-interest in those properties to "Calle Ocho, LLC" (8th Street, get it?). But note that the empty lot that comes through from the Miles Glass property on the north end of the block and splits these four lots (0013, 0014, 0824, and 0825) is not (as of now?) part of this block of properties.* EYA and the DC Housing Authority were awarded last week a Jack Kemp Workforce Housing Model of Excellence Award for the first phase of Capitol Quarter. (I just wish that the ULI folks who put out the press release hadn't said that the neighborhood is "The Yards.") The Jack Kemp awards are given to "workforce housing developments that represent outstanding achievements in several areas, including innovative financing, unique construction methodologies, strong public/private partnerships, and replicability to achieve workforce housing affordability."* Speaking of Capitol Quarter, if you scroll down my homepage to the Building Permits feed, you'll see that the first permits have been approved for Capitol Quarter Phase II houses, for lots on 3rd, I and K.* The Capitol Riverfront BID's Holiday Market is back for another year, running from Dec. 14-18 on the sidewalk outside of 1100 New Jersey Avenue. "Shop the market for wool sweaters and mittens, homemade soaps, jewelry, antique maps, wreaths and holiday greenery, paintings, and much more!" See the flyer for more details.* You can check out the BID's latest newsletter for more tidbits, including that work on 225 Virginia/200 I is scheduled to start next month, with occupancy expected in mid-2012. (Just in time to have a big old railroad trench dug in their backyard!) UPDATE: Yes, yes, there's already been a hole punched in the east side of the building, as people have been telling me for a more than week now. I wouldn't quite call that start of construction if nothing much has happened since....* And, not a news item per se, but some pondering: as part of the need to close what is expected to be a nearly $500 million budget shortfall, Mayor-Almost Vince Gray announced on Monday a freeze on all capital projects that are not yet underway, while a "blue-ribbon panel of experts" reviews which are necessary. There's no specifics on the list of frozen projects reported yet, but I am wondering if Canal Park, which is getting $13.5 million of its $20 million price tag from the Office of the Deputy Mayor of Economic Development, might be on this list. We shall see....Enjoy your holidays, everyone!
BID Statement on Dangerous Neighborhood RankingOct 6, 2010 4:44 PMJust passed my way from the Capitol Riverfront BID, a statement taking strong exception to the WalletPop/NeighborhoodScout.com ranking of "L Street, SE" as the 9th Most Dangerous Neighborhood in the US.[Note: If you want to peruse the crime statistics for the neighborhood from 2005 to today, here they are, viewable by year, crime/type, etc. The information comes directly from the city's data feed for crime.]"In direct contradiction to recent media reports, the popular Capitol Riverfront neighborhood around L Street, SE hosts one of the safest streets in the nation's capital, according to the Capitol Riverfront Business Improvement District (BID)."'The Capitol Riverfront is a safe and welcoming neighborhood,' said Michael Stevens, executive director of the Capitol Riverfront BID. 'The Capitol Riverfront BID District takes crime very seriously and will not allow fictitious reporting about crime rates in our neighborhood to go unchallenged.'"On October 4th, the Website walletpop.com posted a ranking of the 25 most dangerous neighborhoods in America based on data credited to another site, neighborhoodscout.com. The ranking listed the L Street SE neighborhood, a significant portion of the Capitol Riverfront BID, as the ninth most dangerous neighborhood in America, a fact the BID vigorously refutes."'We demand that walletpop.com and Dr. Andrew Schiller of neighborhoodscout.com remove L Street SE from their ranking and correct this inaccurate and fictitious data,' said Stevens."According to the Metropolitan Police Department 2009 statistics for the L Street SE corridor, there have been zero homicides in the area since 2004, and the violent crime rate was 8.98 crimes per 1,000 people, in sharp contrast to the overinflated and erroneous violent crime rate of 111.34 per 1,000 reported by neighborhoodscout.com and walletpop.com. The scant rate of 8.98 of violent crimes per 1,000 along the L Street SE Corridor, is below even Walletpop.com's overall DC average of 14.59 violent crimes per 1,000 residents. Even as far back as 2007, the L Street Corridor SE saw only 45 violent crimes."'NeighborhoodScout.com's disclaimer that "Although we work hard to provide premium quality information, the content contained in any NeighborhoodScout Report is a work of art" is not a justification for inaccurate data, erroneous conclusions, and the posting of unsubstantiated rankings and misinformation about a safe neighborhood to the public,' said Stevens."Comments (10)More posts: Capitol Riverfront BID
Free Tickets to RiverFrontFest for Hood ResidentsSep 21, 2010 1:32 PMI wrote over the weekend about RiverFrontFest, 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.
WalkingTown DC 'Hood Tours Sunday MorningSep 21, 2010 11:25 AMMissed this in yesterday's post on this week's events: WalkingTown DC is this weekend, and among the many (many!) walking and biking tours is once again a Capitol Riverfront BID-branded tour, "Capitol Riverfront: From Navy Yard to Front Yard", on Sunday (Sept. 26) from 10 am to 11 am. The tour, lead by BID executive director Michael Stevens, meets at the New Jersey Avenue entrance to the Navy Yard Metro station.If you're in really (really!) good shape, you can then zip from this tour to the Stadium-Armory Metro station for a Ward 6 biking tour led by Tommy Wells, "Ward 6 Past Meets the Future Bike Tour." It's a 6.5-mile ride from 11 am to 12:30 pm that will start at Kingman Island and hit Eastern Market and Barracks Row before hitting the parks of Near Southeast (Canal, Yards, Teague, and Nationals) and then continuing on into Southwest.
Tidbits: Spiffying Up the NJ Avenue Underpass; CSX Archaelogy Digging; More Near SE HistorySep 7, 2010 9:09 AMA few things to pass along as we kiss summer goodbye (yes, I know it technically doesn't end for another few weeks, blah blah blah):* The Capitol Riverfront BID is applying for a DC Public Art Building Communities grant to get funding to "improve the look, feel and experience of traveling into and out of the Capitol Riverfront along New Jersey Ave., SE, while also creating unique gateway art that represents the identity, sense of place and community in the Capitol Riverfront neighborhood." They will be presenting their concepts at the Sept. 13 ANC 6D meeting, with applications being due on Oct. 13. If the project is selected to receive a grant, there would be public meetings sometime next year to "refine" the concepts, with hopes to complete the project by fall 2011. Though I can't imagine why anyone would want to beautify THIS!* I'm not seeing this on the posted agenda yet, but a reader reports to me that CSX will be making presentations to ANC 6B's Planning and Zoning Committee tonight (Sept. 7) and the full ANC on Sept. 21 about a permit the freight company is apparently requesting to conduct an archaeological survey of Virginia Avenue Park prior to their planned expansion of the tunnel that runs under the park.* Tonight you might see some folks with clipboards hanging around the Navy Yard Metro station entrances; they will be part of the Public Transportation Takes Us There petition drive by the American Public Transportation Association, trying to convince Congress to pass a long-term surface transportation funding bill. For the point of view of someone who has signed the petition, read this recent Richard Layman post. (I am wondering, and have no answer, whether this is the bill that CSX has been looking toward [along with other public money options] for funding the rest of the National Gateway project, which includes the expansion of the Virginia Avenue Tunnel.)* You may have seen commenter MJM referencing recently his newfound obsession with the history of Near Southeast, and now he's put up a blog where you can share in the fruits of his research.
More Info on Yards Park Opening Weekend FestivitiesAug 18, 2010 2:35 PMThe Capitol Riverfront BID is gearing up for its job as maintainer, programmer, and promoter of the soon-to-open Yards Park by sending out this flyer with details on the festivities planned for the park's opening weekend, planned for Sept. 10-12.Live music, food tasting, and a "beer garden" will be available all three days, along with special activities such as an art show by the Art Whino gallery, fitness classes, a Trapeze School demonstration, contests at the dog run, and a fireworks show on Saturday (in addition to being a new spot to watch the Nationals' postgame fireworks on Friday).The events, which are free and open to the public, run from 3:30 to 11 pm on Friday, Sept. 10, 9 am to 10 pm on the 11th, and 10 am to 1 pm on the 12th.
Summer Doldrums Bullet List (Light Tower, Traffic, Hula Hoops, Signage, BID Survey, DC Blogs)Aug 13, 2010 12:37 PMHasn't been much swirling around lately worthy of a full blog post, but here are a couple items so that people don't think I've shut down (though most of them have already been seen on my Twitter feed, aka the "I'm Too Lazy to Blog" feed):* The light tower at the Yards Park is being installed today, about four weeks in advance of the scheduled grand opening on Sept. 10. I hope to have pictures at some point.* Greater Greater Washington reports that MPD fanned out around Nationals Park on Wednesday night, ticketing drivers and pedestrians and handing out flyers on safety. GGW also brings up the public meeting held by Tommy Wells back in March about the notion of reworking M Street under the "Complete Streets" principles of creating road networks that work for pedestrians young and old, cyclists, public transportation users, and drivers. by doing things such as adding dedicated bike lanes, creating safer crosswalks, etc. At that meeting, residents of Southwest were unimpressed with the possibilities, but the few Southeast residents in attendance seemed more open to it.UPDATE: TBD reports that the truck driver in last week's incident is not being cited.* The Post did a video feature on Hoopernatural, the hula hooping fitness outfit. They are running classes for mixed-levels of hoopiness during August at Canal Park, on Saturday mornings from 10 to 11 am.* The Capitol Riverfront BID is running a survey to get feedback from residents, workers, and visitors on the types of events the BID holds (concerts, outdoor movies, farmers' market, etc.). Let your feelings be known here.* While my griping about the bad signage on the SW Freeway (highlighted again by the Post on Thursday) is technically out-of-boundaries, it is on topic to also mention to DDOT that the various blue "services" signs for the South Capitol Street exits on I-395 probably need to get rid of the gas station icons, since the days of having three gas stations right on South Capitol and two within a few blocks to the east are long gone. (But @DDOTDC has put me in a time out after Thursday's flurry of transit-related tweets, which also included this good suggestion from a reader about the need for a left-turn signal on northbound Third Street, SE at Virginia Avenue, for people needing to get onto I-395 southbound.)* And I stumbled across this study by the New America Foundation about "online-only" news outlets in DC. It counted 61 of them, noting that the "city's oldest local blogs that still command an audience began to spring up in 2003," with JDLand being one of the "original few," thanks to my January 2003 vintage. The piece looks at DCist, GGW, Prince of Petworth, And Now Anacostia, and TBD (though it hadn't yet launched), along with a few nice words about this site. But I have been thinking a lot lately about how I'm an old lady compared to the rest of the DC neighborhood blogosphere, and this article (coming on the heels of my [redacted] birthday) certainly reminded me of it. :-)
Upcoming Events: Seabiscuit, Dave Matthews, SoSJul 22, 2010 2:33 AMFor your scheduling pleasure:* Thursday's BID outdoor movie is Seabiscuit, the heartwarming tale of a horse swimming across the ocean for food (no, wait, that's not right). It starts at Canal Park at Second and M streets, SE, at 8:45 pm, but you can arrive early for some hula hooping with Hoop Jams at 8 pm. Rain cancellations will be posted on the BID web site by 4 pm.* On Friday night (July 23) the Dave Matthews Band will be in concert at 7 pm at Nationals Park, with the Zac Brown Band opening. Tickets are still available, and the concert will go on rain or shine. (If you're heading to the ballpark for the concert and are unfamiliar with the territory, here's my Stadium Parking information page. But make it easy on yourself just take Metro.) Speaking of the stadium parking page, I've now added the new (tiny) $10 lot on the northwest corner of New Jersey and I.* The rest of the weekend will be quiet (and hot), but then on Tuesday the 27th the Summer of Strasburg will return to the neighborhood, as Stephen is expected to pitch against the Atlanta Braves in a 7:05 pm game.
Neighborhood Heritage Trail Creation MeetingJun 19, 2010 2:37 PMVia the BID's latest newsletter: "Share your stories of the historic Southeast DC neighborhood as we embark on the creation of a new Neighborhood Heritage Trail in the Capitol Riverfront. Cultural Tourism DC, in partnership with the Capitol Riverfront BID, is holding two community meetings for the public to share stories, bring photos and help shape the community's heritage trail. The first meeting will be on Wednesday, June 23rd at 7 PM at Arthur Capper Senior I, 900 Fifth Street, SE." See the flyer for more information.(This is also a good time to mention that there won't be a Sunday Rearview Mirror this weekend--I have a good one on tap for next week, though.)
Upcoming Events: Shrek, SoS Continues, MoreJun 16, 2010 8:59 PMHighlighting doings of interest over the next few days in convenient bullet form:* Thursday is BID day, with three separate activities, starting with the Capitol Riverfront Farmers Market at New Jersey and M (up behind the fences) from 3 to 7 pm. Then there's the "Front Run Club," a new gathering for runners of all fitness levels that meets every Thursday night at 6 pm at Second and M. And of course it's movie night, as the Ultimate Underdog Movie Series continues with Shrek, with festivities starting at Second and M at 7:30 pm and the movie itself beginning around 8:45 pm. There will also be a hula hooping "Hoops Jam" before the movie.* The Summer of Strasburg (SoS) continues with the phenom's second home start, on Friday night against the White Sox. Game time is 7:05 pm, with the gates at Nationals Park opening at 4:30 pm, and the swarms of sudden baseball fans descending on the neighborhood soon after. Be prepared for big crowds on Metro, roads, sidewalks, bike lanes, etc.* Also at Nationals Park this weekend is "Nats U," which is being held on Saturday and offers women ages 15 and up "the opportunity to learn the ins and outs of America's favorite pastime from the experts at the Washington Nationals." For $50, female fans can sign up for either beginner or advanced sessions, and also receive tickets to Saturday's 4:10 pm game against the White Sox.* There's also a series of additional events and promotions at the ballpark tied into Father's Day (you DID remember that Sunday is Father's Day, right?), which you can read about here.
Tidbits: Five Guys; Gump; 295 Lane Closures; SoSJun 10, 2010 1:12 PM* There's been discussion on Twitter about this, but I guess it needs to be elevated to the blog--last week a sign went up at Five Guys on Second Street saying that it would be closed for maintenance from June 4 - 14. It certainly looks like they're doing work in there, and I doubt that if it were closing for good they would have given a timeframe, but I know people are nervous, given the dearth of other choices. I don't know any additional details, so feel free to post in the comments if you have any scuttlebutt to add.* The BID's summer outdoor movie season continues tonight (Thursday) with Forrest Gump. Festivities start at Second and M streets, SE, at 7:30 pm, though the movie itself doesn't begin until after sundown.
(I'm already making plans for the July 8 showing of Star Wars--if anyone wants to hang out with me, I can regale you young whippersnappers with tales of seeing it at the Uptown in the summer of 1977, and how my mother almost made us leave because she couldn't quite get hip to robots walking around in sand dunes.)Aak! They've taken it off the list, and replaced it with Legally Blonde! Waah!* From DDOT, a notice about some lane closures this weekend on DC-295, which are technically outside my iron-clad boundaries but which do have to do with the 11th Street Bridges project: "From 9 pm on Friday, June 11 into the evening of Sunday, June 13, DDOT contractors will close one travel lane in each direction of DC 295 between the 11th Street Bridge and Pennsylvania Avenue. The work is part of the 11th Street Bridge Project. In addition, there will be single lane closures Saturday on both the northbound and southbound sides of Kenilworth Avenue (DC 295) at Eastern Avenue. This work if related to the replacement of the Eastern Avenue Bridge." They warn that there could be backups of two miles or more.* I didn't really blog about Wednesday's phenomenal debut of Stephen Strasburg (though I was at the game and Tweeted here and there) because I figured that there might be one or two other outlets where you could get the latest. But it will be interesting to watch the impact on the neighborhood if he continues to pitch like an alien being--will all of his games bring huge crowds? Will attendance start to lift at games when he isn't playing? Will game-day traffic and transit issues that haven't really been at the forefront become a sore point if more people come to games more often? And will restaurants and bars (and retailers and office tenants and residents) start thinking a little more about being near the ballpark? The Summer of Strasburg (SoS) could get quite interesting....QUICK ADD: From the Nats: "The Washington Nationals will host their annual blood drive, in partnership with Inova Blood Donor Services, this Saturday, June 12 in the Nationals Park Conference Center from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. In addition to helping save a life, blood donors will receive two tickets to a future Nationals game, a limited edition Build-A-Bear Workshop bloodhound and the opportunity to take an exclusive behind-the-scenes tour of Nationals Park." There will be a second drive on Aug. 28, from 8 am to 2 pm.
WPArade! An Art Parade on SaturdayJun 3, 2010 9:00 PMA reminder that on Saturday (June 5) is "WPArade! An Art Parade in the Capitol Riverfront" (their exclamation point, not mine), presented by the Washington Project for the Arts. It's described as "an extravaganza of artists connecting with community to create a moving visual spectacle of art and culture" with "[a]rtists, performers, musicians, and visual arts organizations will come together in Washington's first Art Parade to display moving art, floats, placards, portable sculpture and street performance along Half Street SE." It starts at Half and M at noon, with a midblock stop for performances before culminating in a party alllllllllll the way down at the Bullpen at N Street, running until 3 pm. All portions are free and open to the public; see a list of the artists here.
Summer with the BID: Movies and MusicMay 14, 2010 11:06 AMThe BID has released its Summer Outdoor Movie lineup, with the theme for this year being "Ultimate Underdogs." It kicks off June 3 with Hoosiers, then runs most Thursdays through August 5, with Forrest Gump, Finding Nemo, The Karate Kid, To Kill a Mockingbird, Star Wars (I'm so there), Slumdog Millionaire, Cool Runnings, Happy Gilmore, and Rocky. They'll be held on the Canal Park site at Second and M, with the movies starting at 8:45 pm but with activities (including big-screen Wii beforehand). The Sauca food truck will be in attendance, and the weekly Farmers Market at New Jersey and M will also be open to buy goodies.
Upcoming Events (ANCs and Business Summit)May 9, 2010 9:00 PMOn your agenda for the near future, should you choose to accept the mission:* ANC 6D (Southwest and most of Near Southeast) meets Monday night at 7 pm at St. Augustine's Church at Sixth and M streets, SW. (When are they moving to their new meeting space, dangit?) The agenda is posted--no big Near Southeast items, except for perhaps an update from the Nationals, a brief update on Traffic/Parking issues from a member of Tommy Wells's staff, and request for support for a liquor license for the new Patriot II river cruise ship operating out of Diamond Teague Park. One other item that might be of interest is an update on the 14th Street Bridge Environmental Impact Statement, which has been quiet for a while.* ANC 6B (south side of Capitol Hill and Near Southeast south of the freeway east of Seventh [excluding the Navy Yard]) meets the next night, Tuesday, at 7 pm at its new meeting place, the People's Church at 535 Eighth Street, SE. Here's the agenda, which is chock full of liquor license renewals and home remodeling projects.* Looking ahead a bit to next week, a reminder that the Anacostia River Business Summit is being held on Tuesday, May 18, starting at 1:30 pm at 20 M St., SE. Admission is $30 per person; the agenda includes a presentation on the Anacostia River Watershed Restoration Plan and panels on "Federal and District Leadership Efforts" and "The Business Impact." There will also be an exhibit hall and a networking reception after the sessions. More info here, and online registration available here.
Upcoming Events (Market, Leukemia Fundraising)May 5, 2010 7:30 AMFor your calendars:* Thursday (May 6) is the first Capitol Riverfront Farmers Market of 2010, running from 3 pm to 7 pm through November on the northwest corner of New Jersey and M, adjacent to the Navy Yard Metro station entrance. More than 10 local farmers and vendors will sell produce, baked goods, prepared foods, and more. The first 50 customers to attend the farmers market on Thursday will be given a $5 off coupon for any purchase at the market.* Alas, I missed the kickoff of the USDOT farmers' market, which started today (oops) and will be held every Tuesday from 10 am to 2 pm on the pedestrian plaza between the two buildings, at Third and M.And, here are two events that I'm passing along on behalf of Lisa Pagano, the Nationals' manager of communications, who has been very good to JDLand over the years. She is running for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society Woman of the Year award, and is trying to raise $75,000 by June 12 (more info here and here), with two fundraising events being held in Near Southeast over the next week or so:* A Cornhole Tournament is being held at the Bullpen on Wednesday, May 12, with the party starting at 6 pm and the tournament itself at 7 pm. There will be live music and raffle items in addition to the tournament. Admission is $5 for the event and $20 for teams of two entering the tournament (with one free beer per player!). More info can be found on Facebook.* Buy a $22 Scoreboard Pavilion seat for the May 20 Nats vs. Mets game, and $8 of the ticket price will go directly to the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. For more information, and to purchase tickets online, visit nationals.com/mwoy.
Big Pile of Upcoming BID-Sponsored EventsApr 28, 2010 2:34 PMIt's almost May, when a business improvement district's thoughts turn to.... programmed events! And the Capitol Riverfront BID is not disappointing. Here's what's coming over the next couple of weeks:* The weekly farmer's market, now dubbed the Capitol Riverfront Market, is returning for another run, starting May 6 and running through Nov. 18. This year it'll be set up on the plaza on top of the Navy Yard Metro station at New Jersey and M, each Thursday from 3 pm to 7 pm, and will feature fresh produce, "specialty products," and locally prepared foods. Here's the flyer.* Fitness in the Front is coming this Saturday, May 1, at Second and M from 9 am to noon. Classes are free, with no sign-up ahead of time, and feature boot camp, kickboxing, yoga, pilates, "Hoopnotica," and Zumba dance. There will also be information tables for Results the Gym and other groups. More details here. Along the same outdoor activity vein, the DC Pickup Frisbee League will be playing at Canal Park Tuesdays at 6 pm, and the resident-organized Front Run Club will be starting up again on May 6, meeting at 6 pm also at Canal Park.* In a slightly more serious vein, the BID is organizing, along with the Anacostia Watershed Restoration Partnership, an Anacostia River Business Summit on May 18, "to launch a historic effort to restore the river and its watershed." Here's the flyer with more information; registration is $30. You can also visit the restoration partnership web site for more background, including the newly released Anacostia River Watershed Restoration Plan.Here's the link to the BID newsletter from whence this information came.Comments (2)More posts: Capitol Riverfront BID
Updates from Capitol Riverfront BID NewsletterApr 11, 2010 10:25 AMIt's not online that I can see, but here are some items from the most recent "FRONT Page News" e-mail newsletter from the BID:* "Capitol Riverfront neighborhood day at Nationals Park will be Wednesday, April 21st with ticket discounts available to residents, employees, and friends of the BID." The on-street supervisor of the BID's Clean and Safe Team will be singing the National Anthem. [I think, though, that Southwest is going to be part of this "neighborhood day" as well, even though it's not in the BID. This was mentioned at an ANC 6D meeting a few weeks ago.]* There will be a "Fitness in the Front" event at Canal Park on May 1, with free classes offered by local instructors and information tables (and freebies!). See the link for the lineup and additional info.* Residential update: "The residential population in the Front is estimated to have reached 3,030 as of the first quarter of 2010. Rental properties including the Onyx, Axiom, Jefferson and 909 are 95% leased. For sale units including Capitol Quarter, Capitol Hill Tower and Velocity are 71% sold. The residential population is predicted to reach 3,500 by the end of 2010."* And Justin's opens on April 16, but you knew that already. :-)
2010 State of the Hood: Looking Back, and Ahead (and Updated Residential Occupancy Numbers, Too)Jan 19, 2010 1:22 PMIt's become a tradition for me to do a yearly overview of what's happened in Near Southeast over the preceding 12 months, and what the next 12 months are looking like, and in my typically understated way, I've dubbed it "the State of the Hood." This year's missive is now posted, and while the expectation would be that 2009 was a whole lot of nothing, there were more milestones of note than perhaps it seemed--two residential buildings and one office building were finished, the first residents moved into Capitol Quarter, water taxis and Circulators arrived, Cornercopia opened, and work began on the new 11th Street Bridges. There were less auspicious events, too, with construction being halted on two projects, foreclosures hitting various commercial properties and private homes, and the drying up of the "development pipeline." But there's still a few new things coming in 2010, like the Park at the Yards and Justin's Cafe.Whether you're new to the neighborhood, or an old hand, I hope you'll take a few minutes to plow through the whole thing. (And maybe even read the old ones, too, to relive the insane years of 2006, 2007, and 2008.)As part of putting the SOTH together, I got the updated residential occupancy numbers from the BID--they say that nearly 2,800 people now live in the "Capitol Riverfront." Here's the breakdown of leasing/sales percentages for the multi-unit buildings:(Note that Capitol Quarter's numbers are a little behind the others, so these are higher now as the move-ins continue)
Rentals Onyx 95.5% leased, 94% occupied (250 of 266 units occupied) Axiom 91% leased, 89% occupied (219 of 246) Jefferson 77% leased, 76% occupied (340 of 448) 909 New Jersey 82% leased, 75% occupied (178 of 237) 400 M 100% leased and occupied (138 of 138) Condos and Co-ops Capitol Hill Tower (Co-op) 83% sold and occupied (285 of 344) Velocity 32% sold, 8% occupied (16 of 200) Capitol Quarter 82% sold, 28% occupied (32 of 113)(ownership units, 56 still under construction)
Capitol Riverfront BID Annual Meeting SummaryDec 18, 2009 2:37 PMThe Capitol Riverfront Business Improvement District held its annual meeting and luncheon on Thursday, on the ninth floor of 55 M Street. Stan Kasten of the Nationals opened the festivities with some brief but energetic remarks about how excited the Nationals are about the neighborhood's continuing development. He was followed by Tommy Wells, who is equally enthusastic about the neighborhood as a prime example of a "liveable, walkable community," saying that people are increasingly choosing "five-minute living." But, he added that if this area ends up looking like every other neighborhood, "then we've failed."After making presentations and awards to the BID's Clean and Safe team members, BID executive director Michael Stevens presented his State of the Capitol Riverfront report, chock full of statistics, including my perennial favorite, the number of bags of trash collected during 2009 (7,526!). The BID estimates there are now about 2,500 residents in the area, with another 500 expected to arrive in 2010. He also spent some time comparing the size and scope of the plans for "the Front" to other waterfront redevelopment projects such as Battery Park City in New York and Mission Bay in San Francisco, and of course detailing the many ways the BID works to publicize and advocate for the neighborhood.Stevens was followed by Christopher Leinberger of the Brookings Institution, who discussed "The Structural Shift in Building." This area and DC as a whole, he said, are the model for the sort of development that cities want to emulate going forward, as he described the pendulum swing from the suburban model of the second half of the 20th century to the new "walkable urbanism," being driven mainly by the Millennial generation, empty-nested retirees, and the growth in the percentage of child-free households.Leinberger's presentation slides are definitely worth paging through, and folks who are big fans of public transportation will especially appreciate his feeling that the slogan going forward should be "The Green Line is the New Red Line," since the biggest opportunities for development around transportation hubs exist near those stations, and that the BID should actually consider expanding its consulting and other offerings to the smaller emerging neighborhoods along the Green Line that need those types of services. (Perhaps this is what Michael Stevens was alluding to in his report, where a Green Line Research Project was mentioned. And, by the way, next year will mark the 20-year anniversary of the opening of the Navy Yard metro station.)Finally, BID chairman Eric Siegel announced that the BID is planning an environmental summit in May 2010 (perhaps at Nationals Park), to focus on the cleanup of the Anacostia River and other environmental issues with the many public and private stakeholders along the river.
This Week's Events, and a Few Other Quick ItemsDec 14, 2009 10:41 AMRounding up the items on this week's agenda:* Tonight is ANC 6D's monthly meeting. Alas, no agenda released yet, a common occurrence that should put them on Santa's "naughty" list.* Tuesday through Friday is the BID's Holiday Market, running each day on Canal Park from noon to 6 pm, with live music from noon to 2. (If you're seeing activity at Second and M today, that's what it is.)* Tuesday has the next Lower Eighth Street Visioning meetings, at 8:30 am and 7 pm at 535 8th St., SE. These sessions will "focus on best practice examples and build-out scenarios," and an agenda just mailed out by the BID (which is running the sessions) shows guest speakers Richard Lake of Roadside Development (the folks behind the redo of the O Street Market) and Wayne Dickson of Blake Real Estate. There's also an agenda item on "The Need for a Community Center."* On Wednesday (Dec. 16) the BID is throwing a free Residents' Holiday Party at the Courtyard by Marriott, from 6:30 to 8:30 pm. They'll also keep the Holiday Market open an extra hour (until 7 pm) for residents, and there'll be live music.* The BID is having its annual meeting on Thursday, with speakers Tommy Wells, Stan Kasten of the Nationals, and Christopher Leinberger, a walkable urbanism expert from the Brookings Institution. In previewing the event on the Breaking Ground blog last week, WBJ's Melissa Castro listed a series of stats about the Capitol Riverfront provided by Jones Lang LaSalle, including that the total office vacancy rate for the area through the third quarter is at 19.2 percent (though it's listed as being at 14.7 percent at the end of October in this subsequent WBJ article). It would have been nice, though, if she'd given @capitolhilldc credit (rather than just "a Twitter user") for the tweet about being the 24th person in line at the DOT Starbucks Thursday morning, which also brought a few fun responses when I retweeted it.* ANC 6D07 rep Bob Siegel mentioned this at last week's ABC committee meeting, and it's confirmed in the city's land records: there are now 12 units occupied at Velocity.
BID Holiday Market; Justin's Cafe PhotosNov 27, 2009 9:28 AMNews from the Capitol Riverfront BID:* They've announced their second annual Holiday Market, running Dec. 15-18, from noon to 6 pm each day, at Second and M, on the Canal Park footprint.. "For four days, the Capitol Riverfront will present a festive holiday market with local artisans selling handcrafted jewelry, crafts, photography, holiday trees and greenery, and more. Enjoy a variety of festive foods and live music daily from noon - 2 pm."
Donate Coats at Nats Park; Buzzard Point Study; Other Tidbits; Meeting RemindersNov 17, 2009 2:06 PMToday's tidbits:* The Nationals are in the middle of the One Warm Coat Drive, which is collecting "clean, reuseable" coats and jackets that will be distributed to District adults and children free of charge by the Coalition for the Homeless. Coats may be taken to the Team Store on the southwest corner of Half and N streets, SE, which will be open at 11 am everyday between now and Dec. 11 (except for Thanksgiving), with the store staying open until 3 pm from now to Nov. 25, 6 pm on the 27th and 28th, and 4 pm from Nov. 30 to Dec. 11.* Buzzard Point--the peninsula south of Potomac Avenue where the Anacostia and Potomac meet--is 95 percent outside of my boundaries (technically there's a sliver of Southeast over there since South Capitol Street runs down to R Street), but I'll still pass this along. The American Planning Association is going to develop a Strategic Vision for Buzzard Point, and there's a community meeting tomorrow (Wednesday, Nov. 18) from 6 to 8:30 pm, followed by a walking tour on Thursday, Nov. 19, from 8 to 9:30 pm, and then an "initial findings" meeting on Saturday, Nov. 21, at 2 pm. The Thursday and Saturday meetings are at the MPD-1D station at the old Bowen Elementary School at 101 M St., SW, and the walking tour leaves from King-Greenleaf Rec Center at 201 N St., SW. More information about the project and meetings here. (Note: meeting locations revised from original post)* This is from last week, but WBJ reports that the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments is joining a regional group looking at possible ferry service from Occoquan to points along the Potomac and Anacosita Rivers (including the Navy Yard).* The city has announced the first move related to the reconstruction of the 11th Street Bridges--they're going to close the pedestrian bridge over DC295 in Anacostia on or about Nov. 30, because it needs to be demolished to make way for the construction of a new ramp that will link southbound 295 with the new bridges.And, two last-minute meeting reminders:* If you're reading this in the next few hours, you can still make tonight's Lower 8th Street Visioning session, at 7 pm at 535 8th Street, SE. @CapitolHillDC live-tweeted this morning's session, if you want to see what went on. The agenda is available on the blogspot site.
Sunday Football Get-Together for ResidentsNov 16, 2009 10:52 AM
A Roundup of Recently Tweeted Tidbits (Mostly)Oct 29, 2009 1:07 PMNot much big news these days, but here's some tidbits, most of which are links that I've Tweeted in the past few days:* The BID and the Washington DC Economic Partnership held a "Capitol Riverfront Storefront Summit" on Tuesday morning, which The Hill is Home summarized, with quotes from the owners of Cornercopia and the Subway on Second Street. No splashy announcements of new retailers, though.* The WBJ's Top Shelf blog pivoted off of the summit to write about Justin's Cafe at Velocity, which the owner now says "hopes to open in about two months from now."* UrbanTurf asks: How do People Like Living in "Capitol Riverfront"?* Beyond DC went to the Columbia Heights streetcar meeting on Monday, and posted more details about DDOT's plans. The Ward 7 public meeting is tonight, at 650 Anacostia Ave., NE, from 7 to 8:30 pm.* The Bullpen is still selling tickets for its big Halloween night bash, from 9 pm to 1 am (with a fully heated tent!). An e-mail says that more than 400 tickets have been sold.* The American Cancer Society is hosting Making Strides for Breast Cancer, a 5K walk to fund breast cancer research, at Nationals Park on Saturday. Two laps around the stadium, and one inside lap on the First Concourse. (I think I've done that walk a whole bunch of times over the past four years!)* The council's Committee on Finance and Revenue has scheduled a November 12 hearing on the pending bill that would allow the city sell bonds to pay for phase 3 infrastructure work at Capper. (Though I don't see the hearing notice online yet.) For more about this, read my entry from a few days back.
Calendar Items (Confirmed, Cancelled, Moved)Oct 5, 2009 2:40 PMA few changes and confirmations to note:* It appears that the foreclosure auction of nine lots along Potomac Avenue and Ninth Street is going forward, scheduled for 12:15 pm tomorrow (Tuesday, Oct. 6) at the Alex Cooper offices.* From The BID: "Due to lowering fall temperatures, the BID has decided to cancel the rescheduled outdoor showing of Star Wars this Thursday, October 8th."* And the