Following up on yesterday's entry
about the plans to move the WMATA Southeastern Bus Garage from its current location at Half and M
to the DC Village site in Ward 8.... This morning the WMATA subcommittee supported the resolution
that will now be voted on by the full board on May 24--the plan is to place an advertisement in June for a demolition/utlities/environmental remediation/site preparation contract, which would be ready for the full WMATA board's approval in September. There's still some question as to whether they'll be building a temporary facility or will go full-bore from the beginning with a permanent facility that will be added onto in later expansion phases (if they get a federal grant they may go for the full facility, or they may have the funds from the sale of the land and some other transactions, etc. etc.).
DC council member Jim Graham did ask for the resolution's wording to be tweaked somewhat to make clear that the city is still working on a plan for the relocation of the homeless families living at DC Village, although Marion Barry told the meeting that just this morning an agreement was finalized between himself (as chair of the appropriate council subcommittee) and the mayor to have $10 million from the DC budget available to get DC Village closed and the families relocated by the end of 2007 (and perhaps even by the end of FY2007). Barry also told the meeting that he is strongly in favor of moving the garage to DC Village, and that his constituents in Ward 8 have also been overwhelmingly in favor of the plan. The desire to move the garage off of Half Street has been an issue for 10-15 years now, he said ("even when I was mayor") and it's "time to do it now."Jim Graham also indicated that he is very much in favor of the move, but that he just wants to make sure that the current residents of DC Village are adequately taken care of (and indicated that he will move to reconsider approval of this plan at the June subcommittee meeting if it appears the city hasn't gotten the relocation plan figured out by then). You can listen to the audio of the meeting here
, and the background/information documents are here
. (And read my entry from late April
on all this for additional background.)