Join Advisory Neighborhood Commission 4B for our January Regular Public Meeting on Monday, January 27th at 7 pm at the Metropolitan Police Department's 4th District Headquarters (6001 Georgia Ave, NW). The draft agenda is included below and available on our Commission website. This month's agenda includes a lot of administrative items, including the election of officers, as well as a vote on our proposed revised Rules of Procedure. Notably, the revised Rules will allow the Commission to establish subject matter Committees.

With the passage of these Rules I hope to establish a Housing Justice Committee that will (1) review proposed developments within the Commission area to consider leverage points to maximize affordable housing; (2) review proposed legislation and agency action related to homelessness and affordable housing, and advocate for mechanisms to increase and expand deeply affordable housing; and (3) host educational events and town halls within the Commission regarding topics related to affordable housing. Please send me an email at if you are interested in being considered for this Committee.

The Commission will also vote on a
Resolution providing feedback to the District's Office of Planning on their proposed changes to the Comprehensive Plan. The Comprehensive Plan is a 20-year framework and guiding document for future planning and development in the District. It is an extremely long, detailed document that Commissioners spent significant time reviewing and studying. The Resolution reflects significant community feedback following a special meeting hosted by the Commission in December, as well as other direct engagement and communications with community members. The Resolution focuses largely on the sections of the Plan relevant to the Commission's geographic boundaries, as well as housing, transportation, and historic preservation.

The Commission will also receive a presentation on a proposed development at 300-308 Carroll St, NW, and 325 Vine St, NW (the location of the Youth Hostel and adjacent buildings). More here. The Historic Preservation Review Board will review the design concept later this month and staff has asked that the applicant return to the Board for additional review after this month's meeting. More here. The Commission will be voting on a Resolution that provides some feedback and similarly asks for the project to return to the Commission for additional consideration once the design concept is further finalized.

Neighborhood Updates

*Traffic Safety in the Neighborhood: The Commission is still trying to get details on government action to address traffic safety issues following a fatal car crash at Blair Rd and Aspen St, NW, that resulted in one death and three injuries. More on that accident here. More recently, a car flipped over near 5th St and Van Buren St, NW. And the listserv has included ample discussion about unsafe intersections throughout the neighborhood. A District Department of Transportation traffic safety specialist will be at the Commission's February meeting to answer Commissioner and community questions regarding traffic safety concerns. I have supported over a dozen traffic safety assessment requests over the last year, with no action from the District Department of Transportation, and I plan to ask about the status and prioritization of those requests. (If you are interested in requesting a Traffic Safety Assessment for any part of the neighborhood, please contact me at

*Takoma Library Open / Takoma Aquatic Center Closed: The Takoma Library reopened on December 30th following renovations that included replacing the floor with carpet on the upper level, HVAC replacement, refreshing and opening up space on the lower level, renovating staff bathrooms, and adding new computers. The Takoma Aquatic Center will be closed until Sunday, February 2nd for annual scheduled maintenance. The Commission is following up regarding whether the scheduled maintenance will include the many issues raised in our Letter of Inquiry and during our walk-through with representatives from the Mayor's Office and Councilmember Todd's office.
*Takoma & Whittier Education Campuses - Opportunities for Support: Whittier Education Campus has been awarded a Makerspace Makeover, thanks to the Heart of America Foundation, which will bring new resources and technology to their library. Yay! Whittier will have two open houses: one on February 4, 5 - 6 pm, and one on April 11, 10 - 11 am. You can support both Takoma Education Campus and Whittier Education Campus through their Amazon wishlists. Takoma's is available here, and Whittier's is available here.

*Pepco Takoma - Sligo Underground Line Project: View Pepco's look ahead of construction activity associated with the Takoma - Sligo Underground Line Project here. Construction is still ongoing along Carroll and Maple Avenue and is expected to conclude around August 2020 absent unforeseen events or weather patterns. 

*Walter Reed Development Updates: Main Drive is now open to the public, as residents have moved into The Parks. This opens a long-closed connection between Georgia Ave, Butternut St, and 16th St, NW. And if you haven't heard, Whole Foods is coming to Walter Reed. More here. People have lots of opinions on grocery stores, and you can hop onto any of the neighborhood listservs to see the discussion. 

*4th Street Commercial Corridor Updates: S&S Liquors is open! Horace and Dickie's is now serving brunch. Donut Run has received all of its permits and construction is starting, with an anticipated opening date of spring 2020. The Clinic and retail spaces (Turning Natural and Lost Sock) at the Takoma Theater are scheduled to open in February 2020. (Both Donut Run and Lost Sock received Great Streets grants. Congratulations!)

New & Notable
What's happening in local government?

Check out these DC Council legislative and other updates.
  • Ward 2 Councilmember Jack Evans has (finally!) resigned from the DC Council after months of pressure from Advisory Neighborhood Commissioners, advocates, and the public, as well as a unanimous DC Council vote to to expel him from the Council. Advisory Neighborhood Commission 4B noted Councilmember Evans' pattern and practice of misconduct and called for an investigation to determine a proportionate sanction back in March. More here. I had strong words about the lack of oversight and accountability, particularly on the part of DC Council Chair Phil Mendelson, that led to Councilmember Evans' continued unethical conduct. You can read them, courtesy of an article by Jeff Anderson, District Dig, here.
  • Despite resigning in shame and under a cloud of ethical violations, there are rumors Councilmember Evans will be running again for the Ward 2 seat. I hope he has more common sense than to do something so ridiculous, but you never can tell.
  • In other notable ethics news, the Director of Government Ethics, Brent Wolfingbarger, resigned after an embarrassing display at a Council oversight hearing, at which he could not account for the lack of docketing of or timeliness in responding to ethics complaints. You can read my views, courtesy of an article by Mitch Ryals, Washington City Paper, here, and more here.
  • In a cruel step that you'd expect only from our current President, Mayor Bowser ordered the sweeping of a homeless encampment near Union Station. The sweep occurred just before severe winter weather and displaced dozens of residents before the point in time count of homeless individuals in the District. More here and here. 81 individuals died without a home in the District last year, which is not just heartbreaking but unconscionable in a city as prosperous as ours.
  • Something fishy is going on with the DC Housing Authority, which scrapped 70 units of deeply affordable housing previously planned for the site and included $14 million for developers to allow the Authority to lease back its headquarters. More from Mitch Ryals, Washington City Paper, here, and Jenny Gathright, WAMU, here. I don't know, y'all, this is the entity tasked with providing affordable housing to extremely low through moderate-income households. What are they doing?
  • The District is flush with cash, so to speak. The District's Chief Financial Officer says the District will end the year with $280 million more in revenue than expected. More here. And the partially tax-funded and oft-criticized Events DC is projected to have $122 million in excess reserves at the end of the current fiscal year (the end of September). Good to know the head of Events DC got a $150,000 bonus (on top of a $350,000 a year salary) when the city cannot afford to maintain its public housing stock. Claw back that excess money, please! More here.
  • Thought you'd heard the last of Initiative 77? Not only did the DC Council repeal the voter initiative to raise the sub-minimum wage for tipped workers, they failed to fund and implement so-called compromise provisions that would have addressed in part wage theft and sexual harassment in the industry. Chair Mendelson had an infuriating response: advocates should have lobbied more and harder to have the Council do what it said it was going to do (after repealing a voter initiative). Boo! More here.
  • DC Public Schools doubled down and is proceeding with closing Washington Metropolitan, an alternative high school, based on supposed lack of academic progress and low enrollment. More here. They're doing so despite opposition from Ward 1 Councilmember Brianne Nadeau, Ward 8 Councilmember Trayon White, and every member of the State Board of EducationHear the students' views against closure here and here, and sign the petition against closure here.
Are you interested in or following pending legislation or a city-wide issue? Send me an email, and I will include updates in this newsletter.

SMD 4B02 Office Hours
*Next Office Hours: Thursday, February 20, 7-8 pm, 715 Van Buren St, NW

Let's chat about the neighborhood! Join me on Thursday, February 20th from 7 - 8 pm at 715 Van Buren St, NW, for monthly office hours for Single Member District 4B02. You can RSVP here. If you need accommodations or would like to schedule another time to meet, please email me at or call me at (202) 821-6333.

Upcoming Community Events

There's lots going on in the neighborhood! Check out the following community events:
  • Tuesday, January 28 - Tuesday, February 4, Transportation Bingo (a fun, week-long public transportation challenge). Check out the details and join us for a happy hour on Bus to Work Day (February 4, 5:30 pm) at Jackpot (726 7th St, NW).
  • Thursday, January 30 , 6:30 - 9:30 pm, Upper Georgia Avenue Main Street Community Meeting at MPD 4th District HQ (6001 Georgia Ave, NW).
  • Tuesday, February 4, 7 pm, ANC 4A Regular Monthly Meeting at MPD 4th District HQ (6001 Georgia Ave, NW).
  • Tuesday, February 11, 7- 9 pm, Brightwood Community Association Meeting at St. John United Baptist Church (6343 13th St, NW).
  • Tuesday, February 11, 6:30 pm, Shepherd Park Citizens Association Meeting at Washington Ethical Society (7750 16th St, NW).
  • Wednesday, February 12, 6:30 pm, ANC 4C Regular Monthly Meeting at Petworth Library (4200 Kansas Ave, NW).
  • Thursday, February 13, 6-8 pm, Ward 4 Education Alliance Meeting at LaSalle-Backus Education Campus (501 Riggs Rd, NE). 
  • Thursday, February 13, 7-8 pm, MPD Fourth District Sector One Monthly Meeting (PSAs 401, 402, 403) at MPD 4th District HQ (6001 Georgia Ave, NW). 
  • Tuesday, February 18 (as well as Thursday, February 20 and Saturday, February 22 at different locations), 6:30 pm, Mayor Bowser's Budget Engagement Forum at Edgewood Recreation Center (301 Franklin St, NE). *Fair warning that this event often consists of the silly exercise of allocating a dollar across interests, but you might take the opportunity to talk about the District's revenue streams, tax giveaways, and funding priorities.*
  • Tuesday, February 18, 7 - 8:30 pm, Ward 4 Democrats Meeting. *Check for details.*
  • Wednesday, February 19, 6:30, ANC 4D Regular Monthly Meeting at Washington Latin PCS (5200 2nd St, NW).
  • Monday, February 24, 7 pm, ANC 4B Regular Public Meeting at MPD's 4th District Headquarters (6001 Georgia Ave, NW). 
  • Monday, March 2, 6:30 - 8:00 pm, Walter Reed Local Redevelopment Authority Community Advisory Committee Meeting at DC International School (1400 Main Dr, NW).
Know of other neighborhood events? Send notable events my way for inclusion in upcoming email newsletters.
You can always contact me:
Phone: (202) 821-6333
Facebook: @Erinfor4B02
Twitter: @Erinfor4B02

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