WaPo: Museum Square Residents Unite to Save Building

As we’ve outlined in past postings, an offer of sale of $250 million has been put forth to the Museum Square tenants association as a means to honor the Tenants Opportunity to Purchase Act (TOPA). This number is generated by the landlord based on raze and redevelopment potential of the site at a higher density rather than what the fair market value is for the units. This story will continue to be ongoing as things develop and the media writes stories on the tenants attempts to avoid being displaced.

Museum Square Apartments at 401 K Street NW

Museum Square Apartments at 401 K Street NW

The latest is from the Washington Post and is entitled “Black, Asian residents unite to save low-income building near Chinatown.” Eye opening, but at least for me, in a way that cuts both ways.
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Road Trip Nation visits our Neighborhood

A lime green bus from Road Trip Nation has been parked on the 900 block of 4th Street NW in the Mount Vernon Triangle the last two evenings. The bus is marked with a #FirstGenRoadTrip twitter hashtag.

roadtripnation_bus_side

A little internet research suggests this bus is affiliated with a public television show that takes young adults on a road trip to meet and interview people who inspire them across the country to learn from their stories, and to share that experience with others. Does anyone know more about their specific visit to our neighborhood in DC?

Road Trip Nation FIRST-GEN Roadtrip map

Road Trip Nation FIRST-GEN Roadtrip map

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Mount Vernon Place Finalizes Acquisition of Two Parcels on 3rd Street NW

According to the Washington Business Journal, The Wilkes Company and Quadrangle Development Corp, the developers behind the Mount Vernon Place master development, have finalized acquisition of two parcels on 3rd Street NW from the District. The process to acquire the parcels spanned roughly 8 years and was considerably involved due to the nature of the property abutting the west side of the I-395 highway. At various stages DDOT, the Deputy Mayor for Planning and Economic Development (DMPED), Housing and Urban Development, and the Federal Highway Administration had to be engaged to ensure the title of the land was clean and a sale could move forward.

Latest rendering of Cantata/801 3rd St NW

Latest rendering of Cantata/801 3rd St NW

With these key parcels now secured the residential project long planned for the east side of 3rd Street NW in the Mount Vernon Place Master Plan can now realistically move forward. This is especially good news for the Mount Carmel Baptist Church which has long been a stakeholder for this particular 320 unit residential development (20% affordable units).  The church has equity in the project and will benefit from planned amenities that will include a program space for the congregation as well as 75 parking spaces dedicated for church use.

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Penn Commons to Open on August 4th

Penn Commons (facebook | twitter), from the Passion Food Hospitality Group, is set to open on Saturday August 2nd Monday August 4th (editor’s note: Penn Commons facebook and twitter had conflicting dates). The restaurant at the 700 Sixth Street NW space next to the Verizon Center looks totally ready to go. Signage is in place, tables set, and even menus posted in the windows beside the front door.

penncommons1

Chef Jeff Tunks cultivates partnerships with local farmers to showcase outstanding U.S. products in his signature dishes at Penn Commons, such as his Grilled Creekstone Farms Premium Beef Skirt Steak with Whiskey Peppercorn sauce.

Beer lovers will score at the Penn Commons U-shaped central bar pouring, 40 CraftBeers on tap from each ale-producing state in the US.

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New Billboards at 4th & K

It took a while, but the billboard panels for the fence at the north perimeter of the 300 K Street parking lot have recently been installed. The fence was erected in November 2013 in a way that always foreshadowed the eventual installation of integrated billboards.

New Billboard at 4th & K

New Billboard at 4th & K

The billboard advertises the opportunity for the 300K office building The Wilkes Company plans to eventually build on this site as part of their overall Mount Vernon Place master planned development. Although Wilkes now seems to be branding the project 901 4th Street – which is actually the address of the current MVT CID offices in the former Madrigal Lofts sales trailer. It could be that what they were once calling 300K may now be subdivided into two different buildings.
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Kids in the Triangle

The Kids in the Triangle (KITT) group is a listserv for parents and family members of children who live, work, and play in the Mount Vernon Triangle (MVT), Mount Vernon Square and Shaw neighborhoods.  No longer just condo buildings and parking lots, KITT can be a place to help a new parent find a nanny, join a child’s yoga class or look to borrow a pack n play.

kitt_photo

To join KITT you can find the listserv at https://groups.google.com/forum/#!forum/kidsinthetriangle or please email us at kidsinthetriangle@gmail.com for more information.

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Candidate Petitions for ANC due August 6th

This November all of our ANC commissioners will be up for re-election. ANCs consider a wide range of policies and programs affecting their neighborhoods, including traffic, parking, recreation, street improvements, liquor licenses, zoning, economic development, police protection, sanitation and trash collection, and the District’s annual budget

Prospective ANC candidates must obtain nomination petitions from the Board of Elections and return the petitions by Wednesday August 6th with at least 25 signatures from residents of their Single Member District (SMD). On November 4th, Election Day, the voters will make their selection. The winning candidates will take office after noon on January 2nd once they are sworn in.

Map of ANC6E with Single Member Districts

Map of ANC6E with Single Member Districts

Most of the Commissioners in ANC6E (map above) have served us well. I routinely hear praise regarding Rachelle Nigro and Marge Maceda from Mount Vernon Triangle residents. On the other hand I have heard nothing but frustration surrounding an inability to contact Alfreda Judd by residents of SMD 6E07. I’ve been told on numerous occasions that Alfreda Judd has no email address and the phone number she provided goes to her mother and messages are never returned.  You can’t effectively represent your SMD if you are not accesible to your constituents. We need an alternative in 6E07. This is a call to Sonata and Madrigal residents – will someone consider running for ANC to better represent us in 2015/6?

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Provide Your Feedback for Playable Art DC on Saturday

Many of you may have heard that the DC Office of Planning (OP) selected the Mount Vernon Triangle community as one of three Washington, DC locations for a Playable Art DC installation. On Saturday, the Playable Art DC team will conduct design workshops with neighbors of all ages (see flyer). You may also participate in the feedback process via an online survey about play available at http://svy.mk/1nE6qyM

playable_art_jul19_poster

This is an exciting chance for kids, families and adults to help design the art (and playable art) which will stand in our neighborhood.   Come by Busboys and Poets or the FRESHFARM Market on Saturday to express your desire for playable art in the Triangle!

[Editors Note: We first posted on this event on July 8th, but this is very important and worthy of a reminder]

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Carnegie Library Redevelopment Meeting on July 23

The National Capital Planning Commission (NCPC), in coordination with Events DC, invite you to attend a Section 106 consultation meeting for the proposed redevelopment of the Carnegie Library at Mount Vernon Square on Wednesday, July 23, 2014 from 11am – 12:30pm. As reported last September, the redevelopment aims to relocate the Spy Museum to the Carnegie Library site. The transformation of the Carnegie Library would incorporate a new glass atrium on the north side of the building.

Carnegie Library image from Wikipedia

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Pedestrian Safety Issues at MVT intersections on Mass Ave

Last Friday, the MVT CID submitted a letter to DDOT Director Matthew Brown about the pedestrian safety issues at 4th & Mass Ave and 5th & Mass Ave.

The MVT CID has received numerous complaints from members of our community about the unsafe conditions at these two intersections. They have submitted 311 requests to both the Mayor’s command center and DDOT. They also met with members of your DDOT staff on May 8, 2014 and discussed these intersections. Unfortunately, the issues have not been resolved. There continues to be concern that the conditions at these intersections will result in a pedestrian fatality if not addressed. In fact, in 2013 a pedestrian fatality did occur at 4th & Mass and another pedestrian was struck a month later.

Notes from memo to DDOT; Click to enlarge

Notes from memo to DDOT; Click to enlarge

Clearly, reconfiguration for construction at 4th & Mass has made the safety situation worse. The area is more chaotic and the crossing signals shorter. It is very difficult to balance construction and accessibility. Clearly some inconvenience is inevitable, but is DDOT doing less than they reasonably could be expected to do to limit the impact on pedestrians? Also, what are your thoughts on the 5th & Mass intersection?

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