Minutes from February 2016 BACA Meeting

I apologize for the delay, but here are the minutes from earlier this month….

7:00?-? (I arrived a little late) Meeting Called to Order – David Hall, President

?-7:15 Treasurer’s Report – Kyle Thomas, Treasurer – (missed part of report), please consider paying membership dues ($20 per person per year) to help support BACA activities and event and be able to vote on official matters

7:15-7:35 Commissioner Teri J. Quinn – Single Member District (5E06):

  • Full ANC 5E meetings will be at Friendship Armstrong Charter School at 1st and P St NW for the rest of the year, meetings are third Tuesday of every month at 7:00 pm
  • ANC had elections and she chairperson again, 3 other officers are also from Bloomingdale; there is a new commissioner Patricia Williams for 5E02
  • ANC Executive Board has open meetings to set agenda and address administrative matters, held first Saturday of odd months and first Thursday of even months at The Summit (126 T St NE)
  • Discussion of recent historic snowstorm activities and coordination – SMDs, Mayor’s 0ffice, and Councilmember McDuffie’s office worked together through daily conference calls as well as in-person help with snow removal with special thanks to our Ward 5 Liaison Tommie Jones and a BACA resident who personally helped with snow blowing – Comm’r Quinn noticed a much higher level of outreach than in the past, Tommie Jones and our other Ward 5 liaison worked in 12-hour shifts to ensure round-the-clock coverage, thanks very much for extra assistance
  • Anxo requesting support for application to DDOT to use sidewalk space for their cidery restaurant to be opened at Florida and 3rd St NW – this use was already approved by ABRA and is usually approved easily by DDOT, the ANC voted in January to go with the recommendation of BACA and hearing will be on 2/25/16; vote by hands opposed taken after short discussion (see below), no one opposed so BACA supports application, Comm’r Quinn will relay support to ANC
  • Sam Fitch with Anxo indicated they will have 48-seat patio in the side lot not on the actual sidewalk, there have been no negative comments from DDOT so far; resident questioned about noise dampening – as part of zoning relief already approved they will install trellis encasement and trees around machinery in the back as well as trees on the patio that should decrease noise, hours will be until midnight during the week and 1:00am on weekends; they will work with us if there start to be noise complaints once they open, but they expect to have mostly a dinner crowd and not very much late night business, the main exit will be on Florida Ave. not on 3rd St and they will ensure that people are not loitering on their property outside of business hours

7:35-7:36 David Hall summarized agenda of upcoming SMD meeting 2/13/16 on behalf of Commissioner Bradley A. Thomas (SMD 5E05), who was unable to attend tonight

7:37-7:44 Ward 5 Liaison, Mayor’s Office – Tommie Jones

  • Many thanks to community for helping out neighbors during snowstorm, please contact him with suggestions of anything that could be done better, reminder to check appliances etc to have them ready and safe for winter and make sure have sufficient insurance for fire etc; call 311 if you see a homeless person who may need assistance for cold weather or hypothermia
  • Mayor had press release today about strong fiscal condition of city, also accountability report for campaign issues, see mayor.dc.gov/accountability for more info
  • David Hall also thanks to Tommie Jones and resident for snow-blowing on Bates St
  • No questions, encouraged contact him with stories about the storm, questions or concerns

7:45-7:52 Short discussion re vote on proposals for lot at 1520-1522 North Capitol St. (at corner of Bates St NW), ballots cast by some in attendance, Christa Fields will post links to presentations and prior discussions about the proposals for review, those in attendance at tonight’s meeting only may email or drop off votes by this Friday (2/5/16), three residents volunteered to count ballots on Saturday, will be passed on to Comm’r Thomas for input as BACA support in addition to votes at upcoming SMD meeting

7:53 Danielle with Mundo Verde – brief discussion of compost coop w/ community, neighbors can contribute organic waste and use resulting compost, see flyer (link already posted) for more info

7:54-8:35 discussion about parking and traffic issues related to Mundo Verde School – John Breyer, COO, and Danielle, active parent (who has been coming to BACA meetings regularly for over a year)

  • listened to concerns, especially for unit block of Bates Street involving parents using a handicapped parking space and a confrontation with a driver the morning of the meeting, a neighbor expressed thanks to John for coming over during that incident and helping smooth it over and making an effort to meet neighbors
  • discussed efforts they have made (some successful, some not) to encourage parents to walk or bicycle and mitigate traffic/parking problems as initially discussed in proposals to BACA about school – they subsidize a daily shuttle for about 150 kids from Columbia Heights, looked into other bus routes but they weren’t feasible and wouldn’t help, they tried a potluck to coordinate ridesharing and carpooling but those didn’t work, will be doing workshops with Washington Area Bicyclists Association (WABA) about cycling with children, they have people directing drop-off and pick-up in front of the school to help with traffic flow, they regularly remind parents to be considerate of neighbors in a weekly newsletter and will do so again related to our discussion in this meeting
  • noted that Mundo Verde cannot be responsible for driving habits of parents, parking enforcement or ticketing by DC should be more effective for parents that are parking illegally, David will reach out about this
  • they will reach out to Friendship Armstrong school about using parking lot at 1st and P during drop-off/pick-up, had asked when it was CAPCS but they weren’t receptive, discussed other possible parking areas and noted that spaces behind Langston/Slater buildings are being used by AREA childcare etc program, spoke with DGS about possibly opening up more areas around those buildings but rejected due to safety concerns, homeowners along alley and behind MV objected to using those areas for pick-up/drop-off, have worked with AREA to coordinate during drop-off and pick-up times, may work with DDOT to adjust times slightly to help with traffic
  • Some BACA residents noted that Mundo Verde is a welcome addition to the neighborhood and trying to be an active and good neighbor and we should encourage them instead of complaining so much, people will always need to park and parents of the school are only parking for a short time, MV can’t fix all of the problems

8:35-8:38 Marie Maxwell, historian and BACA resident, seeking BACA sponsorship as 501(c)(3) for DC Humanities grant for a history and art project at 410 Florida Ave NW, it will tell the history of the neighborhood in a series of maps such as what the area was and could have been, see her blog truxtoncircle.org for more info in general, 501(c)(3) will receive the grant funds – support given and BACA officers will work with Marie to complete necessary documentation

8:39-8:41 question what is the status of the buildings along Florida Ave NW at N. Capitol where Walter Johnson’s liquor store was, are they going to go higher and get rid of part of the alley?  David Hall indicated he will look into it

8:42 Rachel, resident of unit block of Q Street – discussed plans and petition to request sidewalk installation of concrete or brick to repair current damage, noted you can contact 311 if you need bricks replaced in small areas

8:43 David Hall noted that spring clean-up is coming soon and we may coordinate areas to do plantings in a way to have a bigger impact on the neighborhood’s appearance, such as along major routes

8:44 Ibrahim Mumim made announcement about his wife screening a historical play she wrote on 2/14 (see prior post)

8:45 Adjourned


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