Advisory Neighborhood Commission (ANC) 6E held its monthly meeting on Tuesday evening, February 1. Commission Chair Michael Eichler (6E01) called the meeting to order with Alex Lopez (6E02, Secretary), Frank Wiggins (6E03, Treasurer), Rachelle Nigro (6E04, Vice Chair), Patrick Parlej (6E05), Denise Blackson (6E06) and Kevin Rogers (6E07) in attendance. There was a quorum to conduct official business.
Police Service Area (PSA) Reports
Captain Dorrough of the First District reported an assault at the 7-Eleven on K Street and a robbery on the 500 block of New York Ave. in January. Property crime has trended up, with 10 stolen autos around the Mount Vernon Triangle. Thefts from autos were also up, with 13 last month compared to seven a year ago. Commissioner Parlej stated that the community believes that the crime situation is moving in the wrong direction. Dorrough responded that crime numbers are still fairly low and not out of the norm. Plans to put more resources in the PSA should improve the situation in the Triangle. Parlej declared that public safety has now skyrocketed to one of the top issues in the neighborhood.
A resident asked about a situation where there were a number of police cars at Plaza West. Dorrough said that the police Emergency Response Team had been deployed there to serve a warrant and made two arrests. In answer to a question about the resolution of carjackings, the captain said that a number of the perpetrators were juveniles. Juvenile cases are handled by the Office of the Attorney General, which makes the decision to prosecute and does not inform the police of the resolution of cases.
Captain Small of the Third Police District said that there had been 11 violent crimes over the previous 30 days. The Third District has had a rash of carjackings, most of the time perpetrated by juveniles. There appears to be a small gang committing a series of carjackings. Commissioner Nigro mentioned that she had a constituent who was pistol whipped on Fourth Street and that an Uber driver was ambushed recently.
Councilmember Brooke Pinto
Ward 2 Councilmember Brooke Pinto attended the ANC meeting to introduce herself to the people of the former Ward 6 portion of Shaw, who are now part of her ward and to get their opinions on the redistricting process. She offered a little of her background, graduating from Cornell and coming to Washington to go to law school at Georgetown. She had planned to become a health care lawyer and worked for Senator Blumenthal and the Coalition for the Homeless before she went to work for the DC Office of the Attorney General as a tax litigator.
On the DC Council, Pinto is trying to address crime by getting more officers on foot and welcoming the violence interrupter team planned for Shaw. She also wants to implement Vision Zero to reduce the number of traffic fatalities to zero. Pinto is focused on homelessness and is trying to expedite the issuance of housing vouchers. One priority is the building of a new Shaw Middle School. Pinto will have a Council roundtable on the issue soon, and she has put $3 million in the budget to plan for the new school.
Pinto has created a Ward 2 ANC Redistricting Taskforce to establish the new boundaries for the ward’s ANCs. Gretchen Wharton represents Shaw on the taskforce and Ankit Jain is the Mount Vernon Square representative. The taskforce has to produce a final report by April 1.
Pinto was planning to send a letter on Thursday to Mayor Bowser outlining her priorities for next year’s budget. They include a permanent senior center for Ward 2, an expansion of the Shaw Clean Team to 11th Street, accelerated implementation of DDOT’s S Street Revitalization project and a restroom for the Shaw Skatepark.
Commissioner Nigro said that her constituents support more police on the street. She also asked how to provide input to the Ward 2 ANC Redistricting Taskforce. Pinto replied that people who want to comment on redistricting should contact the taskforce chair, Austin Naughton. People can also approach the Council after the taskforce submits its report to give their opinions on ANC redistricting.
1707 Eighth Street, NW
Mid City Development came to the ANC to introduce their redevelopment project on the 1700 block of Eighth Street. The company has owned garden apartment buildings on the site for a number of years and now wants to replace them with a nine-story apartment building. Designed by noted architect Eric Colbert, the new building will have 317 apartments, 48 of which will be income restricted (affordable) units.
The developer has already discussed their plans with Shaw neighborhood groups and made a presentation before the ANC 6E Zoning and Development Committee. They will soon submit an application for approval of a Planned Unit Development to the DC Zoning Commission. Commissioner Nigro suggested that the developers agree to restrict residents in the building, which will have some parking spaces, from applying for residential street parking permits from the DC Department of Motor Vehicles. Commissioner Wiggins objected to the idea of restricting on-street parking.
Transportation Advisory Committee (TAC)
The Transportation Advisory Committee presented a resolution in support of a proposal from the District Department of Transportation (DDOT) to establish dedicated bus lanes along H Street NW from North Capitol to 13th Street NW. The committee included a number of conditions in the resolution, including that the lanes prohibit parking in them all day, instead of DDOT’s assumption that parking would only be prohibited during rush hours. Commissioner Wiggins expressed opposition to the idea of dedicated bus lanes, assuming that they would increase overall traffic congestion on H Street. The resolution failed by a vote of two ayes, two nays and three abstentions.
ANC 6E will hold its next meeting on Tuesday, March 1 at 6:30 p.m. Plans are to hold this meeting as a virtual conference. Visit www.anc6e.org for more information.