Wednesday, June 11, 2014
214 Massachusetts Avenue N.E.
The meeting was called to order at 7:00 p.m.
A quorum of six out of six commissioners was present (Mr. Eckenwiler, Mr. Goodman, Mr. Kazmerczak, Mr. Price, Ms. Schiffman, and Ms. Wirt).
The agenda was approved unanimously as amended (Motion: Ms. Wirt/ Mr. Eckenwiler)
Mr. Price presented the treasurer’s report for May. The beginning balance was $45,380.31. There were two withdrawals: check # 1288 for $3,180, a grant for J.O. Wilson School, and check #1289 for $162, for rental of the ANC 6C post box for six months. There was a Bank of America interest payment of $0.37. The closing balance was $42,038.68. The report and the expenses within were approved unanimously. (Motion: Mr. Price/Mr. Eckenwiler)
Brief Community Announcements
- Exelon-Pepco—Marc Battle. The Excelonrepresentative described benefits to customers which the D.C. Public Service Commission has to approve: $14 million for low-income assistance; greater liability or pay a penalty; continue work on burying overhead wires; and maintain the Pepco record of corporate giving at the rate of $5 million over the next 10 years.
- Third Street Tunnel Project—Sean Cahill. The project, spanning between Massachusetts Avenue and H Streets, 2ndand 4th Streets N.W., is addressing utility relocations over the next 16 to 18 months. Work will continue 7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. The project website keeps the community informed of progress. A 24-hour hotline is maintained at (202) 719-0196.
- Commissioner announcements
– Mr. Goodman reported that “child playable” art sculptures, sponsored by the Office of Planning, have been installed between L and M Streets along the Metropolitan Branch Trail.
– Mr. Price described the pedestrian accident at 7th and Maryland Ave. N.E., where the head librarian of the N.E. Library was struck by a speeding taxi. Charles Allen was there and WAMU covered it. Both Mr. Price and Beth Bacon urged the commissioners to help expedite greater pedestrian safety with a letter to DDOT requesting both temporary and long-term safety improvements. The motion to send a letter passed unanimously. (Motion: Mr. Price/Mr. Kazmierczak)
- ANC 6C committee membership changes—Mr. Goodman announced membership of the newly formed ANC 6C Committee on Parks and Events. He is serving as temporary chair. In addition to the current members, from 6C01, 6C03, and 6C05, Mr. Goodman announced three new at-large members: ViraSisolak, 6C01; Gerald Wall, 6C06; and Meti Zegeye, 6C06 (Mr. Zegeye will no longer be a member of the 6C Transportation and Public Space Committee). The three at-large members were approved without objection. (Motion: Mr. Goodman/Mr. Kazmierczak)
Ms. Wirt introduced a special order for the commission to consider items that would not require discussion or a vote. If any one member removed an item from the consent calendar, it would be placed on the agenda for discussion. The special order for a consent calendar was approved unanimously as a procedure that would save time when no discussion is needed. (Motion: Mr. Price/Mr. Goodman)
The items approved without objection were as follows:
– Approval of May 2014 minutes with the one-week period to submit corrections before posting on the ANC 6C website
– Planning, Zoning, and Environment Committee
Construction of a brick retaining wall at the loading dock, 700 Constitution Ave N.E.
– Alcoholic Beverage Committee
Michio’s, 500 H Street N.E., protest in process against late hours (Mr. Kazmierczak); and Hyatt Place Hotel, 33 New York Ave N.E., support for a stipulated license.
Transportation and Public Space Committee (Joe McCann, chair)
- DDOT’s “Move DC” Plan—Mr. McCann described the plan as containing hundreds of pages of planning for DC for the next 25 years. Goals include maximizing system capacity, supporting neighborhood vitality, and connecting neighborhoods. Improvements in the eastern planning area include commuter train expansion, bicycle improvements, street car lines, sidewalk improvements, improvement of congestion zones, and ADA compliance on sidewalks. Comments were submitted by Mr. Goodman and will be submitted by Mr. Wirt of the Transportation and Public Space Committee for consideration by commissioners. The deadline for all comments is July 7, 2014. Ms. Bacon asked that safety improvements at 7thand Maryland be included. Ms. Wirt asked that the letter include the complaint that ANCs were given inadequate time (3 weeks) to review a lengthy document. The motion to send the above-mentioned comments was approved without objection.(Motion: Mr. Goodman/Mr. Eckenwiler)
- Bicycle facilities, 100 block of F Street N.E. and M Street N.E.—Mr. McCann described needed changes as follows: 100 block of F Street between Union Station and 2ndStreet N.E. was voted on previously but the contraflow bike lane was ever completed (ANC voted on bike lanes 2nd through 8th Streets. DDOT should continue to support bike lanes through Columbus Circle and safe bicycle connectivity. For the M Street NE area, parking spaces should be removed as required to create a two-way cycletrack, protected, from North Capitol to 4th Street NE. From 4th Street NE to Florida Avenue NE, a contraflow bike lane should be created westbound with painted sharrows in the eastbound direction. The commissioners voted unanimously to send a letter to DDOT. (Motion: Mr. Eckenwiler/Mr. Goodman)At M Street between 1st and 2nd Streets two parking spaces should be removed at the south side of the intersection. The commissioners voted to support this letter as well. (Motion: Mr. Goodman/Mr. Kazmierczak)
- 508 M Street, request for handicapped parking space for disabled resident—Mr. McCann described the request, which led to discussion of how carefully these handicapped spaces are checked out by DDOT, and that some of these reserved handicapped space applications could be fraudulent. Standards are needed. The commissioners nonetheless voted on this application. The vote was 3:0:3 (3 in favor; zero opposed; three abstentions). The motion passed. (Motion: Mr. Goodman/Mr. Kazmierczak)
- 600 1stStreet N.E.—Mr. McCann described the need for a smooth transition with one-way traffic and two-way cycle tracks on 1st Street between Columbus Circle and G Street. This will require no parking on the west side of 1st Street, a two-way cycle track on the east side, and widened sidewalks. Two parking spots might have to be removed to make a smooth transition. The commissioners voted unanimously to support a letter to DDOT. (Motion: Mr. Goodman/Mr. Eckenwiler)
- H Street performance parking grant—Mr. Goodman reported that money from performance parking would be used for tree boxes on K Street, wheel chair ramps, and bike racks. DDOT rejected the ANC 6C request for new bike lanes on 4thand 6thStreets.
Planning, Zoning, and Environment Committee (Comm Eckenwiler, chair)
Heritage Foundation request for 10-year renewal of parking lot between E and F Streets, 3rd and 4th Streets N.E.—Cary Kadlecek introduced the matter and said he was available to answer questions. Mr. Eckenwiler stated the extension relief had been granted in 1991, 1997, 2004. BZA did not honor the ANC 6C request at last renewal to renew every 7 years. He stated the ANC should review the parking situation in fewer than 10 years in light of the impact of new construction by Heritage of townhouses on Third Street. A community member stated the neighbors wanted to continue using the parking lot on evenings and weekends, that this was a good-neighbor gesture by Heritage, and that the majority of neighbors do not want to see construction in that parking lot. A member of the audience asked if ANC 6C had ever voted against a Heritage application. The commissioners responded that the townhouse project had divided the commissioners, and there was strong opposition until problems could be resolved, and amenities resulted for the community including bike racks. The commissioners voted to support the renewal. The vote was 5:1:0. (Motion: Ms. Wirt/Mr. Price)
Alcoholic Beverage Committee (Drew Courtney, chair)
Mr. Courtney described the situation at 237 2nd Street N.W. The owner of the previous restaurant at this location, My Brother’s Place, is the same owner who has applied for an ABRA license for a new restaurant at this location, Alibi. The former restaurant under the same ownership had a history of serving liquor to underage drinkers, unpaid fines and loss of liquor license at one point. ABRA inspectors also indicated that the applicant applied as a new application, when in fact it is the same owner, just a different name for the establishment. Given this record, the commissioners questioned the quality of the operation that could be expected from this ownership. The commissioners voted unanimously to send a letter to ABRA with the above-mentioned concerns. (Motion: Ms. Wirt/Mr. Eckenwiler)
Grants Committee (Sonte Ducote, chair)
J.O. Wilson grant—Ms. Ducote stated that this applicant had revised the application for a grant to construct a garden shed at the school. The grant is for $2,000. The commissioners voted unanimously to support the application pending documentation showing the shed is allowable on public space. (Motion: Mr. Kazmierczak/Mr. Goodman)
Ms. Ducote added the committee is working on materials for evaluating grants, including criteria for ranking applications and procedures for ensuring an objective system for reviewing applications. The committee has asked Gottlieb Simon, head of the Office of Advisory Neighborhood Commissions, to provide examples of other ANC grant procedures. The committee hopes to have its new materials ready for the July ANC 6C full-commission meeting. Ms. Wirt asked that the documents be sent to the commissioners in advance of the meeting to allow sufficient time for their review.
Parks and Events Committee (Comm. Goodman, interim chair)
Mr. Goodman described the concept of the NoMa “Midblock Meander” at North Capitol and First Streets, that would allow pedestrians to walk through courtyards of future buildings. The DC Council suggested this walk with retail along the path between North Capitol and First Streets. The Office of Planning has approved the plan. What is needed is a letter to the last building in this path, to be constructed by the D.C. Housing Authority. The committee asked for a letter from ANC 6C to DCHA requesting this meander plan be part of their building design. The commissioners voted unanimously to send the letter. (Motion: Mr. Goodman/Mr. Kazmierczak)
Mr. Goodman reported that although there was no quorum at the first committee meeting, they discussed committee structure and mission. They plan to reach out to NPS to continue Mr. Price’s work with the National Park Service, and will work with the 6C Transportation and Public Space Committee as needed. Future meetings will be the first Tuesday of each month at Kaiser Permanente, 700 2nd Street. Items coming before this committee in the near future include public use of facilities at the Hamilton School, underpass use, the Rock n Roll marathon, and park space at 5th and I Streets.
The meeting was adjourned at 8:46 p.m.