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by Tim Regan — August 29, 2015 at 7:30 am 2,655 1 Comment

2400 18th Street NW

(Updated at 12:33 p.m.) A man was shot in the head along a busy part of 18th Street NW early this morning, say D.C. Police.

Third District Commander Jacob Kishter said by e-mail today the victim of the shooting was taken to the hospital in critical condition.

Kishter added this afternoon that the shooting occurred in front of the Amsterdam Falafelshop (2425 18th St. NW) at approximately 2:47 a.m. this morning.

Madam’s Organ owner Bill Duggan said his son heard a single gunshot while bartending on the roof of his business at 2461 18th St. NW.

“We complained earlier to the police that they were all just standing in the street and not patrolling the sidewalk or the area in general,” Duggan added.

Several people took to Twitter this morning to discuss the shooting.

This story will be updated as more information is available.

Image via Google Street View

by Sean Meehan — August 28, 2015 at 4:30 pm 0

Down Dog Yoga (Photo via Twitter/ Down Dog Yoga)Down Dog Yoga, a local chain of yoga studios, held a class  in the Dupont Circle park to raise money for the Africa Yoga Project.

Participants in the 10 a.m. class were asked to donate $10 or more to the Africa Yoga Project online or at the event. The Africa Yoga Project teaches yoga to children in East Africa.

Representatives for Down Dog Yoga could not be immediately reached for comment, but a tweet about the event promised a “fun and sweaty” time.

Photo via Twitter/ Down Dog Yoga

by Sean Meehan — August 28, 2015 at 3:40 pm 152 0

Columbia Heights Day 2014 (Photo via Facebook/ Columbia Heights Initiative)

The Columbia Heights Initiative plans to make its 10th Columbia Heights Day festival the biggest street celebration yet.

The festival will take place on 11th Street NW between Park Road and Kenyon Street from noon to 6 p.m. on September 12. Organizers at Columbia Heights Initiative, a local business group that plans and hosts events around the neighborhood, are planning for nearly 12,000 people throughout the course of the festival. In addition to the usual food and music, this year’s festival will feature a beer garden sponsored by Meridian Pint, a carnival area for kids and an adult-sized obstacle course.

“This year is our 10 year anniversary, which is awesome, so we’re really trying to blow it out,” said Brianne Dornbush, a community representative for Columbia Heights Initiative.

For the first time this year, vendors at the fair will be divided into four themed areas: health and wellness, community organizations, art and transportation.

“In previous years we just kind of put vendors at tables and didn’t think much about the placement,” Dornbush said. “This year we took a different approach so that if someone is looking to better their health, for example, they’ll have 14 or so organizations in one place to help them do that.”

A carnival for kids will also be set up on the field of Harriet Tubman Elementary School, which will include games and bounce houses.

But adults won’t be left out of the inflatable fun. Columbia Heights Initiative plans to set up an inflatable obstacle course for adults along 11th Street. Teams can also sign up to compete in a Zorb soccer tournament, in which the top half of players bodies are inside giant, clear inflatable balls. The tournament will also be held at Harriet Tubman Elementary, and teams can register online.

The Columbia Heights Initiative is also planning other future events at the Harriet Tubman field, including Friday night movie screenings throughout the Fall and a Halloween party. The first movie screening will be Ghostbusters on Sept. 4.

Photo via Facebook/ Columbia Heights Initiative 

by Tim Regan — August 28, 2015 at 2:20 pm 0

Cairo_Liquor_StoreD.C.’s Alcoholic Beverage Regulation Administration (ABRA) announced on Monday it had lifted the liquor license moratorium in West Dupont for all businesses except nightclubs.

The board voted 6-0 on Aug. 12. to adopt the new rules for three years.

Though the original moratorium was due to expire on May 17, ABRA voted on May 13 to extend it for a period of 120 days, during which it would take testimony from members of the community.

West Dupont residents gathered to discuss  lifting the moratorium during a public hearing on July 22.

ANC 2B Commissioner Daniel Warwick, 2B-02, called on ABRA during the hearing to lift the moratorium on new restaurant, bar and tavern licenses, but extend it for nightclubs. He argued on behalf of his commission that lifting the moratorium on nightclub licenses could be disruptive to the peace, order and quiet of the neighborhood.

Warwick also noted that the only way for new businesses to enter the neighborhood is to purchase existing licenses, which are not always available. Warwick added that his ANC was concerned that the moratorium created a secondary market for liquor licenses that would discourage art galleries, distilleries, breweries, wineries and multi-purpose facilities from opening.

Former ANC 2B Commissioner Karyn Siobhan Robinson testified that the moratorium, including the ban on nightclubs, should be lifted entirely. Though Robinson acknowledged that nightclubs could sometimes disturb the peace, she argued that market forces prevented such businesses from flourishing in the area. Furthermore, Robinson said that maintaining the moratorium artificially inflates rent and prices for retailers.

But some residents who testified at the July 22 hearing said they did not support lifting the moratorium wholesale.

One resident said that several local businesses pose problems relating to noise and litter, and that lifting the ban on new nightclubs and taverns would only make the problem worse.

Another resident, whose balcony overlooks an alleyway, testified that he has witnessed patrons of a West Dupont business using drugs, urinating and “fornicating.” That resident agreed that lifting the ban on new tavern licenses would only increase that kind of behavior.

“With regard to peace, order and quiet, the testimony presented at the hearing as well as the proposal submitted by ANC 2B revealed that there are significant problems in the West Dupont neighborhood with regard to peace, order, and quiet, particularly with regard to late night noise, litter and public urination,” wrote the board in its decision.

“[But] the Board makes clear that it will not tolerate tavern licensees who operate in such a manner that their operations create a nightclub atmosphere,” it continued. “The Board will give great scrutiny to any licensing request that profoundly changes the nature and character of the neighborhood.”

ABRA summed up its decision thusly:

The Board appreciates the balance that must be struck between the interests of the residents in the neighborhood, and the interests that promote a nightlife economy. The Board recognizes that a diverse, dynamic and safe dining and entertainment environment is part of the fabric of the District, and yet, nightlife activity needs to be carefully managed in order to reduce antisocial behavior, noise, public disturbance and other problems.

The Board applauds the ANC’s efforts to solicit the community members’ perspectives on positive steps to transform the West Dupont’s neighborhood and improve urban vibrancy. Like the ANC, the Board believes that if managed properly, a thriving and safe nightlife can act as an economic engine by attracting new businesses and restaurants, diversifying the range of cultural offerings, creating employment opportunities, and increasing tourism. To this end, the Board is in agreement with the ANC that a new direction for the West Dupont moratorium that allows for responsible growth is warranted.

by Tim Regan — August 28, 2015 at 1:00 pm 0

Cell phone provider T-Mobile is trading one Connecticut Ave. NW storefront for another.

Moving crews could be seen earlier today removing boxes and retail fixtures from the T-Mobile store at 1330 Connecticut Ave. NW, and a sign on the door says the location is relocating to a space inside the office building at 1150 Connecticut Avenue NW.

The newly relocated store will open on Oct. 15.

by Tim Regan — August 28, 2015 at 11:10 am 0

Italian restaurant Odeon Cafe (1714 Connecticut Ave. NW) is changing its name and its menu.

Odeon’s general manager, Ben Triano, says the restaurant will become Madrid, a Spanish eatery with tapas, paella and a sangria bar, after the Labor Day holiday.

Last night, the eatery unveiled a portion of its new menu during a tasting party. The menu — which Triano stresses is just a taste of things to come — included fried calamari and paprika aioli, puff pastries stuffed with pepper marmalade and chorizo and a smattering of Spanish wines.

Triano says that the restaurant will be closed during the second week of September to train staffers, switch up the menu and finalize the interior renovations.

“We’re going to close for one week and reveal the final touch-ups,” Triano says. “We’re very excited.”

by Tim Regan — August 28, 2015 at 10:05 am 210 1 Comment

Police CarTwo thieves robbed a man at gunpoint in Petworth earlier this morning, say D.C. Police.

Police say two robbers held a man at gunpoint and stole his bike near the intersection of 14th and Upshur streets NW around 9:13 a.m. today.

The alleged thieves were last seen turning right on 13th Street NW, say police.

by Sean Meehan — August 28, 2015 at 9:00 am 123 0

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Boutique Buy — Red Lion Hotels will buy The Quincy, a 99-room boutique hotel in Dupont Circle. The Quincy will change its name to Hotel RL as part of the sale. [Washington Business Journal]

Smoke Signals — Washington City Paper’s Will Sommer obtained some internal documents showing how Metro responded to the smoke incident that left one rider dead in January. “Earlier this week, WMATA asked LL to return the CD in exchange for redacted copies of the files,” Sommer writes. “No thanks, said LL.”  [Washington City Paper]

Petworth Shop to Close After Synthetic Drug Bust — A business at 800 Upshur Street NW will close after police found more than 500 packets of synthetic drugs there. [WTOP]

Pop-up Alert! — A vegan restaurant by the owner of Sticky Fingers is set to debut its wood-fired margarita stromboli, chocolate-espresso torta, and mushroom and spinach spanikopita next month on 14th Street NW. [Borderstan]

by Tim Regan — August 27, 2015 at 3:40 pm 123 0

Fare-Well-dessertFINAL

A vegan restaurant by the owner of Sticky Fingers bakery is set to debut its wood-fired margarita stromboli, chocolate-espresso torta, and mushroom and spinach spanikopita next month on 14th Street NW.

HillNow, a Borderstan sibling publication, reported this afternoon that forthcoming eatery Fare Well will pop up at G by Mike Isabella (2201 14th St. NW) for dinners on Sept. 21 and 22.

The restaurant is expected to open on the H Street corridor later this year.

The pop-up’s dinner menu has a dozen items, including small plates, mains and sweets. In addition to the stromboli, torta and spanikopita, the food includes cashew and almond burrata, roasted pepper and tofu frittata strata, and berry shortcake, among other dishes.

Fare Well also will have complimentary bread and infused olive oil for customers who attend the pop-up dinners.

Locals interested in the meals can make reservations by calling G at 202-234-5015. Seating begins at 6 p.m.

Photo via Instagram/Fare Well

by Sean Meehan — August 27, 2015 at 8:50 am 0

Moving the Beach Underground — Dupont Underground director Braulio Agnese is asking artists for proposals of site-specific installations using the 650,000 plastic balls from the National Building Museum’s “Beach” exhibit. [Washington Post]…

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