A meeting with DC officials to discuss parking regulations is planned for Tuesday, October 2 at 7 pm at The Dupont Hotel (1500 New Hampshire Avenue NW).
The meeting is in response to a discussion held last April between Dupont Circle Advisory Neighborhood Commission (ANC) 2B and DC officials on parking and methods various neighborhoods are using to ensure the most efficient use of limited street parking spaces. Tuesday’s meeting will build on the previous discussion and focus on specific parking options for the Dupont Circle neighborhood.
Since last April’s meeting, DDOT started its parking sign pilot program in the ANC2F/Logan area that lengthens restricted hours for visitor parking. The new signs allow for only residents with Zone 2 permits to park on the designated side of a street block from 7 am until midnight.
Tuesday’s meeting is open to the public.
From Tom Hay. Follow him on Twitter @Tomonswann or email him at Tom[AT]borderstan.com.
The enhanced Residential Parking Program (RPP) pilot program is starting to be implemented. Under this program, one side of a residential block is reserved for certain hours for local residents only (by DC Ward parking permits). (See ANC 2F Votes to Support New Parking Regs Benefiting Residents.)
Last week D.C. Department of Transportation (DDOT) employees were seen installing new signage on the 1400 block of Swann Street NW. Now, parking on the northern side of the block is reserved for residents with either Ward 1 or Ward 2 parking stickers from 7 am to midnight, seven days a week. The other side of the block is still available for parking to both residents and visitors under the current posted rules.
Pimp Your Parking Spot
A new website will help frustrated drivers find parking spaces, but only if you are in the market for a permanent (or at least monthly) rental arrangement. The site, parkatmyhouse.com, began in the UK and is just emerging stateside. WTOP has more info about the service and what to expect in terms of location and pricing in our area. It also provides info you can use if you have an alley spot you are not currently using.
BTW, don’t be a parking pig. Are you one?
Councilman Harry Thomas Likely to Plead Guilty
According to the The Washington Post, who got it from the courthouse files, Councilman Harry Thomas, Jr. was charged with embezzlement and filing a false tax return on Thursday. The type of filing indicates he has agreed to plea guilty, which corresponds with rumors that Thomas met with friends to discuss the sentence this week. Thomas is alleged to have embezzled over $300,000 of funds intended for youth sports programs between April 2007 and February 2009.
If you are wondering what he purchased with at least a portion of the funds, take your best guess based on his colleagues expenditures. If you guessed an expensive sport utility vehicle, you would be correct! Given his tax fraud, he also must forfeit a motorcycle and a Chevy Tahoe. Given how beholden our Councilmembers are to their expensive motor vehicles, is it any real wonder that DC’s public transportation is suffering from neglect and underfunding?
Single Tracking All Weekend on Metro
It’s almost as if it was on cue! WJLA reports that the Red, Orange, Blue and Green lines will all experience single-tracking in one or more locations this weekend. For those in Dupont headed north, your train will single-track to Friendship Heights. Green line folks around Petworth, expect delays as those trains single-track between Petworth and Ft. Totten stations. The work begins at 10 p.m. on Friday evening and will continue throughout the weekend.
Confederate History in Logan Circle
You may have seen a small, pretty red brick house sandwiched between an office building and apartment building in Logan Circle and wondered what on earth it was doing still intact in that location. A fun article (hey, I’m from Virginia and was raised by a U.S. History teacher, I think it’s fun) in the Washington Times Community section may indicate one reason why the home endures: it was the home of one rogue or heroic, depending on which side of the Mason-Dixon line you were raised on, Col. John Mosby. He was known as the Grey Ghost for the particular hit and run skill of his calvary unit and his Confederate greys.
You Can’t Beat the Price!
In case you missed the official announcement, the Dunkin’ Donuts at 14th and U Streets NW is open! And according to DCist, they’re giving out free medium coffee to everyone who visits through October 30, so get it while you can.
Good News for Drivers!
Amidst some things that nobody likes about our local government, the District has finally moved to a system that allows you to pay for parking from your phone! Greater Greater Washington reveals that there are now apps that you can use on your smartphone to pay, using the posted sign to give you the important number that identifies your particular spot.
Good News for Immigrants!
And speaking of the government taking a stand, according to Washington City Paper, Mayor Gray signed an executive order saying that DC Police won’t share information about arrestees’ immigration status with Immigration and Customs Enforcement. WCP points out that the FBI could still forward information over, but it’s still something for immigrant rights.
From Mike Kohn. Email him at [email protected] or find him on Twitter @mike_kohn.
Getting Crafty Wth It
Despite being cold and wet, Saturday’s Crafty Bastards Art and Crafts Fair was a well-attended event. The festival, now in its eighth year, featured more than 150 artists, a food court with local vendors and several food trucks. In addition to artisans, this year’s fair also hosted the DC State Fair, with homemade cupcakes and pies, as well as a homegrown “ugly vegetable” contest. Among the vendors was Project Runway season one winner Jay McCarroll, while just down the street at Town Tavern, hopeful hipsters auditioned for the next season of Real World. But, in case the rain deterred you from getting there and you want to buy something from one of the supporters later, here’s a look at all of the vendors from this year.
The Wells Fargo Wagon Is a-Comin’ Down the Street…
In less than stellar news from Washington City Paper, the new Wells Fargo in Adams Morgan at 18th Street and Columbia Road NW was robbed at gunpoint on Friday. It was so subtle that no one in the store (including a City Paper reporter) even knew it had happened until the teller locked the door.
POTUS in Action
President Obama made his second appearance at the annual Human Rights Campaign dinner and gave an engaging speech to the 3,000-plus attendees at the Convention Center. He referenced LGBT accomplishments during his presidency and took some jabs at his potential opponents, though he didn’t go so far as to fully endorse same-sex marriage equality, a slight disappointment. His full remarks are available at the MetroWeekly website.
Can’t Find a Spot?
There’s an app for that — but only if you live in Baltimore, at least for the time being. As Greater Greater Washington shared, two clever guys created an iPhone app called Parking Panda that lets people rent out their private spaces for as little as hours at a time, helping to reduce the stress of finding parking. If they can get 30 spaces, they’ll make their way down to DC, so spread the news!
Speaking of parking, apparently the District is now photographing the tickets that they leave for parking violations so people can’t claim that they never got the violation, according to DCist. They’re getting sneaky, aren’t they?
50 Nifty United States
I thought this was a fun project. A Greater Greater Washington reader biked all 50 avenues and put them into a video showing their landmarks. Worth a look if you have some time.
VIDA Fitness (Literally) Rolls Out the Red Carpet on U Street
David von Storch threw a party Saturday night to celebrate his Urban Adventures Companies’ flagship venue of gym-spa-salon-restaurant, VIDA, on U Street NW. There was a red carpet, spotlights, six floors of cocktails, Company Brewery beer, acrobats (!) – see above, and, yes, a fresh glimpse of the new rooftop pool — the pool that caused much consternation among residents of neighboring buildings when first proposed. (Unfortunately, the lighting in the pool area was too poor for clear photos.)
The event will billed as “A Night of Urban Adventure” — the premier launch party for David von Storch’s U Street lifestyle complex, including VIDA Fitness, Bang Salon, soon-to-open Penthouse Pool Club, Aura Spa and 901 Restaurant and Bar. Among the evening’s festivities were three cable-suspended performance artists from Cirque du Soleil (who flew in from Las Vegas) who performed from top-floor windows and down the side of the building.
Results Gym had formerly occupied the U Street VIDA space – up until early this year when VIDA completely gutted the interior and grew the space three levels.
Bye Bye DADT
At long last, the time is here for the official repeal of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell. Thanks to President Obama’s July signature, the policy will be coming to a close tomorrow, 60 days after the measure went through. Looking for ways to celebrate? Washington Blade has you covered with some great spots. Let us know if you have any alternatives for readers.
Those Dorm Kids
Catholic University might have thought it would be smooth sailing following its decision to institute same-sex dorms, citing a study that random hookups happen less frequently in those kinds of dorms. But that decision has since led to a conversation with the DC Office of Human Rights, according to DCist. At the instigation of law professor John Banzhaf, Catholic University now faces scrutiny and pressure in explaining how that policy does not violate the DC Human Rights Act. According to Banzhaf, “the District’s statute prohibits discrimination unless it is a ‘business necessity’ without which an institution could not function.” Yeah, good luck with that one.
Word has it that Dunkin’ Donuts will soon be up and running in the Borderstan ‘hood. U Street Girl caught word of the impending opening, so keep your fingers crossed. We’ll keep you posted with more details.
Parking for Good
We caught two interesting stories about turning your parking adventures in the District into some social good. The first comes from DCist, which encourages you to literally pay your parking meter change forward by passing any extra time along to the next person. The other comes from Greater Greater Washington, which discusses how a few officials opted to turn their Councilmember-only spaces downtown into parks for the day.
Way to go team Borderstan! You made it through not one, but two natural disasters this week. You deserve a medal. Or a cookie. Have any crazy stories from your week of horror? Did anyone actually go outside late last night? What did you do to pass the time during Irene? Let us know in the comments — and feel free to throw any photos you might have taken in the Borderstan Flickr pool.
An off-duty cop was involved in a slight altercation at the intersection of 1st and Pierce Streets NW. After driving drunk, the cop shot at the five people in the car, hitting one three times and hitting one other once. It would be bad enough, but two of the people in the car were trans, outraging the LGBT community and calling for Chief Kathy Lanier’s involvement. From the DC Trans Coalition: “This incident is just another in a long line of systemic violence that trans women, and particularly trans women of color, face on a daily basis.” Read more from DCist.
Metro Ups and Downs
Apparently WMATA is intalling some new lighting on the platforms! Seems like a good thing for the dark, dingy waiting areas, but the DCist reader who called it seemed to think it might actually be too bright for the platform. What do you think? Adding to the potential Metro woes, TBD reports on a potential protest from MetroAccess drivers. Apparently the drivers of those small buses that help people with disabilities feel that they work too many hours in unsafe conditions. Just another day in the life of WMATA, right?
Where Has All the Surface Parking Gone?
Sure, it does seem like there are an incredible amount of apartments around here, but what’s even more incredible is that good ones are still always in demand. That’s why the First Baptist Church of Washington is proposing a 9-story 228-unit apartment build at the corner of 17th and O Streets NW. The site is currently surface parking, and between that and the height (yes, we all know how D.C. loves its shorter buildings), the Church may see some opposition. Greater Greater Washington has the full scoop.
Networking for a Cause
In case you’re looking for a networking event that has a cool idea behind, check out the Young Professionals CANstruction Event at the National Building Museum tonight at 6:30. I had the privilege of participating over the weekend in CANstruction, an annual event where architecture firms build structures out of cans to benefit the Capital Area Food Bank, and I’ll be there tomorrow to talk about it. Come check out all the structures and bring some canned good to help the hungry!
But How Will We Get Down There?
Reports say that escalators at Dupont Circle (and Foggy Bottom for that matter — remember February’s collapse?) are soon to be going under for maintenance. According toWJLA, we’ll be without the escalator(s) for a year. The Washington Post mentions that we’re actually talking about the three escalators at the South entrance on the Circle. Despite the speculation, Metro has yet to indicate their exact plans, including when the repairs will begin. Expect them “soon.”
Who Cares About Public Transportation Anyway?
Don’t let Metro escalators get you down! Pretty soon, you might be able to pay significantly less to drive around town and park in crowded areas. Jack Evans, the Ward 2 Council representative (and yes, that’s our Ward) wants to go back on a controversial rate change to re-establish the price of parking from a few years back. Not only did Evans propose charging $1 per hour instead of the current $2, but he also wants to stop enforcing meters at 6:30 pm, three-and-a-half hours before they stop ticking now. The Examiner has the full scoop on this one.
Two Endorsements for Weaver in April 26 Special Election
With just days to go before the April 26 special election for the At-Large DC City Council seat, the Washington City Paper and Greater Greater Washington have endorsed candidate Bryan Weaver. Earlier this month The Washington Post endorsed candidate Patrick Mara; the lone Republican in the field of nine candidates. Borderstan profiled candidates Bryan Weaver, Patrick Mara and Josh Lopez. All polling locations will be open from 7 am to 8 pm next Tuesday.
Courtesy of Greater Greater Washington, here is interesting news for the on-the-street car parkers in the the Dupont-Logan-U Street area:
“DC has a secret law that only select residents know about: It’s actually legal to park closer to many corners than the signs say. Or actually, it used to be, but the law expired, according to Councilmember Tommy Wells’ office. Unfortunately, the DC Secretary doesn’t keep laws up to date online, so it’s difficult to get all the details… Kicking off election season, Councilmember Tommy Wells has introduced a bill to make it officially legal to park up to 25 feet from such intersections, and to within 10 feet at night. According to Wells’ press release, concerns about public safety prompted this effort to make parking near homes easier late at night.”
Get the details about corner parking in the evenings in David Alpert’s GGW full post. However, in our section of town, we all know the corners at which the parking enforcement officers will give you a pass or will ticket you. Some people refer to them as “legal illegal parking spots.”
A couple of locally oriented items this morning.
First, David Alpert at Greater Greater Washington picks his 10 favorites reporters in the mainstream media for coverage of traffic, transit and urban issues:
Here are ten reporters who’ve stuck out as doing a particularly good job in these areas on the urban issues we follow here on Greater Greater Washington.
There are some good reporters on GGW’s list; I follow several of them and picked up some tips on several more. My favorites on Alpert’s list (in no particular order) are Katie Pearce at the The Current, Mike DeBonis (always read him for DC politics and government) at Washington City Paper, Michael Neibaur at Washington Examiner (love his Twitter feed) and the reporters at The Washington Business Journal.
Regarding the WBJ: I cannot emphasize enough how much local business and development news we get from this weekly. It’s a must read in this house and we pick up great stuff in the Dupont-Logan-U Street are from it.
Second, those new DC parking rules that go into effect this month do impact one strip in the Borderstan area: the “U Street NW corridor” (Adams Morgan to the north, too). The moratorium on Saturday parking fees is lifted, so you will have to start feeding the meters all around town on Saturdays, too.