(Updated at 5 p.m.) Community leaders in Adams Morgan have shot down a development team’s revised proposal to bring a nine-story residential building to a historic property just west of Meridian Hill Park.
Advisory Neighborhood Commission 1C last night voted 6-1, with one abstention, to urge the District’s Historic Preservation Review Board to oppose a plan to redevelop the Meridian International Center grounds on 16th Street NW between Belmont Street and Crescent Place NW. The site includes the Meridian and White-Meyer houses, which were built between 1912 and 1919.
Designed by Jefferson Memorial architect John Russell Pope, the mansions won’t disappear under the proposal by Streetscape Partners and Westbrook Partners. Rather, a 110-unit residential complex would take over a parking area and other open land on the property.
The development team presented the plan at an ANC 1C meeting yesterday after more than a year working on alterations to a previous proposal that failed to win the commission’s approval and drew concerns from HPRB and locals over its size, among other issues.
Washington Parks and People is looking for volunteers to help spruce up Meridian Hill/ Malcolm X park tomorrow morning.
Volunteers will help park staff remove invasive plant species, clean up litter and trim trees at the popular park near Adams Morgan from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. tomorrow.
Organizers have asked volunteers to RSVP via e-mail. Washington Parks and People personnel will meet volunteers at the statue of Joan of Arc inside the park tomorrow morning.
The cleanup event is part of National Public Lands Day. This year’s Public Lands Day includes cleanup projects at more than 2,500 parks across the country.
A throng of people gathered earlier this morning and cheered in celebration at the sight of the Cuban flag waving in front of the country’s newly reopened embassy at 2630 16th Street NW
Diplomats lined the front wall of the embassy and cheered as decorated guards raised the red, blue and white banner.
Like most political ceremonies, the event included some protestors, too.
One man stepped out of his brown leather shoes, peeled off the top layer of his shirt and sprinted across the busy street. He then hopped a row of sidewalk barricades, ran toward the embassy gate and covered himself in fake blood. Officials detained the protestor at the gate.
Others held up banners and chanted anti-Cuba slogans.
Despite the jeers, most locals attending the ceremony seemed to welcome their new neighbors.
Alejandro Sánchez Nieto, who works a few blocks away, said he thinks the embassy will bring new people to Meridian Hill.
“You’ll have more people coming to the embassy for visas, which means they’re going to know the area and the other embassies around here,” Nieto said.
“Now that the embassy is restored to full potential, hopefully in 2016 during Embassy Day you will have the Cuban Embassy open to the public, which would be a big opportunity for people to visit this community,” added Nieto.