You dug out the parking spot, made it look nice and clean. Sure, it took 45 minutes, but you are meticulous. And now that you’ve cleared the snow, you’re ready to head out. You get in your car, turn the key, and . . .
Wait. You just spent all this time shoveling snow. What if some jerk swoops in and steals your spot when you leave? You can’t let someone else mooch off of your hard work. Maybe you should kindly but firmly mark your territory with a well-placed lawn chair, or a cone, or a milk crate or a sign. (more…)
Commissioners with Dupont Circle’s ANC 2B had some strong words for Claudia’s Steakhouse (1501 K St. NW) over allegations that the restaurant repeatedly blocked a sidewalk and bike lane along 15th Street NW several times since it opened in June.
Marlon Alfaro, general manager at Claudia’s; David Bowing, assistant general manager at Claudia’s; and Ben Tesfaye, valet parking manager for Claudia’s valet company, U Street Parking, attended the ANC’s monthly meeting on Tuesday to request that two metered parking spaces near the restaurant be allocated for evening valet parking use.
“[The restaurant] is located in an area where parking is difficult,” Tesfaye said. “There are garages in the area, but unfortunately they do close early.”
“We’re looking at eight to ten cars a night,” he continued. “Two, three people per car, spending $35 or $40, that’s a lot of revenue for the restaurant.”
But ANC 2B chair Noah Smith had some criticisms for the steakhouse’s previous operations along that stretch of 15th Street. (more…)
Members of a Logan Circle church are up in arms over a plan to designate several newly created parking spaces near their house of worship as Zipcar-only spots.
Dozens of parishioners from the John Wesley African Methodist Episcopal Zion Church (1615 14th St. NW) showed up to Wednesday night’s ANC 2F meeting at the Marriott Marquis in Logan Circle to loudly weigh their concerns about a request to establish “2-3 Zipcar-only street sparking spaces on the north side of Corcoran St. NW.”
Zipcar, which as recently as 2013 housed 20 vehicles in the lot that was later developed into the Corcoran at 14th, said the three requested spaces would help the company better service its customers in Logan Circle, one of its most popular service areas.
“We’re trying to replace what was a 20-space lot with really three spaces,” said Scott Hall, Zipcar’s D.C. area general manager. “We’ve been unable to find any replacements, private, public, anything. This has been the only possible solution for us to serve our membership.”
“I would rather have the residents have the parking spaces,” said ANC 2F chair John Fanning. But commissioner Kate Gordon, 2F-01, pointed out that, even if the spaces aren’t allocated for Zipcar’s use, there’s no guarantee that residents could actually use them.
“I’m always in favor of street parking,” Gordon said. “But the loss of that Zipcar lot has meant that more people have had to go out and buy cars or make other arrangements.”
“I would like to see us come up with a compromise,” she continued. “I don’t necessarily want to lose three potential parking spaces, but one or two we could absolutely allocate to Zipcar.”
Keith Spinner, John Wesley Church’s parking and transportation committee chairman, said in response that designating any spots as Zipcar-only would deprive the church’s congregation of parking spaces they originally planned on using.
“Right now, we have one spot, and that’s for the pastor,” Spinner said. “Our first lady has nowhere to park. Our secretary has nowhere to park.” (more…)
The District is almost done with residential street sweeping — and the accompanying parking restrictions — for the year.
D.C. Department of Public Works crews end their street cleaning tomorrow and don’t intend to do it again until March 1. Drivers can park along neighborhood sweeping routes without having to worry about moving their cars during that period.
DPW workers then will focus their attention on leaf collection, which begins Monday and ends Jan. 9. Crews are expected to remove leaves in each D.C. neighborhood at least twice. More details on the agency’s collection schedule are online.
As part of leaf collection season, DPW employees also will pick up Christmas trees from Dec. 26 to Jan. 8.
Though the D.C. budget approved earlier this year called for parking meter enforcement in some areas of the city to occur from 7 a.m. to midnight, a new story by WTOP says the change in hours likely won’t take effect until next year.
When the changes do take effect, Adams Morgan and U Street will be among eight “premium demand zones,” that will have longer hours of parking enforcement and more costly meters than most other parts of the District.
The zones, which also include the National Mall, Georgetown and Penn Quarter, have meters that charge $2 per hour. Outside of the areas, meters charge 75 cents per hour and operate from 7 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.
Parking spots across the District today were converted into miniature parks for D.C. PARK(ing) Day, but few of the tiny parks had room for a bike path like the one set up by Rails to Trails Conservancy on New Hampshire Avenue NW near Dupont Circle.
The Conservancy, a national organization that advocates for bike and walking trails, built the parklet in two parking spaces at 1300 New Hampshire Ave. NW, near their Dupont Circle offices. The parklet, which features a roughly 20-foot-long “bike path” lined with real sod, is part of the conservancy’s effort to advocate for “active transportation,” including biking, walking and skateboarding.
Milo Bateman, the conservancy’s manager of membership operation, said that turnout to the small park was good. The organization gave out free t-shirts, bike accessories, pedometers and popsicles to all who showed up.
Amy Kapp, the editor-in-chief of Rails to Trails’ quarterly magazine said that people weren’t only turning out for the free goodies.
“Everyone has been really interested in what we do,” she said. “It feels good that people are asking about our overall mission and where trails are located.”
Kapp also said that a lot of visitors to the “parklet” talked about their desire for more protected bike lanes in the city.
From David McAuley. Email him at david[AT]borderstan.com.
At the Advisory Neighborhood Commission (ANC) 2F/Logan Circle meeting last week the Rev. Vernon A. Shannon of the John Wesley AME Zion Church (14th and Corcoran Streets NW) asked for the commission to support a shift of the northbound 14th Street bicycle lane as it passes by the church building.
Members of the church, he said, were getting ticketed when they double-parked in the bicycle lanes while preparing to depart in funeral processions. The Rev. Shannon previously brought this problem to the ANC’s attention during its March community forum on Sunday parking. There is a long tradition in DC of churchgoers double parking near churches.
Although the church and DC Department of Transportation have worked around the issue, a solution is still to be reached.
From David McAuley. Email him at david[AT]borderstan.com.
Advisory Neighborhood Commission (ANC) 2F‘s Community Development Committee previewed possible changes to local parking regulations on March 27.
The announced topic was the Enhanced Residential Parking Pilot (ERPP) program, which was implemented last year in Logan Circle. But the discussion wandered to other topics, including citizens’ personal complaints about parking, the difficulties that Logan Circle churches are have with parking (the subject of last month’s meeting) and alternate side of the street parking regulations for street cleaning.
Sherry Kimball, constituent services director for Ward 2 Councilmember Jack Evans, mentioned that plans were in the works to extend the premium demand zone for parking further up 14th Street NW, extending the hours that drivers must feed the meter. The premium demand zone currently ends at M Street NW, but will extend well into Borderstan if the proposed changes go through.
All metered parking spaces within the premium demand zone are in operation until 10 pm, as compared to 6:30 pm for the rest of the city, including (for now) Borderstan. The DC government will soon announce a 30-day comment period on this proposed change.
Joel Heisey, a Community Development Committee member, observed that resident parking permits were currently valid throughout entire wards, meaning that a resident of Logan Circle could, for example, use the resident parking permit to park as far away as Georgetown or Foggy Bottom. He asked Damon Harvey of the District Department of Transportation if there were plans to restrict the parking permits to ANC areas. Harvey said yes, but that he expected resistance to such a change.
“We are looking at it,” Harvey said. “But it is not a slam dunk.”
A member of the public from Columbia Street NW remarked on the need to personally go to police stations to get Visitor’s Parking passes.
“In an era when you can print out your boarding pass, you should be able to print out your parking pass,” he said.
Community Development Committee member Joyce Cowan endorsed this idea, but it is not clear if there are any plans to make it a reality.
The meeting was the second of three scheduled community forums on parking. The final meeting will be held on Wednesday, April 24, at the Washington Plaza Hotel on Thomas Circle. The announced topic is visitor parking.
From Dito Sevilla. Email him at dito[AT]borderstan.com, follow him on Twitter @DitoDC.
If you drive a car in the District of Columbia, eventually you’re going to have to find a place to park it. As a longtime DC resident I have learned when and where I can and cannot park. I know where hidden spaces are located and the best times to park in them.
I have also come to know other less than legal spots, and relish in their convenience to risk of ticket ratio. Expert though I am, there are some streets so mislabeled and jumbled, signs so confusing, redundant and contradictory that the risk of getting ticketed is incalculable.
Usually, my car — like so many others belonging to non-commuters — remains safety parked in the same space for weeks, sometimes months. However now that city street cleaning has resumed I am forced to move it at least twice a week.
Mondays and Tuesdays in my neighborhood mean that between 9:30 and 11:30 am there is no place to park at all. So I often use the time to visit a Target, or make a Costco run, picking up enough toilet paper to last all year. Incidentally, if anyone is making Chicken Picatta, I have several gallons of capers left.
Meanwhile, if I am lucky enough to get back into the city before noon I can find a space close to my house with relative ease. Unless three homes on Q Street are under construction… along with interminable renovations on Church Street… and another home on 17th being moved into, or out of at that time. Parking becomes impossible as residents kindly abuse their “Emergency No-Parking Signs” — but more on that in another article.
I return into the city, do a couple loops around my block and suddenly my understanding of legal, illegal, convenient and possible becomes very muddled. Really, is that what that says? When, where? I read the signs as if I have never been to Washington.
I try to make sense of the alien math used to limit times and distances from curbs, intersections and crosswalks. Everywhere I look another regulation discourages the act of parking altogether. It’s as if the city itself wants me to remain in perpetual motion.
“No Parking,” that’s clear enough, but why is the red arrow pointing directly at a green arrow advertising “2-Hour Parking, Zone 2 Residents Exempt.” Does that mean that if I live in Zone 2 I can park there? Doubtful. I’ll just keep circling.
It is then that I realize: no two streets are labeled the same; it’s a complete mess. I took pictures, of course, because who could believe me. The president lives but nine blocks away, and we can’t agree on where and when we can and cannot park? Really? I’m well acquainted with the District’s third-world mentality in all things regulatory, but I think that even they could draft parking guidelines that exhibit a modicum of equanimity to all drivers.
So I ask, readers, am I wrong? Is your street clearly labeled? Has every ticket you’ve received been fair? Did it make sense to you? Was that meter really expired? Was the posted sign you ignored really “clearly posted?”
I have included some of my photographic findings (above), and rather than try to explain them, I will let you decide what they each have or do not have in common. In a city where inches matter, who rules?
From David McAuley. Email at david[AT]borderstan.com
A community forum on Sunday parking in the Logan Circle area brought a message from the DC government that “churches must work on off-street parking,” as well as many complaints from the church-going community. The forum was held Wednesday evening, February 27, as part of the monthly meeting of the Community Development Committee of Advisory Neighborhood Commission (ANC) 2F.
As part of a presentation at the beginning of the meeting District Department of Transportation (DDOT) program manager Damon Harvey said that “churches must work on off-street parking.”
He returned to this idea many times while responding to citizen complaints, saying that the DDOT will work with churches to identify possible sites for nearby off-street parking. Harvey said that special parking arrangements for local residents are “a good idea,” but they could possibly be lifted for part of Sunday.
Harvey also pointed out that, after DDOT’s Enhanced Residential Permit Parking (ERPP) program was extended to Logan Circle last year, his office identified 50 new parking spaces in ANC2F for use on Sunday morning. These spaces are on streets that are heavily used during the work week, when parking is forbidden. They are now signposted as usable on Sunday mornings.
The ERPP program reserves one side one a block for cars with resident parking stickers between the hours of 7 am and midnight. The other side of the block is open to visitors for limited amounts of time.
Many members of the public, both church leaders and members of congregations, used the forum to bring their complaints about the state of parking near churches to the attention of the board. Some complained that the Sunday morning hours for the 50 parking spaces were not long enough, as church activity often started early in the morning and went on until the evening. One attributed increased parking problems to recent bicycle-friendly measures, saying that “the bicycle people are very powerful”.
The Rev. Vernon A. Shannon of the John Wesley AME Zion Church (14th and Corcoran Streets NW) testified that cars participating in a funeral at a church had been ticketed because they were double-parked in the bicycle lane on 14th Street, in spite of what Shannon understood to be promises to the contrary. Harvey replied that, while churches could apply for temporary permits for curbside parking for funerals, double-parking in bike lanes was always going to be ticketed.
The Rev. Lane Davenport of the Church of the Ascension and Saint Agnes (Massachusetts Avenue and 12th Street NW) called for the full ANC to recommend the lifting of ERPP in the Logan Circle area on Sundays from 7am to 2pm. He characterized the ERPP as “privatizing a public space for residents.”
Wednesday’s Community Forum was the first in a series of three dedicated to discussion on parking issues with input from the public. The next meeting will be on Wednesday, March 27, and will address the ERPP. The final meeting will be on Wednesday, April 24, and will address visitor parking.
From Luis Gomez. Catch his photos at One Photograph A Day. Follow him on Twitter @LuisGomezPhotos.
The District’s Department of Transportation (DDOT) started a parking sign pilot program in the ANC2F/Logan area that lengthens restricted hours for visitor parking a couple of months ago.
The program will be extended to Ward 1 over the next few weeks. These restrictions will extend to ANCs 1A, 1B and 1C (ANC 1D opted out of the ERPP program). One side of the street will have RPP restrictions, and the other side will have enhanced restrictions. Most of the U Street corridor is in Ward 1.
The program is referred to as the Enhanced Residential Permit Parking (ERPP) program. It protects parking for neighborhood residents by designating one side of the street as resident only parking from 7 am to 8:30 pm, Monday to Friday.
The new signage for the ERPP program will be posted on blocks with traditional Residential Permit Parking (RPP) in the next few weeks. Crews will be working on an accelerated schedule to install about 2,500 new signs on approximately 550 neighborhood blocks included in the program. The installation will begin on or about November 17.
The District’s Department of Transportation (DDOT) is implementing a parking sign pilot program in the ANC2F/Logan area that 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. For example, on the 1400 block of Corcoran Street NW, the restrictions are on the north side of the street.
Restrictions in Place
The following streets and blocks already have these new signs or soon will have them, according to DDOT:
- M Street NW: blocks 900, 1000, 1100, 1200, 1300
- N Street NW: blocks 900, 1000, 1100, 1200, 1300, 1400
- O Street NW: blocks 900, 1000, 1100, 1200
- P Street NW: blocks 900, 1000, 1100, 1200, 1300
- Q street NW: blocks 1100, 1200, 1300, 1400
- R Street NW: blocks 1100, 1200, 1300, 1400
- S Street NW: blocks 1100, 1200, 1300, 1400
- T Street NW: 1400 block
- 10th Street NW: blocks 1100, 1200, 1300, 1400
- 11th Street NW: blocks 1200, 1300, 1400
- 12th Street NW: blocks 1100, 1200, 1300, 1400, 1500
- 13th Street NW: blocks 1300, 1500, 1600, 1700
- 15th Street NW: blocks 1100, 1200, 1300, 1400, 1500, 1600, 1700
- Corcoran Street NW: blocks 1300, 1400
- Swann Street NW: 1400 block
- Riggs Street NW: 1300 block
- Church Street NW: 1400 block
- Vermont Avenue NW: blocks 1300, 1500, 1600
- Rhode Island Avenue NW: blocks 1300, 1100
- Columbia Street NW: 1400 block
Stay tuned to Borderstan.com for more updates on parking restrictions in the area.
Many people likely recall the “parking wars” that have plagued the Logan Circle neighborhood over the past several years. A quick primer goes something like this: Logan is home to both a goodly number of residents and a goodly number of churches. Since many of these churches are located along otherwise residential blocks, parking on Sundays (and other days, depending upon the schedule of the church) can be a bit messy. OK, sometimes more than a bit. It’s not uncommon to drive along R St., 13th St., Vermont Ave. and other streets on Sunday mornings and see a number of cars blocking alleys, driveways, intersections, handicapped ramps, and so on.
From the D.C. Department of Public Works:
The DC Department of Public Works (DPW) announced today how services will be affected in observance of Labor Day on Monday, September 1, 2008.
- Trash and Recycling Collections: There will be no trash and recycling collections. All Monday trash and recycling collections will “slide” to the next day. Trash and recycling containers should be put out for collection no earlier than 6:30 pm the night before collection and removed from public space by 8 pm on the day(s) of collection.
- Parking Enforcement: DPW will suspend enforcement of parking meters, residential parking, and rush hour lane restrictions. It also will suspend towing of abandoned vehicles.
- Ft. Totten: Ft. Totten Trash Transfer Station will be closed Monday. It will reopen Tuesday for residents to bring bulk trash.
- Other Services: Other services that will be suspended for Labor Day include scheduled street and alley cleaning, graffiti removal, and nuisance abatement.
- Household Hazardous Waste/E-Cycling/ Shredding: The Benning Road Trash Transfer Station, at 3200 Benning Road, NE , and the Ft. Totten Trash Transfer Station at 4900 Bates Road, NE, are open every Saturday from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. to receive residents’ unwanted toxic items, such as pesticides, batteries and motor oil. Electronics, including televisions, computers and cell phones, will be accepted. Residents also may bring up to five boxes of personal paper documents and credit cards to be shredded for free.