Saturday, December 29, 2007

Great Streets: Anacostia

These are the changes proposed by the Great Streets Initiative, an infrastructure redevelopment program that was supposed to have started this past fall, but has been pushed back again. I also just noticed that they put out a very comprehensive design report (images, renderings, examples, descriptions) in November, which you can access Here - definitely check out the link.

The thing that frustrates me the most at this point is that there are no plans to underground the overhead utility lines - something I plan to formally argue for in the near future.

For more information, check out the MLK Great Streets website

photos by DG-rad
(posted from Vellore, India - that is how oddly dedicated I am...)

Sunday, December 23, 2007

I will be in India for the next 3 weeks so will unfortunately not be blogging very regularly.

Have a Very Merry Christmas and cheers! to a Happy New Year!

photo by DG-rad

Friday, December 21, 2007

Today is the last day to VOTE for Anacostia on!

Winners will be announced January 1, 2008, and I certainly hope they announce Anacostia!

Thursday, December 20, 2007


the chain-link fence does not conform to the historic code

Our Lady of Perpetual Help Catholic School on V Street SE is not enrolling, despite the message on its sign. Rather, it is sitting unused, prime for redevelopment, and is a total blight on my street.

According an administrator:

The school building is not operating this year – enrollment at the two campuses (Morris Road and V Street) had fallen significantly over the past few years, and so the school consolidated with another at the end of the last school year.

We have not yet finalized plans for the V Street property at this time.
Let's hope they get on that soon. And if no plans exist, sell it.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Take this with a grain of salt, please:

The White Man's Guide to Anacostia

I'm not really sure why it is called the white man's guide, but because it exists, and is about our neighborhood, I felt it should be posted. The statistics are probably made up - especially considering that our neighborhood is not "really, really dangerous" as this guide claims.

Gridskipper is an "Urban Travel Guide" to a variety of cities around the world.

As always, comments are encouraged.

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PS - Don't forget to VOTE for Anacostia on every day through this friday!

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Suntrust on Good Hope

Before(ish) and After: I forget what it looked like before before...

photos by DG-rad

Friday, December 14, 2007

New Poll!

Vote now for your Top Choice for a development team for Poplar Point! Poll is on the top right side of this page.

...please leave your reasons why in the comments...

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PS - Don't forget to VOTE for Anacostia on every day until next friday!

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Poplar Point Finalists Unveiled

Tonight's meeting at Birney Elementary was interesting. I was not wowed - but also not disheartened. Here is a very basic breakdown of the final four:

1. Archstone Smith / Madison Marquette
-includes possibility of soccer stadium.
-Has the general look and feel of a suburban lifestyle center. Not much effort to weave any sort of urban cohesive sense into the site.

Archstone Proposal (notice all the big parking decks, and how it turns its back on Historic Anacostia)

2. Clark Realty
-includes the possibility of soccer stadium.
-They do something no other team attempts - actually building a platform over 295 to physically bridge the gap between Anacostia and Poplar Point. I support the platform 200%.
-Create a central park to rival New York's, to which one woman in the audience yelled out "Oh No you can't make it as good as New York Central Park!"

Some pics:

Site plan looks awesome:

I really like this rendering because it shows how truly big Poplar Point is. The strange looking building on the water is the National Hall of the Environment, where "government, business", etc will meet on environmental sustainability issues...

...and also looks oddly like Calatrava's Tenerife Opera House

3. Forest City Washington
-The most realistic and forward-looking plan: they do not pretend that they own all of Poplar Point, nor any outlying areas.
-Their call to the city: "Pick a partner, not a plan. Plans change." They could not be more right. These plans will change dramatically. We are not supposed to choose the team based on the exact plan they showed tonight.
-Unique community benefits package: in addition to creating tons of jobs, they pledged to open up an office in Anacostia, as well as put $1 million towards a real estate development apprentice and summer internship program for local youth.
-also made the point that their plan can include a soccer stadium, but that, paraphrased, get real it ain't gonna happen before 2010.

FCW's preliminary plan:

4. Mid-City Urban / General Growth Properties
-kept boasting about GGP developing 200 malls across America. Thank you for effectively ruining 200 places across America, but I'd rather you not ruin Poplar Point.
-most boring presentation - nothing popped. I remember yawning.

no, Mid-City, you don't own the land at the Metro station..

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At this point, I am in support of Clark Realty and Forest City Washington's plans. Based on Forest City's history, I know they would do an amazing job and the project would be world-class. I just really want that platform over 295...

Better pics and renderings when I can get them.

For more, read the Washington Post's article

NBC 4 has a slideshow of some of the plans Here

Good article from Washington Biz Journal

Monday, December 10, 2007

Here is the flyer announcing Wednesday's meeting where the four finalists will unveil their plans for Poplar Point.

Click to enlarge
I know it isn't technically in our neighborhood, but has anyone been to the new Giant?

We still need a full-service grocery store in Anacostia!

I don't care for a suburban-style grocery in Anacostia. I'm much more thinking urban-style, ala Logan Circle Whole Foods, O Street Market Giant (future), and CityVista Safeway! We definitely have the developable land.

Saturday, December 1, 2007

not sure what happened... but definitely photo-worthy.

PS - Did you VOTE today?