Monday, January 31, 2011

Why is Capital BikeShare usage low East of the River

(Photo from

A map of Capital Bikeshare usage patterns makes it obvious that stations east of the Anacostia River get relatively little usage. However, the map does not tell us why ridership is low.

The discussion here over the map triggered some knee-jerk reactions to abandon the program East of the River. Others argued that the stations are not used much, but they are being used.

Here are some reasons why ridership is likely low east of the river:

Thomas and Catania at HCCA Meeting

(Photos from

UPDATED 2/5/11 at 10:00AM: Kwame Brown had to cancel due to an emergency. In Lieu of Chairman Brown, we will have Councilmembers Harry Thomas and David Catania.

DC Council Chairman Kwame Brown will be the guest speaker in his home community of Hillcrest this Saturday.

Hillcrest Community Civic Association Meeting
Saturday February 5, 2011 from 10am-12pm
Hillcrest Recreation Center

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Community Meeting #2: Walmart coming to Ward 7

UPDATE 1/26/11 at 12:00 PM: The meeting has been postponed until further notice.

Wednesday January 26 at 6:30 pm
Arts & Technology Academy auditorium
Blaine and 53rd Sts, NE

Questions from the 1st meeting are posted on the Capitol View Web site. In addition to a presentation by Walmart, a panel has been set up to answer your questions and respond to your concerns. The following have been confirmed for the panel (other invitations are outstanding):

Keith Morris (Walmart)
Kerry Smyser (DCHA)
Anthony Rodgers (A&R via Derek Ford)
Douglas Stallworth (WMATA)
Maxine Brown-Roberts (Office of Planning)
Jeff Jennings & Gabe Onyeador (DDOT)
Linda Grant & William Howland (DPW, Howland tentative)

Friday, January 21, 2011

Guess what's coming to Ft Davis Shopping Center???

At the ANC 7B meeting this evening, Chris LoPiano from City Interests announced that Fort Davis Shopping Center has a new tenant. Construction on the interior of the space will begin in March. The new tenant will move in around Late-Spring. I know you are all excited and I'm dragging out the announcement.... hehe. I need to build suspense.

If you recall back in June, the Fairfax Village community sent me ideas for things they want to see at Fort Davis Shopping Center and things they do NOT want to see. That list was provided to City Interests.... and.... without further ado, please give a warm Ward 7 welcome to.... our newest business..... (okay... I'm going to spit it out).... FlexCare, which is going to be a community pharmacy located at 3857 Alabama Ave SE.

Vivan Ayuk, the owner, talked to the community about the products and services they are going to provide. FlexCare will offer prescription and over-the-counter medicines, flu shots, medical equipment (such as crutches, walkers, wheelchairs), greeting cards, and limited inventory of beauty aids. In addition they will provide personalized services such as counseling on all prescriptions, wellness screenings (hypertension, diabetes, cholesterol), emergency after hour prescription services, free delivery, and others.

Ms. Ayuk assured the community that her prices would be competitive with CVS and other pharmacies in the area. Ms V is welcoming Flexcare with open arms. I look forward to walking across the street to fill a prescription and purchase over-the-counter medicines.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Ward 7 Democrats Meeting Saturday

Ward 7 Democrats Meeting
Saturday January 22, 2011
10:00 am - noon
Hillcrest Recreation Center
3100 Denver St., SE

Click here for more information on the Ward 7 Democrats via facebook.

More photos MLK Day of Service - Pope Branch Clean-up

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

MLK Day of Service - Pope Branch Clean-up

Over 200 volunteers came out of the Pope Branch Clean-up as part of the Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service. We collected several bags of trash, in addition to large items such as TVs, bikes, propane tanks, mattresses, and tables. Several organizations were there to support the clean-up: Pope Branch Alliance, Anacostia Waterfront Initiative, Groundworks Anacostia, Sierra Club, Youth Build, Conservation Corps, DC Water, DPW, and USAID. Those are the ones I remember off my head.
Volunteers braving the cold

Ms. Dolly Davis (Twining) and Me

Volunteers getting their instructions for the day

Mr. Irv Sheffey (Hillcrest) from the Sierra Club

More volunteers

Trash collected by my team

More trash collected by my team

Trash collected by Team 1

Trash Collected by Team 1

Mr. Barry Carey from DPW (nice to put a face to someone I always bother)

Ms. Trish Chittams (Twining) and me

DPW picking up all the trash we collected

Monday, January 17, 2011

Remembering Martin Luther King, Jr.

Location Change - PSA 606 Meeting

The January PSA 606 Meeting has been relocated to the 6D Substation.

PSA 606 Meeting

Wednesday January 19, 2011, 6:00 pm
MPD 6D Substation
2701 Pennsylvania Ave SE

On Saturday we had two attempted break-ins in Fairfax Village IV in the wee hours of this morning. One at 3907 Penn Ave around 1 am and one at 2000 Fort Davis St around 4 am. Fortunately the additional lighting we added last month allowed the one of the residents to provide a good description of the suspect to police.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Funeral Services for William Lockridge

The funeral services for the late Mr. William Lockridge (Ward 8 State Board of Education member) will be on Thursday, January 20th at Temple of Praise Church, 700 Southern Avenue, SE, Washington, DC 20032, (202) 561-0100.

Viewing: 10-11 am

Memorial Service where friends/family can give tributes: 11 am - 12 pm

Funeral Service: Noon

In lieu of flowers, the Lockridge Family requests that contributions be made to:
The William Lockridge Educational and Scholarship Fund
P.O. Box 54012
Washington DC 20032

Friday, January 14, 2011

Proposed Polling Locations for Special Election

View Proposed DC Voting Centers in a larger map

The Washington Examiner broke the story that the Board of Elections and Ethics is considering reducing the number of polling stations to 16 (2 per ward) for the Special Election scheduled for April 26th (which is the day after Ms V's birthday!!!). Since then there have been debates on twitter on what's more important the reducing the cost of the Special Election or providing residents with as many locations possible. Layered on this debate is the fact that special elections have low turn-out.

Ms V is concerned about the Anacostia Library location in Ward 7. While it is in Ward 7, it's better serves Ward 8. There is Metro Bus access, however those of us living in the Southern part of Ward 7 would not have 1 seat ride (i.e. we would have to take more than 1 bus) to the Anacostia Library. In addition, there isn't much on-street parking in that area.

The challenge with Ward 7 is many of the DC-owned locations are in relatively obscure locations on top of the fact that our bus service lacks seamless connectivity. Despite all that I'd like to offer some suggestions for existing BOEE precincts that are at least more central for Ward 7 residents. Obviously they aren't all government-owned

* Randle Highlands Elementary School
* Sousa Middle School
* Fort Davis Recreation Center
* St. Francis Xavier Church
* Pennsylvania Ave Baptist Church

What are your thoughts, neighbors?

Thursday, January 13, 2011

East of the River Loses a Legend

(photo from

Veteran D.C. community and education activist William Lockridge, known for his determination and chronic impatience to get things done, died Jan. 12 of respiratory failure at George Washington University Hospital.

The 63-year-old had been hospitalized since suffering a stroke at his home in Southeast Washington last week.

Mr. Lockridge spent more than 25 years in public and community service in wards 7 and 8, the areas of Northeast and Southeast Washington predominantly east of the Anacostia River. He represented Ward 8 on the D.C. State Board of Education.

For the full article, Click Here

Tell the world what you think

Thanks to everyone that came out to our first Community dinner at Thai Orchid's Kitchen. We had several generations represented. The communities in Ward 7 that we had represented: Fairfax Village, Hillcrest, Twining, Capitol View, Penn Branch, Deanwood, Benning Heights, and Fairlawn. We also had community members from Ward 5, 6, and 8. I'm sure if I forgot one you all will let me know!!!

Please take time to tell the world what you think of Thai Orchid's Kitchen (and other Ward 7 businesses) via Yelp. To add to Thai Orchid's Kitchen Yelp page, Click here.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Provide feedback

Please check out the DRAFT recommendations presented by the Hillcrest Community Civic Association's Street, Traffic, and Transportation Committee. Provide comments to the committee by January 15, 2011.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Prayer Vigil Tonight for William Lockridge

For Immediate Release:
Contact: Natalie Williams, Family Spokesperson
(202) 904-9466 Direct

Citywide Candlelight Vigil Planned for Monday Night for State Board of Education Member William Lockridge

(Washington DC) A citywide candlelight vigil is planned for State Board of Education Member William Lockridge on Monday night, January 10, 2011 at George Washington University Hospital. The vigil will be held at 7pm in the front of GWU hospital along 23rd Street. All participants should gather at the Foggy Bottom Metro station and proceed as a group up 23rd street stopping below Mr. Lockridge's hospital window. The vigil will last approximately 45 minutes.

"This morning, Mr. Lockridge remains in the intensive care unit on life-support and has shown little, but encouraging progress," says Natalie Williams, Family Spokesperson. "On behalf of the Lockridge family, I would like to thank everyone for their o utpour of love and kind words. We thank the leadership of the city for their presence and support. We thank families from across the city for thinking of us, and praying for us. And we thank the residents of Ward 8 for their around the clock support. I ask that you continue to pray for William and the entire Lockridge family during this very difficult time."

Jacque Patterson, President of the Ward 8 Democrats and Chief Organizer of tomorrow night's vigil, is asking for the District of Columbia to come together as one in prayer to lift Mr. Lockridge to recovery, "William Lockridge, former president of the Ward 8 Democrats, has been a strong supporter of this organization, and his family has served as pillars in Washington DC for decades. We thank them for their many contributions over the years and for serving as true examples of leadership, commitment, and strength. Education across the District has improved, and Ward 8 has become a better home because of their unselfish service. We ask that you come out and support his wife, Wanda Lockridge, their children and grandchildren. We pray that William is recovered and that the family finds comfort during these trying times."

Ted Trabune, President of the DC State Board of Education, says "The members of the State Board of Education are sadden by the news of our fellow colleague. As the senior member of the Board, we value William's strength and institutional knowledge of education across the District. He is passionate about his work, and he is passionate about those in which we represent -- always beating the drum of equity for all children. We sincerely hope that the entire education community joins us in the showing of our love and support for William and his family."

All District of Columbia Elected Officials, State Board of Education Members, and Clergy from across the District have been invited. For more information and media requests, please contact Natalie Williams at (202) 904-9466.

Mayor Gray speaks at HCCA Meeting

(Photo by Marvin Bowser)

On Saturday, Mayor Vince Gray was the guest speaker at the Hillcrest Community Civic Association, where the Mayor is a PROUD member. Mayor Gray started with swearing in the 2011-2012 Board of Directors, which includes yours truly. HCCA meetings are usually well attended, but the Mayor drew a crowd that was so large we were beyond standing room only. Of course after the Mayor finished speaking, half the room cleared out *side-eye*.

Hillcrest meetings start with the Pledge of Allegiance. The phrase "liberty and justice for all" was a nice segue for the Mayor's discussion on voting rights for DC residents. He also discussed his three priorities: 1) Fiscal responsibility and stability 2) Economic Development and job creation and 3) Education.

Mayor Gray stated his commitment to East of the River. He believes that a rising tide East of the River will raise all boats. Ms V was happy that the Mayor is tasking the new Attorney General with looking into the Skyland lawsuits. One thing the Mayor mentioned that raised a few eyebrows is the developer for Skyland has sent an interest letter to Walmart to be the anchor tenant. The Mayor basically stated that Target isn't interested and if Skyland is going to move forward we need an anchor tenant. It begs the question, what does this mean for Capitol View if Walmart decides to locate to Skyland?

His talk ended with emphasizing that he plans to remain engaged in the Hillcrest community. He is going to try to make the monthly meetings when he can. Ms V looks forward to our continued interaction with the Mayor.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Martin Luther King Jr Day of Service

(photo from
Greater DC Cares
Join the Neighboring Now Initiative to celebrate the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. by honoring him through service to the community. Register today at these Ward 7 locations to do your part! Spaces are filling up fast so sign-up early and bring a friend. Participants receive a T-shirt and snack. Click the links below to find out more about the projects.

Martin Luther King, Jr. Holiday of Service
Monday, January 17, 2011
9:30 a.m. - 1:30 p.m.

For the MLK day of Service both Plummer and Kimball Elementary will be Greater DC Cares host sites: Plummer, Kimball

5th Annual Pope Branch Park Clean-up Event
Martin Luther King Jr. Day of National Service
January 17, 2011
9:00 am to 1:00 pm
(on site registration begins at 8:30 am)

For more information click here.

Alice Ferguson Foundation Clean Up in Deanwood
Monday, January 17, 2011
9:00 am – 1:00 pm.
4816 Sheriff Rd. NE (St. Rose Pentecostal Church)

Join the Alice Ferguson Foundation and Deanwood neighbors for the Martin Luther King, Jr. Day of Service. Volunteers will pick up litter, enjoy refreshments and kid friendly activities. Community service hours are available. Help Deanwood thrive with clean land, safe water, and healthy lives!

For more information please contact:
Sylvia Brown at 202-973-8203 or,

Mayor Gray

(Photo from

Mayor Gray will be the guest speaker at this Saturday's Hillcrest Community Civic Association Meeting. Please pay your dues online or bring your payment to the meeting.

Hillcrest Community Civic Association
Saturday January 8, 2010, 10:00 AM
Hillcrest Recreation Center

On a related note, a big thanks to Mayor Gray for giving Fairfax Village a shout out in his Mayoral address after being sworn in.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Community Sustainability

At the Thai Orchid luncheon last week, it was suggested that after the news cameras are gone we should have monthly community dinners. In order to avoid standing community meetings it was suggested that we do 2nd Tuesdays at 7pm. That being said, you're invited to:

Community Dinner
Tuesday January 11, 2011, 7-8:30PM
Thai Orchid's Kitchen
2314 Pennsylvania Ave SE