Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Walkable/Bikeable Anne Beers?

Ms V has been working diligently with the HCCA Street, Traffic, and Transportation Committee (yes I'm the chair) to improve transportation in Hillcrest.  An official announcement will be coming from the Committee, but since this is my personal blog I can say what I want....

You heard it here first..... We are almost complete the process of enrolling Anne Beers Elementary School in the Safe Route to School program.  AND.....*drum roll* Beers will be the official school for the International Walk/Bike to School Day on October 5th.

Monday, August 29, 2011

HCCA Monthly Meeting - DDOT

The September Guest speaker will be Aaron Rhones from the District Department of Transportation to discuss the findings and recommendation from the "Far Southeast II Livability Study" completed earlier this year. The recommendations will include presenting solutions at 32nd St/Alabama Ave SE and 36th St/Alabama Ave SE intersections, traffic calming on Naylor Road SE and safety improvements to Branch Ave SE.

For more information visit, committee website.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Wednesday Stew: What's Cooking

Ms V is sorry she neglected to keep up with Wednesday Stew.  Things have been stewing (more so simmering) over the last few months.  Here are some updates. Happy to say some action items are CLOSED!!!!

Pedestrian signal across Pennsylvania Ave SE at Alabama Ave SE - About a year ago we brought to DDOTs attention that 16 seconds is not adequate to cross Pennsylvania Ave SE.  This intersection is particularly bad during evening rush hour when the pedestrian traffic is high from people getting off the M6 at the Exxon.  I'm a fast walker and even I could barely make it across in 16 seconds.  I noticed today the time on the pedestrian signal was 25 seconds.  Thanks to all the neighbors who made this happen.

Fairfax Village Shopping Center (litter) - Kudos to the shopping center for making a real effort to keep the shopping center clean.   They added more trash cans and have a new cleaning crew.  Neighbors have said that it is noticeable cleaner.  Ms V agrees.  Thanks to Commissioner Jordan (7B06) for his leadership and the neighbors for standing up to demand better.

Bus Shelter at 38th and Pennsylvania Ave (Litter) - Despite TWO trash cans at the bus stop, the litter in the bus stop got out of control.  Thanks to neighbors that care, NPS has been making an effort to keep the shelter clean and clear of debris.  I pass the bus stop at least once a day and I haven't seen any litter.

VACANT LOT - 38th Street (2250 38th Street) - This property located on 38th Street SE has been discussed ad nauseum on this blog in June 2009, July 2009, August 2009, Wednesday Stews, and March 2011. We had a small victory in March when DPW came out to clean it up.  But then it started looking like this again:

So we filed yet another 311 request.  DPW came back out and now it looks like this!!!!  DPW assured me that the owner is being fined.

There still some tasks remaining with this property:

  • Follow-up with DDOT to get the fence moved back 2-3 feet so it isn't right on the sidewalk.
  • Contact owner to see if they are willing to clean up the property, add a fence, and allow the community to garden until they are ready to continue building

Fairfax Village Shopping Center (Loitering) - Loitering is still an issue at the shopping center.  MPD has been focusing their attention on the center.  The result is several drug related arrests over the last few weeks.  Commander Contee put in a request to make the Shopping Center a drug-free zone which prevents loitering.

Bus Shelter at 38th and Pennsylvania Ave (Lighting) - We are still working with NPS to get better lighting at the shelter.  At night the area is pitch black, which makes it unsafe.  The shelter has power and lights, but for whatever reason they aren't operable.

Visiting Martin

Ms V visited the Martin Luther King Jr Memorial this evening.  Here are some photos.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Fairfax Village Survived

Chimney damage behind 3923 Pennsylvania Ave SE.  Our contractors are trying to secure the area as soon as possible.

 I walk in and see my TV on the floor.

The bowl on the counter is the main casualty.  Fortunately the wine survived!!!

New Business in the Community

After announcing their arrival at the January ANC meeting, Flexcare is finally open at the Fort Davis Shopping Center.  Here is there press release:

Flexcare Pharmacy Now Open
Washington D.C.- Aug 5, 2011 – Flexcare Pharmacy, located at 3861 Alabama Ave. SE and locally owned by Felix E. Auk and Vivian N. Auk, is now officially opened for business.

Along with prescription medications, Flexcare Pharmacy has a vast selection of over the counter drugs, health and beauty aids, incontinence supplies, durable medical equipment (e.g. wheelchairs, crutches, and walkers), copy/fax machine, Self service photo kiosk and a variety of greeting cards.

Flexcare Pharmacy will also offer specialty services including compounding, customized prescription packages (bubblepak), monthly diabetes self management classes, flu shots, free delivery and 5% discounts on prescriptions to senior citizens. We accept most insurance plans including Medicare part D and Medicaid.
Also, as a member of the National Community Pharmacist Association, Flexcare Pharmacy participates in a national drug take back program called Dispose My Meds. We safely collect unwanted medications and dispose of them in an environmentally friendly manner.

For more information on the opening of Flexcare Pharmacy please call 202-575-0578 or visit our website at

Monday, August 22, 2011

Ward 7 Concerned Citizens Coalition Meeting

WHEN: Wednesday, August 24, 2011

LOCATION: Sixth District Police Station
42nd & Benning Road, N.E.

TIME: 6:30 pm to 8:30 pm


Your participation is encouraged Open to All Ward 7 Residents

If there are questions, please call: 202-582-6459 or 202-812-5844

Start making your plans for Sunday

If you are planning to attend the Martin Luther King Jr Memorial dedication ceremony on Sunday, now is the time to plan your transportation to the memorial.

Metro outlines plans for Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial dedication event
System to open at 5 a.m. on Sunday, Aug. 28; no weekend track work 
Metrorail will open two hours early (at 5 a.m.), operate frequent service and additional capacity on all lines, suspend track work and offer free parking at all stations as part of Metro’s effort to accommodate customers attending the Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial dedication on Sunday, Aug. 28. 
“We are looking forward to welcoming thousands of guests aboard Metro for this historic event,” said Richard Sarles, Metro General Manager and Chief Executive Officer.
Sarles also announced that there would be no scheduled track work on either Saturday, Aug. 27, or Sunday, Aug. 28. 
“To provide additional capacity, we are suspending all track work over the Dedication weekend,” Sarles said. “Considering the massive rebuilding effort that's underway, this is a significant statement about our support for this important event.” 
For months, Metro has been working with event organizers and the District of Columbia to help the thousands of visitors expected in Washington to honor the legacy of Dr. King travel to the memorial and commemoration events during the week. 
On Saturday and Sunday, more than 60 Metro customer service ambassadors will be on hand at stations within walking distance of the Memorial to provide assistance and distribute special brochures showing walking directions. 
Metro is encouraging customers to review the following travel tips:
· To avoid lines, customers are strongly encouraged to purchase a farecard or one-day pass prior to traveling and to ensure that there is sufficient value on the card to complete an entire round trip. Metro has created a special commemorative one-day pass featuring an image of the Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial. The $9 pass allows for unlimited travel on the day it is used (subject to the same conditions as a standard Metro one-day pass). Customers can purchase the commemorative pass online, at Metro sales offices and regional transit stores. 
· Customers are encouraged to travel directly to one of the above recommended stations without transferring between lines at Metro Center, Gallery Place or L’Enfant Plaza. 
· Visit to get walking directions, review maps and get travel tips. 
· Use stations other than Foggy Bottom or Smithsonian, if possible. (Foggy Bottom Station is undergoing a major escalator replacement project that can impact customer flow. Smithsonian Station is expected to be extremely crowded.) 
· Instead, Metro recommends using any of the following stations:
§ Arlington Cemetery (Blue Line)
§ Farragut West (Blue and Orange Lines)
§ Farragut North (Red Line)
§ McPherson Square (Red Line)
§ L’Enfant Plaza (Yellow, Green, Blue and Orange Lines) 
· Customers can follow @wmata on Twitter for additional service information and travel tips throughout Dedication Weekend. 
Rail Service on Sunday, Aug. 28
· Metrorail will open two hours early – at 5 a.m. – and close at midnight. 
· Enhanced service will operate throughout the day on all lines. Between 8 a.m. and 8 p.m., trains will every 8 minutes on all lines, with even more frequent service on sections of the Red and Orange lines. 
· More eight-car trains will be used to provide additional capacity. 
· Bicycles will not be permitted in the Metrorail system. 
· For safety reasons, many descending station escalators will be turned off to help meter the flow of crowds. 
· Parking will be free at all Metro operated lots. Customers planning to park are strongly encouraged to arrive early. 
Bus Service on Sunday, Aug. 28
· Metrobus service will operate on a normal Sunday schedule. 
· Detours are possible due to anticipated street closures around the National Mall. View detours 
· Bus customers traveling via downtown are encouraged to allow additional travel time.
MetroAccess Service on Sunday, Aug. 28 
· MetroAccess customers are reminded to reserve their trip by 4:30 p.m. the day prior to travel. 
· MetroAccess customers are encouraged to allow extra travel time due to expected traffic throughout the service area. Detours are possible around the National Mall due to street closures.

DCPS Beautification Day - Anne Beers Elementary School

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Anacostia River.... And Beauty is her name

Tonight the Anacostia Watershed Society and the Sierra Club hosted Ward 7 residents on a evening boat tour of the Anacostia River.  I owe her an apology.  I called her ugly and disgusting.   I told her she would never amount to another other than a mud muck.

But tonight.... I saw her inner beauty.  I saw the way the sun kissed her as he said goodbye for the night.  I saw egrets (birds) and herons (another kind of bird) gently glide across her surface.  What a beautiful river.

Here are some of my photos from the trip.  For additional photos, visit the Hillcrest Facebook page.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

More solutions to the food desert

Top 40 under 40

Do you know a dynamic person living or working East of the River under 40?

East of the River Clergy, Police, Community Partnership, Inc is a Faith based Non Profit organization in Ward 8 of Washington DC wants to recognize and give thanks to that community of people who are under 40.  Please see the details in the packet attached. The theme for the event is “The Next Level of Leadership and Legacy”. If you wish to nominate someone for the event please see the message below. Many thanks.

Nomination Deadline- September 16th, 2011 by Midnight
Date of the Event – November 19th, 2011 (6PM- 9PM)
Nominee Acceptance September 30th, 2011
Sponsorship/AD deadline- October 21st, 2011

To download nomination or sponsorship packet, please visit their website

Oasis in the Food Dessert?

DC Central Kitchen is introducing a "Healthy Corners" Program.  During the 6-month pilot program, they will deliver affordable produce and healthy snacks to corner stores and other small retailers in wards 5, 7, and 8.

Ms V hopes that the Mini-Mart in Fort Davis Shopping Center and/or Pennway Mart in Fairfax Village Shopping Center and included in the pilot program.  Both shopping centers are a stones throw from Fairfax Village.

There will be a kick off this weekend.
Saturday August 20th, 1pm-4pm
Deanwood Recreation Center
(49th and Quarles Sts., NE Washington, DC 20019) 

For more information about DC Central Kitchen, visit their website.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Mobile Bike Clinic - CANCELED

Today's mobile bike clinic at Penn-Branch has been canceled due to rain.  Stay tuned for new date and time.

Friday, August 12, 2011

Bike Repair Clinic

Bike Repair Clinic
August 14, 2011
Penn-Branch Shopping Center 
(Look for the WABA Tent)

The FREE bike repair services and rides are for residents of Wards 7&8 only.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Save the Date - Community Meeting for Online Gambling

Ward 7 Community Meeting for Online Gambling 
September 1, 2011 
Dorothy Height/Benning Library 
3935 Benning Rd. NE

Congrats to Harold Pettigrew

According to Washington Business Journal, Hillcrest resident Harold Pettigrew has been tapped to be the new Director f the Small and Local Business Development.  I fully support him.  As a business owner in DC, Harold has stepped in many a day from me going postal.

For example, there was one day where I made SIX trips between Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs and Office of Tax and Revenue.  I was frustrated and almost on the verge of tears.  Harold had been following me on twitter and came down to help out.

Here an excerpt from the article:
Harold Pettigrew, a 5-year veteran of the D.C. government, will be named head of the District's Department of Small and Local Business Development, multiple sources in city government have confirmed.
Pettigrew is currently the administrator for business and professional licensing in the D.C. Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs. It is unclear when Mayor Vincent Gray will announce his promotion. Gray's communications team did not respond to requests for comment.
For full article, click here.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Ward 7 Concerned Citizens Coalition Meeting

Ward 7 Concerned Citizens Coalition Meeting

WHEN: Wednesday, August 10, 2011

LOCATION: East Washington Heights Baptist Church (Located at Branch and Alabama Avenue, SE)
Fountain Hall Lower Level of the Church

TIME: 6:30 pm

PURPOSE: To bring Ward 7 Citizens together to discuss the “Future Direction of the Ward”. Your participation is encouraged

Open to All Ward 7 Residents

If there are questions, please call: 202-582-6459 or 202-812-5844

Community Action Planning - Improve Safeway

Kudos to Parisa Norouzi from EmpowerDC who led us in a group discussion to begin developing our action plan to improve the Safeway at Good Hope Marketplace. There was a great energy in the room. Attached is the Working Draft of our Community Action Plan.

Winslow Woodland, Kevin Chavous and Stephen Broyle stepped up to do some fact finding and outreach. I'm assisting them with documentation and developing the plan. We are trying to get a meeting scheduled in the next two weeks. If you are interested in being involved, please contact Winslow at

A Community Action Plan – Safeway at Good Hope Marketplace

Ward 7 ANC Redistricting Taskforce #2

Tuesday, August 9 at 6:30 p.m.
Deanwood Recreation Center, Multi-purpose room
49th & Quarles Sts. NE

At the meeting attendees will be broken into sub-committees based on ANCs to discuss all suggestions and proposals for the re-drawing of ANC and/or SMD boundaries.

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Community Forum Series: Anacostia Smithsonian Museum

Reclaiming the Edge: Urban Waterways and Responsible Development
Community Forum Series
August 9, 2011
7:00-9:00 pm

Responsible Development along urban waterways and their surrounding landscapes extends traditional development beyond a solely economic profit motive to embrace a triple-bottom line that includes people, planet, and profit. We will explore the importance of strategic, responsible development along urban waterways, which are often seen simply as corridors or geographic barriers. Using local watersheds as our case study, panelists and roundtable guests will discuss organizational and individual approaches to the complex process of riverfront development and associated land use. Panelists will address issues that include economic development, environmental education, and development plans to preserve rivers as cultural and spiritual centers.

The format is a moderated panel and roundtable discussion with audience Q&A. This session will be recorded (audio and video) for research purposes and support of the project’s exhibition component.

Irv Sheffey, Associate Organizing Representative, Environmental Justice and Community Partnerships Program, Sierra Club

Mary Brown, Co-Founder and Executive Director, Life Pieces to Masterpieces
Josh Burch, Environmental Protection Specialist, District Department of the Environment
Brooke DeRenzis, Project Director, DC Appleseed
Peter Ensign, LEED AP - Executive Director, DC Greenworks
Albert “Butch” Hopkins, President and CEO, Anacostia Economic Development Corporation
Keith Ware, Vice President and Co-owner, Eco-Green Living (DC)

Friday, August 5, 2011

Thanks from Commander Contee

Hey Community,

I just wanted to say thanks for the information regarding some of the activities in Fairfax Village. The Sixth District Vice Unit arrested 2 people In Fairfax Village for Distribution of Cocaine. The arrestees are as follows:

Brenda Sullivan of the 1800 block of Ft. Davis SE
Jammi Cooper of the 4200 block of Southern Ave. SE

We will continue to focus enforcement efforts in the area of Fairfax Village.

Thanks again!!!


The meeting that went

The meeting tonight.... was underwhelming. After DDOT gave their presentation, they allowed time for Q&A. Ward 7 residents were concerned it wasn't going deeper into Ward 7. Ward 8 residents were concerned it wasn't going deeper into Ward 8. I asked DDOT "who are we connecting to what?" The main answer is they want to connect us to West of the River and have it touch other Circulator routes. The general sense of the community (someone please chime in if I mis-read reactions) is:

  • there is a desire to have connections East of the River to other communities East of the River
  • let's take our time and do this right or don't do it at all
  • let's not create a duplicate service when it hasn't worked with the convention center route

I think that DDOT is so focused on the operations, they haven't really stopped to think about the people. They haven't thought about where people East of the River go currently, where we'd like to go, and what time of the day we'd typically go there.

People can submit testimony via calling or writing to (202) 673-1736 through August 9th.

To the extent possible I tried to live blog the meeting on committee site: I apologize for any typos or misspelled names.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Support East of the River Artists

Honfleur Art Gallery is hosting their 5th annual exhibition that highlights artists East of the River.  One of the artists, Jonathan Edwards, happens to go to my church.  Well his dad is the Pastor, so I guess I go to his church.  Either way, come out and support for the artists.

Opening reception 
August 5, 2011 at 7pm.  
1241 Good Hope Road SE.

Circulator Meeting TONIGHT

DCCirculator Presentation 08-02-2011

Thursday August 4th
Anacostia Public Library
6 – 7:30 pm.

Each resident will be given two (2) minutes to testify. If you would like to speak at the hearing please provide your name and contact information to Sandy Castor at For those that can't attend DDOT is accepting comments through August 9th.

Monday, August 1, 2011

National Night Out- 2 Parties is better than 1

National Night Out Against Crime
August 2nd, 2011 – 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.

Location 1:
East Washington Heights Baptist Church
2220 Branch Ave SE
Washington, DC 20020

Location 2:
Fairfax Village
3909 Pennsylvania Ave SE (grassy area next to office)
Washington, DC 20020