This neighborhood gateway sign at Irving and Georgia Avenue dates to ca. 2006
Tonight, Monday August 1, 2011, at 8 p.m. there will be a community meeting to discuss the future of the neighborhood sign at the corner of Georgia and Irving Streets. The meeting will be at the sign. The purpose of the meeting is to discuss the future of the sign — particularly the wording — as Irving Street residents make preparations to replace the sign.
All members of the community are invited to participate as are Advisory Neighborhood Commissioners. If there are too many participants for the Irving Street location the meeting will move across the street to Bruce Monroe Park.
In recent years, the residents of the 400, 500, & 600 blocks of Irving Street, NW, have become increasingly active in taking ownership and responsibility for keeping their street beautiful and clean. They have organized regular trash and little clean ups as well as actively partnering with MPD and other city services to remove area graffiti. As part of their Irving Street beautification effort they would like to replace the gateway sign located on the southeast corner of Irving and Georgia.
Since the sign is located on public space DDOT requires a public space permit. As part of that process the ANC weighs in on the use of the space. When members of the community first brought this issue before ANC 1A at the June 8, 2011, meeting it resulted in a split vote that ultimately failed to support the proposal. This was due largely to the item being added to the agenda at the last-minute which did not permit the commissioners the opportunity to discuss the proposal in advance. Additionally there was concern over the wording of the sign. The outcome of the June ANC meeting was that there needed to be a broader community meeting inclusive of Commissioner Lenwood Johnson to better determine the final sign design.
The current sign contains the neighborhood names of “Columbia Heights,” “Parkview,” [SIC] and “Pleasant Plains.” According to Irving Street resident Tommy Duren, it was erected to replace an earlier sign that had the same names on it and a smaller sign below it with text similar to: This grove dedicated to Van McCoy by Earl & Marion Douglas and the neighbors.” The earlier sign ceased to be on the site sometime in the late 1970s or early 1980s.
To help provide guidance to the community, Commissioner Boese — as Chair of the Historic Preservation, Development, & Design Review Committee — authored a report on the boundaries of the Columbia Heights, Park View, and Pleasant Plains neighborhoods. The report was accepted and filed at the ANC 1A July meeting but has not yet been discussed by the commissioners.
The goal of tonight’s meeting is to achieve consensus on the sign’s wording so that the public space permitting/ANC review process can move forward.
The sign at Georgia and Irving Street has seen better days. Residents would like to replace it with a more durable sign to help beautify the community