Next Park View Cleanup Scheduled for Saturday, April 7th

Posted April 5, 2018 by Kent
Categories: Volunteerism

Tags: ,

Georgia Avenue Thrive will hold its next cleanup at 10 a.m., Saturday April 7 at the corner of Georgia and Newton.

This months community partner is Yoga Heights which will be giving a free class for the first 30 volunteers who donate 90 minutes of their time!

Immediately following, volunteers can mingle and enjoy good conversation in the neighborhood. This is Thrive’s latest community get-together, a great opportunity to connect with neighbors.

Thrive’s cleanups have been recognized by Mayor Bowser. “Your good work is key to keeping your community safer and stronger,” she wrote in a recent letter recognizing Georgia Avenue Thrive.

These cleanups are successful in large part due to the commitment of neighbors who come out every month to make Park View a cleaner place. This latest event should be no exception.

See flyer below for details.

ANC1A Kicking Off Committee to Focus on Parks & Public Spaces on Thursday, April 5th

Posted April 4, 2018 by Kent
Categories: Parks and Green spaces

Tags: ,

ANC1A is kicking off a new ad hoc committee focused on parks and public spaces on Thursday, April 5th, starting at 7 pm. The meeting will be held in the office of District Bridges which is located above Meridian Pint. The entrance is on 11th Street at the rear of Meridian Pint next to the Good Silver (3400 11th Street, NW).

This is an open meeting and all are invited and welcome to participate.

Over the past few years, ANC1A has received a growing number of concerns related to effective long-term management and vision as it relates to community parks and public spaces. The goal is for the committee to meet on a monthly basis, develop a comprehensive approach to long-term management and  growth of our public spaces, and make recommendations to ANC1A for action. Specifically, some of the focus areas of this committee will be to:

  • Identify community priorities related to public and community serving spaces;
  • Identify challenges to long-term maintenance;
  • Prioritize long-term improvements; and,
  • Bring all stakeholders together to better understand roles, responsibilities, and identify efforts already underway

Please share this information with others who may be interested.

Randy Griffin Named New 4th District Police Commander, Meet Him Tonight at the Park View UNC Meeting

Posted April 4, 2018 by Kent
Categories: MPD

Tags: ,

On Friday, March 30th, the Metropolitan Police Department’s Fourth District announced a change in leadership that I’m very excited about. Commander Wilfredo Manlapaz was promoted to Assistant Chief in charge of the Metropolitan Police Department’s Internal Affairs Bureau and Third District Randy Griffin was promoted as the new Commander of the Fourth District. This is an excellent choice for the Fourth district and should serve Park View well. Personally, I have had a very productive working relationship with Commander Griffin over the past few years and he is well aware of the issues in Park View — in both the 3D and 4D areas. Furthermore, as he is coming from 3D, he already has an excellent working relationship with 3D Commander Emerman which is a huge advantage.

There is a good opportunity to meet Commander Griffin tonight at the Park View Recreation Center as he will be a guest at the Park View UNC meeting which begins at 7 pm. If you aren’t able to attend, I’m sure there will be additional opportunities soon.

According to Chief Newsham’s announcement:

Commander Griffin is no stranger to the Fourth District. He patrolled the streets there as a patrol officer from 2001-2007. In 2007, he was promoted to Sergeant and assigned to the Fifth District, and the Corporate Support Bureau’s Firearm Examination Section. In 2012, he was promoted to Lieutenant and was assigned as a Patrol Lieutenant. In 2017, he was promoted to the rank of Captain and assigned to the Third District where he honed his managerial skills. I have all the faith and confidence in his abilities to lead the Fourth District and mentor our future leaders. He truly embodies our motto, “We are here to help.”

Below is photo of Commander Griffin and 3D CAC Chair Camille McKenzie posted in 2017.

Below if the official MPD announcement:

Here’s Your Chance to Help the Georgia Avenue Main Street Thrive

Posted April 1, 2018 by Kent
Categories: Community Involvement, Small Businesses

Tags: , ,

The Lower Georgia Avenue Main Streets is currently conducting a survey to identify community priorities, creating an opportunity for residents to engage. The survey is open until April 4th and can be found via SurveyMonkey at https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/765JZPB.

The survey takes less than 5 minutes to complete. The purpose of the survey is to help the program better understand community priorities. Hard copies are available upon request. Everyone is encouraged to participate today and feel free to forward this invitation to others!

The Lower Georgia Avenue Main Street is a new community-based economic development program to support small businesses and neighborhoods along the Georgia Avenue corridor from Kansas Avenue to Barry Place. Georgia Ave Thrive partnered with District Bridges in applying for this grant, awarded Fall 2017 by DC’s Department of Small and Local Businesses.

More info is available on the District Bridges website at districtbridges.org.

What Kind of Washington Do You Want? March 29th Ward 1 Candidate Forum Focuses on the Comprehensive Plan

Posted March 28, 2018 by Kent
Categories: Uncategorized

Tags: , , ,

The DC Grassroots Planning Coalition has partnered with other local organizations to organize a Ward 1 Candidate Forum for this Thursday, March 29th, beginning at 7 pm. The Forum will be at Busboys and Poets on 14th Street. It should be a good opportunity to learn more more about what the Comprehensive Plan is, how it impacts every neighborhood and resident, and why this election matters. More details about the forum can be found here.

Currently, the Office of Planning and the DC Council is in the process of updating the Comprehensive Plan. I’ve been deeply engaged in these efforts beginning in 2017 when I submitted 64 amendments to the plan in the areas of:

  • Land Use
  • Transportation
  • Parks and Open Space
  • Arts & Culture
  • Historic Preservation
  • and many more.

Following the DC Council’s March 20th marathon 13+ hour hearing I also submitted written testimony, which all can read my testimony here.

 

I think this is an important time when we as a city need to figure out what kind of city we want to be. While the stakes are high and the challenges are great, I have confidence that we can get to where our city needs to be by working together.

Friends of the Soldiers Home Announces Sixth Annual Spring Fling

Posted March 25, 2018 by Kent
Categories: Celebrations

Tags: ,

According to the Fiends of the Soldiers Home Website, the 2018 Spring Fling will be on Saturday, May 5th. See flyer below.

Overview from DPR Basketball Meeting (Tournament is On) and Thoughts on DPR

Posted March 9, 2018 by Kent
Categories: Department of Parks and Recreation, Sports leisure and entertainment

Tags: , ,

On Wednesday March 7th, representatives from the Department of Parks and Recreation met with neighbors to discuss the annual Ty Hop Basketball Tournament. The basketball tournament has been held at the rec center since 2002, with no tournament in 2016. It was clear from the start that DPR is committed to continuing the tournament, but are open to feedback on days of the week, times, and length of the tournament (six weeks instead of 8 weeks?). Unlike years past, this year they are focusing the tournament for ages 15 years and younger instead of ages 24-40.

DPR has stated that they will organize a follow up meeting in 3-4 weeks to continue to work with the community on additional details for the tournament.

As in years past, the meeting centered on the need for a public safety plan in the community and concerns about gun violence. This is something that all in attendance who spoke up stressed — whether they were in favor of the tournament or not. Disappointingly, while MPD officers attended the meeting, they largely observed and offered very little, event when asked directly for their input.

The meeting, which began at 7 pm and wrapped up around 8:30 or so, was at times heated and emotional — with some citing the tournament as a valuable experience that helps bring people together and break down racism and bias — to others expressing concern that directly or indirectly gun violence has occurred around and near the rec center during tournament times and that no one should have to teach their children to duck and cover — and others still expressing that the tournament has a long history in the neighborhood and that those who have moved to the neighborhood need to accept that this is part of the community and to not push it out.

In my opinion, DPR can do a better job when it comes to working with the community to organize events. Here are three areas where I believe DPR has dropped the ball.

  1. An annual basketball tournament is fine and should be a community building event, however DPR continues to strike me as focusing only on being responsible for what happens on their property and relying on the community or MPD to control what occurs off their property. Technically, this may be where the responsibilities are, but we need to have a collaborative and integrated public safety approach for events that draw larger numbers of participants for longer periods of time. This is no different than other large events in the city whether it be the Funk Parade or a city festival.
  2. DPR repeatedly stated the longevity of the tournament as its justification for its continuation. As the tournament continues to have a large number of participants I can agree a basketball tournament still has value. However, the neighborhood has also changed a lot since 2002 when the tournament first began. Park View is far more diverse with many young families that equally value other activities. DPR needs to change and adapt along with the community — meaning that basketball should no longer be the only event at the Rec Center. Today the Rec Center needs to do this with a diverse summer program of actives. I don’t see DPR taking the lead on this.
  3. DPR needs to listen. Neighbors do advocate for activities they would like to see at the Rec Center in addition to what is offered now. For the past couple of years parents have repeatedly asked for the small children’s pool to open earlier on Saturday, and I sent Directer Anderson a letter to that effect from ANC1A last year. Similarly, when former Mayor Fenty and Councilember Graham first proposed to renovate Park View Rec Center’s baseball field with a new artificial turf baseball field in 2010, I pointed out that no one in the neighborhood played baseball and led neighbors to push for neighborhood servicing improvements which were delivered in 2012. DPR’s failure to listen before they make decisions sets up a contentious and divisive process before their first conversations with the community even occur. This needs to stop.

Ultimately we need a DPR that is a true community partner. One that is responsive, one that is engaged, and one that values the diverse and ever changing needs of every neighborhood.


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