Proposed Reprogramming of Georgia Avenue Great Streets Funding Draws Council and ANC Action, Community Activism

The Middle Georgia Avenue Great Streets project in front of Looking Glass and Blue Banana, as it looked at the end of July

Ever since the Washington Business Journal published on August 10th that Mayor Vincent Gray intends to reprogram the remaining $1.44 million from the Georgia Avenue Great Streets project to help finance the overhaul of 2850 New York Ave. NW for the Metropolitan Police Department the move have drawn opposition.

From the start, Councilmembers Jim Graham and Muriel Bowser issued a resolution protesting the reprogramming of the Great Streets funds. Residents along Georgia Avenue were also none to happy. One of the more active protesters is Lower Georgia Avenue resident Sylvia Robinson who developed a petition that has already received 400 signatures.

Advisory Neighborhood Commissions aren’t sitting idly by either. Both ANC 1A and ANC 4C are also drafting resolutions in opposition to the Mayor’s hoped for reprogramming (draft 1A resolution here). But opposing the movement of $1.44 million is a drop in the bucket from what Georgia Avenue needs. One need only look at the Middle Georgia Avenue Great Streets project to get a sense of how much money is needed to renovate the remaining Ward 1 and Ward 4 sections of Georgia Avenue.

The Middle Georgia Avenue project is currently about three quarters completed and has an estimated cost of $7,906,624.05. The scope of this project is from Webster Street (north) to Otis Place (south) and began on May 17, 2010 — making the duration of actual construction for the section around 16 months. Similar investment is surely needed in both the lower and upper sections of Georgia Avenue. While saving and protecting the remaining $1.44 million in Great Streets funding is an important first step, without a firm commitment from the entire D.C. Council and the Mayor to support and fully fund the remaining sections of Georgia Avenue and make it a priority, the last million and a half in the pot for Georgia Avenue is not likely to make a visible impact.

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3 Comments on “Proposed Reprogramming of Georgia Avenue Great Streets Funding Draws Council and ANC Action, Community Activism”

  1. jcm Says:

    Do you remember what the total budget was for Lower Georgia? DDOT has removed the project from their dashboard.

    I emailed CM Graham and Mayor Gray on August 31 to register my support for the Lower Georgia Great Streets project, and my anger at the fund reprogramming. Graham responded in about 15 minutes. Gray (or, more likely, his office) never bothered to even acknowledge receipt.

  2. LaurenMcK Says:

    ANC 1B passed a resolution and will be sending a letter to the council, urging them to stop the reprogramming. We’ve invited the Mayor, or someone from his office who can speak to the reprogramming, to attend our Transportation Committee meeting on Monday (but have still not heard a response).


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