Archive for August 2017

Statistics Show Overall Crime in Park View Up

August 31, 2017

Public Safety is something I take very seriously, and while much of the work I do is directly with MPD and individual neighbors, there are times when a more public approach needs to be taken if we truly want to have safe communities. A recent effort that I would encourage neighbors to participate in is with the Park View UNC which held a public safety working group meeting on Saturday August 26th. At this meeting neighbors began listing the public safety challenges that our community faces and started the process of identifying which agencies (i.e. MPD, DCRA, DOH, DDOT, etc.)  would need to be included to successfully address the community’s challenges. As an active participant in the meeting, I can report that it was one of the most productive meetings I have attended in some time. The next Park View UNC meeting will be at the rec center on Wednesday, September 6th, at 7 pm.

I do believe there is a lot neighbors can do to make their communities safer, especially if their elected representatives are working with them, supporting them, and helping to coordinate with all the people that are needed to solve the problems — both in the short- and long-term.

With all of this in mind, I regularly walk the neighborhood to report problems and look at the DC Crime Map to understand what the official statistics tell us about our community. Its a good way to report issues proactively and keep an eye on problem properties. In Park View, some of our challenges include vacant properties, entrenched drug dealing, and being split between the Third and Fourth Police Districts. Because of the latter I generally choose the location of 6th and Newton Place as an area close enough to the neighborhood boundaries to give me an idea of crime trends when using the Crime Map. Anyone can use the Crime Map to fine tune the data to their particular address.

In looking at 1,500 ft around 6th and Newton, for the past two month, the statistics show that crime is up by approximately 46% overall from the same period last year, with only thefts from autos and stolen autos going down. This, frankly, is unacceptable and leads me to some basic questions which include:

  1. Does our neighborhood have the number of beat patrol officers needed?
  2. How does the neighborhood being in two police districts impact the overall service?
  3. How are plain clothes officers being deployed in the community?, and,
  4. For deeply rooted social issues, do the behavior health people have the staff, resources, and authority to address addiction and homelessness issues? If not, will they ever?

In my opinion, the answer to these questions is an overall “No.” I believe PSA 409 could use more beat officers, the entire neighborhood should be in one Police District, and I would like to see a stronger relationship between our plain clothes officers and the community. Lastly, while I value the work of our government partners who focus on the social challenges in our neighborhoods, I don’t believe they are staffed at the levels they need or that they have the authority they need to really solve deep rooted problems.

I’ve included the chart below showing the crime stats for the last two months compared to the same period last year highlighting the areas with the largest jumps — those being robbery with gun, burglary, and theft. I’ve also included the map on where the incidents were recorded.

Freedom 5K and Family Day Coming to Soldiers’ Home

August 30, 2017

I know many people are already beginning to think about the long Labor Day weekend, so here is something to look forward to when you get back!

From the Lincoln’s Cottage folks:

On Saturday, September 16th President Lincoln’s Cottage is hosting its fourth annual Freedom 5K at the Cottage. For one day only the grounds of the Old Soldiers’ home are open to the public to walk, jog, and run. It’s 250 acres of pastoral scenery, past fields, ponds, and old historic homes.

Here’s more information on the race: https://potomac.enmotive.com/events/register/59417db6-93f4-4ad0-92cc-421c5206f5f9

This year we’re combining our two fall events, the Freedom 5K and family day, into one full day called Homecoming. The Freedom 5K kicks off Homecoming (9am) and from 10am-3pm the grounds of President Lincoln’s Cottage welcomes families to enjoy a day full of FREE activities! The activities include:

  • Explore a Civil War Encampment: View the 150th Pennsylvania Volunteers, better known as the Bucktails, who served as Lincoln’s personal guards.
  • Pony Rides: It’s no secret Tad Lincoln loved keeping pets on the grounds. Ride a pony around Lincoln’s front lawn.
  • Arts and Crafts: Make cards for veterans, your family tree and create your own Lincoln top hat!
  • Picnic on the Grounds: Enjoy delicious food from our on-site vendors, or pack your own picnic and enjoy lunch at the picnic tables or on the ample South Lawn.
  • Story hour, music & more!
  • Tour the Cottage: Take a guided tour of the Lincoln family’s seasonal retreat.

For more information: http://www.lincolncottage.org/homecoming/

For questions, email: info(at)lincolncottage.org

For 5K specific questions, email: freedom5K(at)lincolncottage.org

Next Community Clean Up Scheduled for Saturday, September 2nd

August 29, 2017

The next Georgia Avenue Thrive community cleanup will be this Saturday. Neighbors can gather at the corner of Georgia and Morton. Immediately following the cleanup, volunteers will gather at the Murray’s parking lot for free chips and dips from Cosi, plus free lemonade from our great neighbor Peter Fortner, who is also a Sotheby’s realtor. See the flyer below for details.

Park View Public Safety Working Group Meeting This Saturday — All Neighbors Welcome

August 25, 2017

Whether you have been actively engaged with MPD over the past several months, or recently, public safety in the Park View neighborhood is top of mind. Community concerns about various hot spots in the community were top of mind over the past several months, and the shooting at the Park View Rec Center at Princeton and Warder on Wednesday night has only underscored the need to develop a strategy — not just to focus on current issues but also to proactively address future issues.

I’ve been collaborating with and supporting the United Neighborhood Coalition’s efforts to develop a community based task force to focused on public safety. This Saturday, this working group will kick off. Below is the announcement from the UNC.

As promised earlier this week, below are details and the draft agenda for Saturday’s meeting to kick off a Park View UNC public safety working group. All Park View UNC members and non-member neighbors are invited to attend.

Given last night’s events, public safety is top of mind for many in our community. This meeting will be a chance for neighbors to discuss the structure we’d like a public safety working group to take and determine its leadership. We’ll also lay out issues of top importance to the neighborhood that the working group can take on. Although many of us are urgently seeking answers about last night’s shooting, by taking space at this meeting for longer-term planning, we’ll be better equipped to address specific incidents in close coordination with MPD, our Councilmember’s and Mayor’s offices, and other city departments in the future.

I hope to see you there!

Where: Park View Rec Center , on the corner of Warder St. and Otis Pl. NW. We will meet in the small multipurpose room at the back of the rec.
When: Saturday, August 26, 10:00-11:30am

DRAFT agenda – Park View UNC Public Safety Working Group Kickoff

Saturday, August 26, 10-11:30am

1. Welcome and introductions: each attendee provides their name, where they live and their top public safety topic of interest

2. Issues: Brainstorm top issues that the Working Group will focus on (driven by what was covered during the intros and added to/tweaked as we go)

3. Process: How do we track these issues? Which DC city agencies or offices (Mayor, Council, MPD, etc.) can help? How can we best coordinate with them? If it is something the community can be proactive on independently, what action can we take?

4. Structure: What will the Working Group structure look like? This will include leadership of the Working Group overall, point people on specific issues, frequency of report-outs, etc.

5. Next steps/discuss meeting frequency

6. Adjourn

Water Main Replacement on Park Road Moving Along

August 24, 2017

Work on the 600 block of Park Road.

DC Water’s replacement of existing 12-inch and smaller cast iron water mains on Park Road and Morton Street is moving along. The mains have been replaced on the 400 block of Park Road with work continuing on the 500/600 block of Park Road. Work has not yet begun on Morton Street.

Construction may last through April 2019. DC Water’s efforts will help improve water quality and system reliability, increase water pressure in some areas, and maintain adequate flows throughout the system.

After visiting the construction area on Park Road, it appears that we’re getting some new sidewalks out of the effort as well. This should be a temporary benefit, however, as the sidewalk abutting Park Morton should be reworked in the future as part of that effort as well.

Victory Housing/Brinshore Development Selected to Redevelop Hebrew Home Property

August 23, 2017

(Rendering from Victory Housing proposal.)

Yesterday, Mayor Muriel Bowser and Deputy Mayor for Planning and Economic Development Brian Kenner announced that the developer selected to redevelop the historic Hebrew Home at 1125 Spring Road, NW, was Victory Housing with Brinshore Development. This was the same development team that both ANC1A and ANC4C recommended as their first choice at their July ANC meetings.

Through the community engagement process, follow up conversations with development teams, and collaboration between the two ANCs, the Victory Housing proposal was deemed the best overall proposal for the site. Following the selection, the development team will also need to come back before the ANCs as part of the Planned Unit Development/Zoning process through which design refinements can be made. Early conversations with the Victory Housing team showed a wiliness to work with the surrounding neighborhood to refine design elements.

A copy of the full press release is available here and after the jump. (more…)

Pandora Sphinx Moth Visits Neighborhood

August 22, 2017

Pandora sphinx moth hanging out by the mail box, which also gives an indication of size.

I was excited to see a new moth at my home yesterday. It was hanging out on the wall by our mail box from just before 11 a.m. to after 6:30 pm. It was large and green, which actually made it easy relatively easy to identify.

According to Wikipedia, it is a “Pandora sphinx moth (Eumorpha pandorus), also called the pandorus sphinx moth, [and] is a North American moth in the family Sphingidae. It is a large, greenish gray moth with darker patches and pink edges and small pink eyespots. The underside is usually pale yellow-green or brown. It has a wingspan of 3¼–4½ inches (8.2–11.5 cm), females being slightly larger than males. Pandora sphinx moths fly during dusk. Some places see only one generation a year, while others see two.”

This isn’t the first cool moth that I’ve seen in or around our garden. In May 2014 a hummingbirdmoth visited the garden and I was able to take a few short videos of the guest.

Below is a larger image of the Pandora sphinx moth.


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