Georgetown ANC Formally Approves Revised Campus Plan

At 7:38 p.m. on June 14, during a special meeting, Advisory Neighborhood Commission 2E voted unanimously to approve Georgetown University’s 2010-2020 campus plan, as revised by neighborhood groups and university leaders in the last few months. Thus ended at least two years of sharp debate between the two, ushering in a new era in town-gown relations. It was one of the shortest ANC meeting ever.

The most significant outcome, amid a pulling back of students from living in the neighborhood into dormitories on the main campus, is the Georgetown Community Partnership. It will be a standing group of residents and university officials along with student representation to discuss progress and problems as they happen.

“We are all Georgetown here,” commissioner Jeff Jones said. “We have to trust each other.”

Those sitting at the long table on either side of the commissioners included Jennifer Altemus of the Citizens Association of Georgetown and Chris Clements of the Burleith Citizens Association and the university’s vice president for public affairs Erik Smulson and vice president for student affairs Todd Olson.

Again, participants from the neighborhood and the university said they had been skeptical at first but realized it was a good agreement for all with real compromises made. There were a few questions on details, but nothing to hold up the agreement. When one resident, who lives on Reservoir Road, said that his house had been egged by students, the university’s Olson said he would look into that.

Students have expressed displeasure at the phrase — living off-campus is a privilege, not a right. Commissioner Jake Sticka, a Georgetown student, said: “This doesn’t fundamentally alter what it means to be a Georgetown undergraduate. . . At the end of the day, it’s a positive step.”

ANC 2E will send its report to the D.C. Zoning Commission; ANC 3D will meet soon on the campus plan. The Zoning Commission will issue its decision next month.

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