Downtowner DC Sept. 12, 2018

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Redevelopment of the RFK Stadium site has begun.

D.C. Breaks Ground on RFK Campus Project
Mayor Muriel Bowser and Events DC kicked off phase one of the redevelopment of the empty Robert F. Kennedy Memorial Stadium. This initial phase includes three turf fields, a 27-acre parking lot, a playground and a picnic area. The estimated cost of a complete revamp of the 190-acre campus — adding a sports and entertainment complex, a market hall and a memorial to RFK — is $490 million.

New Ride-Sharing App Coming to D.C.
Safr, a new ride-sharing app, will be expanding to D.C. this fall. The app will focus on safer rides, particularly for women. Men and women can sign up to ride or drive for the Boston- based company, which lets passengers select a driver gender preference. The app was created in response to Uber’s background-check policies, which have been criticized for their lack of stringency.

D.C. Rivers: Swimmable Soon?
Bad water quality has been one of many reasons Washingtonians have not been able to swim in local rivers. Now there are hopes that will change. Potomac Conservancy gave the Potomac River a B grade in 2018, up from a D a decade ago. The Anacostia River did not do as well, with a D-minus rating from the Anacostia Watershed Society. It was, however, the river’s first passing grade. Researchers have noted less trash, reduced nitrogen and healthier fish.

Old Italian Embassy Converted to Luxury Apartments

Designed by Grand Central Terminal architects Warren and Wetmore, 2700 16th St. NW, the Italian Embassy from 1925 to 1977, has been redeveloped as luxury apartments. Leasing has started on apartments in the building and in an attached nine-story tower. The 134-unit project is called Modera Sedici. Along with the usual modern accoutrements — fitness center, courtyard, grills and roof terrace — the complex features restored parquet flooring, a grand piano and a ballroom with fireplaces.

Research: D.C. Employers Discriminate Based on Distance
As part of a study, a Notre Dame University economics professor sent out fictional resumes with real addresses, applying for, in most cases, low-wage positions in the center of D.C. The study found that hiring managers were less likely to contact applicants with a long commute. For every additional mile between an applicant’s residence and a job, the percentage of callbacks fell by more than a percentage point.

Raccoon Poses for Pic on Circulator Bus
First, in February of 2017, a raccoon was spotted on the back of a trash truck in Rosslyn, Virginia. Then, last month, a fellow raccoon was seen peering through the back window of a D.C. Circulator bus. The National Mall and Memorial Parks Facebook account posted apicture of “bus raccoon” with the caption: “Look who decided to take a ride on the bus! Take the DC Circulator National Mall Route around National Mall and Memorial Parks. It’s only a dollar! Spotting wildlife is not guaranteed.”

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