ANC 2E December Report: Greenheart Juice, BID Plan on Expanded Sidewalks
By December 1, 2021 One Comment 702•
Greenheart Juice Shop Denied BZA Support Due to Traffic Concerns
Alicia Swanstrom, founder of Greenheart Juice Shop, spoke before the commission and requested support for a Board of Zoning Adjustment (BZA) application for a special exception to add a juice shop in the corner of a building, also occupied by a yoga studio at 3343 Prospect Street NW. No construction or expansion plans will be needed to add the juice shop to the corner portion of the property. All the items including smoothies and food items will be prepackaged in their Sterling, Virginia, location before being delivered to Prospect Street. The representative stated that there will be a storage area, and refrigeration and inside trash space. A delivery van will service the location between 7 and 8 a.m. and the establishment clientele will mostly be walkups which will mitigate the concerns for additional vehicles in the already congested area.
The commission and residents weighed in on the topic and agreed that although they embrace the company’s concept, the additional disruption to traffic and parking concerns could prove to be disastrous. It is already a significant problem where traffic is bumper-to-bumper during rush hour for three blocks in the 34th and Prospect Streets area. In addition, rodent activity around trash cans is already a problem and the city has not been responsive to the surrounding residents’ needs to have it emptied in a timelier manner. The commission is also concerned that this could open the door to more intense usage of the property which would not be in harmony with a residential zone.
The commission motioned to not support the BZA application by the count of 4-2. “I feel confident that you can manage any trash and noise issues but it is hard to see how there won’t be an adverse impact to traffic once you become successful,” said ANC 2E05 Commissioner Lisa Palmer.
Mayor’s Office Update
Anna Noakes joined the meeting and provided a few updates from the mayor’s office. The mask mandate was lifted on Nov. 22 due to not seeing an increase in infections to those who are vaccinated. The majority of Covid-related hospitalizations are with those who are unvaccinated. Booster shots are available to those who are 18 and older. In conjunction with MPD, the Mayor’s Office will be conducting a traffic study campaign in school zones to improve safety for pedestrians and bicyclists. Officers will be monitoring school zones for speeding three hours before and after drop-off and pick-up times. A second round of leaf collection is scheduled between the dates of Dec. 21 and 27. Call 311 to open a service request.
Council member Brooke Pinto’s Office Update
Brian Romanowski attended the meeting and provided updates on Ward 2 mapping and snow removal. The DC Redistricting Subcommittee recently published a Ward 2 map on Nov. 18, and Romanowski noted that borders will change from the east to the south. Current residents will not be mapped out but he said Council member Pinto welcomes the new residents who will be mapped in. A full council vote on the matter will be taken on Dec. 7 and a final vote to close out the matter will be held on Dec. 21. For those who are interested in joining the ANC Boundary Task Force, email Councilmember Pinto’s Chief of Staff Genevieve Fugere Hulick at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Residents over 60 years-old can sign up to have someone shovel snow at their homes. Volunteers will be provided a shovel by the city and are encouraged to visit the website linked here for more information.
Fundraising for Cancer Cookbooks from Georgetown Cooks
“Georgetown Cooks” is a cookbook with a collection of 150 recipes from local Georgetowners. Expect to see an apple crisp recipe from Commissioner Palmer as well as a breakfast dish from ANC 2E02 Commissioner Jenny Mitchell. All proceeds from the purchased cookbooks will go towards the Georgetown Neighbors for Ewing Sarcoma Research. The research is led by Dr. Jeffrey Toretsky of the Lombardi Cancer Center who is serving as chief of MedStar Georgetown University Hospital’s Division of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology. He is an internationally recognized expert in sarcomas in children, adolescents, and young adults. The cookbooks are 100 percent tax deductible and can be purchased here.
Literacy Rate Help is on the Way
Allister Chang, Ward 2 Member on the DC State Board of Education, joined the meeting and gave insight on matters pertaining to education in the District. Only 30 percent of fourth-graders in Ward 2 public and charter schools are performing at an acceptable level based on their National Association of Education Progress (NAEP) scores, prompting an immediate need for literacy improvement. A $16 million funded proposal for a five-year plan to improve literacy is in the works. The Board of Education is currently consulting with stakeholders across the city and looking at other states who have successfully implemented literacy plans with successful results. The pandemic has increased the urgency for teacher retention. Covid has made it difficult for volunteers to step forward and has subsequently created a massive shortage of substitute teachers. Chang noted that the Board of Education appreciates ANC 2E’s advocacy to properly staff schools. It was also noted that although businesses are no longer enforcing a mask mandate it is still in effect in the D.C. school system. Chang can be reached at email@example.com and 202-735-7062.
ANC 2E Quick Hits
Chairman Phil Mendelson’s Office Update: Declan Falls, Constituent Services Representative of Chairman Mendelson’s office, spoke at the meeting and encouraged anyone with a concern to contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org or 312-292-0022.
A Request for Crime Data: A resolution passed unanimously to request Council member Pinto’s office to collaborate with various federal and city offices to provide a biannual summary to the ANCs of arrests and sentencing for armed robberies, assaults, and burglaries. ANC 2E06 Commissioner Gwendolyn Lohse said that the gathered community data is valuable and will increase safety in the city.
Public Service Announcement: Lt. John Merzig of the MPD Second District reported 25 percent fewer robberies/muggings this month compared to last due in most part to the colder weather causing people to stay inside. However, theft in retail spaces has gone up which has enhanced a law enforcement presence along M Street and Wisconsin Avenue NW.
ABC Related Votes: The commission voted to drop a protest vote of a liquor license request before the Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) Board by Bozzelli’s Italian Deli, planning to open at Washington Harbour. A request to allow patrons to transport alcoholic beverages from Tony and Joe’s Seafood Place (3000 K St. NW) to Nick’s Riverside Grill (3050 K St. NW) on New Year’s Eve was passed.
BZA Deferral: The applicant of the property located at 1963 39th St. NW and adjacent neighbors mutually agreed to postpone a BZA matter (case #20505) concerning an application for Special Exceptions from the Matter-of-Right Accessory Uses and the Accessory Building Development Standards until early 2022. The commission voted and passed a measure to communicate their agreement with both parties on postponing the matter to BZA.
Recognizing Kindness and Generosity: The commission passed a resolution commending the S&R Foundation for maintaining and improving an adjacent “Tot Lot” playground on its own initiative for the betterment of the community. The S&R Foundation oversees the Halcyon Arts Lab at 1801 35th St. NW.
ANC Opposes More Time for Sidewalk Extensions
In the Old Georgetown Board approval part of the meeting, ANC2E reiterated its opposition to the Georgetown BID’s request to extend the time its sidewalk decking is allowed on public property. More details are also here.
The commission wrote to the OGB:
With regard to OG 22-017 (HPA 21-172) Curb Lane of M Street and Wisconsin Avenue, NW:
ANC 2E opposes the Georgetown Business Improvement District’s pending application for an extension of the temporary public space permit issued by the District Department of Transportation (DDOT) to facilitate the installation of platforms in the curb lanes of Wisconsin Avenue NW and M Street NW beyond its current expiration date of December 31, 2021.