Saturday, December 31, 2005

drinking in old dc

this is fascinating to me.

Where old DC drank

check out this site

bloomingdale, victorians, and ramshackled.

Those of you that love our architecture in bloomingdale might like this site about sadly empty Victorians all over the city

Victorian Secrets

new years eve

On the Millennium, DC put together a nice New Years Eve Party. Fireworks, concerts, closed streets.. it was great. Maybe in 994 years we can do it again.

sydney, doing it up, this normal every year kinda year:

Friday, December 30, 2005

crack down

Seems like there was a big drug crackdown in eckington yesterday. from early in the morning till into the evening there were cops all around the neighborhood. searching people, questioning people, even arresting some.

apparently there were over 10 guys lined up in my alley being frisked.

The drug activity has been quite active in the past 2 months, perhaps they drew too much attention to themselves.

Manasas combats illegal immigrants

American, getting less free by the minute!
Check this out
The city of Manassas yesterday defended a new zoning ordinance that restricts households to immediate relatives, saying that the city acted within its limited right to control residential occupancy and that the new rule defining "family" was adopted in response to "broad-based community concerns about overcrowding."

This is an interesting article to me because of my concerns for a legal and clean neighborhood, and my concerns for freedom. But i dont want the govermnet to be concerned with whats happeing INSIDE my house.

This connects to Bloomingdale, in that we have many many "problem houses" in our neighborhood. Most of us want them gone, but the judges don't seem to lock up enough perps of "quality of life" crimes. I dont believe that we should legislate symptoms of crimes, as the article claims overcrowding is. Much like i dont believe in the "drug enforcemnet zones" that frequently get set up in Bloomingdale, Eckington, and Turxton. But, when someone breaks a real law, the law needs to pound them for it.

On tricky issues like this, i will always have to side with more freedom, less legislation.

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

starbucks in annapolis

I find this article a bit funny considering how many times i have heard people express their hopes for a Starbucks in our hood. I especially like the "Coffeehouses were very popular in Annapolis and other 18th-century cities, both here and in England. They were a gathering place, and that's basically what this Starbucks is planned to be." comment.

Post Article

How would Bloomingdale react if a Starbucks ever actually opened up here?

changes in adams morgan

here is a Post Article about the closing of The Comet liquor store and the changes that have happened in Adams Morgan

Saturday, December 24, 2005

Gentrification in another country

I just got back from a short trip to Lebanon. There's a neighborhood in Beirut that I loved the last time I was there and wanted to check it out again. I was instantly curious at the similarities to Bloomingdale, and the issues we face in DC.

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The neighborhood is Gemayze, just east of the newly rebuilt Downtown , one of the most amazing downtowns of any city I have ever seen in my life.
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Though rather Disney-esque in its trying to look old yet newly built freshness. Still, much better than what it was and what the areas that haven't been fixed up look like
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It is also just west of the famous Green Line , a major division line during the war, which apparently some cabs will still not cross.

Before the war Gemazye was a very, if not entirely Christian neighborhood. Mainly filled with beautiful old homes from the 1800's. Mostly stone. Nothing is built with wood there!

My last visit was in 2003,in the summer, and the obvious beginnings of a rebuilding after the war was occurring. Now, that growth is even more so, and it has become clear that Gemayze is "In". Bars and restaurants are lining a street that was formerly very residential. Real estate prices are sky rocketing in a city that is already one of the most expensive in the world. Parking is extremely difficult, and the narrow sidewalks are packed in the evenings. Cute boutique shops are opening and there is fear that many of the old shop will close and be replaced by a more contemporary sense of commercialism.
Image hosted by Photobucket.comWhile walking through the neighborhood with a friend and resident of Gemayze, we saw an Italian restaurant called "Corleone's". My friend said, " What business does a place like that have opening here, ruining the integrity of my neighborhood". Its next to a Sushi Bar, and many other bars where you can see Christians, Muslims, and even Druze, sharing a drink.
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Gemayze "has arrived", as realtors like to say. It is certain that much of the old charm of this hood will disappear.
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Many shops that catered to the old residents will indeed close. Neon will light up the streets and larger and larger cars will try to find parking.
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While gentrification in Beirut, and in Gemayze, doesn't come with the overtones of a stereotypical priviledge white person displacing the stereotypical poor black family, like it is portrayed in DC, there is a mixing of cultures and incomes that must find a commonality. I come back to DC to find liquor bottles and trash in my front yard, guys pissing in my alley, a few newly renovated buildings and a few more troubled properties that for sale or have sold. Keep it up Bloomingdale, we have a long way to go. If Beirut can do it, I know we can.

more pictures here

news concerning Lebanon here

Sunday, December 18, 2005


i've been out of town for a while so i dont know whats going on in bloomingdale lately.

i'll cross my fingers thats some big changes have been made during my vacation.

Monday, December 05, 2005

sursum corda article

heres a post article about sursum corda.

according to the article there is concern of some residents that they may not be able to receive government assistance after getting the promised $80,000. $80,000?????? and the concern is continued government assistance?
not trusting the developer, i could see. having the money NOT TO NEED assistance, and you complain? that attitude is absurd.

Friday, December 02, 2005

Rumor about the firehouse

I had heard that the proposals for the firehouse are down to TWO. And both include a restaurant on the ground floor.

While I don't really know how accurate that is, I'm still excited by the prospect.

One of the proposals is for the entire place to be a restaurant, the other is to have an arts based business/studio/school on the second and third floor. Both sound GREAT to me.

Also, there's talk of a Tavern coming to the 1500 block of north capitol. That may be as early as next summer.