Monday, March 14, 2011

meeting tonight on Big Bear Cafe, Bloomingdale Farmers` Market issues, such as parking & the closure of the 100 blk of R St NW

See this meeting announcement:

From: karla lewis
Sent: Mon 14-03-2011 12:43
To: a bunch of people
Subject: Community Meeting Tonight March 14, 2011 at 7pm-- Harry Thomas Center, 1743 Lincoln Rd., NE

This is the follow-up to the meeting that was held on December 21st to discuss community concerns. This session is being conducted so the community can come to together and create solutions for the problems that have been identified, such as the parking issues due the Big Bear Cafe's extended hours and the closure of the 100 block of R St NW for the Bloomingdale Farmers Market.

Please attend, voice your concerns, and help to create and/or support solutions to resolve the issues that currently plague our community.

At tonight`s meeting, we will focus on residential issues. During a later meeting in the series, we will address commercial issues.

Date: Monday, March 14, 2011
Time: 7:00 PM – 9:00 PM
Place: Harry Thomas Recreation Center
1743 Lincoln Rd., NE
Washington, DC 20002
Phone: (202) 576- 5642




  1. "plague" the community?

    wow, the tempest in a teacup that is being able to park where you want for $15 a year.

    people being shot and killed in our neighborhoods are a "plague."

    children not having enough to eat and living in broken homes are a "plague."


    i don't know karla lewis from adam, but man, this email paints a negative picture for me.

  2. Agreed - I live on the 100 block of Randolph Place and when there is no parking there I often park in front of the Big Bear.

    The notion that Big Bear's extended hours have created a parking "plague" finds no basis in fact.

    Unfortunately, treating local businesses like a plague, does give our neighborhood a bad name.

  3. Is this a regular Bloomingdale Civic Assoc meeting or some other random people?

  4. She's using "plague" as a verb; you're using it as a noun. Not the same thing. Try reading her post with "afflict" in place of "plague." Now you get it? She never said parking was a plague.

  5. M: noun, verb, adjective, conjunction, prepositional phrase - doesn't matter.

    the whole thing is a game of intellectual dishonestly. people are opposed to the existence of big bear and the farmers' market. fine. that's a legitimate point (though i personally think it's crazy), but people need to stand up and own it, then.

    say it loud, say it proud. dancing around the edges of the issue is weak sauce.

    (and my point stands - there are real problems, there are silly problems, and there are non-issues in DC. this falls into the latter camp.)

  6. Mari,

    The Bloomingdale Civic Association is neither hosting this meeting nor was it involved in planning it. The next Bloomingdale Civic Association meeting will be held Monday, March 21, 2011 at St George's Episcopal Church (160 U Street, NW) at 7pm.

    Teri Janine Quinn
    President, Bloomingdale Civic Association

  7. Mari - Near as I can tell this group arises out of a meeting that CM Thomas held back in late fall.

    At that time there were also messages about how we need to address problems that have arisen in relation to Big Bear and the Farmer's Market. As the OP states the "problems that have been identified" are parking, parking, parking, parking, parking, etc.

    It appears to be a parking task force, but it does have access to CM Thomas, so could be good to show up and find out what's going on.

  8. Here is the relevant text from the Feb. 2 Bloomingdale Listserv seeking a "peace accord" with regard to parking.

    3. The SMD 5C03 Transition Team conducted a working group on 8 December 2010 with a group of concerned residents led by Ms. Karla Lewis to gain further insight into perturbations related to local parking, the Big Bear Cafe, the Bloomingdale Farmers` Market, and community development in general. As a result, we produced a detailed mapping of the SMD 5C03 Residential Concerns that can serve as the foundation for subsequent dialogue to address the concerns of all parties with intention of establishing a sustainable long-term peace accord between the residents and businesses that coexist in our community. Councilmember Thomas` Office organized a broader follow-up meeting on December 20th and is now generously dedicating Ward 5 resources directly to an issue limited in scope to SMD 5C03. If you would like for your locally elected SMD 5C03 Commissioner to have a seat at the table and a direct role in the ongoing SMD 5C03 Community Peace Process, please send your letters of concern to the Councilmember`s Office at hthomas @ and njohnson @ In the meantime, the SMD 5C03 Office is conducting independent research into frameworks, best practices, and lessons learned resulting from other peace processes undertaken around the globe.

  9. The parking "peace accord" needs to include churches, too.

  10. @ Chuck: indeed. Perhaps a helpful pedagogical illustration would be to invite the group outside the HT, JR Rec Center and count the number of illegally parked cars. And then to perhaps monitor those leaving to see if they get in a car that was illegally parked. I'd be willing to bet that the loudest shouts against BBC and BFM will be from those who had no compunction against parking illegally for the purposes of this meeting. Remember, the last referendum on parking issues surrounding BBC and BFM was held inside a -- wait for it -- church. That's like holding a referendum on obesity inside a Dunkin' Donuts.

  11. Please let's not unreasonably impugn the churches. I fully agree that churches are a much greater parking problem than BBC or BFM, but the reason the parking issue was discussed in a church is that the church made space available for the community to discuss the issue.

    Hopefully people will be able to attend to say that BBC and BFM are not creating a parking crisis despite the last-minute notice.

    It will be particularly interesting to see if church parking is discussed, or if this is just about opposition to the BBC and BFM.

  12. Hi Neighbors,

    I live on the Unit Block of U Street, NW and every single weekday our neighbors on Rhode Island park on my block because of their parking restrictions. It's a bit of a pain at certain hours. Sometimes I have to walk a little way to my house.

    But I recognize that it's important for the flow of traffic that those cars not be blocking a lane on a major road. It's for the greater good.

    The farmers market and Big Bear have become welcome institutions; places for neighbors to gather and meet each other. It gets us walking around our streets and saying hi. This stuff is absolutely critical to the health of our community, not to mention the health of our bodies.

    You neighbors in the immediate vicinity are inconvenienced. But if you are ready to see those institutions close, you are also selfish. Please remember that you are members of a community. Please think first about the greater good.

    Additionally, to say that your parking troubles "plague" the community is such an overstatement that I feel you loose credibility. Plagues on the community include drug-dealing, robbery, violent crime...which as it turns out, are all ameliorated by the kind of progress that BCC and the Farmers Market bring.

    One last point...parking on the street is not your right. It's a privilege. We live in a city, your property line most likely ends at your doorstep.

  13. Is this post a joke?

    After living in this neighborhood for over a decade God bless the person whose greatest concerns are, "Parking issues due the Big Bear Cafe's extended hours and the closure of the 100 block of R St NW for the Bloomingdale Farmers Market."


    My residential concerns are: 1)Crime, 2)Lack of safe opportunities for children to be active, and 3)Not enough places for adults to socialize and be active --- and part of that is not enough commercial establishments in the neighborhood. We need more of what Big Bear offers us, not less. Also, like my fellow neighbors, I consider the Bloomingdale Farmers Market one of our neighborhood's greatest assets.

    As I said before, I think this might be a joke. After all, it was posted on the same day as the proposed meeting. If this were authentic I think there would have been more than a few hours notice given.

    Very odd post indeed.

  14. I will be interested to see if the local government officials address the parking issues around 100 block of R st (presumably caused by farmers market) in the same manner as the parking issues around 100 block of T st (presumably caused by churches).

  15. 2 shootings, 1 murder, innumerable violent assaults (2 recently during the mid-day hours) and our community 'activists' and leaders call a special meeting for Big Bear/BFM parking. A parking problem which - at least in the case of the BFM - was shown through multiple surveys to NOT EVEN EXIST.

    Good stuff guys, keep it up. You're so awesome.