Friday, May 22, 2015

reporter Jeffrey Anderson seeks those who support the current McMillan plan

See this tweet:

. I want to hear from those who support current McMillan plan -- including how it has moved through the process.
3:31 PM - 22 May 2015

5 comments:

  1. Mr. Anderson, there are two "Create McMillan" signs left in Bloomingdale, and the folks who testified in favor of the massive land "give away" are scatttered all over the place, where ever VMP, and Fontaine "PR slime ball campaign, could find them...They read testimony that Mike Cherry of Fantaine must have written for them,,,,you can find your supporters there, and Bowser, and McDuffie. The council is a "marketplace of influence", check them.

    Do the Council members really think we are that stupid. They voted unanimously, in the last hours of 2014 , in silence, and took only a few minutes, to "surplus" our public 25 acres, DC historic site, to a miserable development team, worth $billions. The VMP hired a slime ball PR firm, to force a list of unsavory, and un-ethical dirty tricks on our community. They paid hot shot lobbyists Carmen Group $100,000 for a single meeting with Council member David Grosso. This is the biggest land ripoff since the Dutch stole Maannaaahhaattaan from The Lenape for 60 Guilders and a bag of beads and trinkets, in 1626!
    The "Monstrosity on Michigan Avenue", brings auto traffic to 50,000 car trips a day, on N. Capitol, where the highest air pollution levels are measured. The City Council and Mayor collude with the well heeled developers to steal our public land, right Jack Evans, who kept it fenced off for 28 years,, what miserable record
    We need a Wolf Trap in the Park, a Glen Echo arts and Ed. campus, and a city where the government is not an embarrassment to the Nation.

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    Replies
    1. Speaking for myself, as I may have one of the Create McMillan Park signs you are talking about (though I can think of several more than 2 off the top of my head).

      I do not like all of the backstory-- going back for decades-- as you and others have laid it out again and again, though I think the criticism doesn't have direct relevance to the features of the plan at hand. Lobbyists and PR firms participating in a land-use question of this magnitude should not be surprising in this city so well supplied with them, even if the participation pushes limits of the perception of propriety even if legal.

      That said, I am for the current plan-- not because of any testimony written for me or any financial connection (as I have none).

      I support it precisely because-- this opinion of mine may surprise you or not coming from a plan supporter-- of the results of the constructive pressure by groups such as Save McMillan Park and the MAG. I credit them, our ANCs and civic associations with pushing hard to the point that the current plan is much better than where it stood years ago in form, function, and community benefits.

      The mention of "years ago" brings me to another point-- right now, we have a fenced off site and decades of inability to use it. Bringing this process to square one as you and others suggest-- for any well intentioned design competition or what have you-- means waiting another decade or more until my family or our Bloomingdale neighbors get to use this place (and I have a young child and a house I love- I intend to be here)

      I am a pragmatist. I would rather have a plan that will actually be executed, provide community amenities of open space and a new Olmsted Walk, adaptive reuse (i.e. the community center pool within the cell), limited retail (we do need more as RI Ave corridor is filling up and people keep coming) and new housing. Because I strongly prefer planned development and some greater density at McMillan rather than having our row houses gutted, popped up and back ad infinitum and nauseam.

      Throughout the development of McMillan, I hope the BCA, MAG, ANC, Council, etc hold the developers' feet to the fire on their commitments-- they need to. And I will be the first to write letters or post petitions in support of those efforts when the time comes.

      Frankly, I didn't respond to Mr. Anderson and haven't to most previous posts because I'm a busy working parent who doesn't have the time or energy for endless debate, and don't want to be drawn into more by sitting down with a reporter for an interview. I know several others like me.

      I am only writing this now because I am tired of having my own motivations or intelligence put into question by blanket statements.

      I support the current McMillan plan. I don't support every element of the process over decades past. I support the plan because it gives McMillan more of a future and benefit to Bloomingdale and our city than watching it decay behind the fences.

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    2. Agreed. Thanks to the efforts of the groups that put pressure on the city and developers, the plan as it exists now is far better than what was originally proposed. Having a grocery within walking distance will be great. Having a park that is open every day and at all hours will be great (the cemeteries are great open space but are unfortunately too cut off from the neighborhood). There will also be new housing, which the city desperately needs. And all of this will be the justification and catalyst for transit improvements the area needs.

      The pressure needs to continue throughout this process so that we get the project that is promised.

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    3. Thanks for your support Matt. It's time we heard the ratinal voices in Bloomingdale!

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