A blog for the Bloomingdale neighborhood in Washington, DC.
Oh, FFS. So glad folks (without a financially viable plan for an alternative) are spending their civic engagement energy on this kind of protesting in the current political environment.
I don't mind if they protest - whatever, folks, if that's how you want to use your time, so be it - but I do mind when they purport to speak for the neighborhood. There's lots of people who want to see this move forward, and no doubt many more today than a few years ago. They may not be as loud but they absolutely exist and their voices should count too.
@rc Oh, I agree on both counts. They should of course be allowed to protest -- it's an essential form of speech -- but I don't have any patience for their NIMBY catastrophizing when there are much more important things to put community action energy into. And a wholehearted YES to your second point. I'm one of those less vocal neighbors who supports the project.
There are two big issues that I see with this development project: the destruction of some of the last of our very valuable green space and the conspicuous lack of any sort of transportation plan.1st Street NW can barely handle the current rush hour traffic load. I don't feel like it's NIMBYism to want the developers to have a real plan for getting the people to from their glorious development project. At a time when we’re trying to make the city more friendly to car-free commuters do we really want to support a major development that will be primarily accessed by motor vehicles?The city walled off an area which could have been a tremendous resource for the community and then they blackmailed the community into accepting development as the price to access a (very small) portion of this space. This acreage was always intended to be parkland. Has anyone seen any compelling argument why restoring this as a park is not still a good idea?The only reason that this development ever became at all palatable was that the fence made the status quo untenable. Had they not fenced us out, the community would have had a chance to fall in love with this space and to explore the limits of how it could benefit the community (as it did before the fence was erected.)
So, on what issues do you spend your "civic engagement energy"? Could you identify the "much more important things" and share how you think others should spend their time and money?The process (or failed process) by which our DC government gives away our land after spending millions supporting the developers' bid to win Zoning and HPRB approval, is troubling to many engaged citizens. The issues are now before the Court of Appeals. To suggest that the people who have been involved in this process for many years should quit before the last option has been explored is rather disrespectful.
Will someone just let me know when the Harris Teeter is open, please? Thanks in advance!
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Jed: I've kept a shopping cart in the closet under my stairs for 20 years waiting for the day I would walk to a real grocery store. I just hope the rubber is still good on the tires when the Harris Teeter finally opens.
I'm glad to have a Harris Teeter closer by when it finally opens but man you guys are making it sound like you live hundreds of miles away from a grocery store. The Harris Teeter on First St NE is maybe 20 minutes' walk tops and The Giant on 7th and O is less than a half hour's walk.
For a Harris Teeter, but your getting 50 buildings, years of construction and pollution, traffic, noise for mega dev., a private site stolen from the people. It has always been the Rhode Island Ave(Forman Mills) plaza that needed and made sense to re-develop, and add retail, near the metro. Certainly walking distance to Bloomingdale.(as if you really walk to super market trips!)The Washington Hospital Center parking lots are the cause of much of the sewage flooding, and they really must be re-engineered and should be re-developed for additional medical offices,and flooding solutions, that is where the Dev. Conglomerate should be , not on the last and only open , greensapce around. We are at the mercy of The DC Office of Miserable Planning and multi billion dollar DC Water mitigation tunnels raising our water bills to unacceptable increases, $100-$200 a month. That makes it cost about $5 to take a shower, like a 16 times increase in water bills in 20 years. So when you have an EXISTING large historic park like McMillan, good planning provides these improvements but doesn't destroy environmentally critical green space, IRREPLACEABLE greenspace , so utterly squandered by corrupt hacks like GRAY,FENTY, BOWSER and the rest of the corrupt, racist City Council. You yuppies make it sound like,, to get one more high priced food store, among many, the "Monstrosity on Michigan Avenue ", is necessary, which is absurd. This is the biggest corruption yet, you need an Environmental Impact Study, do you really trust the mediocre politicians and crass corporate Fontaine "astroturfers" who brought you sewage in your basements, dirty tricks against your neighbors(Jamie Fontaine PR sleaze, and squandered the land for 30 years, wasted $millions, and fenced you out while pandering to the rich in upper NW? We can end DC food desserts for people who need it, as well as the fancy restaurant local greens when we convert the 20 acres,The McMillan Underground to "vertical agriculture and aquaponics, in NUMEROUS historic adaptive reuse, saving the entire surface park(Please see this fascinating video: http://youtu.be/ILzWmw53WwoThe international successful movement of adaptive re-use, and the DC govt. would have supported years ago for the ultra rich predominantly white people in upper NW, where you can walk from every home to greenspace and real parks.Pollution, congestion, ultra density, pathetic McPark, 600 buses a day on your block for EYA. The "walkable neighborhoods of EYA, just happen to require 31,000 aoutmobile vehicle trips a day). Sen. McMillan planned the "Emerald Necklace" for you and your kids. So drive to Rock Creek, if McMillan Town Center is such a great idea, get a section of 1500 acre Rock Creek for more corporate profit.See how welcome they will be over there. Thanks yuppies for all your cynicism, nasty comments,selfishness, and absence of any real vision, community, so CONSUME in peace, but please reply to the facts directly, not the messenger, Daniel
While the sometimes rambling stream-of-consciousness tone of Dan Wolkoff's missives certainly may rub people the wrong way, he does have some very very good points. I will comment on them down the road, but for now, let's just stick to the facts themselves:Appeal is pending. Traffic is already ridiculous and *will* massively increase. Green space will be sorely missed.And for everyone who clamors for another chain supermarket: get a life. Seriously? If you've been waiting for a Harris Teeter to come within 5 blocks of you for the last 10 years, you need a new hobby or someone to open your eyes to the fact that there are tons of shopping options, and perhaps you should support local small businesses such as Windows Market, etc. Besides, the Wolkoff point about the horrendous RI Ave. strip mall being a much better location for a quality supermarket is well-taken and must be considered by city planners. (There used to be a crappy Safeway in there, btw).Most importantly, he's right about the Georgetown/Chevy Chase/etc. residents: they would raise HELL if City Hall were to propose taking away from their abundant green spaces to create traffic jams and construction drama. And what to we do in Bloomingdale/LeDroit Park? Very little, except clap our little hands in support of more multi-billion profit machines.
That's choice. Brush off Daniel's ramblings then tell those for which the supermarket aspect is part of their support to get a life. Nice.
AS - I disagree. But look: this is an issue on which reasonable people can disagree. And that's okay. I think all we're asking is for a little respect here. Many people in the neighborhood unaffiliated with the development *do* support it. It is possible to take these same facts and conclude that this development is an exciting thing for our neighborhood, that it brings a brighter future for everyone. So what I ask of the project opponents is to please stop insulting us, our intelligence, or our motives by suggesting otherwise. Please also stop representing yourselves as speaking for the neighborhood. People in Bloomingdale do support this project. I'm fed up with the assertions otherwise.
Sorry to say it, but since our elected ANC reps don't voice much of an opinion, at least to my knowledge, we DO represent Bloomingdale, or at least a portion thereof. Whoever speaks up more ends up representing the masses -- isn't that how the civic principle of democracy works in its most fundamental form? That's why people protest & mobilize to "get out the vote" -- whoever does so better, louder, and more wins in the end. The presidential election is just another sad reminder of how that principle can lead to apparently 'acceptable' results.But honestly this is not about who 'speaks for Bloomingdale -- NOBODY does, because there is no single issue on which all of Bloomingdale residents agree, I can guarantee that. So, rc, neither you & your friends clamoring for a convenient grocery shopping experience (or not-so-convenient, when you consider that you will be standing in a parking-lot-like stretch of traffic on 1st street (or N. Cap.) from NY Ave all the way to McMillan!), nor the rest of us who believe that this deserves more consideration, "represent' this neighborhood. We merely speak up. That's a good thing.Finally, what really does make me worried (other than the massive traffic influx, as well as the highly likely $ millions that were paid under the table to and by developers, agents, etc. to make this happen) is the definite "forever-ness" of the destruction of (1) green space & (2) a historic architectural and technological monument. For the rest of D.C. history, this will be taken away -- for the convenience of a chain grocery store 4 blocks closer to us? I say, that position is taken by lemmings who follow the peer pressure of "having a Whole Foods close to your rowhouse means you have 'arrived'..." mentality. They forget the long-term effects over the short-term benefits. Thanks for considering.