ANC 6D Report - January 2017

Advisory Neighborhood Commission (ANC) 6D met on Jan 9. Newly elected commissioners Gail Fast (6D01), Cara Shockley (6D02), and Ronald Collins (6D03) joined returning commissioners Andy Litsky (6D04), Roger Moffatt (6D05), Rhonda N. Hamilton (6D06), and Meredith Fascett (6D07) on the dais. 

More on Peninsula 88

The commissioners heard a presentation by Buzzard Point LLC, the developers of Peninsula 88, located on Buzzard Point at the intersection of First and V streets SW. The site, adjacent to National Park Service (NPS) land and the shuttered Pepco power station, is currently occupied by a flower garden. Developers are proposing to an eight-story apartment building containing 110 units of housing as a matter of right. Under inclusionary zoning, eight of the units will be set aside for affordable housing. The apartments will offer a combination of one- and two-bedroom units, the former of 800 square feet and the latter 1,500 square feet. There is room for a small retailer on the ground floor’s northwest corner. A hundred parking spaces will be built on two levels.

The developers committed to creating a small dog run on the V Street side of the property and promised to build 50 bike storage spaces. They are petitioning the city to extend the route of the No. 74 bus to the property as well as exploring options for watertaxi service. They said they had been unable to interest the NPS in an extension of Half Street through their neighboring property.

The developers asked the commission to provide a letter of support of their project as it undergoes design review under the terms of the Capitol Gateway zone. “I can’t vote in favor of any project in Buzzard Point, period,” stated Chair Litsky, citing the absence of a comprehensive transportation plan for the area. Commissioner Fascett joined him in his opposition. The commissioners voted 5-2 in favor of supporting the project.

With Commissioner Shockley abstaining, the commissioners voted to authorize Moffatt and Hamilton to testify on their behalf before the Zoning Commission on the project. 

Buzzard Point Park

The commissioners discussed two concepts put forward by the NPS for the renovation of Buzzard Point Park on the site of the former marina. Representatives from DC Sail and others in the audience objected to the lack of a public boat ramp and marina in either plan. There is now no public boat ramp in Southwest, they stated. Litsky pointed out that both proposals contain kayak docks. The commissioners endorsed Concept One with Commissioners Shockley and Fascett in opposition.

For more information visit https://parkplanning.nps.gov/projectHome.cfm?projectID=62603.

Short-Term Family Housing Facility

Deputy Director Jay Melder of the Mayor’s Office of Policy & Legislative Affairs (MOPLA) presented plans for a short-term family housing facility at 850 Delaware Ave. SW, the current site of the Southwest Unity Healthcare Clinic. (For a look at details visit www.capitalcommunitynews.com/content/family-shelter-moves-forward-southwest.) The city will be applying to the Board of Zoning Adjustment for relief to allow the building to be 88 feet in height and reduce the required parking from 26 to 13 spaces.

Commissioner Moffatt asked why no retail, other than a new health clinic, could be provided on the first floor of the new facility. The city would have to apply for a planned unit development, a much more involved and expensive process, to permit such commercial usage, replied Melder. This would significantly delay the project.

Commissioner Fascett reminded Melder of the commission’s longstanding demand that there be no shared bathrooms at the new facility. Cautioning that the project was still at the zoning stage, Melder stated that the architects were trying to maximize the plumbing space. Every room would have a fridge and there will be two microwaves per hall, he stated.

Commissioner Fast questioned whether 13 spaces would provide enough parking for both the clinic and the short-term housing facility. The facility’s residents are extremely unlikely to have cars, explained Melder. 

Commissioner Hamilton remained concerned that the medical clinic was undersized. Southwest needs a state-of-the-art urgent care facility, she said. Five thousand square feet has been reserved for the medical clinic, Melder responded. Another 2,000 square feet of storage could be repurposed, he added. Hamilton asked whether the city had found a swing space to house Unity’s existing clinic during the construction. There is no District-owned swing space provisioned, stated Melder. “We have not gotten to that point in our discussions.” Litsky interjected, “I am concerned that there is no firm answer on what is happening in the interim. We can’t wait two years without a health clinic.”

The commissioners took no vote on the short-term family housing proposal.

Public Safety Report

Metropolitan Police Department Lt. Bredet Williams introduced her replacement at PSA 105, Lieutenant Darryl Robinson. The First District saw a significant increase in the past 30 days in robberies, assaults with deadly weapons, and car breakins. In PSA 105 police closed 53 percent of aggravated assault cases. Williams warned drivers not to leave anything visible in their cars.

“There is a ring of people stealing cell phones and selling them,” Williams stated. They are targeting white females and riders awaiting Uber pickups. She reminded pedestrians to remain aware of their surroundings.

Other Matters

The commissioners elected a slate of new officers by acclamation: 

Andy Litsky (6D04), chair

Cara Shockley (6D02), vice chair

Gail Fast (6D01), secretary

Meredith Fascett (6D07), treasurer

The commissioners took the following actions:

approved the meeting’s agenda

approved the December minutes with Commissioner Shockley abstaining

approved unanimously a resolution in support of permits for the Women’s March on Washington

approved sending a letter in support of the Rock and Roll Marathon scheduled for March 11, with Commissioner Shockley abstaining

approved sending a letter of support to the Alcoholic Beverage Control Board for application by Shake Shack, located at 50 M St. SW, for a D/R license, with Commissioner Shockley voting against

approved the new membership of the commission’s ABC Subcommittee under the continued leadership of Chair Coralie Farlee

unanimously approved $2,000 for the purchase of office supplies

unanimously approved the commission’s 2017 meeting schedule

unanimously approved participating in the ANC Security Fund

ANC 6D will meet on Monday, Feb. 13, at 7 p.m., at 1100 Fourth St. SW, Second Floor. Visit www.anc6d.org/ for more information.