Bloomingdale Buzz

While trash has not been a problem at Crispus Attucks, dead leaves and twigs can get wet and damage the grass if left for extended periods.

Everybody Everywhere

On Saturday, Nov. 19, Bloomingdale’s Crispus Attucks Park hosted its annual Fall Cleanup Day. Located on the block surrounded by First, V, North Capitol, and W streets NW, the park is maintained and operated solely by the local community. “Every fall and spring, in the park, we have a seasonal cleanup day,” said Crispus Attucks Treasurer Christopher Bulka, adding that the Spring Cleanup Day is generally held in March or April depending on the weather and when plants start to bloom. “Basically, we encourage community residents, and really anybody who knows about the park and wants to lend a hand, to join us,” he said.

November’s cleanup had one of the best turnouts in recent memories, a total of around 25. Bulka, a Bloomingdale resident since 2014, and other members of the board started the day off at 9 a.m. and were joined by a steady flow of residents starting around 9:30. The group was tasked with planting crocus bulbs (each year, a different flower) as well as pruning hazardous or view-obstructing branches. The most significant goal was to remove twigs and leaves and to lay down mulch throughout the many planting beds.

Dead leaves, if not removed, can damage grass, but trash is one problem the park doesn’t have. “We have a really great community that really respects the park when we use it,” Bulka said. The people who use the park are conscientious about removing trash they create (such as food wrappers), and those who live adjacent to the park clean up refuse they see blown onto the grounds.

Because Crispus Attucks is fully owned, maintained, and operated by locals, it relies entirely on donations. Every May, the park hosts the Bloomingdale Community Day – essentially a community-wide yard sale featuring a snack stand – and the Taste of Bloomingdale, for which local restaurants donate time and a dish. Attendees purchase tickets which they can exchange for food. All of the proceeds go to the annual upkeep of the park, which Bulka said tops $14,000.

To find out more about Crispus Attucks Park, including how to donate, volunteer, or book an event, visit www.crispusattucsparkdc.org.

The Latest from DC Water

Bloomingdale is now fully in the grips of DC Water’s improvement projects. While the changes will benefit residents long-term, the immediate impacts will lead to some inconveniences. Here is a breakdown of the latest.

The project is going to install more than 4,500 feet of water mains in the neighborhood, as well as replace lead service lines or others in need of replacement. Fire hydrants and valves will also be replaced, and roadways and sidewalks affected by the construction will be restored. The major water-main replacement is mostly on First Street, covering most of the street’s span from Channing Street to Rhode Island Avenue NW (as well as branching off a bit onto some side streets, including the entire 100 block of Adams Street).

DC Water is analyzing the pipes in the neighborhood to determine which ones are made with lead. To identify whether your pipe includes lead, visit the application at www.dcwater.com/lead/pipe_material_information.cfm. While residents will need to pay to have their pipes replaced, DC Water is offering a significant discount compared to any private company.

The project is underway and will continue into February. While DC Water had originally hoped to avoid Saturday work, the timeline will require regular hours of 9 a.m.-6 p.m., Monday-Saturday. The final restoration will begin in April.

Temporary restricted parking signs will be posted throughout the neighborhood during the next few months. Residents and the winds are removing some of those signs, but DC Water reminds residents that the signs are enforceable even if taken down. Removing the signs may not prevent ticketing or towing and can delay the project’s completion. In addition, First Street will stay closed from McMillan Drive to Channing Street NW throughout the project. To mitigate the negative effects of these restrictions, DC Water will be offering free Uber transportation from the parking lot on Second Street between Bryant and W streets NW to residents’ homes.

BCA updates

The November meeting of the Bloomingdale Civic Association (BCA) featured an extensive discussion of the latest on the DC Water project. Concerns included parking restrictions and road closures, noise from Saturday construction, and noise from people driving over steel plates late at night.

A representative of Mayor Muriel Bowser briefed the crowd about a holiday season social media campaign, #ThankfulDC, intended to identify what locals are thankful for. Local businesses, residents, government agencies, and politicians have participated in the campaign. The representative gave a brief description of Mayor Bowser’s Alleypalooza campaign to fix up alleyways throughout the city. So far three in and near Bloomingdale have been improved: 14 Todd Place NE; 136 Randolph Place NW; and 16 Evarts St. NE.

Following the mayoral updates, the BCA recounted October’s election for the association’s council, which featured mostly returning members. A representative of the Bloomingdale Village Square Project noted that its crew is planning a fundraising event featuring live music and attractions for children sometime in January. BCA will also be hosting a party soon. Its annual holiday party will immediately follow an abridged monthly meeting on Dec. 12, at St. George’s Episcopal Church, 160 U St. NW, at 7 p.m.

Max Moline is a communications specialist living in DC. He frequents Nationals Park and enjoys writing about food as much as he does eating it. He’s always looking for new places to try. Rooftops and cigar lounges are a plus! Get in touch: molinecommunications@gmail.com; @MaxMoline425.


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