NatsTown Green-Up: The Washington Nationals Dream Foundation will team up with Earth Conservation Corps to give area residents and local businesses the opportunity to help beautify the neighborhood surrounding Nationals Park. More than 100 volunteers will take to the streets from 8am to noon to clean up areas at three separate locations - the Matthew Henson Center (2000 Half Street, SW); the intersection between 1st and Q Streets, SW; and the park at 3rd and I Streets, SW. Nationals Pitchers *Tyler Clippard and *Craig Stammen will also join volunteers for a portion of the morning’s clean-up.
Thursday, July 29, 2010
Tuesday, July 27, 2010
There are three design alternatives under consideration for the Switzer Building, but all three alternatives will bring the following improvements: C Street, from 3rd Street to 4th Street, will be reduced to one lane in each direction, which will allow the sidewalks on both sides of the street to be widened; bulb-outs at the corners of 4th & C Street and 3rd & C Street; the installation of curb cuts and wheelchair ramps to comply with ADA regulations; a landscaped plaza on the north side of the building; street trees; a concession/coffee stand; public art to hide vent shafts; permanent perimeter security measures; install a back-up generator below-grade; provide Level IV security for the building; and use sustainable practices. Here are descriptions of the three design alternatives from the Environmental Assessment:
Under Alternative A, the entire existing surface parking lot on the north side of the building would be converted to landscaped plaza. The proposed design would combine both open lawn and fully planted landscaped panels. A coffee/concession stand accessible to the public would be installed at the east end of the plaza.
Alternative B proposes to convert the existing surface parking lot to a landscaped plaza. The landscaped plaza design would include open lawn panels opposite the two entrances with fully planted landscaped panels flanking
the lawns on the east and west ends. Surface parking for approximately 11 vehicles would be located at the center of the plaza and would be bordered on 4 sides by planting beds. The lot would be designed such that it could serve as an additional outdoor venue when not used for parking. A coffee/concession stand and small seating area would be installed at the east end of the plaza adjacent to the 3rd Street sidewalk.
Alternative C proposes to convert the existing surface parking lot to a landscaped plaza. The landscaped plaza design would include open lawn panels opposite the two entrances with fully planted landscaped panels flanking the lawns on the east and west ends. Surface parking for approximately 28 vehicles would be located at the center of the plaza and would be bordered on the north, east, and west sides by planting beds. The lot would be designed such that it could serve as an additional outdoor venue when not used for parking. A coffee/concession stand and small seating area would be installed at the east end of the plaza adjacent to the 3rd Street sidewalk.
These proposed improvements come on the heels of plans for Federal Building #8 next door, which is currently under renovation and will also incorporate elements of the Switzer Building landscaping plan. Other improvements in the SW Federal Center area include Eisenhower Square at 4th Street & Independence Avenue and the American Veterans Disabled for Life Memorial at 2nd Street and Washington Avenue.
The GSA prefers Alternative B and will make its case to the NCPC at the September 2nd meeting. Public comment is open on the proposal until August 9th.
Sunday, July 25, 2010
(Left) There is an expanded grocery section in this CVS. In addition to bread and frozen foods, customers can pick up a salad or a sandwich. Apparently, this store is one of the many stores that added this feature in 2010.
Saturday, July 17, 2010
Beth Paulson, founder of the Southwest Action Team, a community organization that helped initiate the shuttle service, said her group has collected about 500 letters in support of resuming the Shuttle-Bug, including one from an assistant D.C. police chief.
Wednesday, July 14, 2010
“I have been a longtime fan of José’s restaurants, and am just plain thrilled that José Andrés Catering with Ridgewells will be creating food in our beautiful new cafe space,” shares [Arena Stage Artistic Director Molly] Smith. “Along with other exclusive catering partners, Arena Stage will now not only be a home for American theater in Southwest, D.C. but of the culinary arts as well. The synchronicity between great art and great food is undeniable.”“Many years ago when Molly told me of her dreams for the new Arena Stage, I knew I wanted to be a part of it,” adds Andrés. “And now, my team and our partners at Ridgewells are here at Washington’s most amazing new destination.”
Monday, July 12, 2010
- 200 jobs will be created (including the construction period and permanent union jobs at the hotel)
- A pre-apprentice program
- 20% affordable housing component
- An annual art exhibit for ANC 6D
- An annual Neighborhood Day street fair
- Free admission to the art museum for any ANC 6D resident EVERY DAY
- Sculpture garden on the Delaware Avenue circle
- Space within the development for ANC 6D programming
- The continuation of free admission one day a year at the Corcoran
- Easement on H Street to allow access to the Randall Recreation Center next door
- Annual exhibit at the museum for ANC 6D artists
Friday, July 9, 2010
Thursday, July 8, 2010
Part of the problem with the maintenance of the park, located at 6th and I Street, SW, is when the park was transferred from the National Park Service to DPR, there were issues with the drainage system and water lines that were not brought to the attention of DPR. As a result, the deferred maintenance caused the pumps in the duck pond to malfunction. Another concern was the condition of the park, which was strewn with trash and leaves, missing streetlights, uncut grass, and crumbling brick retaining walls. These problems had nothing to do with the property transfer, but were due to negligence. Eventually, the park was cleaned and the duck pond drained by DPR until new pumps could be installed.
Other fixes to the park, including the repair of the brick retaining walls, is supposed to be done by the developers of the neighboring View at Waterfront apartments, who were to make those improvements as a concession in their Planned Unit Development (PUD) submission in 2008. However, the improvements to the park do not need to be made until the new south tower residential building planned at the View at Waterfront is built. Since the PUD submission in 2008, the View at Waterfront property was foreclosed on and now has new owners. The state of the economy has put plans for new construction of apartments at the View at Waterfront, as well as the repairs to Town Center West Park, in limbo.
In the meantime, some local residents recently formed an organization called Neighbors of Town Center West Park to care for the park and serve as an advocacy group. Every second Saturday of the month, this group of volunteers picks up trash and does other maintenance at the park. The next clean-up day will be this Saturday from 10am-12pm. At the June ANC 6D meeting, the commissioners voted unanimously to designate Neighbors of Town Center West Park the official community representative for the park. With this designation, the group can participate in DPR's Park Partners program.
The current condition of Town Center West Park, despite the fact that the fountains are now operational, stands in stark contrast to the portion of Town Center Park that is along the recently reopened 4th Street, SW. New park benches line the paths leading from Town Center West Park to 4th Street, SW and Waterfront Station, along with new landscaping, sidewalks, streetlights, bike racks, and brick retaining walls.
If you want to get involved with the Neighbors of Town Center West Park, contact Bob Craycraft at firstname.lastname@example.org. They also have a Facebook page:
“Town Center Park West, SW Washington DC.”