What will Georgetown look like in 2028? More importantly, what do you want it to look like? Wider sidewalks? Easier parking? More restaurants? Better transit? You may soon have the opportunity to answer those questions, and actually have an impact.
Yesterday the Georgetown BID announced an ambitious new effort dubbed “Georgetown 2028”. The project is designed to take a deep look at what the neighborhood needs to do over the next fifteen years to face the challenges of a city growing and changing at an incredibly fast pace.
Future Georgetown must compete against new and “coming soon” commercial areas in the District and nearby areas so it remains home to fine dining, distinct retail opportunities, great hotels, and major businesses. Future Georgetown must have the transportation strategies and system to efficiently move people in, out and around. Future Georgetown, as a riverfront neighborhood, must have the forethought to protect itself from the impacts of a changing climate, including rising water levels. It must understand its future infrastructure needs and decide how it wants its public infrastructure to be designed, used, and managed. And finally, future Georgetown will need to manage all these issues as efficiently and effectively as possible.
The effort is a breathtakingly broad look at all the changes that need to be made to the physical and business environment in Georgetown. The project is organized around a task force of business, educational, governmental, and residential representatives (full disclosure: GM is on the task force representing the Citizens Association of Georgetown). Supporting the task force are three working groups addressing, respectively, transportation challenges, economic development, and the public space. Those topics give you a good sense for what sort of broad-based topics the project will consider.
And the project is also very wide-open in terms of solutions. And consistent with that, the project is seeking input from the public. There will be a community engagement meeting on June 13th at 1055 Thomas Jefferson St. at 5:30 to 8:00. There will be a second community engagement meeting in September.
But the input isn’t limited to community meetings. The project has already set up a community engagement website, which allows you to log in and offers your thoughts on what you want to see change about Georgetown over the next 15 years. There’s even a rewards program! Build up 150 points by logging in, referring a friend, and contributing enough ideas and you win a lunch with the BID CEO Joe Sternlieb, during which you can share your thoughts on Georgetown and what ideas you have to make it better.
Basically this is exactly the sort of comprehensive and ambitious planning effort that GM has been calling for for years. GM is absolutely thrilled that it is finally happening, and he’s honored to be taking part.
8 responses to “Georgetown 2028”
“Make no small plans…”
The only thing that was not mentioned was that Georgetown is where many of us LIVE. At this rate why not make every house Commercial Only and turn the whole place into a Mall; how far will this creeping commercialization crawl anyway?
It’s a Georgetown BID initiative, Elliott – of course it’s focused on the business side. There would probably be quite a bit of pushback if they didn’t limit their scope to primarily the commercial areas and concerns. Of course the impact on residents will be taken into account, especially since many of the participants (like Topher) are residents of Georgetown themselves.
Just to be devil’s advocate: Georgetown has actually lost a lot of businesses if you compare it with the past. Many houses of today were well into the mid 20th century small shops and businesses; countless small grocers were to be found on street corners. Manufacturing dominated the riverside streets. The retail was better spread out around the town but the main drags were and still are cheek to jowl commercial. We could use some more thoughtful, useful, small shops in the neighborhoods.
Start with a couple of Blue Line metro stops.
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