No items jumped out at GM particularly, but one thing he’d like to note is all the updates. What he means by this is that each month, the ANC receives updates from organizations around the neighborhood. It’s a feature that has increased a lot in the last couple years versus the past, and GM thinks it’s great. With the loss of a weekly newspaper like the old Georgetown Current, it’s really hard for organizations to get the word out to the public about what they’re up to. While a few minutes of time in an ANC meeting is not the same as that old cherished paper, it’s still pretty good.
And this month there seems to be even more updates than normal. The organizations include Safeway (talking about their somewhat chaotic renovations), Office of People’s Counsel (talking about changes to water bills), the Four Seasons Hotel (talking about their vision for the neighborhood), Dumbarton Oaks Park Conservancy, the new MacArthur High School, and Georgetown Main Streets (who present most meetings, as they have so much going on).
If you want to get up on most issues happening around the neighborhood, with all these updates just listening in for the first hour or so of the monthly meeting will do the trick.
But GM kept up hope that it could be revived since the building was still owned by Andy and Suk Yang Johnson, who ran the shop themselves for many years. Hailu was actually the third operator to take over the space since the Johnson’s stepped back in 2011. With luck there would be a fourth.
And it looks like that is in the cards. Sara’s Market is a treasured part of life in east Georgetown. GM used to stop by practically every night when he lived on that side of the neighborhood. But Dent Place Market doesn’t try to be what Sara’s Market was, namely a small version of a full size grocery store. It’s more like a small version of the dry goods side of Dean and Deluca. And maybe that’s a better fit for the neighborhood. When he closed Sara’s, Hailu complained that Georgetowners rely so much on grocery delivery services that a corner market like Sara’s lost too much business. Dent Place Market is–for lack of a less trendy word–more of a curated experience. People like that.
So keep your fingers crossed this comes through…
And in related news, the Georgetowner also reported that Streets Market is opening a small grocery store in the old 7-11 on P St. This will be a good test of the very thing GM was just talking about! Can a small grocery store survive these days? We’ll see…
My ANC campaign is off in full-swing! The signs are up (and let me know if you can host one on your front steps!). And I’m now reaching out to speak with as many residents as possible about my campaign and what are my priorities should I be elected.
And my top three priorities are as follow:
#1 – Constituent Services
I promise to make active constituent services my number one priority as an ANC commissioner. This begins with a regular monthly newsletter that will update everyone on all that is happening within our district and in Georgetown beyond. It will be available to anyone who wants to sign up and I will do my best to get out the word on how to do so.
But active and regular communication is just the start of what I plan to offer the community if elected commissioner. I want to be the first person you think to call whenever a municipal issue arises. Missed trash or recycling? Illegal construction down the block? Potholes? Let me know what’s wrong and I will endeavor to address it and let you get back to living your life.
Additionally, I envision the role of commissioner as being someone who helps connect residents to build community. For instance, I would like to gather a list of senior residents or others with mobility issues and organize neighbors to ensure that after a snowfall, their steps and sidewalk are clear. I’d also take a keen interest in ensuring that any new tree that is planted is properly looked after by a nearby resident. These are small acts that many are happy to perform, they just need to be asked.
#2 – Safer Streets
I promise to push the city to prioritize pedestrian safety throughout Georgetown. This involves firstly calling on the city to increase traffic enforcement, particularly along the commuter routes that wind through our neighborhood. The pandemic has unfortunately fostered a sense of unaccountability amongst some drivers who put everyone else at risk with their reckless driving. It’s time for the city to make those drivers accountable again.
Beyond that, the city is about to begin a livability study of Georgetown considering all aspects of our road design. I want to ensure that the interests of pedestrians are kept central during that study and with any proposed road re-designs it recommends.
I feel passionately about this because I have a ten year daughter. I want her to be able to explore the neighborhood on her own. But I am petrified of what an impatient and reckless driver could do to her. I want to know that I have done everything possible to ensure that she, and every other kid like her, gets home safe again. I don’t want any family to experience the despair of losing a loved one to traffic violence.
#3 – Commercial Revitalization
Living within a short walk of hundreds of shops and restaurants is one of the best aspects of living in Georgetown. But as residents surely recognize, too many of Georgetown’s commercial blocks are beset with empty storefronts. This is particularly true of Wisconsin Ave., just around the corner from our district.
I will work closely with the business community to encourage good, resident-serving businesses to come and open in these long vacant spaces. There is, of course, only so much an ANC commissioner can do to accomplish this. But through building relationships with the business community, I believe a commissioner can help steer promising businesses to a smoother opening. And conversely, I believe a commissioner can help steer away businesses that have the potential to bring undue disruptions.
These will be my top priorities if I am elected Commissioner. If there’s one theme that unites them, it’s the importance of pulling together a diverse group of residents, businesses and government representatives to fix problems. And those skills and relationships would apply just as well to the myriad other issues that arise for the ANC.
I hope these priorities appeal to you, and I hope that you’ll vote for me this November 8th.
This Friday night, art will be taking place all around the neighborhood. That’s because Art All Night is coming to Georgetown.
This event (which has sister happenings in neighborhoods across the city) will take place at a long list of places from 5:30 pm until 10:30 pm (so, not “all” night, in case you were worried about noise…) The events will take place mostly along the Wisconsin Ave. corridor from N St. all the way up to R St. The list of them is really quite long! But GM wanted to highlight a couple. First, the Great Zucchini will be performing at Hyde-Addison at 5:30. This legendary magician in a local favorite among the pre-school set. Second, the Duke Ellington School Radical Elite show band will be performing at the Georgetown Library at 6:00pm. And finally, a Georgetown summer photo exhibition (and competition!) will take place on the second floor of the Georgetown Theater building (i.e. the Compass Coffee) starting at 6pm.
But that’s just a small snippet! Here’s the whole list: