On Tuesday, Vincent Gray soundly beat Adrian Fenty for the Democratic nomination for mayor. Given the one-party state that we live in, Gray can for all intents and purposes be considered the mayor-elect. So what will his mayoralty mean for Georgetown? It’s not clear, since he has not said too much specifically about Georgetown, but that doesn’t mean GM can’t do a little speculation on a few issues!
GM has kicked around the idea of writing an article about Michelle Rhee’s disastrous meeting with the Hardy PTA last December and call it “The Night Adrian Fenty Lost the Election.” Yes there were other single events that seemed to encapsulate everything that Fenty was doing wrong to get reelected, but the Hardy incident stands out as a particularly bad one. Not for nothing, but the meeting ended with Ward 7 councilmember Yvette Alexander delivering a rousing speech to the angry crowd that to get rid of Rhee they’d have to get rid of Fenty first. Step one can be checked off.
While the post-Pope transition appears to be going along with relatively minimal problems, it seems likely that an appetite remains within the Hardy PTA to roll back the changes and reinstall Patrick Pope as principal. Moreover, there may be an effort to finally convert Hardy entirely into a magnet arts school. Given that the Hardy situation became a bit of a rallying cry for pro-Gray voters, it seems likely that at least some change of course is taken.
Of course much of that depends on whether Michelle Rhee sticks around and how much latitude Gray gives her. The jury is still out on that. Continue reading
We’ve all seen them. Some of us have put them up ourselves. They’re Emergency No Parking signs, and they’re a fact of life in neighborhoods like Georgetown. They ordinarily evoke a bit of frustration, and sometimes a whole lot, but we learn to live with them.
Those that have had to put them up themselves have had two options:
- Submit an application to DDOT, pay $34, and travel all the way down to North Capitol St. to pick up the signs once the application is approved;
- Go to MPD 2D headquarters on Idaho Ave. and pick up the signs for free
Unsurprisingly, most people choose Option Two. But Option Two is available no longer. MPD no longer issues No Parking Signs.
If you need to block off some parking spaces, you have only one choice now: submit and application to DDOT and pay $34. The upside? Maybe fewer people will use them.
Hat tip to GGW’s Lynda Laughlin.
Georgetown Cupcake by Daquella Manera.
Good morning Georgetown, here’s the latest:
At Monday’s ANC meeting there was a near constant theme that weaves itself through just about every ANC2E meeting: cars and parking. It is the received wisdom that parking is a scarce commodity in Georgetown that needs to be defended against all threats of a cut in supply or an increase in demand.
For instance, on Monday night a resident came applying for permission to construct a basement exit to her house. The conversation soon turned to how many square feet the butler’s pantry was in the basement. What does that have to do with a basement exit you ask? A basement with a kitchen and an exit could be turned into a completely separate basement apartment. And in the minds of Commissioners, and many residents, another apartment means another car and another car means one fewer parking spot.
This is how the great Georgetown bugaboo, cars and parking, guides many of the decisions of our elected officials.
But are they basing their decisions on a fair picture of the neighborhood or are they letting their own flawed perceptions and the voices of a loud minority guide them?
GM dug into the numbers and found that the true picture of cars in Georgetown is complicated. The problem is felt by fewer than you’d think and the bulk of the problem may come from the choices of surprisingly few. Find out why after the jump.
That was the adjournment time of tonight’s ANC meeting. Assuming the meeting kicked off at 6:30 (GM was a few minutes late), the meeting was a mere hour and a half. That must be some sort of a record. Let’s go to the video tape:
Seen Saturday at 11:00 AM:
Another photo and the relevant law after the jump:
If there’s one thing people (both resident and visitor alike) complain most about Georgetown, it’s parking. Residents can’t reliably park close to their homes and visitors circle blocks over and over looking for a spot to leave their car for a few hours as they eat or shop. It seems like a perpetual problem without a solution. But there is a solution for residential street parking near entertainment districts: here in DC we call it “performance parking” and it’s an effective means by which scarce parking spaces can be efficiently allocated while simultaneously giving preferences to residents. Read more about how this program already works over by Nationals Park and how it could work here after the jump:
On Monday night, the ANC rejected a request by the residents of 1724 35th st. to establish a curb cut on S st. to allow them to build a two car garage on the back of their home. The Commission expressed concerns about the effect the move would have on parking and stated their general distaste for such curb-cuts. While the ANC made the right choice by rejecting the curb cut, it did so for only partially the right reasons. Find out why after the jump:
Is 2 > 40?
CycleLife is a bikeshop-cum-gym-cum-smoothie bar that recently opened up on Water St. in lower Georgetown. The owners of the new two floor complex hope to “forever rearrange the landscape of how recreational cycling and physical fitness is viewed.” The company’s press release goes on to explain:
CycleLife is a 2-story, 12,000 square foot facility on the shore of the Potomac River in the historic Georgetown area of Washington D.C. which brings under one roof the most complete array of services, equipment and amenities ever put together, and delivers them to cyclists with a level of customer service that is closer to a luxury European resort than a Main Street bike store.
In all honesty, GM is a little confused exactly what niche CycleLife fits into. It appears not to compete directly with the traditional bike stores like Big Wheel Bikes or Revolution Cycles, nor is it a traditional gym. Regardless, the addition of a new bike store lifestyle center is a good thing.
But there’s more.
The owners of CycleLife have requested from the District that the two parking spots directly in front of their store be removed so that they can install bike racks instead. They plan to provide up to forty spots for bikes. Additionally, they plan to provide video surveillance of the bike racks and to provide basic bike maintenance services. DDOT is currently reviewing their application. On December 2, the owners presented their application to the ANC and a measure supporting their application was approved unanimously.
The Georgetown Metropolitan strongly supports this application. Firstly, it’s a simple matter of mathematics. Forty is greater than two. Granted, there are places throughout Georgetown to which a bike can be locked; however, this is merely an adequate situation. For too long bike riders and pedestrians have had to settle for merely adequate if it means a slight marginal gain to car drivers. Secondly, there are plenty of parking garages in that vicinity. There are no less than five garages on K/Water St. alone. There is no parking shortage in Georgetown, there is only a cheap parking shortage. Substituting excellent bike parking that can serve up to forty people for two cheap parking spots is a no brainer.
Finally, this shop is located pretty much on the south terminus of the Capital Crescent Trail. If its facilities can encourage more people who live along the CCT to ride a bike to Georgetown instead of driving, that’ll make up for two paring spots in no time.