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Ah! Were back again after what can only be described as a lovely summer by Washington standards. I hope all CSNA members have had an opportunity and inclination to relax a bit, and recharge the old batteries. Now, where were we....?
There has indeed been a great deal in the works in our community since the last CSNA meeting and newsletter, and the purpose of this volume is largely to update all and sundry on some of the many projects which are taking shape or being considered within our community.
The fact that these projects are even being considered is ample acknowledgement that conditions are changing in and about the Cardozo-Shaw area. What has for years been seen as potential for change is finally beginning to gel; it seems that we are achieving that critical mass which enables a community to be sustained not merely as a curiosity to which outsiders come to spend pocket money, but rather as a neighborhood of residents and businesses which developers believe finally to be worthy of economic investment. If Cardozo-Shaw can be seen as a bellwether for the rest of the District, then our fair city also must be seen as poised for a comeback. After a lot of work by many, and a long time in coming, our city again promises to be a shining urban success.
Most of CSNAs membership belongs to the organization as a result of a desire to take an active role in the direction of our community. As a group and as individuals we probably work much harder than the average city resident to create change for the better. To that end, I just want to remind everyone that next Tuesday voters have the privilege and the responsibility to take the first step in electing representatives who will work toward that same goal. Even if you have time for nothing else on the 15th, please, take the time to VOTE!
President, Buck Clarke, 387-5937
At the August ANC 1-B meeting, developer Chris Donatelli and public relations director Larry Clark presented their plans for the development of the former Children's Hospital site that called for a combination of a major national retail grocery store and 96 townhomes. Sworn to secrecy, Donatelli would not reveal the name of the grocer, and indicated that a letter of intent, not a firm commitment, was obtained from the retailer.
The retailer has been providing the developer with general plans for a 46,000 square foot store facing 13th Street, with 300 parking spaces located atop the structure. Clark confirmed to those in attendance that the grocer was not Fresh Fields, but another grocer of similar quality and prominence.
The Bethesda-based company has proposed 96 townhomes to face 12th Street side of the development, between V and W Street, with an interior mews and parking around the perimeter. That aspect of the proposal was never discussed, however, as differing opinions on the ANC and the public expressed concern that they were not aware of the current plans and persuaded the Board to table the approval until further public outreach could be obtained. In a surprising turn around, Donatelli and Klein agreed to support the ANC decision to call for a cancellation of a proposed hearing the following week in front of city officials that is required as one of the first steps toward transferring the property from the city to the private firm. That hearing, scheduled for August 18, was subsequently canceled, and the developers agreed to present their plans and get public comment. They will present these plans at the September 10 meeting of the Cardozo-Shaw Neighborhood Association.
The end is near! The Historic Preservation Review Board will hear our application for designation of the Greater U Street Historic District on Thursday September 24th at 441 4th Street (One Judiciary Square) in Room 220 South at 10 am. We plan on presenting an overview of work completed to date, a slide show of historic architecture, and a presentation on the social aspects of U Street during its prime; the African American entertainment period from the 1920s and 30s. It should be educational for all those present!
In coordination with the Residential Action Coalition, we are hosting a final, small-scale public forum for those in the community who may still have questions and concerns surrounding the designation. The forum will be held at the Whitelaw Hotel Ballroom from 7 to 9 p.m. on September 14th. Plan to attend!
If you cant make the forum or the hearing, PLEASE send a post card or letter in support of designation to James Speight, Chairman HPRB, Historic Preservation Division, DCCRA, .6124 H Street, NW Room 305, Washington, DC 20001. Each and every one will assist us in this long-term endeavor!
As many of you know, CSNA (with the guidance of Paul Williams) was instrumental in the historic designation of the twin apartment buildings at 1226-1332 U Street on July 25th of this year. The owner of 1330-1332 U Street, Marvin Jawer, had requested a demolition permit last fall for his building. Many of you were also interested in learning more about the proposed tenant, pizza delivery and fast food franchise Papa Johns. They are indeed on their way. As promised, Paul Williams called a meeting to discuss the options.
The kick-off meeting was held on Wednesday, September 2 at Erico Restaurant to address issues associated with the continuing introduction of fast-food restaurants along the U Street corridor. Papa John's is the most recent franchise to express an interest in locating in our neighborhood. Results from the meeting will be presented briefly at the next CSNA meeting, and those interested in this new committee (searching for a leader?) are encouraged to contact Paul Williams at 462-6251.
James Packard had received all necessary permits to implement the exterior facade renovation of the True Reformer building at 1200 U Street, and expects this aspect of the overall renovation to begin as soon as possible!
|Sept 9, 7:00 p.m.||Reeves Center, 2nd Floor||ANC 1B Meeting||Glenn Melcher, 797-0969|
|Sept 10, 7:00 p.m.||Walker Memorial Baptist Church||Membership Meeting||Buck Clarke, 387-5937|
|Sept 22, 7:00 p.m.||Westminster Playground||WNA Meeting||Chuck Baxter, 232-7921|
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