Mayor Muriel Bowser and the District Department of Transportation have announced eight Capitol Hill-area alleys scheduled for repairs during this summer’s “AlleyPalooza 3.”
The campaign to mend alleys across the District starts today. DDOT hopes to repair eight alleys in each of the District’s eight wards by July.
Eight Hill-area alleys were improved in September during the second AlleyPalooza. The alleys identified for service this year include lanes near:
- 112 14th St. SE
- 1201 C St. NE
- 121 12th St. NE
- 1302 H St. NE
- 1301 C St. NE
- 809 5th St. NE
- 324 16th St. SE
- 1419 D St. SE
Residents can track the agency’s progress online.
Photo via District Department of Transportation
New Non-Profit Seeks to Support Young Women in Need of Mentorship and Support — HER Resiliency Center, a new non-profit started by a Congressional staffer who was once an addict and sex worker, will hold a fundraiser on Feb. 24 to raise funds for the new center, which seeks to help women age 18-25. [Hill Rag]
Plan to Close D.C. General, Build Shelter in Southwest Puts Two Ward 6 Neighborhoods at Odds — When Mayor Muriel Bowser announced her plan to replace D.C. General with smaller shelters in each Ward, many expected Ward 6, which includes D.C. General, to be fully on board. However, concerns of some Southwest residents show that support is not even across the Ward. [Washington City Paper]
Arena Stage’s ‘City of Conversation’ Shows That Little Changes in Politics — “City of Conversation,” a play currently showing at Arena Stage, is a political drama set in the 1980s with a plot that is nonetheless very relevant to today’s political climate. [Washington City Paper]
Mayor Muriel Bowser and her administration’s Office of African Affairs will screen a documentary on the District’s African population tonight in Navy Yard.
The documentary “Diaspora in Dialogue” profiles several Africans who now live and work in the District. In the film, six District residents talk about their heritage and being a member of the African diaspora in D.C.
The screening, which is part of the OAA’s Black History Month celebrations, will be held at the D.C. Commission on Arts and Humanities at 200 I St. SE at 6 p.m. The screening will be followed by a panel discussion on the ties between African and African-American communities.
Attendees must have a government ID to enter and are asked to RSVP online.
(Updated at 1:50 p.m.) Ward 6 residents can learn more about the proposed transitional housing shelter in Southwest and give their input at a community meeting tonight.
Mayor Muriel Bowser’s office will hold meetings in all eight Wards this evening to discuss the plan announced on Tuesday to replace the D.C. General homeless shelter with eight smaller shelters across the city. Bowser is scheduled to attend the Ward 6 meeting tonight.
The Ward 6 community meeting will be held from 6:30-8:30 p.m. at Friendship Baptist Church at 900 Delaware Ave. SW, a block away from the proposed site of the new shelter at 700 Delaware Ave. SW.
Bowser’s plan calls for a seven-story building to be built next to the Blind Whino arts club and museum. The shelter is intended to hold up to 50 families at a time and will include parking. The plan also calls for playground and recreation space, a computer lab for residents and on-site support services for families in the shelter.
An employee at Blind Whino said over the phone that the arts organization has no official comment on the plans and doesn’t expect the planned shelter to interfere with its programming.
Ward 6 Councilmember Charles Allen said he believes residents will ultimately support the plan, which will allow the city to close the shelter at D.C. General in Hill East. He also said he would work with Southwest residents to make sure that their concerns are addressed in the planning process.
We will ask tough questions to ensure success, but do not underestimate the capacity of our residents to care about all of their neighbors.
— Charles Allen (@CharlesAllenW6) February 9, 2016
I will work w/ residents in Southwest to answer Q's, ensure a smart plan & make this proposal a success for neighborhood & neighbors in need
— Charles Allen (@CharlesAllenW6) February 9, 2016
Allen will also host community office hours in Southwest on Friday from 8-9:30 a.m. at the Waterfront Starbucks at 1100 4th St. SW.
Photos via dc.gov
The meeting is planned to take place from 6:30-9 p.m. Wednesday at the Friendship Public Charter School campus at 1345 Potomac Ave. SE. Ward 6 Councilman Charles Allen, Council Chairman Phil Mendelson and At-Large Councilmembers Anita Bonds and Vincent Orange are scheduled to attend the meeting.
Bowser, Allen and Bonds will join a representative from the D.C. Attorney’s Office to discuss affordable housing and homeless services. The meeting will also cover crime prevention and enforcement, according to a Facebook post from Ward 6 Democrats.
Representatives from the Metropolitan Police Department are also scheduled to attend the town hall. Other invited participants include the Capitol Hill Village, MPD’s Citizens Advisory Council, Metro Transit Police and the U.S. Capitol Police.
This is normally where we would tell you about events going on in the Capitol Hill area this weekend and warn you about Metro delays. However, the blizzard currently blowing into the area will shut down the Metro for the entire weekend and force most planned events to reschedule.
Mayor Muriel Bowser is urging residents to shelter at home for the duration of the storm. Here’s everything you need to know to weather the storm in the Capitol Hill area:
The Washington Post’s Capital Weather Gang is expecting snow to continue falling for about 36 hours with an average snowfall of an inch per hour. The storm is expected to be worst late this evening and into Saturday.
Pepco has warned District residents to expect some extended power outages in the area as heavy snow and high winds batter wires. Bowser also pleaded for patience after the storm as cleanup is expected to take several days.
Snow Emergency Plan
Bowser declared a snow emergency for the entire District this morning. Information on closures, emergencies and more is available at snow.dc.gov:
- Metrobus service will stop completely at 5 p.m.
- Metro Rail service will stop completely at 11 p.m.
- The District Department of Transportation has been towing cars off of Snow Emergency Routes and urges drivers to stay off the road if possible
The District government has designated public buildings in each Ward as warming areas, including the following buildings in the Capitol Hill area. Separate shelters are designated for people experiencing homelessness during the storm and those whose power might go out during the course of the storm:
Capitol Hill area warming shelters for those experiencing homelessness are:
- Trinidad Recreation Center (1310 Childress St. NE)
- King Greenleaf Recreation Center (201 N St. SW)
- Sherwood Recreation Center (640 10th St. NE)
If you see someone who may be experiencing homelessness or need shelter, call the shelter hotline at 1-800-535-7252 or 311 to request transportation to a shelter.
If power goes out in the Capitol Hill area, the Rosedale Recreation Center at 500 19th St. NE will be open as a warming center for those lacking power.
If you see an animal in need of assistance, contact the Washington Humane Society at 202-576-6664.
Phone Numbers to Know
- Pepco – 1-877-737-2662
- DC Water – 202-787-2000 or report a water main break using this online form
- Washington Gas – 703-750-1400 or 800-752-7520
Due to a new law signed by Bowser last year, the District is authorized to fine residents and businesses that don’t clear snow from sidewalks adjacent to their property within the first eight hours of daylight after snow stops falling. However, Bowser said on Thursday that the District will not be issuing tickets for unshoveled sidewalks during this storm. Still, city officials urge residents to shovel sidewalks in front of their property for neighbors’ safety.
What Do We Call This Storm
While it’s much more important to be prepared for the storm than to know what to call it, we do need something to call it. The official name of the storm is Winter Storm Jonas. However, that doesn’t have the ring of 2010’s Snowmageddon, and media outlets throughout the area have proposed their own names for the mega-storm:
- The Washington Times and NBC Washington are keeping it simple, using #Blizzard2016
- The Washington Post’s Capital Weather Gang dubbed the storm “Snowzilla”
- Hill Now sister site Borderstan got more creative with their naming, voting in a reader poll to call the storm “Gorf”
Photo via Flickr/58067032@N06
Mayor Muriel Bower issued a state of emergency and a snow emergency for the Capitol Hill area and the rest of the District. Bowser made the announcement at a press conference to discuss the blizzard that could bring more than a foot of snow to D.C.
The National Weather Service has issued a blizzard watch for D.C. from Friday afternoon to Saturday night. The watch says that conditions are expected to be worst on Friday afternoon, with heavy snow and strong winds causing “potential life threatening conditions.”
The snow emergency, which officially begins tomorrow morning, bans parking along snow emergency routes. The snow emergency routes in the Capitol Hill area are:
- North Capitol Street
- Florida Avenue NE
- Benning Road NE
- H Street NE and NW
- Massachusetts Avenue NW
- Constitution Avenue NE between I-395 and 14th Place NE
- North Carolina Avenue between 14th Place NE and 16th Street NE
- C Street NE between 16th Street NE
- Independence Avenue SE and SW
- Pennsylvania Avenue SE
- M Street SE and SW
- Maine Avenue SE
- South Capitol Street
Cars parked along snow emergency routes will be towed starting at 9:30 a.m. tomorrow.
D.C. Public Schools will also be closed tomorrow and the District has recommended that charter schools close as well. Most District government offices will close at noon tomorrow.
With light snow expected in the area this afternoon, Mayor Muriel Bowser cancelled her scheduled community walk in Hill East today and will instead hold community office hours this afternoon.
The office hours will be held at Cesar Chavez Public Charter School at 709 12th St. SE at 4 p.m.
Earlier today, Bowser announced a new open data initiative for the District at a press conference in Navy Yard. The initiative aims to make D.C. government data more available to the public.
Photo via Facebook/Muriel Bowser
An ABC7 news crew car was broken into while the reporters were covering a press conference on crime at the Eastern Market Metro station, according to ABC7.
The thief smashed a window in the car and stole equipment. The reporter said his car was parked just feet away from the press conference, where Mayor Muriel Bowser and Metropolitan Police Department Chief Cathy Lanier announced a new task force to combat robberies, particularly those committed by repeat offenders.
The new Robbery Intervention Partnership Task Force is an effort to bring together MPD, the Metro Transit Police Department, the Office of the Attorney General and the U.S. Attorney’s Office to focus on curtailing robberies.
The press conference, which was also attended by Ward 6 Councilman Charles Allen and At-Large Councilwoman Anita Bonds, was held at the entrance to the Eastern Market Metro station.
Photo via Twitter/ DC Police Department
Mayor Muriel Bowser will hold a press conference at the entrance to the Eastern Market Metro station tomorrow morning to introduce a new initiative to combat the increase in robberies across the District.
The press conference will be held at 10:30 a.m. Wednesday to announce the new Robbery Intervention Partnership Task Force. According to a press release from Bowser, the task force will involve cooperation between the Metropolitan Police Department, the Metro Transit Police Department, the Office of the Attorney General and the U.S. Attorney’s Office to focus on stopping robberies.
Residents around Eastern Market and the Capitol Hill area more generally have expressed concerns at numerous community meetings about the increase in robberies in the area over the past year. The press release from Bowser says that the task force will focus particularly on repeat offenders.
Earlier today, the District Council also targeted crime by unanimously approving a bill introduced by Ward 6 Councilman Charles Allen that will offer incentives for residents and businesses to install security camera systems.
The bill authorizes up to $200 per camera installed and registered, with a maximum rebate of $500 for homes and $750 for businesses, nonprofits or religious organizations.
ANC 6C Commissioner’s Home Vandalized With Anti-Abortion Poster Alleging He ‘Supports Baby Killing’ — Advisory Neighborhood Commissioner Chris Miller, a member of ANC 6C, found a sign taped to his home saying he “supports baby killing” after he wore a shirt saying “I Stand with Planned Parenthood.” [Washington City Paper]
Starbucks, Petco Coming to the H Street Corridor — Plans for a development on the 600 block of H Street NE, across from the future Whole Foods Market site show space for a Starbucks and a Petco Unleashed pet store. [The Hill Is Home]
Exterior of First Condo Building at The Wharf Nearly Complete — Construction continues on the first condo building of The Wharf development in Southwest at 525 Water St. SW with plans for condos to be ready by spring. [SWTLQTC]
Bowser Emphasizes Health Initiatives at New Year’s 5K in Hill East — Mayor Muriel Bowser called for a focus on health initiatives in the new year at her second annual Fresh Start 5K walk/run near Eastern High School on New Year’s Day. [WTOP]
New Year’s Eve celebrations have already begun around the Capitol Hill area and there’s no shortage of parties to choose from tonight. When the confetti clears, though, it’s shaping up to be a quiet first weekend of 2016 in the area, with few events planned for Saturday and Sunday.
Temperatures are expected to cool down gradually over the weekend, with temperatures in the low 50s today but remaining in the 40s for most of the weekend. We’ll be taking tomorrow off and will be back on Monday. In the meantime, here’s everything you need to know to make the most of this New Year’s weekend in the Capitol Hill area.
How to Get Around Tonight
- Between midnight and 3 a.m., all Metro trains and buses will be free for those with a SmarTrip card courtesy of a sponsorship with Miller Lite. Passengers can use their SmarTrip to enter and exit Metro stations, but will not be charged for the trip. On buses, riders can show their SmarTrip to the driver to board for free.
- The Washington Regional Alcohol Program will pay for a free ride home (up to $30) from 10 p.m. tonight to 6 a.m. tomorrow. Those needing a ride can call 1-800-200-TAXI
- The DC Circulator will run extended service until 2 a.m. tonight
- Check out our guide to New Year’s Eve parties in the area to find the right celebration for you tonight.
- Join Mayor Bowser for a 5K walk/run Friday morning to ring in the New Year
- Restaurants across the area will hold New Year’s Brunch Friday morning, including Osteria Morini (301 Water St. SE), Medium Rare (515 8th St. SE), Hank’s on the Hill (633 Pennsylvania Ave. SE), Ambar (523 8th St. SE) and The Arsenal at Bluejacket (300 Tingey St. SE)
Several roads will be closed Friday morning for the Fresh Start 5K walk/ run near Eastern High School:
- East Capitol Street between 17th and 19th streets will be closed from 7:30-9:30 a.m.
- East Capitol Street between 19th and 22nd streets will be closed from 8:45-10 a.m.
- 19th Street SE between Independence Avenue SE to East Capitol Street will be closed from 8:45-9:30 a.m.
- 22nd Street between C Street NE and Independence Avenue SE will be closed from 8:45-10 a.m.
- On Friday, Metro trains will run from 7 a.m. to 3 a.m. on a Sunday schedule
- On Saturday from 6 p.m. until closing, Orange, Silver and Blue line trains will run every 24 minutes due to track work between Eastern Market and Stadium-Armory stations
- On Saturday and Sunday, Red Line trains will run between Shady Grove and Glenmont every 24 minutes and between Shady Grove and Silver Spring every 12 minutes from 9 a.m.-9 p.m.
- Parking meters, residential parking and rush-hour lane restrictions will not be enforced on Friday, Jan. 1
- Friday trash collection will be pushed back to Saturday
The run will begin at the intersection of 19th Street NE and East Capitol Street, in front of Eastern High School. Runners of all fitness levels can register for free online. The annual run is part of Bowser’s FitDC initiative to promote health in the District.
Bowser also announced that as part of that initiative, all District Department of Parks and Recreation fitness centers will be free for D.C. residents in 2016.
Fitness centers, which used to require a membership fee, will offer free treadmills, stationary bikes, elliptical machines and weights to residents.
The fitness centers in the Capitol Hill area are:
- King Greenleaf Recreation Center – 201 N St. SW
- Rosedale Community Center – 1701 Gales St. NE
- Sherwood Recreation Center – 640 10th St. NE
Martin Di Caro, the transportation reporter for WAMU 88.5, delivered some familiar news on The Kojo Nnamdi Show today: the H Street NE streetcar is still not ready to carry passengers, and likely won’t be ready by the end of the year.
The streetcar is set to start a final test phase that will take 21 days, after which D.C. Fire and EMS officials will be able to grant final approval to open to the public, Di Caro reported for WAMU.org.
However, officials have not yet set a date for the final testing phase, called pre-revenue operations, or PRO, will begin. Di Caro said it is very unlikely that the testing and approval from the Fire and EMS Department will finish by the end of the year:
“The fact that only 27 days are left in the year, therefore, shows time is running out in 2015. Moreover, there is no indication as to when oversight officials, led by Fire Captain Kelton Ellerbe, will give the go ahead to start PRO. His office continues to grapple with project managers inside the District Department of Transportation over the approval of documentation for the line’s safety systems.”
In September, Mayor Muriel Bowser said that the streetcar would carry passengers by the end of the year, a promise that will likely not come true.
Bowser Denies Link Between Pepco Stadium Deal, Merger — Mayor Muriel Bowser and Pepco representatives both denied rumors that Pepco’s agreement to pay $25 million for naming rights of the future D.C. United Stadium and other properties influenced Bowser’s decision to back the Pepco-Exelon merger. [WUSA 9]
Capitol Hill-Based Beer Brand Looking Past Local Markets to China — Meet the owner of a new Capitol Hill-based beer brand 888 Lucky Beer, who is focusing on selling his brew in China. [Washington City Paper]
Metrobus and Streetcar That Collided Yesterday Sustained Minor Damage — An accordion-style articulated bus and a streetcar both sustained very minor damage when the bus crashed into the streetcar on H Street NE yesterday. [Washington Post]
Canal Park Ice Rink Opens for Winter Today — The Canal Park Ice Rink in Navy Yard is set to open for the winter at noon today after a week-long delay due to unusually warm temperatures. [Hill Now]