Rebuilding Place in the Urban Space

"A community’s physical form, rather than its land uses, is its most intrinsic and enduring characteristic." [Katz, EPA] This blog focuses on place and placemaking and all that makes it work--historic preservation, urban design, transportation, asset-based community development, arts & cultural development, commercial district revitalization, tourism & destination development, and quality of life advocacy--along with doses of civic engagement and good governance watchdogging.

Wednesday, January 04, 2012

2011: A bad year for Ward 5

-- continued strife in Brookland over intensified development around the Metro Station ("Brookland development hits snare," Washington Examiner)

-- former ANC5B Chairman William Shelton embezzles close to $30,000 ("ANC5B Commissioner to Repay Nearly $29000 in Misappropriated Funds in Agreement with Attorney General’s Office ," DC Office of the Attorney General press release)

-- the Korean restaurant on Morse Street in the Florida MarketUnion Market is closed for many many months (this was the biggest for me, although Elise of the Frozen Tropics blog, the go-to blog for the H Street NE neighborhood tells me that they reopened finally), but other places have closed in the market as well, including La Villa, which was was a great place to buy Latino foods for good prices

-- Councilman Harry Thomas is accused of misusing more than $300,000 in public funds ("D.C. attorney general: Harry Thomas Jr. diverted public funds" Post)

-- Developer Rick Walker announces a Walmart-anchored shopping center for New York Avenue ("D.C. planners have 'issues' with first Wal-Mart proposal," Post)

-- The DC Farmers Market in the Union Market catches fire, putting dozens of vendors out of business. And the ethical cloud over Councilman Thomas makes it difficult for these vendors to get extra-normal help to reopen on a temporary basis. ("DC Farmer's Market closed after fire," WJLA-TV)

- Councilman Harry Thomas' has records, a motorcycle, and SUV seized by the FBI during a multi-hour raid on his home ("Photos: Federal Agents Raid Harry Thomas Jr.'s House," Washington City Paper)

-- and supporters of Harry Thomas continue to support him... ("D.C. council member's home searched," Post)

(and as mentioned in the previous blog entry, CM Thomas is going down, although Marion Barry has proved that there are plenty of opportunities for comeback in the city's political arena, although maybe we're entering a new era?)


-- the part of the ward close to H Street gets to benefit from H Street improvements (H Street is in Ward 6)

-- NoMA is adding housing in the W5 section (most of NoMA is in Ward 6)

-- new development by Abdo Development and Bozzuto Development has broken ground at Brookland, on land owned by Catholic University, complementing the rowhouse development by EYA on part of the grounds of St. Pauls College

-- housing and some retail is being constructed at the Rhode Island Metro Station (my photos are on the laptop with the currently broken screen...)

-- some good things are happening neighborhood-restaurant wise in Bloomingdale ("Boundary Stone Opening Tonight In Bloomingdale" and "Corner, Meet Pub" from the Washington City Paper), complementing the Big Bear Cafe and the Bloomingdale Farmers Market (open May to November)

-- and a Costco anchored shopping center will be built on South Dakota Avenue.

-- "Today's News is Yesterday's News" lyric from the song "Goodbye" by the Psychedelic Furs

-- and the concept in the lyric, "meet the new boss, same as the old boss" from "Won't Get Fooled Again" by The Who (meet the new year, same as the old year)



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