Wednesday, August 23 / Tenleytown/AU Park, DC

February 2010 /// download pdf

The meeting convened at 7:35 pm.  Commissioners Jonathan Bender, Sam Serebin, Lucy Eldridge, Beverly Sklover and Matthew Frumin were present.

Announcements

Jane Waldman of the Tenleytown Historical Society (“THS”) announced that Woodrow Wilson High School (“Wilson”) had received landmark status that day and reminded the audience of the upcoming Tenleytown Heritage Trail event.

Open Forum

Corrine Douglas raised an issue relating the trail from Fessenden Street, NW to Alice Deal Middle School (“Deal”) and urged the Commission to follow the issue as part of the Safe Routes to School Program as well as to try to exert whatever influence it could on the National Park Service to improve the route.  Ms. Douglas explained that the trail was poorly maintained and dangerous, but a key route used by children to get not just to Deal, but also to Wilson.  The Commissioners assured Ms. Douglas that they would follow up on the issue and it was noted that Commissioner Bender has been very active in that process to date.  Andrew Del Junco of the Mayor’s office also said he would look into the issue.

Crime Report by 2nd District Police

Lt. Alan Hill provided the 2nd District Report.  Lt. Hill noted that crimes generally were down.  He noted, however, that burglaries were up and that the 2nd District was holding a Community Meeting on that subject on Monday, March 1st at 7:30 pm at the same location as the ANC 3E meetings.

Agenda

Request for Letters in Support of the Turtle Park May Fair

Chris Cormack of the Friends of Turtle Park organization asked ANC 3E to send letters to Department of Parks and Recreation (“DPR”) and Homeland Security in support of the Turtle Park May Fair on Saturday, May 15th with a rain date of Sunday, May 16th endorsing using the park and closing a portion of Van Ness Street, NW for the period of the set-up, fair and clean up – approximately from 8:00 am to 5:00 pm.  Commissioner Frumin proposed a motion to sign the letters which passed unanimously.

Presentation by DPR Relating to Chevy Chase Park

DPR Director Jesus Aguirre and DPR staffers Alessandra Carozza and Bridget Stesney provided an update and presented the latest plans for portions of Chevy Chase Park.  The presentation did not show plans for the baseball field, the basketball and tennis courts, or a dog park.  Director Aguirre explained that DPR contemplated installation of lights for the baseball field and a small dog park (provided that a non-governmental organization agreed to maintain and manage the dog park).  He suggested that work on the park could commence as soon as late June and that in the interim an environmental impact analysis would be conducted.  He claimed that an all-in budget for the project could be $4.5 million.

Residents and Commissioners stressed the importance of having clear policies to govern the use of lights if they are included as well as policies to govern parking around the park.  They likewise stressed the importance of allowing the group that uses the baseball field to exercise their dogs in the morning to continue to do so.  Nearby neighbors of the park (and Commissioner Eldridge) spoke in opposition to the idea of including lights on the field.  Representatives of Capital City Little League (and various Commissioners) spoke in support of including lights.

DPR Director Aguirre indicated that DPR expected to produce a fuller plan for the park including more detailed plans for the policies governing various issues and would present those at an ANC meeting in the near future.

Presentation by American University relating to their 2011 Campus Plan

David Taylor from the President’s Office, Jorge Abud from Facilities, and Penny Pagano from Community Relations from AU came to the ANC to make a presentation on where AU was at in its 2011 Campus Plan process and to outline the ideas currently on the table in that process.

A resident confronted AU officials about ongoing disturbances caused by an adjacent house used by AU students next to her home.  AU officials acknowledged the problem, but claimed that gaps in the school’s Code of Conduct hampered their ability to resolve these kinds of issues.  Commissioner Sklover recounted steps she had taken to have this matter addressed as well as her expectation that it had been solved and disappointment to learn that it had not been.  Commissioner Bender asked AU to pledge that a representative would come to the Commission’s next meeting to work with the community to address the asserted gaps in the Code of Conduct.  The AU representatives said that they would see to it that the appropriate official did so.

Residents from near the Tenley Campus and Commissioners opined that AU’s proposals for the Tenley Campus were excessive even as opening offers.  Residents from the Fort Gaines area warned of dangers associated with  increases in AU’s enrollment cap.  Residents from the area bordering the Nebraska Lot on the southeast end of Ward Circle expressed concerns regarding the plans for that site.

The AU officials stressed that the proposals continued to evolve and the Campus Planning process would continue at least through 2010.

Resolution on Plastic Bag Law

Commissioner Serebin proposed a resolution in support of the recently enacted District law requiring that shoppers pay five cents for plastic bags to discourage the use of such bags, protect the environment and fund clean up of the Anacostia River.  The resolution passed unanimously.

Resolution on Sidewalk Shoveling

Commissioner Serebin proposed a resolution supporting the idea in legislation proposed by Council Member Cheh noting that the current mechanism for enforcing the obligation of businesses and homeowners to clear sidewalks of snow after significant storms had proven ineffective and authorizing fines of businesses and residents that did not meet that responsibility to address pedestrian safety concerns.  The Resolution passed 3-0-2 with Commissioners Serebin, Bender and Frumin voting in favor and Commissioners Sklover and Eldridge abstaining.

ANC Business

The December 2009 Meeting Minutes were approved 5-0.

The January 2010 Meeting Minutes were approved 5-0.

The Commission approved payment of Diana Winthop’s invoice for $400 covering the period from January 4, 2010 through February 24, 2010 which was paid by check number 1264.

The meeting adjourned at 10:15 pm

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