ADVISORY NEIGHBORHOOD COMMISSION 3E
TENLEYTOWN AMERICAN UNIVERSITY PARK
c/o Lisner Home 5425 Western Avenue, NW Washington, DC 20015
ADVISORY NEIGHBORHOOD COMMISSION 3E
TENLEYTOWN • AMERICAN UNIVERSITY PARK • FRIENDSHIP HEIGHTS
The meeting convened at 7:35pm. Commissioners Bender, Frumin, Quinn, and Sklover were present. Commissioner Serebin joined the meeting at 7:40pm.
Announcements and Open Forum
John Wheeler solicited signatures for the citizen’s petition initiative for the November ballot that would prohibit corporate contributions in DC.
Commissioner Sklover invited attendees to the first fundraiser for Northwest Neighbors Village, which provides community support services to older citizens of Chevy Chase, D.C. The fundraiser will be held June 2, 4pm, at the Katzen Center. Admission is $45 per person.
Presentation by the Second District Police
Sgt. John Loveday presented a crime update for Northwest DC neighborhoods. Sgt. Loveday reported that there have been two robberies without guns within the last 30 days, both of which were closed with arrests on the nights they occurred. No robberies with guns have occurred within the same time period. One assault with a dangerous weapon (other than a gun) was reported; the suspect is a juvenile. Thefts in the area in this period have increased to 25 this year from 18 in same area and period in 2011. Thefts from autos have increased to 13 from 4 in the same area and 30 day period in 2011 and 2012.
Sgt. Loveday described some of the recent crimes. The robberies and assaults included a disgruntled employee punching another employee and stealing money from Domino’s Pizza on Wisconsin Avenue; a snatch and grab of a cell phone at Starbuck’s on Wisconsin Avenue; and a fight between juveniles at McDonald’s on Van Ness Avenue.
Presentation by Douglas Development of application for PUD for the Babe’s Billiards site at Brandywine Street and Wisconsin Avenue, NW
Commissioner Bender observed that the redevelopment at the Babe’s Billiards site has, given economic uncertainy, been in process for three years. He reported that a PUD application has now been filed.
Patrick Burkhart reviewed the plans for the mixed-use redevelopment of Babe’s Billiard’s site at 4600 Wisconsin Avenue NW. The plans remain consistent with the presentation made at the January 12, 2012 ANC 3E meeting. The redevelopment site has been renamed “The Bond” and residents can now track the progress of the development at http://thebondattenley.com/
Osborne George presented a traffic study that amplified the preliminary data presented at the January meeting. (See http://thebondattenley.com for more details on the transportation plan.) No on-site parking spaces will be provided to residents and the leases for the apartments will prohibit residents from applying for RPP rights. The use of public transportation will be encouraged through transit subsidies, and providing memberships with the first installment paid for bicycle and car sharing programs.
Tom Smith from the Mayor’s office asked if the building would be marketed to seniors. Mr. Paul Millstein of Douglas Development said they welcome seniors who use public transportation but that the building is not suited for residents who own cars.
Some attendees expressed excitement for the project, thanking Douglas Development for their persistence, and stating that they welcomed the revitalization that the development would bring to the neighborhood. An attendee asked what steps could be taken to facilitate and expedite the project.
In response to a question, Mr. Millstein said that building would only offer rental leases.
At some point Mr. Millstein stated that they would be undergrounding the utilities around the entire property and in response to a question from a Commissioner stated that they would like to see the utility pole on the southwestern corner of Brandywine and Wisconsin removed and would work with various stakeholders to try to achieve that.
A Commissioner asked if it would be possible to restrict the type of businesses offered leases to help discourage patrons’ use of cars, such as banks and stores that sell heavy merchandise.
In response to Commissioner’s questions, Mr. Millstein said they plan to hold the property long-term and offered a brief update about retail tenants interested in the site. He told the Commissioners that the building would be pet-friendly.
Mr. Millstein explained that if Zoning Commission hearings and permit process continue as expected, groundbreaking could begin as early as the summer of 2013. He asserted that if the project secured strong approval from the ANC that could enable them to invest in developing construction and permit documents before final Zoning Commission approval and expedite eventual construction.
A Commissioner urged the design of the façade be reconsidered to make a more dramatic signature and that an effort be made to create a dramatic lobby describing how such features have been used to good effect on Bond Street in New York City, and noting that this building is to be called the Bond at Tenley.
A Commissioner congratulated the team for their progress and responsiveness to community needs but added that before he could approve the project there needed to be a more reliable way to prevent residents of the building from obtaining RPP access.
The Commissioners all expressed enthusiasm for the project but agreed that open issues needed to be resolved and a voluntary agreement reflecting such resolution concluded in principle before a vote could be taken on the proposal. The Commissioners expressed an interest in moving that process along promptly and indicated that they hope to work closely with project leaders to help expedite the process.
Discussion and possible resolution regarding DDOT Notice of Intent relating to the intersection of 42nd Street and Military Road, NW
Commissioner Quinn offered a resolution that endorses a temporary channelized barrier to force cars northbound on 42nd Street to make a right turn only onto eastbound Military Road NW with certain conditions, including a change in the timing of the stoplight at the intersection of 41st and Military. The resolution asks that no restrictions be placed on southbound traffic at this time. The resolution also requests that the DDOT study the impact of traffic barriers at the intersection and adjacent streets and present a full written report and presentation of its findings to the ANC 3E six months after the temporary barrier is erected.
Commissioner Quinn noted that neighbors have pressed DDOT for a year to provide a solution to help prevent the frequent traffic accidents at the intersection of 42nd Street and Military Road NW. DDOT has issued a notice of intent (NOI) that they plan to erect a channelized barrier for right turns only onto Military Road for both north and southbound vehicles on 42nd Street. Residents of 41St Street are concerned that such a barrier will increase traffic volume and accidents on 41st Street.
At its February 9, 2102 meeting, the Commission unanimously passed a resolution asking DDOT to consider the impacts of any changes at 42nd and Military on 41St Street NW before proceeding with any permanent changes.
A discussion of the proposed resolution followed, including comments from attendees and Commissioners. Suggestions included: reducing the timing of the stoplight; installing speed bumps; installing a 4-way stop sign; foregoing any action before studying the impact of proposed measures on the surrounding streets and neighborhood; not endorsing a temporary measure as DDOT could then view the temporary measure as the long-term solution.
Commissioners agreed that they prefer a reversible measure at this time and that they supported the resolution with amendments calling on DDOT to examine specific additional blocks in the evaluation of the traffic impacts of the proposed changes. The Commissioners voted unanimously to approve the amended resolution.
Consideration of application for ABRA license by Tanad Thai at 4912 Wisconsin Avenue, NW
The owner of Tanad Thai made a brief presentation requesting that the Commissioners support his application for a 45-day temporary liquor license while the fulltime liquor license is being processed. He explained that he re-opened Tanad Thai after his father retired from running the restaurant and as such they need to apply for a new liquor license. The Commissioners voted unanimously to send a letter offering support for a 45-day stipulated license for Tanad Thai.
Consideration of a resolution in support of increased use of speed cameras and other automated traffic enforcement mechanisms
Commissioner Bender offered a resolution in support of the Mayor’s proposed expansion of traffic photo enforcement, noting the safety benefits such enforcement confers. The resolution encourages the City Council to approve the Mayor’s proposal and approve such contracts and take other such steps as needed. The Commissioners voted unanimously to approve the resolution.
Consideration of a resolution in support of allowing liquor sales on Sunday
Commissioner Serebin offered a resolution that encourages the City Council to consider abolishing the (blue) law that prohibits the sale of liquor by authorized stores on Sunday. The Commissioners voted unanimously to approve the resolution.
Commissioners unanimously approved the April 2012 minutes.
Commissioners unanimously approved the April Treasurer’s Report.
Commissioners voted unanimously to approve expenditures: $740 to Loren Stein; $150.90 to Federal Express; $5,000 to Northwest Neighbors Village; $415 to Friends of Friendship Park for the Mad Science education performance at the May Fair. On the latter two checks, the grants had been approved at earlier meetings, but issuance of the checks was approved at this meeting.
The commission meeting adjourned at 10:33pm.
Matthew Frumin, Chair