Delayed DDOT Response to ANC Concerns

ANC 6C Report

251

At the Feb. 9 meeting of Advisory Neighborhood Commission (ANC) 6C, Commissioners voted to designate Commissioners Joel Kelty (6C05) and Drew Courtney (6C06) to testify at the DC Council Oversight Hearing for the District Department of Transportation (DDOT). The pair will ask the agency to prioritize forms of transportation other than automobiles and point out that the agency has not provided either response or action on matters noted by ANC 6C. These includes particularly commission correspondence about road safety on H Street NE. 

Commissioner Mark Eckenwiler (6C04) pointed out that, some years ago, ANC 6C sent the agency a letter flagging safety issues along the H Street NE corridor and making specific recommendations for improvements, notably at intersections like that at Third and H Streets NE, where a high number of accidents occur. The agency did not respond for a year-and-a-half, Eckenwiler noted, and largely dismissed suggestions made in the commission’s letter. 

Courtney said testimony will rely on contributions from ANC 6C Transportation Public Space (TPS) Committee Chair Michael Upright and a document created by former TPS Chair Christy Kwan that tracks the commission’s correspondence with DDOT. 

2020 VPP Placards Effective Until April 

Commissioner Eckenwiler highlighted emergency legislation signed by Mayor Muriel Bowser (D) extending the validity of the 2020 Visitor Park Pass (VPP) placards until April 14, 2022. This legislation is designed to allow residents to get familiar with the new ParkDC system. The new, centralized digital system is designed for DC residents and their visitors to manage visitor, temporary, home health aide, and contractor parking permits via a single online portal. Visit the site at parkdc.com.

Consent Calendar

Commissioners voted unanimously to approve the consent calendar which included motions to:

• Support a concept Historic Preservation Application (HPA) to demolish an existing one-story rear addition and construct a new two-story addition and screen porch at 638 E. Capitol St. NE. The ANC first saw the application in January to consider zoning matters. The majority of the work is in the rear of the structure and not visible from public right of way.

• Approve a Board of Zoning Adjustment (BZA) application for special-exception relief from the lot-occupancy requirements to construct a two-story garage at 632 Fifth St NE. The project has support from adjacent neighbors. In addition, at Commissioner Kelty’s suggestion, the ANC will send a letter to the Zoning Commission (ZC) flagging an issue with ambiguity in zoning regulations about technical regulations. The area of a staircase landing is excluded from the building area and so from lot occupancy requirements. In recent months, Eckenwiler said, the ANC has seen multiple instances where applicants have insisted that substantial areas of what could be decks are instead staircase landings and therefore do not contribute to lot occupancy. 

• Support a BZA seeking special exception from penthouse height and setback requirements to construct a new penthouse on an existing attached four-story building. Applicant Hillsdale College submitted a HPA for the project in late 2021. They have since revised plans and now seeks to construct a modest one-story
(as opposed to two story) addition to the existing building. 

• Oppose an application to DDOT and TPS for a construction permit for 202 K St. NE and instead request revisions to a previous design. The developer indicated an earlier design removed the retaining wall at Second and K Streets and made public space more accessible. 

• Write a letter to DC Council to support a NoMA BID request for funding to make improvements to the Third St NoMA Metro Station entrance. The goal is to add a safer, more walkable entrance to NoMA Metro. The BID is requesting $50 million in FY2023.

• TPS Committee Chair Michael Upright will participate in a Community Advisory Committee for the North Capitol Corridor Study. The study focuses on safety improvements from Massachusetts Avenue to Riggs Road.

Support for Rock ’n’ Roll Marathon

Commissioners voted to write a letter in support of the March 22, 2022 Rock ’n’ Roll Marathon. The 2021 event was pushed to fall 2021, but now organizers will resume the regular spring schedule making the 2021 and 2022 events unusually close together. Attendance at the event is expected to be 11,000 down from a previous peak of 19,000 runners. The event will also now be a half, rather than full, marathon.

Organizers have promised they will clear the course and clean-up the next day; representative Diane Romo-Thomas offered her contact number to commissioners to help alleviate any issues. There is no loop in the course, such as in previous years, that would trap cars within the perimeter of the run.

Other Matters

Chair Karen Wirt (6C02) noted that ANC 6C has received permission to meet virtually through May 4. A second bill under consideration by DC Council would extend the ability to meet online through September 2022. 

An appearance by representatives of National Park Service East on parks in ANC 6C has been deferred to the March meeting.

Grant Applications Welcomed 

Commissioner Christine Healey (6C01) said that the Grants Committee has asked commissioners to promote the ANC’s ability to give out grants. The ANC 6C grants program awards grant funding to organizations that conduct programs which directly benefit the ANC 6C community. Grants typically range from $500 to $2,500. There are four annual application cycles. Learn more at anc6c.org/committees/grants-committee/

Attending were Commissioners Christine Healey (6C01), Karen Wirt (6C02), Jay Adelstein (6C03), Mark Eckenwiler (6C04) and Drew Courtney (6C06) were in attendance. Joel Kelty (6C05) was not present. 

ANC 6C generally meets on the second Wednesday of the month. The next meeting of ANC 6C is scheduled for Wednesday, 7 p.m. Mar. 9. Get the latest information on how to attend at anc6c.org/hot-topics/.