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Liquor Store Parking Sparks Frustration

Advisory Neighborhood Commission (ANC) 6C met on May 8 via WebEx. Commissioners Christy Kwan (6C01), Leslie Merkle (6C02, secretary), Jay Adelstein (6C03), Mark Eckenwiler (6C04, chair), Joel Kelty (6C05, treasurer) and Tony Goodman (6C07, vice chair) were in attendance. Patricia Eguino (6C06) was absent.

Parking Problem

The owner of Oasis Market Liquor Store, Eun H. Park, has applied for a renewal of the establishment’s Class A license. The establishment is located at 1179 Third St. NE. Commissioners were concerned about illegal parking on the adjacent piece of land. They suggested ameliorating the “public nuisance” by adding a no-parking sign near the space as well as planters to obstruct vehicular access.

Customers and “unrelated vehicles” park in the space, stated Park. Kelty reported receiving numerous complaints about “both the owner and his customers” parking in the area. Kelty emphasized the importance of taking action through the liquor licensing process, since it’s “the only leverage” the commission has.

The owner has been a “good neighbor” to the community, stated Goodman. It was “unreasonable” to threaten his license, he said. “We have levers to pull and we have things to do besides modifying the settlement agreement.”

The liquor store has not been “an overall problem for the neighborhood,” but the parking situation has created problems for its neighbors, stated a resident. “I think the only solution that’s going to get us any progress is some sort of physical barrier,” the resident added.

While acknowledging the overarching problems with illegal parking along the corridor, Goodman said the liquor store “isn’t even the worst case within a block of public space violations.” He discouraged the commission from taking action on this matter. “The fact that we’ve got one resident, one person who emails every single time does not mean that that is worse than the other situations in the neighborhood,” Goodman added.

The commission took no vote on this matter.

Other Matters

The commission voted to:

  • support the District Department of Transportation (DDOT) concept planning for bicycle and multimodal safety improvements along Massachusetts Avenue and C Street NE;
  • request the installation of traffic cameras along E and F streets NE to assist in the enforcement of the restrictions against heavy trucks and buses from using these blocks as through streets;
  • protest the substantial change to the Class A liquor license application of High Spirits at 301 H St. NE, on the basis of peace, order and quiet, citing concerns about extended hours and reported problems under new ownership including trash and public urination;
  • protest a new Class C tavern license for Manifest at 1242 Third St. NE.

ANC 6C will meet on June 12 at 7 p.m. via WebEx. Visit www.anc6c.org to learn more about the commission and register to attend the meeting.

Sarah Payne is a reporter for Capital Community News. She can be reached at sarahp@hillrag.com.

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