The regularly scheduled meeting of Advisory Neighborhood Commission (ANC) 6C was held at the Heritage Foundation (214 Massachusetts Ave. NE) on Wednesday, March 14.
The quorum: Christine Healey (6C01, secretary), Karen Wirt (6C02, chair), Scott Price (6C03, treasurer), Mark Eckenwiler (6C04), Chris Miller (6C05, vice chair) and Heather Edelman (6C06).
The commissioners unanimously pre-approved two financial requests: $600 to fund American Sign Language (ASL) interpretation at the upcoming ANC Grants Seminar and $1,495.50 to pay for a year of advertising in the Hill Rag community newspaper and in the annual Fagon Guide to Capitol Hill.
The Alcohol Beverage Licensing (ABL) Committee voted to protest a new liquor license application from Red Bear Brewing Company (1130 Third St. NE) until the committee can reach a stipulated agreement with the applicant. The committee also asked the ANC to approve the selection of Jason Starr as its vice chair.
The Planning and Zoning Committee unanimously voted to support the re-application of a special exception variance to the Board of Zoning Adjustment by the Sons of Italy Foundation, for the continuation of the nonprofit use of space at 219 E St. NE, where the organization has been operating since about 1980, on two conditions: that the organization agree to a maximum number of employees and not have large gatherings or receptions for non-members.
The Transportation and Public Space Committee reported that the NoMa Business Improvement District (BID) wishes to start a farmers’ market near First and Pierce streets NE on Sundays from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., and requests support to reserve 15 metered parking spaces for vendor vehicles on Sundays from 7 a.m. to 2 p.m. during May to October. Most of the spots will be located on First Street but some are on Pierce. The committee supported the request unanimously.
The committee also supported a public space application from Buredo fast casual restaurant (111 K St. NE) for a 16-seat, unenclosed sidewalk cafe that would operate from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. The cafe would not serve alcohol. The committee supported the application on the condition that trash receptacles and a border with an entrance to a neighborhood parking garage be provided.
The committee also moved to support a request made by residents of two apartment buildings on the unit block of M Street, asking the District Department of Transportation (DDOT) to remove rush-hour parking restrictions on the street.
The consent agenda was unanimously approved.
Committee Chair Victoria Lord asked the commissioners to support two applications for grants received by the committee, which they did unanimously.
The first application was from Capitol Hill Village (725 Eighth St. SE), a neighborhood nonprofit organization created to give residents of Capitol Hill the means and the confidence to age in place. The organization requested $2,500 for a seminar on health and housing options in the neighborhood and an extension of a seminar series begun last year.
The second application came from Ludlow-Taylor Elementary School (659 G St. NE), which sits on the border between ANCs 6A and 6C. The school sought $966.50 from ANC 6C to complement the $966.50 already received from ANC 6A in order to purchase Chrome Notebook computers for individual use by students and a Chrome Cart to allow for teacher monitoring of computer use. Parents will also be permitted to use the computers and internet after school hours.
Transportation Public Space
The ANC voted to request that DDOT postpone a public space application from Cava Grill (523 H St. NE) for a 28-seat, unenclosed sidewalk cafe without umbrellas, awnings or alcohol. The concept had been presented to the ANC in February, but the application was not yet submitted. The Transportation Public Space (TPS) Committee had concerns primarily about the proximity to residences, but the applicant did not appear at the TPS meeting, so the committee recommended that the ANC request a delay in order to address issues.
A representative for Cava present at the ANC meeting clarified that the initial contact person between TPS and the restaurant was no longer with the company, but agreed to postpone the hearing and appear at the May meeting of the TPS committee.
The committee also requested that the ANC authorize written testimony relative to the budget oversight hearings for DDOT, which the ANC unanimously supported. The committee recommended DDOT set a higher goal for installation of bike lanes. Last year the goal was 6 percent more; for the 2019 fiscal year, the goal is 10 percent more, but the committee would like that goal to be increased.
The committee asked for more integration in transportation planning. Noting that a $1 million study was conducted on bus transit along New York Avenue, it asked that the study and transit efforts be linked to public space redesigns currently in the works along Florida Avenue, as well as the New York Avenue Streetscape Project and others.
The committee also noted that DDOT collected data at various intersections as part of the Vision Zero effort. However, in DDOT-issued documents this data is listed as unavailable. The committee argued that DDOT should publish the data and fund a staff person to collect the data and publish or distribute it.
Planning, Zoning and Economic Development Committee
The ANC heard a Board of Zoning Adjustment application for a special exception in regard to lot occupancy as part of a rear and third-story addition at 1139 Sixth St. NE. Relief is requested to go from just over 60 percent occupancy to just under 70. Chair Eckenwiler said that the problem was not with the lot but with aspects of the addition, noting that the plans show a two-and-one-half-foot-foot gap between the second-floor ceiling and third floor. Visibility of the addition from the street is also an issue. Architect Ralph Wilson said that the addition had been pushed back three feet to alleviate these concerns, and the space between the floors, intended for duct work and plumbing, had been reduced by one foot.
Eckenwiler said that the ANC had objected to three similar cases in the past for aesthetic reasons, citing the impact on the uniformity of the block. Edelman pointed out that the addition was by right, and similar applications might not be heard by the ANC. The application was opposed by the ANC, 5-1, with Edelman objecting.
Parks and Events Committee
Committee Chair Joe McCann provided a report on NoMa parks, noting that DC Public Library would be establishing a Fab Lab Pop-Up at NoMa in shipping containers at 1150 First St. NE. The lab will be a maker space offering classes and workshops involving 3-D printing, laser cutting, sewing machines and more. Construction and exterior painting are in progress, and the opening is expected later this year.
McCann also asked the committee to write letters in support of two pieces of legislation: the Save Good Food Amendment Act of 2017 and the Residential Composting Incentives Act of 2017. The former creates tax credits for individuals and businesses donating food fit for human consumption, especially vegetables, fruit and frozen foods. The second is a home composting incentive program offering a $75 rebate to residents who buy qualified composting containers. The bill also requires that applicants get training from the Department of Public Works (DPW) in composting, especially in regard to vermin control. The ANC unanimously endorsed both.
ANC 6C meets at 7:00 p.m. on the second Wednesday of the month (except August) in the ground floor conference room at the Heritage Foundation (214 Massachusetts Ave. NE). The next meeting of ANC 6C will take place at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, May 9. Learn more at www.anc6c.org.