President's Message

By Eric Langenbacher,

Where to begin?

Parking—At meetings with ANC and other community leaders on April 1 (at St. John’s Episcopal Church) and April 29 (at DDOT headquarters near Nationals Stadium), DDOT indicated that it would like to conclude its pilot study of the area and finalize plans for the entirety of ANC 2E (Burleith, Hillandale, Georgetown). However, there appears to be little consensus on issues, and more data—on so-called “Ward 2 commuters” for instance—have been requested by members of CAG. I suspect that the status quo will prevail for the most part. There will likely not be a smaller zone restricted to the ANC boundaries; nor will there be resident-only parking on one side of the street, which DDOT appears not to favor. Community members agreed that a limit on the number of visitor parking passes is a good idea and requested that enforcement be ramped up. Other options include extending the two-hour limit (currently 7 am–8:30 pm) or reducing the limit to one hour only. These changes will be difficult to implement because the DC Council would have to pass city-wide legislation.

Airplane Noise—Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton is sponsoring a big meeting on Tuesday, May 5, from 7:30–9:30 pm at the Palisades Recreation Center (500 Sherrier Place NW) to formulate and press for a position on the increased airplane noise due to various recent changes at Reagan National Airport. Representatives from the FAA, Metropolitan Washington Airport Authority, and other elected officials will attend. This is an important opportunity to make our voices heard. Please try to attend.

Hardy Chiller—The big, blue, noisy chiller on the lawn in front of Hardy Middle School on 35th Street is temporary. It will take at least 6–8 weeks for the permanent chiller to be ordered and installed. The contractor is aware of the noise issues we have had with the last chiller and has promised to procure the most efficient/least noisy model available. They also noted that technology has progressed since 2008 (I can’t believe it has been that long since the Hardy renovation!), so that noise issues should be minimal. We are monitoring this closely.

Corcoran/Fillmore School—As many of you have read, the Fillmore School building has been sold to the S&R Foundation (which also owns Halcyon House and Evermay in Georgetown). It intends to convert the venue into an arts incubator, although plans for a renovation and possible addition are yet to come. I think this is the best outcome by far for Burleith, minimizing parking spillover and limiting the density of development. The tot lot should not be endangered.

Ellington School—It appears that work is starting to intensify—at least interior demolition and excavation. We are not happy about an entire lane being blocked off on R Street for no apparent purpose. The ANC and BCA are trying to resolve this. Also, there will be a noise and vibration study for the houses along the perimeter, but there have been few specifics recently on that front. More details—especially for the affected homeowners along R Street (and a few beyond)—are forthcoming.

Call Box Restoration—The project is proceeding rapidly. Although we are very close to our fundraising goal, donations are still being accepted. The BCA is currently contracting with various vendors and, if all goes as planned, the first call box should be completed by the time of the summer picnic and the remaining four soon thereafter (and no later than the end of 2015).

Spring Clean-up—This semiannual neighborhood event will be held on Saturday, May 30, from 9–11 am. As always, we meet up at Ellington Field before fanning out into the neighborhood. The BCA will provide supplies such as gloves, trash bags, and brooms. Coffee and bagels will greet the volunteers.

Georgetown University—With classes now over, exams will take place soon. All non-graduating students need to leave their dorms by Sunday, May 10, and graduating seniors after Commencement weekend (May 15–17). There may be some extra traffic and noise during this period. As always, if there is a noise problem, please report the incident as quickly as possible by following our website’s Good to Know procedures.

Finally, save the date for the annual Burleith Summer Picnic on Saturday, June 20. Similar to previous years, there will be BBQ, a band, and fun activities for children and adults. I hope to see you there.