Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Revised Ronneberg

The revised proposal from Commissioner Ronneberg places the baseball stadium in the southwest ANC, but keeps the portion of Barrack's Row south of the freeway in the proposed 6B. This change helps balance the number of commissioners in each ANC -- the smallest ANC has 7 commissioners, while the largest ANC has 9 commissioners.  This revised proposal does not reflect any decision made by the W6TF.  To be clear, this is posted at the request of Commissioner Ronneberg to generate discussion of potential ANC boundaries for Ward Six.  Commissioner Ronneberg is not a member of the W6TF.  If folks want to submit other proposals for discussion, please follow the instructions under the "Do it Yourself" post below and mail the URL to  If you have any questions about how to use the self-help tools, send an email to the same address.  Just be patient as the task force members are volunteers.  Regards, Joe.

The new population totals are:
Red = New Shaw ANC, Total population: 14,185 (7 commissioners)
Orange = ANC 6A/6C Consolidation, Total population: 18,514 (9 commissioners)
Blue = Expanded ANC 6B, Total population: 16,058 (8 commissioners)
Green = New Hill East ANC Total population: 15,572 (8 commissioners)
Purple = Consolidated ANC 6D, Total population: 13,683 (7 commissioners)


  1. i would like the boundary for the RED ANC to be extended to 2nd St NE because it would include all of new york avenue, all the air rights over the railroad tracks and union station. the red ANC includes the east end of Downtown DC.

    i do not live in shaw and refuse to call ANC2C where i live the shaw ANC because it deminishes our neighborhoods value as a consequence of ANC2C's proven dysfunctional reputation

    richard 446

  2. I liked Comm. Ronneberg's first attempt a lot more.

  3. @richard 446

    As a resident of Near Northeast, I absolutely disagree that the Western ANC should extend to 2nd Street NE.
    1) The train tracks are not a border in our neighborhood at all. (North Capitol, however, could be considered a border.)
    2) The Union Station air rights project is adjacent to rowhouses in Near Northeast.
    3) NoMa extends to 4th Street NE, and includes many parcels on both sides of the tracks. Future development of the Uline, Wilkes property, etc. will definitely affect residents in NoMa, and vice versa.
    4) For Near Northeast residents, the New York Ave Metro is our station, Harris Teeter is our grocery store, our CVS is at 1st and M NE, and we have neighborhood meetings at our coffee shop (Tynan) on First NE.
    5) Just tonight, I was enjoying the NoMa Summer Screen (on the Eastern side of 2nd Street NE) with neighbors from both sides of the tracks in NoMa.
    5) The current SMDs (6C04/6C05) that include the bulk of NoMa do not need to change very much due to the census. 6C04, in particular, is still within the 1900-2100 range. There is no mathematical reason to split up NoMa and Near Northeast.
    6) If anything, 6C04/05 should stay in the same ANC, whether they go with Ronneberg's proposed Orange ANC or the Red ANC.

    However, I do agree that it would make sense for multiple ANCs to touch Union Station and the Capitol complex, so that more residents can have a say in the preservation and future development of this major Ward 6 landmark. Therefore (unless 6C04/05 join the Red ANC) I would suggest a border for the Red ANC that goes down North Capitol or New Jersey, but then juts into NE for a block or two to touch Union Station and the Capitol.

  4. Please do not split Capitol Quarter from the rest of Near Southeast. All the development in Near Southeast will affect our quality of life (and property values) far more than what happens on Barracks Row, even if Barracks Row is where we hang out now.

  5. The revisions do not address the major flaw of the plan - dividing SE Hill East, Rosedale and Kingman Park from their primary commercial corridors. Commissioner Ronneberg stated that the goal of his plan was to put commercial corridors in a single ANC. The only way this plan would work is if there were a primary north-south commercial corridor east of 15th Street. The proposed Hill East ANC would jump back and forth from considering development on the eastern end of Penn Ave. SE to development on Benning Road NE - and many residents would be given a say on development in an area that they do not view as part of their immediate neighborhood. Development on Benning Road NE is going to have much more of an impact on H Street NE than the eastern half of Penn. Ave. SE. The current configuration of the commissions makes more sense than both the original and revised Ronneberg proposals.

    Let me also add my thanks to the task force for the blog and the opportunity to comment.

  6. Anonymous 3:26,

    One of the constraints of any redistricting exercise is making the numbers work - there are 703 people who live in the portion bounded by 3rd St, M St, and the freeway. Moving that block to 6D would reduce the population of the proposed 6B to 15,354 -- which would make it almost impossible to create 8 SMDs that have between 1900 and 2100 people. It wouldn't work without making changes that impact other areas.

    I encourage everyone to explore the fantastic "roll your own" redistricting tool at: Folks will quickly realize difficult it is to get all the numbers to work out along logical boundaries.

    In addition to the 1900-2100 population per SMD requirement, the task force seems to favor having 5 ANCs with rough parity in the number of SMDs. Practically that means each ANC would have 7 to 9 commissioners rather than some having 5 and some having 11.

  7. If the decision was made to take the Capitol Quarter chunk of Near Southeast and move it to 6B, I'd suggest making sure that the "chunk" includes all of the footprint of the Capper/Carrollsburg PUD, which means the DPW trash transfer station at New Jersey and K as well, and the blocks just to the east of Canal Park. (Which then means probably taking Canal Park and the 225 Virginia building as well. None of which have any population at this point, so can be moved without any problem.)

    In fact, no matter where this area ends up, the Capper footprint really should be kept together, given how much of the PUD is still needing to be built.

  8. (Adding from the comment above) And then, if you're going to keep Capper together and split Near SE anyway, why not let the Capper SMD run down to the river and include the Navy Yard and the Yards (currently with little/no population), so that at least as the population of the area grows, the two SMDs south of the freeway don't end up ridiculously imbalanced in terms of populations.

  9. Commissioner Flahaven,

    Part of the issue is that ANC boundaries will have to change if Ward 6 is going to have 5 ANCs composed of 7 to 9 SMDs. Under this guidance, keeping existing boundaries won't be an option.

    I would welcome you or someone else putting an alternative proposal on the table for discussion. Just let folks know the proposal's organizing principal and how you would create 5 ANCs each with 7-9 commissioners.

  10. I agree with Brian Flahaven that the Ronnenberg/H St centric porposal (whether it is the current or older version) to be deeply flawed and will undermine economic, social and racial integration efforts in the center and East end of W6. I defer to residents of the Waterfront and Shaw area on whether the parts of this proposal re. their areas make sense. See my posts re. his earlier version for details.

    Specifically his proposal to create one ANC for H St and his proposal to create a Hill East ANC should not be implemented and instead we should go with a minimal change/Status quo proposal with regard to what is currently ANC 6A and 6B.

    I have submitted a "Status Quo Version 1" proposal for ANC borders to the W6TF that basically uses current ANC borders with minimal changes. Hopefully our excellent W6TF team can convert the Status Quo Version 1 into a readable map on the blog sometime in the next 24-48 hours.

    Rob Stephens

  11. I definitely support the Red ANC going over to the railroad tracks. There will certainly be similar arguments made for continuity to NOMA from the west. The 0 population count makes it a free area that can go either way, it will be an interesting debate. The suggestion of partially extending the Red ANC to Union Station could give it a voice for the upcoming developments over the train tracks, an intriguing idea & worthy of discussion. I like a shared situation with regard to all of that. Bringing 6C04/5 totally over to the Red ANC is possible but would probably meet with resistance in keeping H Street split. (I'm trying to leave that one to you all...:)

  12. One problem with the Red ANC going all the way to the tracks is that it would probably be a single SMD which includes all of Northwest One, as well as most of NoMa. By 2020, there would likely be over 10,000 people in that SMD (in addition to the original 2,000).

    I would recommend either:
    1) If 6C04/05 go with the Orange ANC, keep 6C04/05 relatively the same as they are now (because the tracks are definitely NOT a neighborhood boundary). Include the triangle between 395, Mass Ave and Louisiana in the Red ANC so it can touch the Capitol/Union Station.
    2) If 6C04/05 go with the Red ANC, then maybe the SMD borders should shift from North Capitol to First NE, to try to spread the development a little more among the SMDs.

    Either way, even though as of the census there were zero people in NoMa, there are now over 1,000 on both sides of the tracks (with many more to come). Unlike crossing 395 or North Cap, the track crossings are grade separated (with nice new sidewalks!) and really don't serve as a boundary. As you said, it's a "free area" that can go either way, so there's no mathematical reason for splitting up NoMa.

  13. There could definitely be an SMD boundary along K street (west of the tracks) or even H. It definitely doesnt have to be (and shouldn't) be one SMD especially if it (or part of it) ends up in the Red zone.

  14. Mr. Ronnenberg-
    In regards to Near SE, your comment about the need to move (the well over by now) 700 people in CQ to ensure that 6B has 8 commissioners is confusing to me. Why would it be a problem for 6D to have 8 commissioners and 6B to have 7? Especially if it allows a neighborhood, Near SE, to stay together?

  15. *Mr. Ronneberg* (pardon the misspelling in the prior post)

  16. The quality of life in CQ is directly tied to the success of efforts to develop Near SE. These residents should have a voice in these efforts rather than lumping them in with the already established Barracks Row area. There are many motivated individuals in CQ that are willing to put in the time and energy to make their neighborhood successful and can be a valuable assest to this burgeoning area.

  17. @si

    The problem with that is that you'd be lumping together areas into single SMDs which are entirely different neighborhoods. Near Northeast and NoMa are intertwined... they don't simply separate easily at the tracks, which are not a neighborhood border.

    Besides, that portion of Ward 6 between the tracks, K and 395 is only 1700 people. The area below H is only 800. Multiple neighborhoods would have to be combined into single SMDs, while unnecessarily splitting up NoMa into different ANCs even though its not required mathematically.

    Again, it would make no sense to split up my neighborhood of Near Northeast/NoMa.

  18. These are the (crazy) SMDs that would result from making the Red ANC go all the way to the tracks. This unnecessarily split up NoMa, which spans the tracks and is intertwined with Near Northeast.

    SMD #1,62.02%201007,59%201021,59%201032,59%201038,59%201031,59%201023,59%201024,59%201003,59%201001,59%201018,59%201004,59%201019,59%201000,59%201002,62.02%201011,62.02%201009,62.02%201006,59%201022,62.02%201010,106%202040,106%202041,106%202033,47.02%201021,47.02%201023,47.02%201022,47.02%201017,47.02%201016,59%201035,59%201016,59%201033,59%201034,59%201017,62.02%201013,59%201039,47.02%201018,47.02%201019,47.02%201000,47.02%201020,47.02%201002,106%202032,59%201005,47.02%201015,59%201036,47.02%201001,106%202031,47.01%201003,106%202027,47.01%202003,47.01%202004,47.02%201003,47.02%201004,106%202028,&popnumber=2006

    SMD #2,47.01%202000,106%202023,106%202024,106%202005,106%202004,106%202021,106%202022,106%202026,106%202028,106%202027,47.01%201000,47.01%201001,47.01%201002,&popnumber=2079

  19. Anonymous 11:52,

    The problem is that if the CQ portion was placed in 6D,the total 6B population would be 15,354. 15,354/8 = 1919 per SMD. I believe that it would be impossible to create 8 SMDs with more than 1900 people per SMD to hit the 15.354 number.

    Population could be moved from other areas, but it is a bit like squeezing a balloon -- where do you take it from to make everything work out? With the posted tools, you could suggest some quantitative alternatives like RodOnTheHill has done.

  20. Per my postings on the Stephens proposal, the Ronnenberg proposal -- as far as I can tell, creates several ANCs that are above or below the +/- target set by DC law.

    Let's hear from our W6TF team on what are the legally required upper and lower targets of our ANCs under two scenarios -- one that adds in the 1,772 population of Kingman Park and one that does not. Based on this we can have a more focused discussion.

    As I noted in previous posts, a growing number of folks in Rosedale, Hill East and Kingman Park and I believe creating a Hill East ANC would have many adverse effects on the 3 of most diverse and lowest income areas of W6. Creating a single ANC for H St is a legitimate goal but it comes at the expense of other priorities such as income and racial integration/empowerment as well as linking each ANC to ongoing and significant economic development projects.

  21. @Tony, NOMA is currently split between 2 SMDs which you do not advocate changing (and neither do I), But despite the 0s, we know that the upper part has lots of people and the lower part has very little, no? So perhaps a solution could be to bring the Red ANC over via the small southern part to touch the tracks, which I think you also suggested, then Near northeast would be joined with NOMA but the Triangle (and ultimately NW1 wouldn't be totally closed off from the development over the tracks. Also check out for some discussion from the western neighbors...

    P.S. I'm enjoying this, i hope you are too!

  22. @si

    I don't have much of an issue with how the SMDs are split up. I just don't think it makes much sense to split up NoMa into multiple ANCs, especially when there is no mathematical reason to do so. Both sides of the tracks are a single neighborhood, and it would be a pain to have to unnecessarily coordinate across an ANC border.

    I also agree it may make sense for the Red ANC to touch Union Station if it's already including areas South of Mass Ave. However, I definitely think that Near Northeast should continue to take the lead on the Union Station air rights project. South of K NE, the West side of the tracks is all existing and planned office, and the East side is almost all residential.

    P.S. Definitely... this is a lot of fun!

  23. As a resident of the current 6A02 (only block from H Street), the orange ANC 6A/6C consolidation makes a lot of sense to me. I would strongly support bringing H Street under one ANC. I believe it would best link together people who identify with the H Sreet as their neighborhhod to the issues that arise from the ongoing development in the area. This prososal would make it easier and less confusing for residents to participate in relevant meetings...hopefully it would result in only a single meetings schedule to follow. Also, it would importantly allow the ANC to develop more cohesive policies along the H Street corridor.

  24. Comm. Ronneberg,

    Have you considered the workload implications for a combined ANC 6A/6C? Do the ANC 6A zoning and liquor committees feel like there is not enough material for each monthly meeting?

    Your proposal would at least double the volume of zoning and liquor license cases, along with all the historic preservation cases. You'd have 1.5 miles of H St, all of NoMa, and whatever comes up from neighborhood development.

    I worry that ANC 6A's all-volunteer committee system will buckle under the weight. Would your committees need to meet twice a month? Would you form subcommittees that re-create the 6A, 6C split? Would the outcome be consistency at the price of quality?

  25. Anon 9:39,

    A consolidated 6C/6A ANC would have a higher workload than the present ANC 6A. However, there are ways of adapting -- for example, the ED&Z committee has held two monthly meetings when its agenda could not accommodate everything in one meeting. Other meetings have had a very light agenda and additional agenda items could be handled in a single meeting.

  26. I strongly oppose the creation of a Hill East ANC as envisoned in the original Ronneberg proposal and Revised Ronneberg proposal. The proposals make no sense from the perspective of Hill East. They cut the community in half. Community ties and neighbor building efforts over the last two decades would be sacrificed in the name of achieving abstract goals pertinent to other parts of Ward 6.

    I prefer the basic idea of the Stephens plan: Minimum change to ANC boundaries, when possible.

    My experience with the redrawing of MPD Beat/Police Service Area (PSA) boundaries is that it too often sets back community policing: Community ties that develop organically over the years get torn asunder. With new boundaries, we, like Sisyphus, too often have to restart the process losing valuable time. The preservation of neighbor fabrics should be a higher priority than drawing maps that may look pretty in the abstract.

    Jack Colhoun
    1400 block of C St.,Se

  27. Elizabeth NelsonJuly 29, 2011 at 6:09 PM

    Although I am not in favor of this proposal (details of my concerns are posted under the Stephens Plan), I do want to acknowledge the effort that Commissioner Ronneberg has invested. He, Bob Stephens, other "posters", attendees at the open meetings, and especially the Ward 6 Task Force members are all to be commended for giving this matter the serious consideration it deserves.

  28. Dear Comm Ronnenberg and fellow Hill Easters:

    Apologies for this long posting, which I may have to break into several parts (this is part 1).

    Though I have raised many questions and concerns about your proposal and while I have presented the Status Quo Plus alternative which I still favor slightly over yours, I hope the W6TF and the greater Hill East community will not reject your proposal without giving it a fair hearing.

    To this end, I would like to present a few arguments in its favor that either have not been made or that I would like to flesh out. I will set aside issues related to H St and narrowly focus on what is in the best interest of the greater Hill East, of which I am a member.

    HILL EAST ANC: My second reaction to your Hill East ANC proposal was negative for reasons I have already posted on this blog. My first reaction, however, was one of curiosity. First, because during the Save Ward 6 fight, Rosedale, Kingman Park and Hill East came together as a community that I had never witnessed before which was very empowering. If we came together once, can't we do it again on a longer-term basis with similar results?

    Furthermore, while the "economic orientation/aspiration" of most of us in Hill East is indeed towards H St and/or Eastern Market, the fact remains that we in Hill East lack a thriving business/economic development area of our own. While some of us may feel disempowered because we would "lose" a direct say in the management of H St and Eastern Market, we would possibly then be forced to turn all or more of our attention and social entrepreneurship to getting more economic and social development on Hill East which is much needed.

    (Continued in part 2)

  29. (Part 2 continued from Part 1)

    Under the current ANC structure, it is possible we Hill Easters spend a little too much time focused on trying to shape activities to our West and to link up with them instead of on the many and great challenges of Hill East. Just imagine if our great ANC and community leaders such as Flahaven, Frances, White, Lia, Mack, Gilbert etc spent ALL their talents and time on making Hill East better and creating economic and social dynamism East of 15th Street rather than on dealing with issues related to geographically more distant though thriving places such as H St, Eastern Market, etc.

    If the Ronnenberg proposal or a variation of it is adopted (which I doubt it will be because it is too much change and too much of an experiment), we in the greater Hill East may feel initially dissed by our neighbors and ANCs to the West, but it may be exactly the type of umbilical cord breaking we Hill Easters need to really accelerate our focus to generate change and improvements in our slowly changing community and not simply feel better about ourselves because of links with exciting changes to our west.

    In sum, while I do not take back the questions and criticisms I have made of the Ronnenberg proposal in prior postings, I also hope the W6TF and the greater Hill East community seriously think about the best ANC map that would help Hill East. I still lean toward status quo and fear negative perception issues (actual or fictive) that could accrue to Ward 6 if a variation of the Ronnenberg proposal is adopted.

    Setting politics and perception issues aside, the Ronnenberg proposal is a gamble while the Status Quo Plus proposal is the devil we know. My hope is that the greater Hill East community will not reject the Ronnenberg proposal offhand or be too enamored of the Status Quo which frankly has brought change all too slowly to our Hill East community.

    We in Hill East need and should demand more focused ANC attention on our problems and challenges. The best choice for Hill East is as clear as mud in my mind at this stage. I lean towards the Status Quo Plus/Stephens proposal that I developed but I still wonder whether the Ronnenberg gamble may be exactly what we Hill Easters need though it is counter-intuitive, controversial and may be painful.

    Think about it carefully and continue to be respectful of each other as we debate the ANC map that will define in large measures how we work together for the next ten years to build an ever better Hill East.

    Cheers and Peace
    Rob Stephens

  30. The message from participants in last night's 6B W6TF meeting on this proposal was consistent, clear and unanimous from all ANC Commissioners (speaking as individuals not as an ANC) and residents - minimize changes to current ANC boundaries and do not create a Hill East ANC. There were suggestions to minor tinkering with some ANC and SMD borders, but with few exceptions it was only tinkering.