Friday, August 5, 2011

Open Microphone: Where Should Near Southeast Be Placed - 6B or 6D

We have record number of emails sent to stating support as well as some concerns about connecting near southeast with Capitol Hill versus the Waterfront. So I thought I would set up a post to allocontinue to continue the discussion online. Regards, Joe.


  1. I recently moved from Near Southeast to the Southwest. I understand that many in the Near Southeast want to be part of 6B because they frequent and enjoy all of the restaurants and amenities of Capitol Hill. But when I was looking for a new place to live, I felt like there were a lot more similarities between Near Southeast and Southwest. Much of the development that is happening in the area is pulling these communities together, and I think neighborhoods both east and west of South Capitol have a lot to gain from each other.

    As someone who lived in the Near Southeast area for a while, I think there are some big environmental differences between 6B and Near Southeast. I really do understand the desire to be part of 6B, but from my point of view it just makes more sense to be part of 6D.

  2. Living in Near Southease, my life is centered around the baseball stadium/Yards Park area and across the freeway into more of Capitol Hill. The freeway isn't a barrier for me, but South Capitol Street is. I hope that all of Near Southeast will stay together under one ANC - particularly with upcoming CSX construction and major commercial development that is already underway.

  3. As a Capitol Quarter homeowner, I desire to be ANC redistricted in the following manner:
    1. I affiliate MUCH more closely with Capitol Hill (SE) than with Southwest; AND
    2. I believe that ALL of Near Southeast should remain in the same ANC, even if this requires that Near Southeast include 2 (or more) single member districts.

  4. My wife Audra and I support Capitol Quarter and the rest of the Capitol Riverfront/Navy Yard neighborhood in SE remaining together as a neighborhood in one ANC (namely 6B) and we want that ANC to be linked with Capitol Hill and the Barracks Row area north of the freeway as well as the new development below M Street directly adjacent to us. We consider that area our neighborhood; it is where we live, frequent businesses and spend time with our neighbors. We eat at Barracks Row restaurants, buy groceries at Eastern Market, attend concerts in Yards Park, walk over to Nats Park for a game, watch the progress at Canal Park and go to the gym at Results. We walk under the freeway nearly every day, but have rarely walked across the busy thoroughfare of South Capitol St. (although we enjoy driving to the Safeway occasionally). So we believe our neighborhood should speak with one voice with one ANC.

    While we look forward to continuing to work with our fellow Washingtonians across South Capitol St. through ANCs and otherwise, it is imperative that the ANC process provide Capitol Quarter and the rest of the Capitol Riverfront/Navy Yard neighborhood direct input over the development south of M St. and east of South Capitol as it directly affects our neighborhood the most because of its proximity.

    We also believe that folks north of the freeway in Capitol Hill should have a voice on those issues as we should have a voice concerning Barracks Row development and other issues just north of the freeway. For example, residents immediately north and south of the freeway will want to speak with a single, strong voice during the coming years of challenges that CSX's Virginia Ave. Tunnel project will inevitably bring; Southwest residents could be affected as well, but in no way as directly.

    We echo the views expressed by our ANC representative David Garber on the Ward 6 Redistricting Task Force blog and believe that our neighbors in Capitol Quarter, the buildings between 2nd St. and South Capitol and those north of the freeway in Capitol Hill support these views.

  5. Capitol Quarters (and hopefully the Yards Park, and the rest of Near SE too) - must be part of 6B. I haven't met anyone in our neighborhood who doesn't feel closer to the Hill and Barracks Row than anything in SW. SW, perhaps because it is separated by South Capitol Street, feels like a different world from SE/ the Hill.

  6. I am conflicted. On one hand, I can see the logic of associating near southeast with ANC 6B. On the other, I am against creating a Ward within a Ward. In my opionion, Adding near southeast to 6B would just that.

  7. Joe-
    Can you say more about what you mean by a ward within a ward?

  8. One of the many things heard was the need to create ANCs that have common interests and concerns orientated to shared community spaces. This was one of the arguments used to not extend ANC 6C south past East Capitol or extend 6B north of the freeway. In my opinion, a ward within a ward occurs when:

    1. An ANC boundary includes too many different neighborhood commercial corridors in relation to the other Ward ANCs. In this case, ANC 6B would have the Pennsylvania Avenue corridor that runs the full length of Ward 6, Eastern Market which has close community interests in nearby northeast, Barracks Row which has nearby community interests in near southeast, the baseball stadium which has community interests from the waterfront community and the emerging Hill East community. That is a lot of community landmarks to be concentrated in one ANC.

    2. When one ANC would almost be twice the size of three other ANCs that seems to be a structural imbalance. By adding the community that surrounds the baseball stadium, ANC 6B would have a population that supports 12 SMDs. Conversely, 6D and 6C would only have enough residents to justify five or six SMDs, 6E would have seven SMDs and 6A nine SMDs. This would create concentrate a tremendous amount of workload into a single ANC. Why should the task force allow one ANC to essentially make decisions that would impact three other ANCs?

    3. Somewhat related, the budgets for the ANCs are established by population. By expanding 6B south, one ANC would receive twice the resources when compared to three other ANCs.

    4. In my opinion, the "super-sized" 6B would also not be contiguous and would run counter to many of the ten criteria the task force adopted as an overarching guideline for redistricting.

    I am not saying there is not a solution that would incorporate the near southeast community into 6B. From my viewpoint, to accomplish that would require redistributing some of the existing ANC 6B area to other ANCs. This would create more compact ANCs where one ANC does not become a ward within a ward.
    So, while I understand the requests from the near southeast community to be joined to ANC 6B, looking at the entire Ward and the impact to the other ANCs, I would have a difficult time supporting such a consolidation of residents and community interests into the existing ANC 6B. And it is important to state, this comment only represents my personal opinion and not an official statement for the W6TF. And I would go as far as to say that this might represent a minority opinion at that. Regards, Joe Fengler

  9. Joe:
    I am glad to see your post.

    I was beginning to wonder if the purpose of the task force was to create one super large self absorbed ANC and four little ones which would barely have a sufficient population to support their interests. At least your post shows that this is not the role you view for yourself as Chair.

    I support your concerns and I am a resident of 6B.

  10. I live and work on Capitol Hill, my daily commute buses me down Barracks Row from the ballpark area, and walks me home through Folger or Marion Park and Garfield Park, Fragers is my neighborhood hardware store, Eastern Market and Yes! Organic are my grocers, Pound the Hill feeds my nutella cravings, Southeast Public Library keeps me in sync with my book club, Jimmy T's keeps my weekend mornings starting right, Lincoln Park and the Congressional Cemetery provide pups when I need a little fur therapy, the entire Hill residential neighborhood becomes my marathon training track, and Capitol Hill Classic 10K gives me the sanity check mid year. I live just beyond the highway in the Near Southeast part of Capitol Hill, I am a Ward 6 resident, a Capitol Hill resident.

    Near Southeast is a continuation of Capitol Hill, this can be seen in where we grocery shop, where we go out for drinks and dinner, where our Sunday strolls for coffee and brunch take us, what parks we gather in with friends, children and dogs, how our home development extends the Hill rowhouse feel under the highway, and how we identify ourselves and neighborhood. Our values and expectations for a livable, walkable city align with our elected official. It is critical that this redistricting effort does not divide us as a Near Southeast neighborhood or from our larger neighborhood Capitol Hill - both are our amenity base and our social base. Doing so would be the antithesis of the "contiguous" goal of redistricting and the "neighborhood" goal of ANCs. It would be holding us on the outside looking in on our neighborhood that we live, work, and play in and keeping us in one that has little connection to our neighborhood, other than an occasional waterfront Safeway run.

    IF the two choices are narrowed down to our little area being in 6D or 6B...well, Near Southeast is the riverfront neighborhood of Capitol Hill. I strongly oppose any efforts to split the Near Southeast/Capitol Riverfront/Navy Yard area into multiple ANCs or keep us lumped with the Southwest Waterfront, a fine neighborhood - just not OUR neighborhood.


  11. I think the residents of Near Southeast need to look east this question a different way: do they want decisions about their neighborhood controlled by five commissioners who don't live in it (staying in 6D) or 10 commissioners who don't live in it. And, while Near Southeast residents don't spend much time in Southwest, Southwest residents certainly spend time in Near Southeast, and are impacted by what goes on east of South Capitol. I'd also say that the 6D commissioners would understand more about the needs of an emerging community with lots of different types of housing stock and how to handle a lot of big development projects. And Near Southeast residents wouldn't be as small of a minority voting bloc in 6D than if they move to 6B.

  12. The near SE and SW DC need to stay together. While I understand the desire by some to associate near SE with Capitol Hill, the relationship shared with Capital Hill is similarly strong for those of us in SW. We fought to remain in Ward 6 for that reason. However, even more important than that connection with Capitol Hill is the relationship of near SE and SW DC with each other. We share so much in common: the waterfront, the massive new development taking place, the promise of great change for our neighborhoods. It is really essential when viewed in this context that the two areas stay connected in a 6D. There must be a unity and cooperation as we face the challenges that lie ahead. We share a huge amount in common and it would be a great tragedy to split the voice. Our collective waterfront voice would be greatly weakened by any decision other than one that keeps the near SE and SW in 6D.

  13. I would like to see Near Southeast remain with ANC 6D. The one thing we share is waterfronts; the entire area falls within the Anacostia Riverfront protection area. I feel that as a united group we are more likely to be able to handle all waterfront issues -- especially those pertaining to new building.

    I live on the Southwest side of South Capitol, but I, and many of my constituents, often find myself in Near Southeast whether it's for ballgames, a concert in the park, or a snack.

    I'd like to see our communities remain together.

  14. I'd like near SE to remain in 6D. The issues of waterfront development plus a large number of new buildings which face both areas for the next 10 years are the same. These are best dealt with by a joint effort which can only be accomplished by being in one ANC.
    Also, M Street transportation issues and the Douglas Bridge/South Capital Street rebuild are best handled by the same ANC.

    Having the near SE development area in the same ANC as SW has worked well for the past 10 years and remains the best option for dealing with the myriad development issues of the next 10 years.

  15. I think that the Near Southeast community should remain in ANC6D. I believe that the following factors should be taken into consideration:

    1. There is a great deal of expertise and institutional knowledge in regards to ANC6D development projects.
    2. Near Southeast belongs in a united Waterfront district as opposed to a Capitol Hill one.
    3. M Street transportation issues need to be addressed in a unified manner.
    4. South Capitol St. needs to develop as a bridge not a divide between the Southwest and Near Southeast communities.

    Max Skolnik
    Former Commissioner, 6D01

  16. ANC6D should remain united. Fengler’s 4 points (above) are valid. In addition, there are other reasons to keep this area together: the greater waterfront needs common attention as envisioned by the Anacostia Waterfront Plan and DC’s Comprehensive Plan, the development of the M Street transportation corridor needs unified attention. We have been asking for a plan for years and finally the District is funding it. Let’s not split the vision and effort. In addition, there is the new re-development on South Capital that needs a common effort. This is designed to create a welcoming boulevard to our city. Why divide the neighborhood representation that will be working to ensure that happens?
    Finally, we all need more retail in SE/SW. Although the 8th Street area has blossomed beautifully, we need more areas like that in near SE and SW. Let’s keep it together!

  17. I wish Mr. Fengler had considered all those points before he kept ANC6B the size it already is. By adopting the Stevens "Status Quo" plan, he ensured 6B's continuation of "ward within-a-ward status". Adding Near Southeast into that entity now and decrying what it would "create" strikes me as a little belated.

    The fact is, despite both SW and SE having waterfront properties, the two communities are different and have their own needs. I don't deny that both communities belong in Ward 6, and we have overarching commonalities which unify us as a Ward. But when it comes to speak as communities, SE and SW are in different places. The residents of SW only of late have begun to take interest in our section and once their own Waterfront redevelopment is underway, will again return their attention back to the west side of S. Cap.

    I understand that residents of SW are concerned about the progress happening within our area, and I respect those opinions. But if the Committee should take any words with greater weight, it should be that of the residents themselves, and where they see themselves tied to. First and foremost, we are tied to Near Southeast, and regardless of whether we sit in 6D or 6B, we must remain unified. But secondly, we are tied to Capitol Hill, much in the same way the SW residents assert they are tied to us - it's where we spend our time and our money. Many of the neighborhoods on our northern borders also have begun to look southwards for our parks and our amenities - as we develop retail and restaurants those mutual ties will only grow.

    While SW residents rightfully claim ties to our area, I have not found any SE residents who do the same to theirs. If anything, we should be united with 6B because of the mutuality of our relationship, and how that will inevitably grow.

    --Andrew Shields
    Near Southeast Resident

  18. The progress thus far of what some describe as "SW -- the Little Engine that Could" is largely due to the willingness of individuals involved as members or supporters of the current ANC 6D to keep their eyes on the future -- aware of what it took to get the area through the last half of the 20th century to where we are now. Now is not the time to introduce potentially conflicting and distracting issues. There are already enough perils and possibilities to consider.

  19. I completely agree with Max Skolnik's comments above. Waterfront issues are important to both SW and Near SE. ANC 6D is accumulating a wealth of information regarding waterfront development issues. It seems wasteful to divide this expertise among ANCs.

    The boating communities are united on a number of topics along DC's SW and SE waterfronts. We face common issues regarding maritime commerce, transportation, and development. It makes no sense to divide the boating communities between two ANCs.

    A coherent, unified approach to M street is extremely important to successful transportation plans that will benefit development in both SW and Near SE. Placing Near SE into another ANC will make a unified approach terribly difficult.

  20. I am a resident of Capitol Quarter in Near Southeast. I feel strongly about two points on redistricting. First, the entirety of Near Southeast should stay together in the same ANC. We share common interests and have a strong shared bond with how development is occurring in the neighborhood and need to stay together in one ANC.

    Second, I believe that the whole of Near Southeast should be moved to 6B. We have a much stronger affinity to greater Capitol Hill then to Southwest. None of us shop, eat, or play in Southwest. We all spend our time in Capitol Hill, however, and have a strong shared interest in the development around Garfield Park, Penn. Ave SE, and Barracks Row.

    I urge you to keep Near Southeast together and move us to 6B.

  21. Near SE and SW have too many of the same issues at this critical time that are best dealt with by a unified approach and expertise provided by being the the same ANC. Near SE should stay with 6D.

  22. I have lived on Capitol Hill and now live in the SW. Although I can appreciate the immediate "sense" of the Near SE residents that they identify more with Barracks Row and The Hill; I sincerely believe that this is a short term view. As the South Capitol Street project concludes and as the Wharf Development progresses; that Near SE section will turn to the Waterfront. And the Waterfront, all along the Channel and down around the stadium, the Navy Yard and the Anacostia walk is what will geographically and actively connect the ANC. The waterfront will not go away, the S. Capitol St. "barrier" will. Also, the retail and traffic concerns which so desparately need to be addressed are concerns for the SW and the Near SE; not concerns any longer for The Hill. We need our ANC to aggressively address these issues for us both. Being separated will not help either of us. Thank you for your time and your attention to my thoughts on this issue.

  23. As a resident of SW and also a professional Urban Planner, I strongly encourage that the SW and SE waterfront areas remain together in 6D. The major development projects planned in both areas can best be addressed by an integrated approach for the benefit of all current and future residents and businesses. This area is hugely important as THE Waterfront of the City of Washington and deserves and demands comprehensive decision processes to make the most and the best of the individual elements. The planning and implementation will be best served with the areas joined within 6D. I also agree with earlier posters that as the new development projects unfold that the areas will evolve together into one vibrant unified community.

  24. Near Southeast should remain in ANC 6D. We are one community with shared interests in the development of the waterfront. It may sound nice to tell our friends that we live in the Capitol Hill ANC, but that will be about it. ANC 6B has enough issues and the southeast waterfront will just be another problem for the Commissioners to work on. We shoud remain unified with 6D. That is where our interests will be best served.

  25. I would urge Mr. Fengler and the rest of this task force make note of several extremely important observations I have yet to see voiced adequately in this process:

    1. SW residents seem overwhelmingly in favor of keeping Near SE in 6D.

    2. Near SE residents commenting here and in other online forums seem substantially in favor of moving Near SE to 6B, citing frequently the connections and commonality with "other" Capitol Hill neighborhoods, specifically Barracks Row, as well as having comparatively little connection with SW businesses, residents, amenities, etc.

    3. The barrier presented by South Capitol Street is far more substantial to the residents of Near SE than the elevated freeway.

    4. Those commenting on this issue who do not live in Near SE are likely to have interests in mind other than the best representation of the Near SE residents within Ward 6. As such, a simple notion of fairness dictates that the opinions of the actual Near SE residents who will be affected by this decision should be the ones considered most strongly by the task force.

    5. While Mr. Fengler's comments about the negative aspects about "a ward within ward" are very accurate, they reflect the inadequacy of the current proposal (which already includes a district having twice the number of commissioners as another) and should not impact whether Near SE should be included with SW or Cap Hill South/Barracks Row.

    I have been a near SE resident since 2010 and have lived in Ward 6 (Cap Hill/Eastern Market, Cap Hill/Stanton Park and Near SE) continuously since 1999.

    In conclusion, I strongly urge Mr. Fengler and the task force to consider other options in lieu of the current proposal. The overarching goals of creating relatively equally sized ANCs and keeping neighborhoods aligned as closely as possible, as described above so eloquently by our former Ward 6 councilmember Sharon Ambrose, are not adequately satisfied by this proposal.

    Near SE should absolutely be included with the neighborhoods to our immediate north and east. These areas are the obvious, logical, physical, walkable and practical extension of our own neighborhood. The ANC commissioners representing the SW and Cap Hill South/Barracks Row neighborhoods should be entrusted to commiserate on issues of common interest, such as the Douglass bridge, reconstruction of S Capitol Street, etc.

  26. I notice there isn't much call from current Capitol Hill residents begging to bring Near Southeast into their fold. Maybe Near SE residents should take the hint that Capitol Hill is just not that into you. Is that the group of people you want deciding your future for tiger next 10 years? ANC representation for small areas isn't all about what you want, it's about what a group of other people will be deciding for you.

  27. I live in the new Capitol Quarter homes and have to say that over the last 2 years, the only reason why I go across South Capital St is if I have to go the the DMV. Everything I do is in SE at the Yards, on Barracks Row, etc. I don't think it makes any sense to break off the commercial area of near SE and put it into SW when it is the people of CQ & other residents in near SE that will be most affected by the decisions made by the ANC. You should take all of us out of those vital conversations and put them into the hands of SW residents that don't even live in our neighborhood.

  28. LOL @ anonymous (2:38pm) - or maybe it's because Capitol Hill residents are confident enough about their own neighborhood that they don't have an overwhelming need to interject their opinions about how people in ANOTHER neighborhood are represented.

  29. As a resident of Near SE, I would also prefer to stay a part of capital hill in 6B. Although I think it is great that many of our neighbors in SW would like us to join their ANC, I hope that the committee will listen harder to the ACTUAL resident's of Near SE's opinion on the matter. You know, since we actually live there. Besides being near the water, I don't think SW and near SE's interest's are that similar.

  30. 3:26, your neighborhood has been a part of the SW ANC for many years now.

  31. The overarching argument I have gathered from comments by Near SE residents is as follows,"We spend most of our time eating and shopping on the Hill, therefore, we should be part of 6B." In my humble opinion, the reason you don't feel connected to SW and don't spend much time over on our side of S. Capitol is because we are several years behind you in terms of commercial development. We don't have the same number of places to eat and shop ... yet! When the waterfront is redeveloped and you suddenly start to eat, shop, and spend time in SW, will your argument above still ring true?

  32. Early in this process, Near SE was asked to weigh in on where they felt their commercial core was located. Near SE folks overwhelmingly responded Barracks Row/Eastern Market. Near SE was also asked if the highway or S. Cap. was more of a real barrier. Near SE folks resoundingly answered they felt S. Cap. was more of a barrier. These were good questions to ask in a redistricting process and they wouldn't be asked if the answers didn't matter. The answers given by Near SE residents indicate that Near SE residents (of which I'm one) believe our community ties are closest with our neighbors North and East. Within the confines of the map that came out of the last W6TF meeting, a choice has to be made and it seems that if Near SE is given the choice, we'd choose 6B over 6D.

    But that doesn't mean SW isn't still awesome. Really, all of Ward 6 is wonderful and I'm so glad we made it through the first round of redistricting together! I certainly hope this process, regardless of how it turns out, doesn't breed bad feelings between good neighbors...

  33. Quick question: Apart from the physical aspects of the road itself, why do Near SE residents feel that S. Cap is a greater barrier than the highway?

  34. I think the physical aspect plays a big role. VA Ave is super easy to cross compared to S. Cap. But also, lots of Near SE folks work north of the freeway (the Hill, other agencies in that direction), their kids go to school north of the freeway (lots of kids at Brent, but also day cares and preschools north), they play in Garfield and Marion parks (Near SE kids even skate under the highway at the skatepark), and they eat out at Barracks Row, which means the freeway is crossed every single day by, I'd hazard to say, most Near SE residents. The same can't be said for S. Cap. Perhaps that will change in the next 10 years, but it's not the case now....

  35. Part 1

    There are significant and on-going development issues in both portions of ANC 6D's waterfront ANC. Over the past ten years, ANC 6D has developed strong expertise in dealing with major Planned Unit Developments and some of the largest construction projects in our city, among them: Nationals Stadium, Waterside Mall, Arena Stage, the SW Waterfront, the Hope Six Development, Capitol Quarter townhouses, The Yards, and Canal Park. As these major builds conclude over the next decade, peeling off that expertise and institutional memory will prove to be mistake.

    Both the Comprehensive Plan and the Anacostia Waterfront Plan recognize the importance of a united waterfront district. In fact, the Comp Plan specifically includes the lower Potomac, Washington Channel and Anacostia River in one planning district - District 19. The waterfront district ANC has developed issues expertise and contacts locally and regionally to help manage myriad issues including marine management and commerce, marine ecology and wetlands, Anacostia Watershed, marina issues, waterfront recreation, waterfront transportation and the development of shoreline parks. It is no less objectionable for 6D to presume that they could easily get up to speed on the multitude of historic preservation and merchant managment issues that the Hill has than it is for 6B to presume to be able to develop an easy expertise in waterfront and major development issues. We'll both be better served keeping our strengths and institutional memory where they are.

  36. Part 2

    Both portions of ANC 6D have distinctly similar retail challenges. Each has very limited retail currently and much of what limited retail ANC 6D had at all was removed during redevelopment. Restoration of both neighborhood-serving retail and commercial/tourist retail establishments on either side of S. Capitol Street is critical to our Waterfront District and, according to the Comp Plan this should be addressed jointly. The argument has been raised by some that Near SE relates more to the Hill than it does SW. Well, of course it does. That's because there is no retail center presently in Near SE. But in a few years there will be quite a lot of new retail with a Harris Teeter and other establishments at The Yards, possibly a Whole Foods on New Jersey Avenue and significant retail along M Street. Things are changing dramatically. By using the "Capitol Hill is the center of the universe" argument, Southwest should also be part of ANC 6B. After all, with our paucity of retail, we eat, shop and bank there as well. But that's a silly argument. Leave the Waterfront ANC as one. Trust me, we'll all still dine on Barracks Row, go to Eastern Market on the weekends and shop at Frager's. That's because all of Ward Six does that.

    Critical transportation issues along M Street need to be addressed in a unified manner. After a decade of pushing for it, ANC 6D finally convinced the city to put up the money for a comprehensive transportation plan to analyze everything from the 14th Street Bridge along Maine Avenue/M Street to the 11th Street Bridge. This was a critical component to enable both sides of our waterfront district to develop properly. Capitol Hill didn't call for it. ANC 6D did -- because it needed to be done to ensure proper development for the entire Waterfront ANC. Now, at long last, the long view will be taken. The Fredrick Douglass Bridge will also be rebuilt in the next few years. To have this comprehensive transportation plan disrupted and debated by two separate ANCs (when one is frequently one too many) will ultimately delay the implementation of a complete streets agenda, traffic issues and other multi-modal transportation options. This is something that must be handled expeditiously. One ANC is better than two.

  37. Part 3

    South Capitol Street is going through a very complex rebuild at street grade that will create an urban boulevard to lessen any existing physical divide. ANC 6D has been working on this plan for several years. Again, one ANC is better than two as we approach a very complicated issue. As well, Eye Street will be soon be brought through fully to Near SE, ensuring that the northernmost areas of our waterfront ANC will be better connected especially as major cultural amenities such as The Wharf and the new museum at Randall School soon come on line.

    The Ward within a Ward argument is sound. Just how big does an ANC have to become and how much political and commercial influence does it have to assume? I urge the Ward Six Redistricting Task Force to take the long view on what is, ultimately, a ten year plan. And as articulated very clearly by the District's other ten year plan -- The Comprehensive Plan -- keep the Waterfront united. Keep ANC 6D whole.

  38. As a Near SE resident, I care what happens in 6B. I follow the blogs of 6B Commissioners and have even attended meetings because they are working on the issues that affect my life: CSX, Marine relocation, lower 8th, US-NY Circulator expansion, etc. If Near SE isn't on the 6D agenda, and it often isn't, I don't follow what they are doing because their quality of life issues (live aboard, shuttle around 4th, etc) aren't my quality of life issues. In short I'm more invested in B than D and will be more engaged if we are redistricted.

  39. I strongly feel the voice of the communities actual residents outweigh that of those are aren't residents in Near SE. Overwhelmingly, near SE residents want to be part of 6B.

    The poll should first ask "Are you a resident of near SE?". Then ask if we want to be part of 6B or 6D.

  40. But, if Southwest residents feel as connected to Near Southeast as Near Southeast residents do to Capitol Hill, are the Southwest residents' feelings any less valid? It's not a one-way street.

  41. "why do Near SE residents feel that S. Cap is a greater barrier than the highway?"

    Because basically from 1st St SE to 4th St SW is a desert. Not only are you crossing the troublesome S. Cap traffic, but you're doing so if and only if you're willing to hoof it for at least five+ blocks from wherever you began your journey. And even then, until lately, you're basically at Safeway. (Station 4 is very new, I'd wager most of my neighbors don't know about it). Going north, on the other hand, is a much easier proposition, a more pleasant walk and far easier to traverse relative to the vehicular traffic in the area.

    We *drive* west. We walk north.

  42. I am a resident of Near Southeast. I want to be in 6D.

    What's sad is that it seems is that Near Southeast really wants to be a part of 6B, but 6B isn't very interested in Near Southeast. Southwest is very interested in developing a long term partnership with Near Southeast, but Southeast residents shun any attempt to be associated with Southwest.

    If SE stopped trying so hard to be part of an established neighborhood that doesn't want them and spent more time really evaluating the similarities between themselves and SW, we might make more progress. I would much rather be paired with an area that wants to build a partnership and grow together.

    And I know this has been raised by others, but 6B already has the biggest share of residents and 6D is on the smaller end. Wouldn't moving Near Southeast to 6B just make things more uneven?

    Also, I'm bothered by the fact that Garber publicly laments the division between SE and SW, but he sends out emails to his constituents telling them to speak up to combat the SW opinions.

  43. As Capitol Quarter residents, my husband and I strongly agree with the comments made by Brent and Brian. We eat shop and play in barracks row, eastern market, navy yard and nats stadium. We are keenly interested I. The development of the yards park waterfront development and want to be in the same ANC that allows us to have a voice in what happens.

  44. I am a SW resident and think Near SE should move to 6B. It's just not logical and fair-minded to force these folks to stay in our crazy ANC. Near SE is a young, vibrant community full of positive energy and forward-thinking. Can anyone say that of ANC6D?

  45. I'm a SW resident. Every argument I've heard for adding Near SE to 6B boils down to this: "we spend all of our time on the Hill. We eat, play, and send our kids to school there."

    Lots of people do the exact same thing. SW could be part of 6B for that matter. I also spend a lot of time eating and playing on the Hill. However, the ANC website says the following: The Advisory Neighborhood Commissions consider a wide range of policies and programs affecting their neighborhoods, including traffic, parking, recreation, street improvements, liquor licenses, zoning, economic development, police protection, sanitation and trash collection, and the District's annual budget.

    Do Near SE residents really feel that on all of the above issues, 6B is a more appropriate ANC than 6D? Will economic development on the Hill have any close ties to economic development in Near SE? What about zoning, parking, and St improvement? These are some of the most critical issues that will address Near SE.

    I've read arguments that people don't feel connecting to SW because until recently there was "only a Safeway" (what about Arena Stage and retail on the waterfront?) Basically, people are complaining SW doesn't have the commercial and retail available that Cap Hill does. Near SE doesn't have that retail either. I don't think it is a sound argument to say you should join an ANC because it has the retail you currently consume. It makes more sense to stay in an ANC that has the same retail challenges as you and would like to move forward addressing those challenges jointly.

    I do not want to play the game of insulting anyone in this process. I was particularly disgusted by the comment previous to mine at 6:41 this morning. I think both SW and Near SE are great, and are eventually going to be the places where people want to visit and live in DC. I think the best way to make sure that happens is by working together. I don't think riding on Capitol Hill's coattails is the way for either neighborhood to move forward.

    If my last comment is completely off base, please feel free to correct me. I'd prefer if an argument unrelated to retail and schools that explains a greater link to the Hill. I'm trying hard to understand this process, and I definitely do not want it to lead to divisions between my two favorite parts of the city. I just don't understand the current arguments for Near SE to 6B.

  46. Is public housing a problem for some who want to stay near Barracks Row?

  47. I was wondering the same thing. Is public housing the real division folks are referring to between Near SE and SW, as opposed to an actual road?

  48. Judith Claire judithclaire@comcast.netAugust 9, 2011 at 10:46 AM

    Several days ago, I tried to post a comment, but it did not appear- perhaps I didn't copy the magic numbers correctly. The magic number for those of us who have waterfront and riverfront, M St, bridge traffic and new construction including retail is 6D. Eastern Market is doing fine. Transportation( water taxi, M St, 14th and 11th St bridges, new construction and retail are the big quality of life problems....Eastern Market is doing fine...of course Cap. Hill Congress is quality of life is more than Eastern Market. 6D needs to stay as is...we need each other now !

  49. LOL - now we have Anonymous posters who are now insinuating that Near Southeasters don't want to associate with SW because of public housing?!?!?!?! Talk about ignorant!

    We Capital Quarterers have paid anywhere from $750k - $900k and up to live directly next door to public housing in many cases. There are SEVEN DCHA rental units (btw, that's "public housing") within 50 feet of my front door. I know the occupants of five of them but that's a different story altogether.

    More info for the factually impaired - "In total, the entire Capper redevelopment project is projected to have 707 public housing rental units (the same number it had before the redevelopment)"

    Can't wait for the next brilliant thoughts about our neighbors and neighborhood from more Anonymous Southwesters!

  50. Why are we a pawn piece? I don't feel a connection to either SW or Cap Hill. To split Near-SE and move Cap Qtr and Canal Park and Yards Park is nothing more than a power grab to have control of those areas. For one I don't want to be shutout of an area I live in (Canal Park/Yards) and pay a direct BID tax because they view it as their playground. Do the residents of Cap Hill really consider our area the shadow southern point of Cap Hill?

    BTW - Why don't we create/enlarge Near-SE by taking some of 6B and 6D instead of merging Near-SE with 6B or keeping us in 6D (and reorg 6D/6B) and make Near-SE the center piece of the ANC. How would people like that?

    And remember when Half St, The Yards and the rest of Near-SE are built out how many people will be going to 8th St and Eastern Market to shop and eat? Not as many as today. One day we won't have a reason to go north of the freeway except to work on the Hill.

    I wish someone could answer why they 'really' want to split Near-SE. Population is not the real answer??

  51. Perhaps this is a difference in age between the younger Near SE residents and the older, more experienced SW residents.Southwesters have worked hard for many years and recently SW has been "discovred." The newer SE construction seems to have a younger crowd..but, I was unaware of residences selling for 900k as mentioned above. Younger owners in SE would want to hang out near Eastern Market (expensive) and all the resturants on Barracks Row.) Southwesters have worked hard and we are on the upswing. I often walk to SE along M St. and crossing S. Capitol to the Nats, restaurants ,Riverfront, 4 Guys is not a problem. It takes 10 minutes from Waterfront ( 4th and M SW. Artomatic had a wonderful show in the new building above the Metro in SE..all of us walked over and back to SW at 1am.This may be a younger crowd who is more into night life. We will have more nightlife here soon. So, dump your car, rent a bike and take the Water Taxi to National Airport..enjoy Arena Stage, rent a boat at adventurous!

  52. Born and raised on the Hill, now at the YardAugust 9, 2011 at 11:05 PM

    I am a lifelong Capitol Hill resident and current Navy Yard district resident. And yes, I do insist on its traditional title, not some new name invented by a developer. Having lived both north and south of the freeway, I consider, as do many others I know, the Navy Yard district to be part of Capitol Hill. As such, it belongs in the same ANC as the rest of the hill.

    In addition, like most other residents of the area, I spend far more time on Barracks Row or on Pennsylvania Avenue than in SW and no amount of development in SW will change that. The Navy Yard has far more in common with the Hill than it does with SW. The interests, activities, concerns and demographics of those two areas align much more closely than with SW.

    Keep the Navy Yard in one piece and link it with the community it has a greater connection to and already is a part of - Capitol Hill.

  53. I live in ANC 6B. We have enough problems to keep us busy for decades. Leave the Navy Yard, the waterfront, Nats Stadium and the new developments between the expressway and M St. SE in ANC 6D where they have been for the last 10 years. Things seem to be working fine under the current set up.

  54. I love how the residents in near SE consider themselves a part of Capitol Hill. The problem is, you are not a part of Capitol Hill. If you disagree ask the Capitol Hill residents if they consider you as such?

    That said, I think the real issue is that on the other side of South Capitol street is public housing. Yes, I think most people would rather be associated with the affluent Capitol Hill neighborhood than DCPH.

    But what happens when the neighborhood changes? Not just near SE but Buzzard Point and the James Creek Marina and the Southwest waterfront...No one is going to be hanging out at Barack's Row. Why? Because you'll be enjoying your own newly developed neighborhoods.

    It's corny to only want to be a part of a neighborhood because you dine there. No one has given any solid reasons for wanting Near SE to join Capitol Hill. Not one solid argument for moving Near SE to 6B outside of, I hang out there, is on this board.

    Stop looking in the present and look to the future.