Posts Tagged ‘ward 5


New Chuck Brown Park Design

The City held another meeting on the proposed Chuck Brown Memorial Park at the Center of Aging today. The meeting was to unveil their new concept for the Park and pavilion. Here is the old plan and concept of the pavilion:


The new concept, which will have only 200 seats and much more greenery and open space is below:


What do you think?

10:27 am The new park’s seating has been reduced by more than 40%. The concept will resemble a Roman amphitheater. The playground area is to remain as is.

10:29 am The entire height of the Pavilion will stand 26′ high with the Tower being the highest point, nine feet higher than the pavilion itself.

10:33 am Concerns about sound from the Amphitheater by area neighbors was answered with “the sound ordinances will be enforced”. There will not be restrooms built because they cannot be maintained and for potential drug issues. They will provide a “restroom pad”. Users of the Amphitheater will be responsible for bringing in Porto-potties, their own lighting and equipment.

Parking and security will need to be part of the permit process.

10:40 am “the goal is to not have big events here….but I don’t know that honestly”

10:42 am Jon Mandel: “the city has negotiated with a local church to use their parking lots during events.”

10:43 am The scape will block line of sight of MPD to see into the park, which they currently have. Concern over security. Also concern about the huge morals of Chuck Brown. “I don’t want to have to look at a huge moral everyday” – resident

Response on MPD line of sight is that they are spacing scape enough for police to see through and mesh design will allow to see “shadows”

Photo of morals and tower:


10:50 am The Mayor ignoring residents concerns borders on the “line of scandal” using tax payer money for something like the Pavilion. “It can be a memorial for Chuck Brown but without pavilion and amphitheater”.

“It isn’t about go-go music, I don’t want to hear music all the time.”

10:55 am “quality of life of residents has not been addressed. This isn’t a racial issue.”

10:57 am City official basically says that this new pavilion is the only way to clean up the park.

10:58 am “We have 600 children homeless in this City…the Mayor is running a dictatorship….I’m sick of it…. If Mayor wants it, put it in his backyard,” says 57 year resident.


RIA is about to Get Caffeinated

Rhode Island Ave NE is about to be jolted with some great news!


Rendering courtesy of Zekes Coffee

Zeke’s Coffee of DC is planning a new “Roastery and Coffee Lab” for the 2300 block of Rhode Island Ave NE. Zeke’s, which got it’s start roasting beans and selling coffee in 2005 in Baltimore, MD, is a family-owned business and a member of that family, John Kepner, who is a local resident, has been managing the DC-side of the business. John decided to open this new location to fulfill the wholesale side of his DC operations and to experiment with new flavors and mixes of coffee, hence the “coffee lab” concept. The rear part of the shop will be where John and his team will roast and blend beans, bag them, and prepare for shipment (added bonus: they will offer tours so folks can learn how the process works)… but no worries, local coffee lovers, because the front 2/3 of the shop will be retail, a coffee bar, and seating (counter and bar stools) so you can pick up your favorite flavor of bean, try samples of the coffee, or just go all in with a cup of Zeke’s and enjoy it on site. In fact, they are planning to have outdoor seating so folks can enjoy their coffee while watching the world flow by.

Zeke’s will feature between 40-50 varieties of coffee, which you can sample in store, or show up on most Saturdays to enjoy the “coffee lab” where you can sample new concept blends not available to the public. This is what will make Zeke’s stand out from other coffee shops and RIA NE is proud to have them here!

John and his team are excited about this new opportunity along the Avenue, and credits the fact that the engaged neighborhood (and having local friends) helped convince him that this location was the right one. The shop’s operating hours have not been determined yet but John mentioned that it will depend on the neighborhood. In other words, more demand, more coffee time.

So get ready…. Zeke’s Coffee is aiming for an early summer opening!

(side note fact: John’s grandfather used to repair/fix coffee roasters for a living, and because their family was so big, his grandfather used to call everyone “Zeke”…now you know where the name comes from and how the family honor’s their grandfather!)


Pizza on the Avenue


Photo courtesy of Manny and Olga’s

It seems that Rhode Island Ave’s “Main Street” is about to get its own pizza place soon. Manny and Olga’s Pizza is announcing their intention of opening a shop 2117 RIA NE. Their website says that they already have 14 locations in the DC Metro area, including H Street, 14th Street, and Georgetown. Their menu boasts pizza, subs, calzones, wings, and much more. And, they deliver.

So, how good is a Manny and Olga’s? The Yelp reviews are kind of all over the place but mainly in the low rating category. Maybe Manny or Olga can expect nothing but 4-5 star ratings with this new location? Let’s hope so.

Do you have your own experience with a Manny and Olga’s Pizza? If so, let us know!


Chuck Brown Park Design Released

Even though Chuck Brown had nothing to do with the Langdon/Woodridge community, the plan to reform a local park right off of RIA in his honor is moving forward. Thanks to reader, Toni, for passing this article from CityPaper along:


This morning at the Wilson Building, Mayor Vince Gray signed into legislation plans to turn a portion of Ward 5’s Langdon Park into Chuck Brown Park and finalized a memorial in honor of the late Godfather of Go-Go. But the renderings released today are dramatically different from the images we saw back in August. The latest plans for Chuck Brown Park turn the site into an outdoor concert destination: “Reminiscent of Roman structures,” the proposal says, “the venue will take the shape of an amphitheater with a semi-circular theatre space defined by rows of magnolia and cherry blossom trees.” The amphitheater, called the Chuck Brown Music Pavilion, is designed for a capacity of more than 900 seated visitors.


Is Woodridge Part of the “Up and Coming”?

photo by DC Urban Turf

photo by DC Urban Turf

DC Urban Turf has listed their “Best Use of a Magic 8-Ball” on the best upcoming neighborhoods in the City.

 two years ago UrbanTurf reached out to a selection of bloggers, journalists, real estate agents and developers to get their thoughts on what DC neighborhoods would be attracting homebuyers in 2015. Earlier this year, we decided to check in with the same group to see if they still agreed with the choices they originally made.

Woodridge wasn’t singled out as an up and coming neighborhood, although the same blog did write about RIA NE as recent as Octoberof this year, we are encouraged by the immediate surrounding communities’ designation as such. But being located between Brookland, Fort Lincoln, and Fort Totten, plus having one of the most promising “Main Streets” in the area and large single family homes, Woodridge is, by default, a part of these up and coming neighborhoods that you should keep an eye on. The Friends of RIA (FoRIA) are making huge strides with this area and the addition of over $1 million being slated for improvements along RIA NE, we plan to see the area transforming for the better.

As Urban Turf noted:

That whole part of NE — including Brookland, Woodridge, Michigan Park, Fort Lincoln — is seeing a lot of new developments come out of the ground that are going to transform the area.

What are your thoughts? Is the entire area going to surge or are parts of it going to be left behind?


Bike Share Locations Announced

CAs the Insider reported earlier this year, Rhode Island Ave NE is getting a couple of Bike Share locations!

According to the announcement today from DDOT, Bike Share will set up locations outside of the Rhode Island Ave Metro Station and at the corner of 18th Street NE and RIA NE (in front of the Woodridge Library). In addition, a planned station is slated for V Street and RIA NE at Summit Place. This, of course, is great news for our area and glad to see some follow through by our City’s elected officials and departments when they first announced that we would be receiving the bike phenom.

DDOT is planning to install 54 locations across the City’s eight Wards this winter just in time for Spring. RIA isn’t done after this round though. Future locations for a Bike Share location is at RIA NE and Franklin Street NE.

Red are locations to be installed this winter. The blue circle is a future location.

Red are locations to be installed this winter. The blue circle is a future location.


Come Home to the Avenue

The Friends of RIA NE (FoRIA) are hosting the first “Come Home to the Avenue” event on Friday, December 7 from 6 – 8:30 PM. As part of this event to bring neighbors and friends together, they are hosting a Silent Auction with items donated from area businesses and others (in fact, the Rhode Island Insider is donating a Wine Basket!). The event is being held at Art Enables located at 2204 Rhode Island Ave NE, and as a thank you to Art Enables, the group is asking folks to support them by donating art supplies.

So to recap: 

WHAT: FoRIA’s “Come Home to the Avenue” Holiday Reception, Gallery Show, and Silent Auction

WHEN: Friday, December 7, 2012 from 6:00 PM to 8:30 PM

WHERE: Art Enables, 2204 Rhode Island Ave NE

See you there!

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