Seems that our cause is picking up steam. Check out this article from the City Paper. Will our ANC and the Council respond to residents’ concerns?
Here is a response from an ANC Commissioner that covers the RIA area. I want to ask him to acknowledge that he will hold a meeting with the residents to cover what we want and do not want on RIA before he makes any movement on this. The residents, as you can read in the previous posts on this blog, have their opinions and want to be heard!
Also, Corey, if you could disclose to us whether or not you have any family or friends who own businesses or wants to own businesses along RIA, just so we know where you are coming from (as you know, we have grown skeptical of our ANC lately with the recent financial issues going on that caused some of them to resign)….
Will you, Corey?
“Hi all, this is Corey Arnez Griffin, ANC representative for SMD 5A10. I have responsibility for the north side of Rhode Island Avenue from South Dakota Ave to the corner of 18th Street. I share the concern about the economic development potential for this amazing avenue. The potential is evident as you monitor the amount of traffic on Rhode Island Avenue flowing in and out of our city everyday. I have been actively working with some of the business owners in our SMD to promote business vibrancy and the much needed renaissance for our corridor. In the time that I have been serving in office, I have made a deliberate decision to host all of my ANC SMD meetings on Rhode Island Avenue. My strategy is simply to introduce our community to the businesses on the avenue and to promote foot traffic. The desired output is to create a buzz that helps to reduce crime and to attempt to increase presence and patronage with our existing businesses.
Building partnerships with our businesses is paramount to sustaining and capitalizing on the small growth we have seen in the last 12 months or so. We have many new businesses on the avenue in and outside of SMD 5A10. We have Lace Lounge, Flip It Bakery II, American Quality Home Care Services, and Art Enables, among others. The key will be promotion, partnership, and public patronage. I sponsored, along with others, a letter of support for the Greater Washington Hispanic Chamber of Commerce to provide technical assistance to the business owners on Rhode Island. This is a small effort to support business growth and sustainability. Alone, it will not be enough, we have to have the other elements to create the desired outcome. I would like to see us organize a business association with specific representation from the owners on RIA, to include the churches. Working together with the entire community and our government, in my opinion, is the only way to begin to change the dynamics on RIA.
Lastly, I am committed to work with the other ANC stakeholders and Civic Association leadership to begin to organize around concrete efforts that attack, what I will call the 3P’s for RIA mentioned above. Tactically, I would like us to pull together the neighbors to work with the MPD to walk the avenue and show community presence to eliminate the prostitution, organize efforts to remove the blight of the “We buy…” signs and trash, and plan a series of events that support our businesses and that celebrate RIA’s history and potential.
I have more on the subject, but I suspect that I should stop here and get some reaction.
The point I would like to emphasis is that I am prepared to roll up my sleeves and do whatever is necessary to exploit the potential RIA.”
*Photo from Brookland Ave blog