Ward 5 budget townhall April 10 & Lamond Riggs neighborhood library

Mayor Gray will host a budget townhall with a focus on Ward 5 on April 10, 2013 at Luke C. Moore Academy (1001 Monroe St. NE) at 6:30 pm.  In his press release on the mayor’s budget, Councilmember McDuffie said that he would like to see money allocated for the modernization of Lamond Riggs library.  The mayor’s proposed budget does not include any money for modernizing Lamond Riggs library, but it does provide money so that all DC public libraries will be open 7 days per week.

Updated  3/29/2013

The mayor’s proposed FY 2014 budget includes a line item for renovating the Lamond Riggs library (pdf), with full funding estimated at over $18 million.  It notes that the library is 45 years old and is energy inefficient.  The spec calls for the library to be substantially renovated “to create a new 21st century state-of-the-art LEED Silver Rated vacility.”  The budget includes zero FY 2014 funding for renovating the library, but includes proposed funding for FY 2015 & FY 2016.  It notes that Cafritz’s development (Art Place at Fort Totten) includes a spec in a (much) later phase to build a new library for the neighborhood as part of the Art Place development.  The document states DCPL is still involved in discussions with Cafritz about this.  An older budget timeline projected that the design for a renovated library would be completed by October 2011, with construction starting in Jan 2012 and completed by June 2018.  Of course none of those milestones was met and it’s unclear at this point if Cafritz’s proposal is the reason for the delay.

Site options for new Brookland middle school to serve Ward 5

DC’s Department of General Services has proposed three site options for an arts-focused Ward 5 middle school in Brookland.  A few weeks ago, DGS proposed co-locating the middle school with Turkey Thicket rec center.  That idea was met with strong opposition.  Now, DGS has proposed three standalone site options, but the school would still be placed in close proximity to the rec center.  Visit the DGS Brookland middle school site to see a presentation on the options and a list of FAQs.  Embedded in the presentation is a link to let officials know what you think of the plans.

On a couple of Ward 5 listservs, there is still discussion about putting the middle school in a different location than Brookland (e.g. at UDC Community College Backus campus, which used to house a middle school), but it’s not clear if that is really a consideration at this point.

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Hanger Clinic (prosthetics and orthotics shop) opening near Fort Totten metro

The signage is up for Hanger Clinic, filling out one of the long vacant commercial spaces near the 7-Eleven across from Fort Totten metro station.  Hanger Clinic is one of the nation’s largest providers of prothestics and orthotics.  Information about their products and services can be found here.  Certainly a welcome sign for the commercial space near the metro.

The Hampshires (6000 New Hampshire Ave NE) featured in Urbanturf

Urbanturf has a sponsor feature from Comstock on The Hampshires, the new housing community being developed in Riggs Park at 6000 New Hampshire Ave NE.  We’ve mainly reported on 6000 New Hampshire in the context of the PUD modification concerning the portion of the development sold to a second developer.  Upon completion, The Hampshires will have 38 detached homes and 73 townhouses surrounding open green space and a dog park.  Neighborhood representatives attended the grand opening of the detached homes in September.  Comstock starts construction on the townhomes this week.

Funny aside:  DC Urbanturf’s facebook post asks the question, “Do you know where that is?” in reference to Lamond Riggs.

March 27: Candidate forum for at-large city council seat

A special election for the vacant at-large city council seat and a vote on a DC Charter Amendment for budget autonomy will be held on April 23, 2013.  The DC Federation of Civic Association is sponsoring a candidate forum on Wednesday, March 27, 2013, at 6:30 pm, at Eastern Senior High School (1700 East Capitol St. NE).  WJLA news reporter Sam Ford will moderate.