Proposed condos and West End library. (Rendering: Eastbanc/TEN Arquitectos) Via DCist.
This week in Foggy Bottom: the new anti-university group has a formal coming out at the the FBA, FoBo wanted Mara overwhelmingly but got Orange instead, plans for the new West End library and firehouse revealed, Foggy Bottom: undead zone?, Charlie Sheen‘s not the only pampered celebrity, and GW athletic director Karl Hobbs
gets the boot gets fired leaves gets canned ugh, he’s just gone, okay?
It's all inside....
You already know how I feel about the parking decisions being made at the redevelopment site where the new library will be. (Low density+lots of parking spaces = bad public policy and overly congested roads.) Evidently we can add “huge waste of money” to that list of outcomes as well.
As DCist reports:
But then you get to the real bulk of the cost: parking will run EastBanc well over a half a million dollars for but 12 spaces.
What. Am I missing something here? This seems to mean that the cost of 1/2 operational library = 12 parking spaces. Why in the world would that be true? If those numbers are right (EastBanc delivered them to the DC city council), then do you think people are getting their money’s worth?
Read the full DCist article here, complete with link to EastBanc’s factsheet.
Earlier this week I posted that the West End Library and Fire Station redevelopment plan was in peril after seeing this message posted on the Foggy Bottom listserv informing us of a challenge to the project that required help from the community to overcome. The posted message implies that because the city would provide no funding, it was now extra important for citizens to come out to support an alternate means of funding.
Last night, Foggy Bottom Association President and ANC commissioner Asher Corson contacted me to say that’s not exactly right, and the project is in fact not in peril. Instead, he says that this is all just part of the plan. In his own words:
The West End Library/Firestation redevelopment plan has hit a pretty major snag as the 2011 operation budget for libraries has been deeply cut and capital funding for improvement has been completely eliminated for next year (at least.)
Via the Foggy Bottom Listserv:
The likelihood of the Council approving funding for any remodel to the public buildings on Square 37 (site of the library) and Square 50 (the fire station) are non-existent. Therefore, public approval of a surplus land disposition resolution and endorsement of the selected developer (Eastbanc) becomes important because this will start the development process which will lead to a new library and fire station in our community.
On June 9th at 6:00 p.m., at the Library, the Deputy Mayor will hold a public meeting to hear from you as to whether or not our community is ready to move forward with a development by declaring the unused air over and around the library and fire station, and the entire police station site, is to be classified as surplus land. This will ensure that this property can then be redeveloped with new mixed use facilities.
On June 16th at 3:00 p.m., at the Wilson Building, the District Council will conduct a hearing in which you may affirm that the community is ready to move forward with the above referenced surplus land disposition resolution; that there has been a full, open, and public process leading up to the selection of a developer; and that the community through the various civic organizations (ANC, FBA, WECA, and WELF) has endorsed the developer selected by the District. I recommend you stress that time is of the essence because a new library, new fire station, affordable housing fitting two different income profiles is a community priority.
I was never a huge fan of the plan in the first place (way too many parking spaces and not enough density,) but there’s no denying that both the library and the fire station are in need of some major renovations.
Update: Asher Corson responds — says the project is not in peril.
ANC 2A holds its regular meeting tonight from 7:00 to 9:00 pm at the West End Library. Kwame Brown will be there, and the full agenda can be found here.
Are any of our readers planning to attend?