Now that the proposal to renovate the Chevy Chase Community Center has been submitted to the mayor, the next step is to persuade D.C. officials to accept it. The plan calls for spending $24 million to gut the building and create a modern structure that can accommodate a wide variety of activities and a half-court gymnasium.
One of the first opportunities to speak out for the plan will be at “senior budget engagement forums” this month. One forum will take place by telephone at noon on Feb. 20. To RSVP, call 202-442-8150 or visit engagement.dc.gov. An in-person session will start at 6:30 p.m. Feb. 21, at the University of the District of Columbia, 4200 Connecticut Ave. NW. Others will be held at 6:30 p.m. Feb. 22 at Watkins Elementary School, 420 12th St. NE; and at 10 a.m. Feb. 24 at Kramer Middle School, 1700 Q St. SE. To RSVP, go to 2018budgetforums.eventbrite.com.
Our association will be represented at the Feb. 21 event. We urge others to attend. The community center proposal would benefit D.C. residents of all ages, but a growing number of seniors are taking part in fitness activities at the center.
The D.C. Council appropriated funds for a new staff member at the center to manage programs for seniors. The Department of Parks and Recreation has told us that a person was selected last month, but the new staffer has not begun work or been publicly identified.
We decided not to hold a public meeting this month, but we are planning them in March and April. On March 20, in collaboration with Northwest Neighbors Village, we plan to hold a meeting on the issues involved with caregiving. In April, we hope to have a session with candidates for D.C. offices. Watch this column for details.
— Ted Gest