Shepherd Park Citizens Association: July 5, 2017


The Georgia Eastern project would include a Harris Teeter supermarket at the prominent corner by the Maryland line. (rendering courtesy of Douglas Development)

Shepherd Park residents attended a sometimes heated discussion on the Georgia Eastern project at an “emergency” meeting on June 22 held at Ohev Sholom – The National Synagogue.

Moderated by Ward 4 D.C. Council member Brandon Todd, the meeting allowed a wide range of views to be expressed, especially regarding the council vote on the alley closing within the project area scheduled for the following Tuesday.

Todd gave no indication of delaying the vote, as requested by some present. At times, he appeared to refuse to recognize people who were for such a postponement or who wanted to correct facts stated by D.C. Department of Transportation personnel.

Considering the way in which the alley-closing bill was later presented as a part of a “consent agenda” on June 27 and passed unanimously, some feel he was less than transparent at the meeting. A consent agenda is a procedure that groups routine and non-controversial legislation for vote without discussion. There has been much controversy over the alley closing. There have been strong feelings by some in the neighborhood that the alley closing should have been approved with conditions, not given freely to the developer. Support and opposition continue regarding the project, with agendas mixed and oftentimes not stated clearly. Perhaps there is a need to follow a rubric for conflict resolution — STILL, for stop, think, inhale, listen and learn.

Many thanks to all those who helped make the 15th annual Shepherd Park picnic such a success. A large group gathered on the Lowell School lower field for food, games, music, fire department demonstrations and other activities. Awards were given to businesses and individuals who have made a difference in the community. A big round of applause for Stacey Dennis’ planning and implementation, sponsors’ donations, volunteers’ service and Mark Pattison’s leadership.

— June Confer