“BOARDING HOUSE RUSE” (“Loose Lips,” 11/5) contains serious errors regarding Luther Place Memorial Church and its plan for the development of N Street Village. Shame on you for not verifying facts and figures with the church.
1.) Architectural plans and the financial pro forma, to which Logan Circle Community Association (and ANC 2F) leaders have had considerable access and input, make abundantly clear the church’s intention to build permanent rental apartments, not a shelter.
2.) The estimated cost of the proposed development is $13 million, not $7 million as reported by you (and the Washington Times).
3.) The N Street Village project has been awarded a federal homeless demonstration grant, not a homeless-shelter grant.
4.) In keeping with the original development plan, current housing and supportive services for homeless and formerly homeless women at N Street Village will be incorporated at their present levels into the Vermont Avenue portion of the new complex. An adjoining but separate part of the building will provide permanent rental apartments for low-income families on the 14th Street side of the structure.
5.) It would serve well to note that NIMBY (not-in-my-back-yard) is an attitude, not a geographical matter. Perhaps it would be helpful to point out that the suburbs are not exempt from the growing problem of homelessness. Fact is, there are at least four successful and welcome group homes for mentally disabled persons known to exist within one block of Luther Place Pastor John Steinbruck’s residence in suburban Alexandria.
6.) If your quote attributed to Don Smith is accurate, I can only suggest that his insinuation that Luther Place members are “killers” of the Logan Circle neighborhood is a thoughtless and counterproductive remark.
To the “Clark Kent” writer of “Loose Lips,” how about getting your facts right for once; come out from your telephone booth and be identified with everyone else in the public arena.
Parish Administrator, Luther Place Memorial Church, Logan Circle