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An aerial view of the Art Place @ Fort Totten
So earlier today I reported on the Cafritz Foundation’s huge new Art Place@ Ft. Totten development. The proposal includes, among many other things, a Children’s Museum, 929 residential units, and a nearly 60,000 square foot grocery. It will encompass 16.52 acres of land. And I just ran a google search on “Art Place Fort Totten,” which reveals only three related front page results.
So, apparently, there’s not much out there.
It showed at a community meeting last night, in which neighbors lobbed questions and accusations at…Well, that wasn’t always clear. Here are a couple of examples:
Moment 1, courtesy of the lady who appeared to be filming the entire meeting:
One woman kept asking about development plans for the area around Eastern Ave., Riggs Rd, Nicholson and Oglethorpe Streets—-a region roughly a mile away from the site.
We’re not talking about that part of the neighborhood, she was told.
“So is it safe to say you’re evading the question?” she asked.
Moment 2, courtesy of a concerned parker:
A question arose about parking after someone noted that each residential unit would not have a designated parking space. The housing was supposed to be “transit-oriented development” after all.
“Some of these units are quarter mile from the Metro!” railed one lady, standing up and totally incensed.
“Well a quarter mile is considered quite walkable—-It’s five minutes,” stated someone amongst the group of Cafritz representatives.
Moment 3, courtesy of the ANC commissioner that left the meeting early, negating its purpose in the first place:
At the end of last night’s meeting, ANC4B commissioners were supposed to vote on—- essentially—-whether they cared enough about this project to appeal to the developers in the future.
The vote was supposed to take place last week, according to Chair Douglass Sloan. But Judi Jones, his fellow commissioner, asked that it be pushed back.
Then, she left the meeting before a vote could occur.
*One is this Office of Planning Memorandum to the DC Zoning Commission about the project; Another is this April 2008 Capitol Community News report; And another is this recent Washington Business Journal article about condos, which briefly mentions the Cafritz project.