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A morning roundup of news, opinion, and links from Washington City Paper and around the District. Send tips and ideas to citydesk@washingtoncitypaper.com.

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D.C. has 827 homeless families, including 1,591 children, living in motels and shelters this week. This winter, the city’s homeless population doubled, and the District government wasn’t prepared for the surge. This week’s cover story tells the stories of some of these homeless families—-and examines why the city wasn’t ready.


  • Jeffrey Thompson pleaded guilty to conspiracy charges this week and implicated other people, including Mayor Vince Gray, with him. A look at what and who could be next in the investigation and what it could mean for the upcoming mayoral primary. [Loose Lips]
  • Shawn Kuykendall, a former D.C. United and American University soccer player, died Wednesday after an eight-month battle with cancer at the age of 32. [Post]
  • Frustrated with overcrowding, commuters and transportation activists are calling for a dedicated rush-hour bus lane on 16th Street. [WAMU]
  • A profile of Bob Bennett, the lawyer hoping to keep Mayor Vince Gray out of jail, or even out of a courtroom. [Post]


Ben’s Children: Ben’s Chili Bowl just opened a new restaurant in Arlington and will open another one on H Street NE by the end of the summer. But can the iconic U Street joint expand and not feel like a Disneyfied version of the original?

Mind the Gap: A new study found that D.C. has the fourth highest income inequality gap among the 50 largest American cities. The richest 5 percent of Washingtonians make 54 times what the poorest 20 percent make.

Don’t Blink: A congressional committee voted yesterday to approve a change to to the Height Act. You’ll hardly notice a difference.

LOOSE LIPS LINKS, by Will Sommer. (tips? wsommer@washingtoncitypaper.com)

  • David Catania launches his mayoral bid. [LL, Post, TimesBlade]
  • Who’s next for U.S. Attorney Ron Machen? [LL]
  • Inside the explosion in homeless District families. [WCP]
  • Northwest Current withdraws its Vince Gray endorsement, Gray campaign withdraws its ads. [LLPost]
  • Michael Brown accused his treasurer of stealing his campaign money. Now the feds say he was right. [LLPost]
  • Post ed board accuses Gray of injecting race into State of the District address. [Post]
  • Virginia state senator who’s apparently never heard of Bob McDonnell mocks the District’s ethics problems. [Post]
  • Jack Evans gets a new rating from gay activist group. [Blade]
  • Greater Greater Washington endorses Tommy Wells. [GGW]
  • Jeff Thompson‘s guilty plea sways Post columnist. [Post]

HOUSING COMPLEX, by Aaron Wiener. (tips awiener@washingtoncitypaper.com)

  • Skyland Town Center finally breaks ground, overshadowed by politics. [WBJ]
  • Greater Greater Washington endorses Tommy Wells for mayor. [GGW]
  • The most controversial Upper Northwest development will soon begin to rise. [WBJ]
  • Liquor license sets up a battle on Blagden Alley. [SALM]
  • An amusing liquor license agreement from Georgetown’s past. [Georgetown Metropolitan]
  • Metro cleverly uses a railcar as a pedestrian bridge. [BeyondDC]
  • The lack of a dedicated 16th Street bus lane is costing WMATA $8 million a year. [GGW]
  • Today on the market: “Mt Pleasant condo for Petworth prices”—$357,000

ARTS LINKS, by Jonathan L. Fischer. (tips? jfischer@washingtoncitypaper.com)

  • D.C.’s Ex Hex on their tightening-up tour and South by Southwest [Post]
  • (e)merge art fair is set for Oct. 2 to 5 at the Capitol Skyline Hotel. [(e)merge]
  • This year’s Opera in the Outfield—Washington National Opera’s simulcast of The Magic Flute—takes place May 3. [DCist]
  • Flailing effort to open an Irish-American Museum makes business reporter pine for a return to the north Kerry coastline. [WBJ]
  • Today in Banksy news: Those Syria signs are against the law, obviously. [DCist]
  • Unimpeachable D.C. anthem ruined. [PoPVille]

FOOD LINKS, by Jessica Sidman. (tips? jsidman@washingtoncitypaper.com)

  • Eat at Joe’s, but skip the stone crab. [Post]
  • The 13 best coffee shops in the D.C. area [DCist]
  • A machine that turns water into wine? Yup, it’s a sham. [NPR]
  • Five things to know about the Zero Degrees Zero Minutes pop-up [Zagat]
  • &pizza coming to 10th and E streets NW [Elevation]
  • Mexican restaurant Tico slated for mid-May opening on 14th Street NW. [Eater]
  • Taste testing sandwiches with yoga mat chemicals on yoga mats [BYT]