January 2022 Meeting Highlights

Highlights from our first meeting of 2022 have been posted.

In this meeting, ECA members voted:

  • YES on previously discussed draft bylaw amendment to create “officer emeritus” position.
  • YES to submit FY 2023 budget request to advance environmental and equity issues in Eckington & across Ward 5, including: funds for Ward 5 sidewalk and tree box installations, development of a Ward 5 Circulator bus route, installation of continuous air monitoring in Ward 5’s industrial neighborhoods, and more resources for litter collection/removal.
  • YES to submit letter (to be drafted) to Ward 5 ANC redistricting committee:
    • Advocating for the breakup of ANC 5E, which currently includes Eckington, Bloomingdale, Edgewood, Stronghold and Truxton Circle, has over 25,000 residents, and would be comprised of at least 13 single member districts if its boundaries remained unchanged.
    • Expressing preference for Eckington to be part of a commission composed of approximately 7-8 commissioners, a size which is more amenable to stakeholder engagement.
    • Noting that Eckington now has approximately 7,000 residents according to the recent census and that there will be at least three and a half ANC commissioners representing our neighborhood at the conclusion of redistricting.
    • Advocating that to the extent possible, Eckington’s single member districts anticipate the growth of the neighborhood since the 2020 census (residents of Eckington Yards, Eckington 501, and Rhode Island Avenue development all will not figure into redistricting this cycle)

We also flagged a number of opportunities for members to contribute to the Eckington Community, including:

  • Join a short-term committee to establish and award community grants in 2022. Committee members will meet by phone in late January/early February to scope proposed purpose (tentatively relating to supporting organizations that serve Eckington and activities that promote community building, environmental improvements, safety, and opportunities for youth), criteria for grants, and other details for a request for proposals/evaluation process. We will seek to have candidates for ECA consideration by April. To join the committee, please email Taylor (taylor.eckingtoncivic@gmail.com).
  • Join our outreach & liaison committee to support ECA outreach within your building/block. This will include helping to get the word out about ECA and important news, as well as flagging hyperlocal concerns and priorities for the ECA.
  • Be on the lookout for an email from the ECA – expected in the next two weeks or so – with a request for input on 2022 budget priorities for the city. 

Our next meeting will be from 7-8:30 pm on Monday, February 14. We’ll be meeting virtually — feel free to bring your Valentine (or just wine and chocolate).

January 2022 Virtual Meeting Agenda

Jan. 10, 2022 | 7:00PM-8:30PM 

How to Participate in Our Virtual Meeting
Link: meet.google.com/ryy-qwco-bod 
Or dial: +1-219-654-2369‬ PIN: ‪149 080 474‬#

Join the Civic Association: Register here (it’s free)
You can also support the civic association by making a one time or recurring donation

Agenda Items

ECA business — 7:00-8:00 pm

  • Vote on previously discussed draft bylaw amendment to create “officer emeritus” position 
  • Vote to submit FY 2023 budget request to advance environmental issues in Eckington & across Ward 5, including: funds for Ward 5 sidewalk and tree box installations, development of a Ward 5 circulator, installation of continuous air monitoring in Ward 5’s industrial neighborhoods, and more resources for litter collection/removal. 
  • Vote on to submit letter to Ward 5 ANC redistricting committee:
    • Advocating for the breakup of ANC 5E, which now has over 25,000 residents (and would be comprised of at least 13 single member districts if its boundaries remained unchanged)
    • Expressing preference for Eckington to be part of a commission composed of approximately 7-8 commissioners. 
    • Noting that Eckington now has approximately 7,000 residents according to the recent census and that there will be at least three and a half ANC commissioners representing our neighborhood at the conclusion of redistricting. 
    • Advocating that to the extent possible, Eckington’s single member districts anticipate the growth of the neighborhood since the 2020 census (residents of Eckington Yards, Eckington 501, and Rhode Island Avenue development all will not figure into redistricting this cycle)
  • Short updates:
    • ECA to establish and award community grants in 2022 
    • Join our new committees:
    • DC’s Deputy Mayor for Planning and Economic Development extended the deadline for responding to its RFP for 2225 5th Street NE and 513 Rhode Island Avenue NE to February:
      • DMPED and the DC Public Library have not had any conversations about this property (or, it seems, about DCPL’s need for a library location in Edgewood/Eckington by FY 2024)
      • One thing the ECA will consider is whether to advocate that DMPED reissue its RFP to specifically include a library and/or permanently move the fire station to another location
    • DDOT revealed that Florida Avenue and North Capitol Street are part of its near-term vision for bus priority. We anticipate working with them on this in the coming year. 

Updates from the offices of elected representatives and community members — 8:00-8:30 pm

Upcoming Meetings & Events

Our accomplishments in 2021 and plans for 2022

Neighbors,

It has been a long year for everyone, and I hope that the next few weeks will offer you space to enjoy precious time with friends and family.

I wanted to take a moment to highlight some of the work that the Eckington Civic Association has done over the last year and preview some of our plans for 2022. Sometimes I hear residents express frustration about how long it takes to address some of the problems we witness daily. While I frequently share that frustration, I also find it important to recognize progress when it happens—not to mention the importance of the persistent and patient work it frequently takes to achieve that progress. In many cases, it is a virtual certainty that nothing will happen unless folks get together, organize, and plot a path forward.

In Eckington, we’re fortunate to have a lot of neighbors who take on that burden and are working in ways big and small to improve our community. I’m particularly grateful for the contributions of my fellow ECA officers—Neil Shah, Ben Colbert, Dana Samuels, Daniel Agold, and Taylor Kennedy—who worked tirelessly this year on the accomplishments listed below. I’m also grateful for our partnerships with Eckington Parks & Arts, Langley Elementary PTO, North Capitol Main Street, the NoMA BID, and the NoMA Parks Foundation as well as to the many individuals and small businesses that helped make Eckington Day a success. I’m also grateful for the opportunities we’ve had to collaborate with ANC 5E03 Commissioner Denise Wright and for the pink hard-copy updates those of us in Commissioner Pinkney’s district receive. And I’d be remiss if I did not mention all of the critical help that we get from Silas Grant at Councilmember McDuffie’s Office as well as Nokomis Hunter at the Mayor’s Office of Community Relations and Services.

I especially want to thank all of you who found the time to join one of our meetings, give thoughtful feedback on one of our proposed letters, make Eckington Day a success, or participate in our end-of-year celebration. A community is nothing without the many wonderful people who give it life.

I hope reading about our recent achievements and plans for the coming year will encourage you to participate if you’re already a member, join the civic association if you are not (it’s free!), and support our advocacy and community-building efforts with a one-time or recurring donation if you are able.  

Warmly,

Conor Shaw
President
Eckington Civic Association

Major accomplishments of 2021

Strengthened the association’s organization and engagement

  • Implemented shift to free membership and created a simple process to join (Thanks Ben!)
  • Provided regular “highlights” of every meeting with action items for members and residents (Thanks Taylor!)
  • Sustained a high level of engagement on our 2021 virtual meetings
  • Launched an Instagram presence (Thanks Ben)
  • Record number of visitors to our website and donations (thanks to all of you!)
  • Recruited a full set of seven officers for 2022 (Please welcome Brandt Witt, our newest VP!)

Relaunched Eckington Day

  • Eckington Day returned for the first time since 2018 and was a smashing success!
  • We organized a community festival at Tanner Park featuring tons of activities, music, small businesses, neighborhood orgs, and more. (Many thanks to Dana, Taylor, Sara, and the many others who helped make this happen.)

Secured budget wins for Eckington

  • In this year’s budget cycle, we helped secure:
    • $24.5 million for the construction of an Edgewood/Eckington DCPL library in FY 2024
    • $19 million for the renovation of Harry Thomas Recreation Center in FY 2024
    • Additional funding for violence interrupter programs, which will soon be launched in Edgewood, Shaw, NoMA, and Ivy City (in addition to existing programs in Truxton/Eckington and Trinidad).
    • $1 million for an upcoming study of North Capitol Street, which will include safety improvements and concepts for the future design of the corridor—including the “deckover” and multimodal alternatives.
  • We congratulate Eckington Parks & Arts in securing funding for a Department of Small & Local Business Development (DSLBD) “clean team” to assist with trash and litter removal in Eckington.
  • We also congratulate Langley PTO in securing funding for an HVAC system at Langley Elementary.

Hosted a forum on the future of North Capitol Street

The forum featuring presentations by proponents of two alternatives: the Deckover and Community Boulevard. If you missed that forum, you can watch the event and take a look at some of the forum materials here.

Advocated for safer streets and responsible land use

  • We got the District Department of Transportation to make important improvements to its final plans for Dave Thomas Circle and Florida Avenue NE. When these projects are completed, Eckington residents will enjoy safer, more-direct pedestrian and cycling routes to NoMA and Union Market. Construction on both projects will begin next year.
  • We reiterated requests for safety improvements to neighborhood streets and supported a new effort to improve safety along Lincoln Rd. NE.
  • We encouraged residential and commercial uses of land adjacent to 5th street NE through the adoption of one of our proposed amendments to DC’s Comprehensive Plan. (We unfortunately did not prevail in securing the adoption of a second amendment that would have done the same for a larger portion of land adjacent to the Metropolitan Branch Trail.)
  • The Zoning Commission approved the rezoning of several parcels along Rhode Island Avenue with our support. (Thanks to Daniel for leading our work on this!)

What we plan to focus on in 2022

ECA members hold the power in our organization. Our officers don’t take a position on an issue without asking for your input and buy-in first. That said, we want to give you a preview of the issues we expect to focus on in 2022. As always, please reach out to us at eckingtoncivic@gmail.com if you have thoughts about matters that the ECA should prioritize or–even better–help us organize a constructive way for Eckington residents to do something about it!

Community building

  • Conduct more in-person events as it becomes safe to do so
  • Experiment with hybrid in-person/virtual meetings (though virtual meetings will continue until we announce otherwise)
  • Organize and host Eckington Day 2022

Advocacy

  • We intend to make environmental issues in Eckington and across Ward 5 a major focus of our work in 2020. We believe that Ward 5 communities deserve better monitoring of air quality near industrial facilities like the asphalt plants in Brentwood and Eckington; investments in neighborhood streets that lack sidewalks tree boxes; and better bus service that would help neighborhood residents move around the city more sustainably.  
  • We will continue to advocate for preventative approaches to safety—whether it is traffic violence or gun violence.
  • We will help coordinate community feedback with respect to the design of development along Rhode Island Avenue. In the past, we have emphasized the need to incorporate deeply affordable housing with family-sized units, streetscape improvements (including access to the trail), and community-facing retail spaces. There may also be an opportunity to advocate for the inclusion of a DCPL branch library to fill the Edgewood/Eckington service gap.
  • We will consider weighing in on ANC redistricting. Eckington nowhas approximately 7,000 residents who are served by only two neighborhood commissioners. DC’s apportionment laws require one commissioner for every 2,000 residents, so Eckington will have at least four single member districts by the end of the year (at least one of which will probably extend into another neighborhood). It is also likely that ANC 5E (the Commission that Eckington’s commissioners are in) will see some changes.

Other items

  • Help educate voters about Ward 5 and ANC elections
  • Help residents understand and engage on future of North Capitol Street
  • Build stronger relationship with McKinley Tech PTO
  • Create two standing committees to help us reach more Eckington residents and plan for Eckington Day
  • Recruit officers for 2023 (we anticipate needing to recruit candidates for at least two positions in 2024)

November Meeting Highlights Posted

Highlights from the ECA’s November 8 meeting have been posted.

During the meeting, ECA members elected the following officers for the 2022 term: Conor Shaw (Pres.); Neil Shah (Treas.); Ben Cobert (Comms. Dir); and Daniel Agold, Taylor Kennedy, Dana Samuels, and Brandt Witt (VPs).

Members also voted to send this ECA letter to Eckington ANC Commissioners and DDOT in support of street safety requests in and near Eckington.

We also noted the following opportunities to help:

  • Please fill out this survey to help the NoMA BID explore potential options for a farmer’s market at Tanner Park.
  • Provide feedback on a draft letter asking for steps to improve Eckington’s tree canopy, including the need for more street tree boxes on neighborhood sidewalks. Eckington Parks and Arts will move this effort forward.
  • Provide feedback on draft bylaw amendment to create “officer emeritus” position (to be voted on at a future meeting – likely January). This position would allow for mentored handover of roles like treasurer and provide a mechanism for officers who are ready to pass the mantle but may have insights of value for incoming officers.

Additional updates from the ECA and our elected officials are included in the notes.

November 2021 Virtual Meeting & Officer Elections

Nov. 8, 2021 | 7:00PM-8:30PM 

How to Participate in Our Virtual Meeting
Link: meet.google.com/ryy-qwco-bod 
Or dial: +1-219-654-2369‬ PIN: ‪149 080 474‬#

Join the Civic Association:
Register here (it’s free)
You can also support the civic association by making a one time or recurring donation

Agenda Items

2022 Officer Elections— 7:00-7:30 pm

  • Vote on bylaw amendment to change elections to November (requires two thirds of members present)
  • Brief statements, Q&A w/ 2022 candidates of ECA office 
    • For President: Conor Shaw
    • For Treasurer: Neil Shah
    • For Communications Director: Ben Colbert
    • For Vice President (the ECA can have four): Dana Samuels, Daniel Agold, Taylor Kennedy, Brandt Witt
  • Election of 2022 officers

ECA business — 7:30-8:00 pm

  • Feedback on draft bylaw amendment to create “officer emeritus” position (to be voted on at a future meeting – likely January)
  • Vote on sending ECA letter to Eckington ANC Commissioners and DDOT in support of street safety requests in and near Eckington including:
    • Lincoln Rd. Safety Project
    • 2019 Eckington Civic Association traffic safety requests, including:
    • Other recent traffic safety requests submitted by Eckington residents
  • Short updates:
    • Please fill out this survey to help the NoMA BID explore potential options for a farmer’s market at Tanner Park.
    • DC’s Deputy Mayor for Planning and Economic Development issued an RFP for 2225 5th Street NE and 513 Rhode Island Avenue NE:
      • “Redevelopment of the site must incorporate a new fire station for Engine 12 and may include a mix of uses including retail and housing. Given robust population growth and construction activity in the area, the site is a prime candidate for mixed use development including commercial and residential uses built in conjunction with the fire station”
    • Eckington residents are working on a draft letter asking for steps to improve Eckington’s tree canopy, including the need for more street tree boxes on neighborhood sidewalks. We’ll work with Eckington Parks and Arts to move it along. 
    • COVID vaccines are available for children between 5 and 11. View DC vaccination sites here

Updates from the offices of elected representatives and community members — 8:00-8:30 pm

Upcoming Meetings & Events

Commissioner Pinkney is holding a Lincoln Road safety walk on Saturday Oct. 23 at 11 am

ANC Commissioner Sylvia Pinkney announced via flyer that she is going to host a safety walk at 11 am on Saturday, October 23 at 11am on Lincoln Rd.

The walk is in response to work by a group of concerned Eckington and Edgewood residents recently filed a number of important traffic safety requests regarding Lincoln Rd. Even though this corridor is home to two recreation centers and adjacent to several schools, it is also the site of persistent reckless driving, speeding, and crashes. The traffic safety assessment requests are an attempt to get the city to install some basic protections for pedestrians as well as speed bumps and all-way-stop signs that would slow down drivers cutting through our neighborhood.

The D.C. Department of Transportation recently announced that it was going to try to speed up these kinds of requests; however, local advisory neighborhood commissioners continue to have a great deal of power to influence what requests move forward.

If you would like to support the implementation of safety measures on Lincoln Rd., please attend Commissioner Pinkney’s safety walk. You can also stay up-to-date with the group advocating for changes to Lincoln Rd. at https://lincolnroadne.wixsite.com/lincolnroadne.

The Eckington Civic Association has not taken any action on these requests yet; however, we anticipate voting on a letter supporting these requests at an upcoming meeting. The safety concerns are also consistent with a traffic safety survey that the ECA conducted in 2019 as well as an August 2019 letter and traffic safety assessment request for Lincoln Rd. The ECA is not aware of any steps taken by DDOT to address the concerns raised by the ECA about Lincoln Rd. since August 2019.

Oct 11 ECA Meeting Highlights

Highlights from our October 11 Meeting have been posted.

We’d like to thank everyone who came out for Eckington Day, especially all of our volunteers and vendors who helped to make the day such a success!

Members voted YES to provide $500 in ECA funds to become a silver sponsor of Langley Elementary’s Tiger Trek fall fundraiser.

Three ways members can help this month include the following:

  • ECA officer elections for 2022 are taking place on November 8, 2021. Please take a look at our call for candidates and contact us at eckingtoncivic@gmail.com if you are interested in running for one of these offices. The deadline to express interest in running for election is November 1, 2021.
  • Join efforts to promote traffic safety on Lincoln Road. Eckington and Edgewood residents have created a website and are hosting a virtual meeting on October 14 at 7pm regarding safety issues along Lincoln Rd. We’ll be attending and expect to have action items at our November and December meetings to support this effort. No action has been taken by DDOT in response to the ECA’s 2019 traffic safety assessment request regarding Lincoln Road.
  • Eckington & Eckington Day T-shirts are still available for $30. Email us at eckingtoncivic@gmail.com if you’d like to buy one!

Our next meeting will be on November 8, from 7:00 – 8:30. We’ll post the agenda to the ECA website and the Google Groups listserv in advance.

October 2021 Virtual Meeting Agenda

Oct. 11, 2021 | 7:00PM-8:30PM 

How to Participate in Our Virtual Meeting
Link: meet.google.com/ryy-qwco-bod 
Or dial: +1-219-654-2369‬ PIN: ‪149 080 474‬#

Agenda Items

ECA business — 7:00-7:45 pm

  • Eckington Day recap and feedback
    • Thanks to everyone who participated and attended — we had a great time
    • We’ll be thinking about how best to organize future events like this. Stay tuned for updates about a possible Eckington Day planning committee
    • Eckington & Eckington Day T-shirts are still available. Email us if you’d like to buy one! 
  • ECA officer elections for 2022 are taking place on November 8, 2021. Please take a look at our call for candidates and contact us at eckingtoncivic@gmail.com if you are interested in running for elected office. 
    • Deadline to express interest in running for election: November 1, 2021. 
  • Vote on using $500 in ECA funds to become a silver sponsor of Langley Elementary’s Tiger Trek fall fundraiser. 
  • Street safety 
    • Eckington and Edgewood residents have created a website and are hosting a virtual meeting on October 14 at 7pm regarding safety issues along Lincoln Rd. We’ll be attending and expect to have action items at our November and December meetings to support this effort. No action has been taken by DDOT in response to the ECA’s 2019 traffic safety assessment request regarding Lincoln Road.
    • DDOT responded to our feedback on the Dave Thomas Circle 65% design. They are implementing speed limit reductions and considering extending protected bike lanes north to R street. It appears that they have declined to embrace the rest of our comments (including narrower intersection, prioritizing bus service, extending bike lanes westward). The city has taken possession of the Wendy’s property and expects to hold a final meeting on the intersection design later this month. 
  • Short updates:
    • Union Kitchen at 1625 Eckington Place NE is opening October 11
    • The SEC announced plans to move their headquarters to North Capitol Street & NY Ave
    • We will be partnering with NoMA BID on a survey seeking community input regarding a possible farmer’s market in Tanner Park. The survey is forthcoming, but we need your participation to help us understand how a farmer’s market in Eckington could succeed. 
    • A construction permit was issued for 13-story mixed use building (388 units) at site of the former Exxon at 1 Florida Avenue NE.

Updates from the offices of elected representatives and community members — 7:45-8:30 pm

Upcoming Meetings & Events

ECA September 13 Meeting Notes

Highlights from the September 13 ECA Meeting have been posted on our website. Check out the notes for decisions. Please particularly note some of the ways you can help:

Watch the ECA’s September 15, 2021 forum on the future of North Capitol Street

On September 15, 2021, the Eckington Civic Association hosted a forum on the future of North Capitol Street featuring proponents of two visions for the corridor: the community boulevard and the deckover. We are posting a recording of the zoom meeting (with captions) for those who missed the forum or wish to rewatch it. Copies of the two presentations will also be made available when they are ready.

The Community Boulevard presentation:

To sign up for updates about the community boulevard proposal, visit Ward5forAll.org/NorthCap.

The Deckover presentation will be posted here when it is available.

To learn more about the deckover proposal, visit https://northcapitoldeckover.org/.