City Paper Widget

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

200 Block of N Street: Discord over Parking

Two recent incidents along the 200 block of N Street NW illustrates how the fight for limited on-street parking space sets neighbor against neighbor.

"It's a bit of a sad situation for the 200 block of N Street," said Commissioner Rachelle Nigro (district 04), referring to the first of the two incidents described below.

(From the Facebook site of Commissioner Rachelle Nigro)
At the last meeting of Advisory Neighborhood Commission (ANC) 6E/Shaw, a request for a dedicated on-street handicapped parking space for the resident of a single-family house at 216 N Street was discussed. The resident at 216 N Street apparently applied to the District Department of Transportation (DDOT) for a designated handicapped parking space in front of her home. The space was granted. There was "negative feedback" from some neighbors. But it is too late to un-grant the handicapped parking space.

DDOT is supposed to notify ANCs of requests of this type. DDOT says it did so, specifically, that they mailed a letter on June 4. But, by the September 1 meeting, the ANC had never received any communication, paper or electronic, about the application for a handicapped parking space. A Commissioner said this was the second time communication concerning handicapped parking spaces did not reach the ANC.

ANC6E Chair Alexander Padro (Commissioner for district 01) expressed exasperation at DDOT's apparent inability to mail a letter so that it arrives at its intended destination.

"We get notices from the District government about proposed actions every day," he said.

Another Commissioner was skeptical about the letter's existence.

"Let us read the proof," said Commissioner Marge Maceda (district 05). "We have never received this."

The ANC passed a motion to send a letter to DDOT telling them their letters do not arrive at their intended destination.

ANC6E videos its meetings in their entirety and post them on its YouTube channel in 30-minute segments, but the section of the meeting which contained the discussion of this topic was missing from the channel at the time of this writing.

There was also some discussion at the meeting because the property was apparently listed as for sale on the real estate web site Zillow. However, on the same day as the ANC meeting, the listing was removed from Zillow, although the attendees of the meeting apparently didn't know it.

The asking price for the property was $1.3 million.

The second parking dispute occurred in August, according to information from the Facebook site of Commissioner Nigro. On August 7 and 8, there was a two-day teacher development event at nearby Dunbar High School (101 N Street). Apparently someone at DC public schools issued several official-looking "parking permits" (see above) in the name of the Office of the Deputy Chancellor Institute of DC Public Schools. The permits claimed it allowed the bearer to park in "the two-hour restricted zone" (i.e., on-street parking for residents) while the development event took place.

As Commissioner Nigro pointed out in a Facebook comment, DC public schools are not authorized to issue on-street parking permits, and there apparently was some confusion about who exacting authorized and produced the "permits".

Nigro also wrote on Facebook that she had asked for an explanation from various parts of the DC government about the incident, but as of this writing had not posted any response.

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