mlk_library_dc
901 G Street, NW

From DCPL:

“The Great Society Subway: A History of the Washington Metro”

Tuesday, August 26, at 7 p.m. in the Great Hall. Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Library

his talk should be fascinating to anyone interested in Metro, or in the city itself, or more broadly, in how public transit decisions are made. Besides all that, I’m expecting it to be very entertaining, because the book certainly is.

My first thought on looking into Professor Schwag’s book was that it was very densely packed with information (which it is) and might not be a fun read–but it is also that! I’ve found so many wonderful stories in it, that I think it’s safe to say that you will learn a lot, and also are likely to find something that will surprise you, or make you laugh out loud, no matter where you open the book.

An example is this comparison on page 142 of building Metro to the building of the Trans-Alaska Pipeline, through permafrost, mountains, and tundra:

“Metro’s builders faced a challenge equal and opposite to that of their pipeline counterparts….As workers in Alaska built 800 miles of pipeline through wilderness all but uninhabited by humans, workers in Washington took up the challenge of pushing 100 miles of rapid transit through a long-settled region densely populated by lawyers.”

Actually, though I’m still chuckling over that line, other parts of The Great Society Subway have already made me realize we all owe a great debt to those lawyers and other activists, for helping us get Metro instead of a spaghetti bowl of highways in DC, and for pushing needed improvements to Metro, like elevators to serve people with mobility problems. (One Metro official seriously proposed training wheelchair riders to use the escalators, balancing on two wheels!)

The more I read, the more I came to realize that no one who wanted to truly understand Washington DC as it is today could do so without reading this book.

The author, Zachary M. Schrag, has a gift for imparting knowledge packaged in details that make the story come alive; I’m looking forward to his talk!”

08/22/14 4:16pm

popville
Photo by PoPville flickr user ep_jhu

Well – I’m taking my first real vacation in three years! And I can’t freaking wait. I’ve almost gone ballistic on some commenting trolls recently but then I realized what a troll was, so anyway this is good timing for me to recharge the batteries a bit. But some quick house keeping – I’ll be gone most of next week and there will be a slightly limited schedule of posts (only the hardcore followers will notice, I promise there will still be lots of good stuff) and we will return to normal after Labor Day. Please continue to send emails/tips/questions (princeofpetworth@gmail) and I’ll post/get back to you on my return. If there is breaking news that you want to talk about/discuss/debate please post in the rant/revel of that day (unfortunately don’t post links because you will get held up in moderation.)

Commenting – because of the above mentioned commenting trolls some folks won’t be able to comment as normal next week. A lot of people are on shared networks and unfortunately even though they have done nothing wrong their comments still fall under moderation. All I can say is I’m sorry for the situation. But just to explain how pathological some of these douchebags trolls can be – I have one commenter who regularly leaves vile vile vile racists comments that sometimes slip through (of course I delete them as soon as I see them and/or textdoc tells me about them!) and then s/he emails my advertisers saying that I encourage racist comments. That my friends is the tip of the iceberg. It is very likely that some objectionable comment will sneak in next week too. It is inevitable. So please just ignore them. They want a reaction. Do not give them one if possible. Or if need be just tell them to F-off once and then ignore them :) In all seriousness these people are incredibly disturbed and it’s not effective to have a rational debate with them. Their sole goal is just to get a reaction out of you. In my absence I believe ignoring them is the only way to deal with them.

But I don’t mean to bore you with my travails. I just want to say that commenting next week may be a little whack. Fortunately the last week of August is usually a chill one – so I hope everyone is able to recharge a bit. Come September we’ll be ready tear it up once again. Cheers and thanks for understanding – PoP/Dan

08/22/14 3:45pm

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Photo by PoPville flickr user JamesCalder

From WMATA:

“Reconstruction of the Metrorail system will continue over the weekend of August 22-24 with service adjustments beginning at 10 p.m. Friday night and continuing through system closing on Sunday.

Silver, Blue, Yellow and Green line trains will operate at regular weekend intervals. Red and Orange line trains will operate every 20 minutes with additional Red Line trains between Grosvenor and NoMa-Gallaudet during daytime hours.

Red Line
Trains every 10-20 minutes

Red Line trains will operate as follows throughout the weekend:

Between Shady Grove & Glenmont: every 20 minutes
Between Grosvenor & NoMa-Gallaudet: every 10 minutes Saturday and Sunday from 9AM-9PM only

Work Performed: Rail tie, fastener and insulator renewal between Takoma and Forest Glen. On Saturday and Sunday, Metro will continue railcar testing and acceptance of our new fleet of 7000-series railcars between Twinbrook and Shady Grove. (more…)

08/22/14 3:30pm

Ed. Note: Thanks to Michelle for putting together this list of adoptable pets. It will be featured the last Friday every month. If you are interested in submitting an adoptable pet you can email Michelle at Help.the.Pups.DC(at)gmail(dot)com

cats

Derby and Preakness – Homeward Trails Animal Rescue

Derby and Preakness are two adorable kittens from Homeward Trails Animal Rescue.  These two kittens are full of energy – whether attacking a ball, running for a teaser toy, or bird watching through the window, these kittens love life!  When they tucker themselves out, they’ll curl up next to you, purr, and drift off for a nap.  They are even treat motivated enough that you could probably teach them tricks!  If you are interested in adopting Derby, Preakness, or any of our adoptable animals, please fill out our cat adoption questionnaire and email it here.  Homeward Trails needs more cat fosters, so if you are interested, please contact Lori here.  You can also meet some of our adoptable animals at one of our events!

betitia

Betita – Lucky Dog Animal Rescue

Betita is a seven-month old shepherd mix from Lucky Dog Animal Rescue.  She is a very sweet little girl from Puerto Rico.  As seen here, she’s just too cute!  She has just discovered dogs toys, gets along with other pups, and loves to go on walks – literally skipping along with her ears up and wagging her tail.  Though she is shy, she is gaining confidence every day and now even jumps to her foster mom to go for those walks she loves to much!  To adopt Betita, please fill out our adoption application available here and email it to Elissa.  We have many adoptable animals, so feel free come check us out at one of our events!

More great pets after the jump. (more…)

08/22/14 3:10pm

snowy_owl_died
Photo by PoPville flickr user philliefan99

Terrible update to our snowy owl who was hit by a bus in Jan. then taken to Minnesota for care then released into the wild. The Raptor Center reports:

“Sadly, we’re writing today to let you know that The Raptor Center has learned the snowy owl’s body has been recovered from the shoulder of a Minnesota highway, near where he had been released last spring. The snowy’s cause of death is uncertain, but the placement of the body indicates he may have been hit by a vehicle. The body was in good condition, indicating the owl was successfully hunting, and was identifiable by a bird band placed on the leg prior to release.”

3060 16th Street Northwest

This rental is located at 3060 16th Street, Northwest. The listing says:

“Lovely condo in Old World building! Spacious, bright and sunny one bedroom unit located on the 6th floor with beautiful views of DC from every window. Hardwood floors, generous closet space, renovated bathroom and Kitchen with granite counter tops and SS appliances. One block from Columbia Heights metro and bus stop right outside the building.”

You can see more photos here.

This 1 bed/1 bath is going for $1,700/Mo.

08/22/14 2:30pm

1125-Spring-Road-NW_hebrew_home
1125 Spring Road, NW

“Dear PoPville,

DC government has posted materials about the project here.

The results of a resident survey are available here.

The city has their own spin on it. The city suggests that 80% of respondents want “some” mix “ranging from 10% – 100%”.

Even using the skewed questions (only offering choices at % levels that seem pretty arbitrary), however, 72% of respondents want there to be 1/4 or less affordable housing in the complex.

That’s just a quick glance. There are some upcoming public meetings as well.”

From ANC Rep Vann-Di M. Galloway:

“The Department of General Services will host a follow-up to the August 12th Community Meeting. It will be held on Tuesday, 9 September from 6:30 P.M. to 8:00 P.M. at the Raymond Recreation Center in the Multipurpose Room on the second floor.

In this meeting we will discuss Program Development for 1125 Spring Road, N.W.”

08/22/14 2:10pm

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Photo by PoPville flickr user nevermindtheend

DCRA and Basement Apartments, again

“I am in the middle of a Pro-Active Building Inspection on a basement apartment for which I have had a C of O for 24 years and a current Basic Business License. The Inspector claims that my two bedrooms are illegal because there is not sufficient fire egress, yet what he cites is the DCMR 14 (which just deals with maintenance – keeping the egress clear) and the International Residential Code (for which he gave me copies of the rules). But the IRC, as I understand it, deals with new buildings and/or buildings with two units or less. My building has of C of O for three units (they don’t do Pro-Active Inspections on two-unit buildings). This is covered by the International Construction Code and its Fire Code and Existing Building Codes, as modified by DC. The Fire Code section on Egress says that bedrooms in basement apartments meed the requirements if they have doors that open directly onto an Exit Path, which mine do.

Now the Codes are very convoluted, with numerous revisions and cross-references (and some of the cross-references have not been updated to reflect revisions). Both the Inspector and his boss told me to find a contractor who knows the rules and let him get the permits, letting the permit inspectors sort it out. I talked to an old friend who had been a building inspector for a long time (now retired) and he said, “you can always appeal”.

My contractor has had a designer and permit expeditor who is supposed to sort this out, but they are not returning phone calls from him or me.

Has anybody had similar experience with basement egress issues or can recommend a knowledgeable expert?”

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