Dear PoP – What are the Big Holes On Park Road, NW Near the CH Giant?


“Dear PoP,

Could you do some investigating on the big empty holes in the ground (surrounded by orange fencing) in front of Giant and Sticky Fingers on Park Road? They have become make-shift trash dumps. They appear to be designed as future flower beds or something but for now, they are complete eyesores.”

I think they are supposed to plant trees there. But you can find all sorts of great information on the Columbia Heights Streetscape Web site here. It lists all the projects and the time lines. Really a must visit Web site for those that live in the area or are just curious about the project.

17 Comment

  • Why the hell they put these so close to the entrance to Giant is beyond me. Whatever they plant there will quickly be stomped on or become a bike rack. Speaking of, the guy pawning perfume/oils outside the BofA/Radio Shack has got to go. He has trampled the tree/berm by standing on it all day. Does this guy have a vendor permit? Jim Graham, are you listening?

  • The sad fact is that these are cosmetic fixes designed to assuage community group heads, even though the average local could care less, or have no issue with trashing or ignoring the nice digs. It’s also there to make the yuppies think the place is “changing.”

    • which generalization are you Jody?

      a ‘yuppie’ by all objective measures but you don’t think so because you Get It?

  • I am half convinced that they’re tearing up the street in hopes of finding gold.

  • Jody is clearly not drinking the kool aid. May I offer you some?

    it’s not going to change overnight but it’s a step in the right direction. it’s a work in progress. just like Logan, U Street, and Chinatown were.

  • God help you if they start putting up something like the H Street “H” planter boxes. They are hideous and look like a 3rd great environmental studies project.

  • Regardless of their current state, I’m glad they are there for when they actually get finished. Honestly, just look at the photo – that sidewalk has got to be like 30 feet wide. Seeing 30 feet of nothing but paving would have drained my soul.

  • Has anyone else noticed that the urban design plan, including the location of trees, was probably done entirely on a computer using “rules” such as “trees should be spaced X far apart” – and was probably completed independently from plans for the streetlights? The reason I say this is that there are several HORRIBLY planned tree wells, especially on the 14th street side (east). This includes some that are RIGHT NEXT TO street lamps (the trees will inevitably come down once they get too big) or tree wells that are in bad spots for commerce, like the one in front of Giant. It’s like someone did a site plan from the 1,000 foot level, without ever considering how the implementation would occur on the ground. Shouldn’t the workman have said something as they were putting the wells in, like “hey guys, this may not work so well”???

  • I don’t mind the guy selling stuff, he seems to know a lot of the locals. I just wish he’s move north to where bumfest use to be, that way he wouldn’t be in the way as much.

  • Looks like a mosquito hatchery to me.

  • I find it hard to believe that most of these comments are negative… Trees, no matter how close to a pole or door are a good thing…

    • Wrong – NOT a good thing. Poor planning upfront means mucho damage to the sidewalks/lights/etc. Then they have to spend our money to redo it, all while everything is a ripped up mess. Because no one really thought about the plans in the first place.

      Then everyone will weep about the torn out trees, and we’ll be back where we started from anyway because they’ll have to come down.

      Sorry, but it’s true.

  • yeah, but if the tree does some damage in 10-15 years to the street lamps and they are removed it’s all a waste of money. The City – I assume it’s the City – can saved itself $$$ here.

  • Vonstallin

    Thanks for the comedic post everyone…

  • It’s too bad this picture isn’t from yesterday or today. They’ve been excavating the tree boxes (and circles) and filling them with dirt. Not sure when the plantings will happen, but it’s certainly a lot better than watery construction waste.

  • I’ll take trees, stupidly placed or otherwise. It’s not the right time of year to be planting trees, so they’re probably holding off for another couple months. I’m glad to see they’re at least filling some with dirt.

    The streetscape project isn’t over by a long shot, and I’m reserving judgement till it’s over. They’re replacing pretty big pipes on 14th now. Once all the utility work is done, 14th will be dug up and a new road will be installed. It’s hard not to get annoyed by things like the light posts in the middle of the new sidewalk. Hopefully that stuff will be fixed.

    When they were going in, I thought the new solar panel things at the triangle park were going to be a disaster, but they turned out to be pretty cool.

  • Thank you Cookie. I agree, lets wait until its done.

    Tree upkeep is a life long resposibility for all cities. It makes our life better among all the concrete.

    Regarding the sidewalks, take a closer look. The bricks can easily be removed and altered. That was a smart decision.

    As for street lights, again, take a closer look, some are temporary and some aren’t. Besides that, roots of most trees are very small and do little damage when a good species is chosen. Anything smaller than an Oak will do no damage, just walk around Dupont, Capital Hill, or Georgetown and you will see.

    Trees might be able to reach 1/4 of their normal life span in an urban setting like CH anyway, unlike those giants near the reflecting pool at the Lincoln – in the city with lots of room – that is the cost of doing business.

    The other choice is none at all… just like the valleys of NYC. (Not that there is anything wrong with NYC.)

    You decide. Stop all this whining!

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