From the Forum – Neighborhood meeting for the Farmers’ Market at 14th and Kennedy


Neighborhood meeting for the Farmers’ Market at 14th and Kennedy

“I received a note from the 14th and Kennedy Street Farmers’ Market last week, inviting all to a meeting “to address concerns residents have expressed.” (I live less than a block from the market; I don’t know how widely these flyers were distributed.) The neighborhood meeting is Thursday, July 2 at 7pm in the basement community room at the Madison Terrace Cooperative, 1365 Kennedy Street.

An image of the friendly invitation (written in both English and Spanish) is attached. Given the recent lively discussion on PoPville about this Farmers’ Market, I thought people might be interested.”

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41 Comment

  • I certainly hope this “meeting” won’t lead to the closure of the market or worse yet, a slowdown in the much-needed development of this area. I suppose many long-time residents would rather have criminals and loiterers around rather than businesses that will improve the area (and raise property values). For those NIMBYs inconvenienced by the parking situation, or for those who view the market and other improvements through racial and class lenses—get over yourselves.

    • I view things correctly. If you view things differently than I do, you view them incorrectly and need to get over yourselves. Got it.

  • +1 billion

  • I wonder how many malcontents there actually are. Probably just a few grouches. This isn’t a loud market and there’s plenty of parking in the area, so it’s hard for me to fathom any good cause for complaint. I get that farmers markets are pricey and smack of gentrification, but this neighborhood doesn’t have a grocery store unless you count Walmart and a couple poorly-stocked bodegas. Plus, this corner is developing regardless of the farmer’s market. Swampoodle and the new cafe are going to cause much more traffic, parking hassles, and noise.

    • What cafe are you referring to? The new corner market/deli or something else?

    • It’s a very loud and vocal minority of people. I only know of a scattering of residents in two apartment buildings, and a local businessperson known to be a loudmouth who relishes opportunities to exert power and control, and to derail efforts that they aren’t in control of.

  • Everyone please come to the meeting to show your support. Institutions like this suffer because a small number of NIMBYs complain and the many people who support it fail to speak up. Neighbors please come speak your mind about this great new farmer’s market and the other fantastic development that’s coming to Kennedy Street at long last.

  • I just hope that the people who don’t have a problem with this show up in droves and express their opinion. If they don’t, those that don’t like it and are motivated are going to get all the time with less push-back and it will look like that there really are more people who don’t like it than do.

  • I will do my best to be there. Be sure to send this to the various Petworth listservs.

  • My question to many of you, how close do you live to this farmers market and are you impacted by losing parking spaces in the 5500 block of Colorado Avenue, NW? Many of you live in Petworth and other neighborhoods, so why would you have any input in this area because it’s not in your neighborhood. The same applies to people living across Georgia Avenue, NW over on Kennedy Street. The same applies to a supporter living at 13th & Emerson Street, NW. 13th & Emerson Streets NW is not in that neighborhood and a supporter in that area shouldn’t have a say in what occurs at 14th & Kennedy & Colorado. None of you wouldn’t want outsiders coming to your neighborhood telling you what should happen there. Most residents in that area wouldn’t want their streets close to host a farmers market. Why was this block chosen?

    • I mean you no personal disrespect, and I do not wish to discount your views. That being said, you cannot simply limit debate about this issue by excluding everyone other than the narrow subset of people who happened to live on the affected block. If someone from 7th and Kennedy wants to walk a few blocks to the market, then they are part of the community. You can’t just exclude them arbitrarily because they live on the other side of Georgia.

      Please everyone, let’s stay positive about this. To the extent people have concerns, let’s try to address them and move forward. This is a wonderful thing for families in the area.

      • 7th & Kennedy Streets, NW is not in this community. You are located in Petworth, not 16th Street Heights. I can’t imagine any of you going up to Shepherd Park or Crestwood to dictate an issue like this. The residents impacted the most by parking and other issues should be heard. This is one of the negative impacts of gentrification and millennials moving into mostly black neighborhoods wanting to take control disrespecting long time residents.

        • So you admit this isn’t really about parking, is it? Your pride is somehow wounded because the neighborhood got together and did something positive that benefits just about everyone?

          As for “gentrification and millenials,” as far as I can tell the market has been frequented largely by families with kids as well as older folks. I happen to live half a block from the farmer’s market, and I would warmly welcome anyone of any race or age or block to come by and buy fresh produce, meat, eggs, bread and coffee. We are all part of a community here. I can’t understand why people have to find negatives in something positive.

          And I am sorry, but to make pointless distinctions between 16th St Heights v brightwood v Petworth v whatever is just silly. And 7th and Kennedy is definitely NOT Petworth, by the way.

        • Bringing fresh vegetables is disrespectful to black people? That has to be one of the oddest comments I’ve ever read. This whole debate is silly. There is tons of parking in this neighborhood, and no one can possibly be harmed by little farmers market.

        • “This is one of the negative impacts of [‘others’] moving into … neighborhoods wanting to take control disrespecting long time residents.”

          YES! Exposed!!!

          This is part of ‘The Plan’ whereby ‘others’ [my term for anyone but the vocal complainants] takeover the program of “disrespecting long time residents”. ONLY NON-GENTRIFIERS (?) AND FOLKS BORN PRIOR TO 1980 ARE ALLOWED TO DISRESPECT LONG TIME RESIDENTS — PERIOD, END OF STORY. This is ‘our’ culture, so back off!

        • Being a long-time resident does not mean you have any right or control over what goes on in the neighborhood. Do you have a vast majority of the population behind you? That’s what matters. Embrace change, Larry. Frankly, I wouldn’t consider someone living at 16th & Colorado a neighborhood resident either. Why, that’s practically Crestwood!

          The only negative impact having “gentrifiers” (I still don’t know who they are) and millennials moving into the neighborhood is the emotional hurt of knowing that your neighborhood might change for the better once they take up residence. Do you know why this is? It’s because influx of new residents advocate for those things that they want to see where they live. Little good has come to the neighborhood from having the old guard set the terms.

          • Xochipilli, there isn’t plenty of parking in the 5500 block of Colorado Avenue, NW. When residents in the 5500 block of Colorado park on 14th Street and around the corner on Longfellow, those residents become upset because we are putting a burden on parking on their streets. I can’t imagine a black person moving into Chevy Chase or a predominately white neighborhood and start making changes or demands. Why is there a need for a farmers market? There’s a Walmart, Safeway, and Giant no too far away. Farmers markets serve mostly white populations. Many of you come here to bash others for having an opinion. Making comments about blacks hanging on 14th & Kennedy Streets, NW drinking 40’s is racist.. All black men don’t hang on corners. I doubt if my comment get approved by the site owner. He tend to let others make disparaging or racist comments without censorship. Why not close the 1300 block of Kennedy Street, NW?

        • Larry,
          If you live at 16th and Colorado, then I promise you that your paking situation is in no way affected by this market. It is hard for me to imagine what “other issues” may be negatively impacting you. By your own logic, you should have no say in his debate.

          • @ Colorado and Longfellow,

            um, if some African-Americans moved to Chevy Chase and quickly wanted to do something good for the community, of course they would have every right to do so. It’s their neighborhood as much as anyone else’s. In fact, if old timer white residents of Chevy Chase started yelling “Who are all these newcomer blacks and who do they think they are telling us what to do?” You probably call them racist, and you would be correct.

            For the love of God, this is about fresh fruits and vegetables and mingling with neighbors and bringing all races together. There is nothing “white” about eating fresh produce, and as a non-white person I find your comment insulting and demeaning. All people of all races should be happy about this.

            Also, do you really think buying your groceries at Walmart fosters the same sense of community? Seriously?

    • Hello, 14th & Colorado Resident! I live right around the corner, on 16th Street below Kennedy. I love the new farmers market and have purchased food there every week — even this past Saturday in the pouring rain. I will be there on Thursday to voice my support.

      As a 16th Street resident, I am already restricted from parking in front of my house 5 days of the week, though I am fortunate to have my own off-street parking behind my house. When friends or contractors come to visit, they easily park around the corner on Kennedy or Colorado, because parking is extremely abundant. When I previously lived elsewhere in the District with no off-street parking of my own (and where on-street parking was extremely tight), I understood that the road directly in front of my house did not belong to me, that I had no rights to claim ownership over those parking spots, and that a more vibrant community was a better community overall. Being forced to park one’s car a few yards further away for one day of the week during a portion of the year is surely worth the price of admission for a neighborhood with successful businesses and commingling neighbors.

      Finally, I suspect that particular block was chosen because it is a commercial/mixed-use zone with preexisting businesses. The intersection of Colorado, Kennedy, and 14th provides a natural plaza area in which to stage a market. Though I assume DDOT would never allow it, I would gladly volunteer my block of 16th Street for a Farmers Market instead!

    • I live 2 blocks away. I have never had a problem finding street parking within a block of my house. I agree with Res that this discussion shouldn’t be limited to the people who live on top of the market.

    • if only i could be so lucky as to have a farmers market literally right outside my door. then i’d have no excuse for not going each week!

    • I would welcome a farmer’s market on my block. I live 3 blocks away and never have any trouble finding street parking. Parking is abundant in this part of town compared to the rest of the city.

    • I *do* wish to discount your views, and have no concern about any perceptions you may or may not have. *I* wanted a farmer’s market, as did many many hundreds of neighborhood residents. Valiant efforts were made to make the market a reality. Now it is. Only market forces can keep it open or closed. The parking issue is a totally irrelevant red herring, as there is still plenty of parking to be found on Kennedy, 14th and Longfellow *even during the hours of the farmer’s market.” You’re simply among the residents with irrational fears of positive change in the neighborhood. You fail to grasp that however long you’ve been a resident, you do not own a neighborhood, and that all of these positive changes only serve to increase the value of your assets (I assume you are a homeowner). The focus on parking is entirely transparent; you think the neighborhood’s positive changes are bad for entirely paranoid, imaginary reasons. This has nothing to do with facts, or what the majority of your neighbors want.

      In fact, I’m a neighborhood resident (though not by your standards), and I’ve driven over there numerous times and found parking spots without the slightest bit of searching. You’re talking about seven parking spots unavailable for four hours. That’s pretty equivalent to any number of parking spots that might not be available for any number of reasons on any given day because non-residents are parked there instead. Perhaps we should prohibit non-residents from visiting our neighborhood?

      The majority of people in the neighborhood want this, and because of this, need not pay any heed whatsover to the small minority of residents who would like to the corner returned to the possession of drunks, drug dealers and evildoers.

    • Hello, I live right in front of the market. I think it’s the best thing that’s happened to this intersection in many years. I am always so happy to see and meet neighbors there and it makes me feel like there is a community here and a place / event where people can meet each other and have civic interactions. I have a car and park on the street in the area where the market takes place (I don’t have an off-street parking space) and I am in no way inconvenienced by this market. On Friday night I just move the car a block or two away. There is so little happening in this area to demand parking spaces that it’s not a problem. Two weeks ago after visiting the market, I sat at my window and watched the market full of customers and noticed that at the height of the market’s hours (around ~11am) there were seven open parking spaces on this block between the barricades and the Longfellow intersection that were available for use.

      This drama around the market makes me so sad. What will happen with the restaurant and deli/cafe open? Will these naysayers feel unhappy and disrespected by sidewalk seating? I am disappointed that the ANC 401 rep is fueling a drama around this market and acting disrespected by market organizers, who live in the neighborhood are are his constituents. Please, folks, if you support the market, go to this meeting and personally contact Taalib-Din and tell him that you do. He claims to represent his constituents but is siding with the smaller group of people who are upset.

      • The organizers bent over backwards to accommodate Mr. Uqdah’s strange, ever-shifting demands, but it eventually became apparent that he was simply against the very idea of a positive neighborhood development that he wasn’t in control of. He even insinuated that the organizers were personally profiting from the endeavor. Something he wrote stood out to me, which was the idea that the neighborhood “can either succeed together…or fail together.” What a crappy, crappy, crappy, self-limiting attitude to hold.

        • HaileUnlikely

          Perhaps this flap will serve as the needed catalyst for somebody to run against him for ANC next time instead of just letting him run unopposed again.

      • This is from an email he just wrote about the meeting:

        the integrity of market
        organizers and their manager, with respect to these
        processes and procedures was disrespectful to the immediate
        community, and to myself, both personally and as an elected
        representative. I could have smoothed this process through
        for all concerned from the very beginning, but I was
        personally — as a community activist — professionally
        — as a organization founder and president — and as an
        elected official, summarily excluded from the process.
        I’m really not sure what is expected of me at this

  • I likely live in the same building as this poster, and can say that nearly everyone is DELIGHTED by the farmer’s market. Beyond the convenient access to wonderful, fresh vegetables, bread and quality meats, I have met more neighbors since this opened than in all the years that I have lived here. There is a very small, but vocal, group of naysayers. I get that it’s tied up in issues of race and SES and gentrification, but think this is a wonderful step towards serving the larger neighborhood community, and not just the men who want to buy 40s and get drunk at our bus stop.

    And if people want to so something about the parking, I would gladly sign a petition to end street sweeping on our block. It is 10x more disruptive!

  • I’m a fan of the farmer’s market and I plan to atttend the meeting. We live at 13th and Jefferson and this is exactly the type of progress we’ve been waiting for. It’s a great way to meet neighbors and find fresh produce and meat that’s raised by regional farmers. The greens we bought last week were delicious.

    • 13th and Jefferson, eh? Don’t you know that that isn’t close enough to count? Only the opinions of neighbors matter. And by “neighbors,” I mean those who are opposed to the market.

  • The activity on this corner is nothing new. Community Alliance for Upper Fourteenth Street (CAUFS) and the 14th Street Strategic Area Plan Advisory Committee before that has worked to bring community and vibrancy to this corner for several years. When OP hosted several community meetings for residents and business owners in 2010 & 2011 all were welcome to attend to hear about the Plans recommendations and goals. If you participated, you may have heard that that intersection will probably be reconfigured and a portion of the street closed and rerouted. So the farmers market is allowing DDOT to see how the reconfiguration would work for potential closure. Also, the location of the farmers market is in a commercial district that will probably have metered parking very soon because of the upcoming development and therefore won’t be accessible to neighbors for long term parking anyway.

    If you are interested in a constructive dialogue instead of calling out a neighbor who lives 6 blocks away, attend the meeting this Thursday at 7pm at the Madison Terrace Coop to see how we can move forward as a community.

    Your neighbor at 13th & Emerson

  • I hate that I will miss this community forum and completely agree with Res. This is a WONDERFUL addition to the community. I live 3 blocks away on Madison and love that I can spend my Saturday mornings buying fresh produce and meeting neighbors.

    Can residents who are unable to attend the meeting still voice their support?

  • There’s plenty of parking even if, God forbid, you have to walk a few blocks. Former Dupont and Glover Park resident here and you should try parking in those neighborhoods!

    • Basically agreed, but it is incredibly naive to try to illustrate to somebody who moved to Brightwood several decades ago that you had it rough in Dupont or Glover Park.

      • I’m sorry anon at 10:26—perhaps I should have included other areas of the city not full of white people? Try parking in Shaw or areas of Capitol Hill as well. The bottom line is that the residents of this neighborhood clearly have no idea what it’s like to live in an area where parking is almost impossible.

  • Evidently the loudest critic is ANC4C commissioner Taalib-din Uqdah, a long-time resident. I hope area residents will contact him to voice their displeasure. I’d be curious to know what he’s done to improve the neighborhood. After all, he’s lived there for years. He doesn’t like the farmers market but he’s OK with a trash-strewn 14th and Colorado Avenue area just a few blocks away from his home?

  • The below comment was posted on the Shepherd Park listserv and none on that listserv seemed to have any problems with the comment.

    Why would Shepherd Park residents want to attend a meeting regarding politics in another neighborhood? It’s my understanding, some residents on Colorado Avenue, NW supported the farmers market coming to their neighborhood, however, they didn’t want their block closed for 6 months, 6 hours Saturdays, and losing parking spaces. Outsiders from other neighborhoods not impacted by this shouldn’t have a say in this matter. Try closing any block or street here in Shepherd Park for 6 months every Saturday for 6 hours; you will meet opposition from many residents. How can we consider residents living down on 14th & Kennedy Streets, NW as our neighbors because it’s a different area or neighborhood? I guess DC residents living in the Palisades and Dupont Circle are our neighbors too. The definition of a neighbor is someone living next door or very near to another.


    Shepherd Park


    We would like to invite you to a meeting on Thursday, July 2 at 7pm to address concerns residents have expressed about the new farmers market at 14th and Kennedy.

    All are invited.

    This will be in the basement community room at the Madison Terrace Cooperative – 1365 Kennedy Street.

    In attendance will be the market volunteers, DC government representatives and any community members who would like their concerns addressed.


    14th & Kennedy Street Farmers Market

    • Neighborhood boundaries are unclear in this neck of the DC woods, but by some definitions the farmer’s market is in 16th Street Heights and “Colorado and Longfellow,” not even a full block away, is in Brightwood. So I guess you should have no say, right? See how pointless this way of thinking is?

      So in your world, who is a neighbor? let me guess, just the people who live in those buildings, right? I’d bet that if you took a poll of people within a three block radius you’d still find overwhelming support for the farmer’s market, so your whole “insider v. outsider” thing would still fall apart.

      • You’re not my neighbor, and the 5500 block of Colorado Avenue, NW is in 16th Street Heights, not Brightwood or the Carter Barron East Civic Association neighborhoods. Closing down a street or block in Shepherd Park would never be allowed because those residents would oppose it. Why would the Farmers Market Organizers be sending emails to other listservs out of this area to attend their meeting tonight? The below comment was posted on Shepherd Park listserv and none of the residents there oppose or had any disagreement. Residents in Shepherd Park aren’t my neighbors. You truly need to understand the definition of a neighbor. Read the post below from Shepherd Park listserv.

        Farmers Market Down In 16th Street Heights

        Wed Jul 1, 2015 5:09 pm (PDT) . Posted by:

        Agree. Some people in the neighborhood donot support the businesses in Shepherd Park …so what would be the purpose of attending the meeting?
        Issues here should be the repaving of some streets and not others.
        Street between Alaska and kalmia needs to be repaved. All around us there has been the repavement of.Alaska Avenue and 14th Street in front of Shepherd School. I noticed today new handicap curbs are.being installed at Geranium and 13th. We need those too.
        So Shepherd Park of. Shepherd first.
        Sent from my Verizon Wireless BlackBerry

  • I have lived in this neighborhood for 25 years and i and my neighbors up and down my street and elsewhere IN the neighborhood (and it is a diverse group of longtime residents and new residents) are very positive about this market. it is very welcome and i would hate to see this become a divisive issue.
    I am a longtime customer of the latino market other businesses in the area and have also seen the businesses come and go. we are seeing new businesses, eateries of diverse nationalities in our neighborhood, a farmer’s market that, if you look closely, has some diverse vendors and i know they are actively seeking more.
    I see this as an opportunity for community members to come together in a more social way, and see this bringing more fresh food and produce into the community, not less. i support the market and AM in the neighborhood

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