Whither Goes Hine?

I cannot stress too strongly that everyone in the CH community needs to get involved in the review and decision process on the redevelopment of the Hine Jr. High site at 7th & Pennsylvania Ave SE.  The buildings erected in this large site and what they will eventually contain (i.e., offices, residents, retail, and perhaps a hotel) are going to change our life on the Hill.  It is up to the community to make sure that change is mostly positive.

ANC6B is now leading the review of the historic preservation (HP) component of the project and in the Fall will be engaged in its zoning aspects.  (This latter stage is called a Planned Unit Development or PUD and you can go to Commissioner Metzger’s blog <www.ancnorm.org> for a PUD 101 discussion.)

If you tried to attend the ANC’s Planning & Zoning meeting on March 1, you know what a debacle it was regarding the HP case.  We have learned from that experience and gotten our act together.  The Commission has now planned a series of meetings to assure that everyone will have an opportunity to contribute to the dialog on this very important but complex Capitol Hill project.

Tue March 8, 630pm: ANC6B Regular Monthly Meeting. Location: Church of Jesus Christ of LDS, 522 7th St SE
The Hine HP case is already on the agenda but the Commission will not be voting on it as previously planned.  Instead, we will use this time to explain the ANC process going forward in full.  We will vote to request the Historic Preservation Review Board (HPRB) to delay its consideration of the Hine project until April.  We may provide a short briefing on the HPRB process, as we understand this HP case will cycle through the Board several times prior to any final decisions and we expect each cycle to include an ANC6B and, thus, community review.  The  agenda of the full meeting is at <www.anc6b.org/nextmeet.html>.

Tue March 15, 6pm to 9pm:  Special ANC Meeting on Hine.
Location: St. Coleta’s School, 1901 Independence Avenue SE.*
There will be 3 basic sections to this meeting: (1) a full presentation by the developers on the project as it currently stands; (2) questions and comments by interested community groups and individuals; and (3) questions and comments by the Commissioners.  The developers’ most recent presentation is at: <http://hineschool.com/design-concept/>, select “Hine Community Concept Presentation” at the bottom left side of the screen. This will open a PDF file. There is also an article about the plans in the March 2011 Hill Rag, pages 38-40.

*Note: St. Coleta’s is walkable from the Station Armory/RFK Metro Station (two stops from Eastern Market) and there is a parking lot on the premises.

Mid April (evening, other details TBA): Special ANC Meeting on Hine.
The ANC will hold another special meeting on Hine.  At this meeting, the ANC will hear any new information the developers or the community wish to present and will vote on its position on the project.  This position will be transmitted to the Historic Preservation Review Board for its April 28th meeting.  Most likely, the ANC will also testify at the Board meeting.

I urge you involved yourself and your neighbrs in these discussions.  So far, those providing input to the developers have naturally been the nearby neighbors who will be directly affected by the demolition, construction, and ultimately the buildings that arise.  But, the project belongs to all of us.  In addition to the above formal meetings, I would like to hold series of informal, small meetings between now and mid-April with 6B04 residents to help me out with my vote.  I can meet you at my house, your house, on a park bench, over a latte … days, evenings, weekends. Just let me know where to be and when.