Thursday, December 23, 2010

ANC7C Holiday meet 'n' greet

In a break from the norm, which is usually no meeting in December, Advisory Neighborhood Commission 7C hosted a holiday meet and greet.

In recent weeks, the Commission has been faced with news of Wal-Mart's arrival at the Capitol Gateway site at East Capitol and Southern Ave.  With the Commission facing this and other high profile community and economic development plans, we felt it was critically important for residents, developers, and stakeholders to meet in a social and informal environment.

The development community certainly came out in full force with refreshment donations from Beulah Community Improvement Association and its partner UrbanMatter's Ray Nix and 4800 Burroughs Avenue.  New deli owner Eun Sun Kim profiled her eatery's new menu with a spread of three types of salad--chicken, seafood, and tuna, chicken wings, sandwiches, and potato wedges. 

Mark your 2011 calendars for the 7C meetings on the second Thursday, 7p, 5109 Nannie Helen Burroughs Avenue NE basement! 

Commission Chair Khaliq Elhillali welcomes attendees to the holiday meet and greet.

Neighbors partake in the spread donated by Uncle Lee's Seafood deli owner Eun Sun Kim.  The deli is located at the starburst at Eastern Ave-Division Ave-Sheriff Rd.

Chair Elhillali and 7C Office Manager Ginger Jevne share a laugh.

Ward 7 Councilmember Yvette Alexander chats with neighbors and stakeholders about prospects for Wal-Mart and other community happenings.  7C Commissioner Mary Gaffney is pictured to the right.

Neighbors in 7C07 SMD engage Chair Elhillali about the Commission's operations and how to get involved.
Rev. Turner, pastor of Beulah Baptist Church and head of its community development organization, talks with development partner Ray Nix.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Liquor Store Alley: Is Your Neighborhood on the Edge?

For much of the year the process of granting liquor licenses has been debated from working class Ward 5 to hipster Ward 2 to tony Ward 2.  The overwhelming opinion is that the District's liquor license process which is administered by the Alcohol Beverage Regulation Administration (ABRA) is broken.  The common thread in these license debates, however, has been on-premises liquor consumption at bars, restaurants, and taverns.  Alcohol licensing for liquor stores is not, however, considered a part of the ABRA reform. 

In too many neighborhoods in Wards 7 and 8 there is a concentration of liquor stores--both beer and wine (Class B) and beer, wine, spirits (Class A).  Generally, there is an automatic expectation that a voluntary agreement and/or monetary donation can be made and the ANC will acquiese to the inevitable, ABRA granting the license.  This underlying tone favors the business instead of favoring the community and lets the business off the hook for actually having a business plan that doesn't leech off predominantly low-income neighborhoods.  In many cases in Wards 7 and 8 a VA will not be sufficient because the concentration of liquor stores is too high; we're saturated. 

Google Maps. Uncle Lee's left, Jock's Liquor right
 I am contending with this very issue right now with Uncle Lee's Seafood.  There is a new owner who is "just trying to survive."  The owner has a background in operating a deli with a speciality in breakfast.  She has changed the menu to include breakfast and lunch.  Unfortunately, survival is based on the lottery and liquor sales and not using her talent and skill on meeting an unmet market--an eatery with quality food and not typical carryout. 

No liquor license issuance is the only option for Uncle Lee's Seafood. Vibrancy and sanity of the neighborhood will not be enhanced with six liquor stores within a half mile radius! 

Google Maps. Liquor Store Landscape
 While I appreciate my neighbors west of the River writing about making the liquor license process less contentious, it is important to note the impact of concentrating licensees, specifically liquor stores.  Maybe there's room in ABRA reform to separate liquor stores from the licensing for restaurants, taverns, and nightclubs to take these matters into consideration.  Maybe even 7C should pursue a moratorium like Georgetown.  Otherwise, we'll continue to pick at the contention of "who is in the catbird seat--the licensee business owner or the Advisory Neighborhood Commission/community?" 

Monday, December 13, 2010

Ward 7 residents define "livability" for their streets

A cross-section of residents in north Ward 7 gathered recently to help the District Department of Transportation and its consultants put a pin in the oft-used term "livability" at the second meeting of the Far Northeast Livability Study.

In transit and smart growth circles, livability means multimodal transportation, transit-oriented development, and a Complete Streets policy.

Many attendees weren't versed in the new terms entering the community development lexicon, but they do know their neighborhood and the ward can be better with more sidewalks, improved crosswalk markings and pedestrian signaling, slowing speeding traffic on narrow neighborhood streets and thoroughfares, and improving bus service.

The Far Northeast Livability Study area encompasses all of north Ward 7, between East Capitol Street, the Anacostia River, and the District line. A unique feature of the study process is an advisory council made of community members which shapes the meeting format, engages neighbors, and gives insight on key points.

This advisory council is especially important because the area has already been the focus of numerous studies in the past. Residents want to see action, not just a study that sits on the shelf.
DDOT Director Gabe Klein Photo Courtesy SBrown
Fortunately, DDOT Chief Gabe Klein agrees. At the monthly general meeting of the DC Federation of Citizens Associations, Klein pointed out the agency has $3 million invested in the DDOT Livability Program, including "money in the obligation plan to put solutions in place." The funds to implement the Livability Program are also included in the Metropolitan Washington Council of Government's five-year Transportation Improvement Program. Klein pledged to attend the next huddle.

The gathering discussed tools that transportation engineers use to deal with speeding and cut-through traffic, and to integrate biking connections. The toolbox includes simple, low-cost methods like painted medians, high visibility crosswalks, and in-street pedestrian yield signs. At the other end of the spectrum, there are high impact, mid- to high-cost solutions like chicanes, roundabouts, landscaped medians, and raised crosswalks.

Residents discussed these options and weighed the pros and cons of each along problem corridors like Sheriff Road, 49th Street, East Capitol Street, the Minnesota Avenue-Benning Road intersection, and the Nannie Helen Burroughs-Minnesota intersection.

The next steps in the process include a review of the meeting comments in December and a follow-up in January. With a population of nearly 30,000 people, it is critically important for north Ward 7 residents and stakeholders to be on the ball and make sure the "study" gets implemented.

Crossposted at Greater Greater Washington.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Live, work, play, shop, worship...New age livability

District Department of Transportation will be a busy bee in Ward 7 this weekend.  The agency is sponsoring the DC Circulator study at Benning Road Library (which has been renamed the Dorothy Irene Height Memorial Library) at 1:30 p.m.  In the morning the transportation team and its consultants are hosting the second Far Northeast Livability Study

The Far Northeast Livability Study covers all of north Ward 7.  Saturday's meeting will cover the Solutions Tool Boxes that transportation engineers grapple with when faced with speeding, cut-through traffic, etc.  Residents will have these tools at their fingertips and be able to weigh the good and the bad with implementation along problem corridors like Sheriff Road, 49th Street, East Capitol, Nannie Helen Burroughs-Minnesota intersection, etc.  With a population of nearly 30,000 people it is critically important for north Ward 7 residents and stakeholders to be on the ball and make sure the "study" GETS IMPLEMENTED. 

Livability Flyer

Friday, October 15, 2010

Demystifying the Opera (for you & the kiddies)

DCOpera Event

The Washington National Opera is committed to engaging families East of the River and is asking for the help of change makers in the community to share this event with their neighbors.

Washington National Opera Family Look-In
The Kennedy Center, 2700 F St. NW (Orange Line "Foggy Bottom/GWU")
Saturday, October 16, 2:00PM
Registration:  $10 use "Source Code DCCAH"

Do you have questions? Feel free to email Michelle Pendoley @

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Deanwood's Urban Turf Profile

Deanwood: A Little Bit of Country Just Inside the District’s Borders

"It’s easy to get disoriented in Deanwood. Exit the Metro station and walk past the gleaming new recreation center, and the neighborhood quickly takes on a foreign tone. With its hills and one-story frame houses, it’s not a stretch to imagine you’re wandering around a rural community somewhere—one that isn’t particularly open to outsiders.

Located east of the Anacostia River and just inside the District’s northeast border, Deanwood has long been viewed as a community with a small-town atmosphere." Read the rest of the article

Weigh in on this blog on whether Urban Turf got it right along with your vision of Deanwood's future.

Deanwood Duplexes in 5000 Block of Jay St

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

The transition begins...Gray Ward 7 Town Hall

A common saying in politics is, "Winning a campaign is easy.  The tough part is governing."  Noone doubts D.C. Council Chairman Vincent Gray, the presumptive mayor, has the ability to govern.  The doubt, or perhaps more appropriately the uncertainty, arises in how he will govern.  This uncertainty is made more stark when coupled with our city's horrendous budget constraints.

For neighborhoods like Deanwood, which went heavy for Gray, the asks are long and deep.  Dealing with basic quality-of-life needs like improved schools, public works services, and police presence are important.  Just as important, though, is implementing a meaningful community economic development plan.  For greater Deanwood neighborhoods our community economic development is wrapped in the multi-year Lincoln Heights/Richardson Dwellings New Communities Initiative (LHRDNCI).  The LHRDNCI hinges on a cross-section of government and private invesments, including human capital and infrastructure, to create mixed-income, sustainable development sites.  Private developers have already downgraded some of their plans on account of the economic downturn.  These developers must have a comfort level from government but also in my opinion they need a gut-check and must be strongly prodded by government to plan for the best and build the best in spite of the current economics.

Gray campaigned on a birth-24 education system that includes real-life employment skills.  It is my contention that that campaign promise can be implemented and accomplished in greater Deanwood.  Breaking up the silo mentality of the private sector is a step.  However, a bigger and more treacherous step is corralling residents, both long-time and new arrivals, to forget perceived slights and defuse flashpoint rhetoric and come together to push for innovative community revitalization--dusting off the so, so, so many development plans for far northeast Ward 7 and get it done.

While the presumptive mayor's heart may be in Ward 7 he has to govern from 30,000'.  The opportunity to make a campaign promise and slogan a model and reality is in greater Deanwood--if the presumptive mayor sets the tone and empowers (demands?) Ward 7 residents (in some cases guide to stage left) to organize effectively to communicate our message, our needs, and our wants ourselves

"How will the presumptive mayor govern?"  Significant returns on investment for the public and private sectors hang in the balance.

vgray ward7 townhall

The Ward 7 town hall is moved to Pennsylvania Avenue Baptist Church, 3000 Pennsylvania Ave. SE.  Please allow for significant travel time (WMATA or car) due to the Pennsylvania Avenue Great Streets project construction.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

A Walk With: Sylvia Brown, Advisory Neighborhood Commissioner, Deanwood - Housing Complex - Washington City Paper

A Walk With: Sylvia Brown, Advisory Neighborhood Commissioner, Deanwood - Housing Complex - Washington City Paper

For someone who follows Twitter fairly closely, Sylvia Brown—@ANC7c04—is an outsized presence. She nudges councilmembers and narrates press conferences, corrects journalists and vents about the latest political outrage.

Turns out Brown is a large presence in real life, too. She’s tall, basketball player tall, though the resemblance might also have been due to the track pants and sneakers. Brown ... immediately pointed out something I’d never noticed before: The Lederer Youth Garden, which has dozens of small plots for children, complete with a beehive.

“It’s a hidden gem,” she says.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Guest blog posting: Taking back our neighborhood

Editor's Note: "Officially tired of the madness," Ajia Meux, Deanwood neighbor and former Deanwood Citizens Association president, has distributed this "Open Letter to Community Members."  To reach as many neighbors and stakeholders she asked Deanwoodenizen to post the message to her blog readers. 

Dear Community Members,

I am writing you this as not only the former president of the Deanwood Citizen's Association, but also as a resident of the community and a concerned citizen.  I am deeply concerned about the state of the Deanwood Citizen's Association.  Since I know there is power in numbers, I am reaching out to the larger community.  You need to be seen and heard!

In eight months time, the current executive board of the Deanwood Citizen's Association has managed to run the organization into the ground.  They have managed to alienate new members—members who showed vigor in wanting to work on behalf of the organization and their community and members who made it their mission to bring other community members to meetings now do not even come.  Committees to
address community issues are hand-selected and the information that comes from the committees is guarded.  Member opinion is not respected, issues are often tabled and never addressed and only the President and the Vice President seem to have any say so into decisions made.

Community visibility is nil and when DCA leadership is represented reports are that their behavior is unprofessional and aggressive.  For the last three meetings, there have been no minutes and no treasurer's report for the September meeting.  This is of particular importance because the current executive board is notorious for making up information and distorting truth.  We did not receive minutes for June's meeting or July's meeting.  I did not see anyone recording the meeting tonight [editor's note: Monday, September 27, 2010].

The former president, Sylvia Brown, ANC7C04 was an amazing DCA president.  She spent much time building Deanwood's reputation in the community and informing ALL residents of the process by which change can come when we work together as ONE COMMUNITY.  I made it my mission to represent DCA to ALL residents, spending countless hours going door to door to invite not just home owners, but ALL COMMUNITY MEMBERS to be engaged in the civic process.  It is important that DCA be used as a vehicle for the entire community to progress, not monopolized by a few who use it as a means of control.

I own my home in Deanwood and have been a resident of the community for four years.  I pay taxes on my property AND in the community through sales tax.  I shop at Deanwood businesses.  I am (and you are) just as much a stakeholder in this community as our next door neighbors who have been in the community for 30+ years.  This polarizing attitude of the current leadership has to stop!  Have you ever been called about an "emergency meeting" or any meeting for that matter?  Have you received a flyer?  Has anyone from DCA ever stopped and knocked on your door?  Anyone ever ask your opinion about ANYTHING happening?  I am begging you to come to a DCA meeting [fourth Monday, 6:30 p.m., 1350 49th St. NE] and challenge this current board.  I do not plan on running for office again, but PLEASE consider running.  It's time that we represent this community like others represent theirs—in a way that is clear, professional, respectful, diplomatic and that serve the interest of EVERYONE.
This is a drastic measure, yes I know.  But I am tired of meetings full of shenanigans and petty arguments when our community is in crisis and on the brink of transition. Someone has to grab the reins.  These folks are out of control.
Ajia Meux
5000 Block of Sheriff
Deanwood Resident

Monday, September 27, 2010

MuralsDC completes second Deanwood site

After fits and starts the second MuralsDC project in Deanwood is complete!  MuralsDC is an initiative from Jim Graham, Ward 1 Councilman and chairman of the Council's Committee on Public Works and Transportation.  MuralsDC is a multi-agency effort to combat illegal graffiti, called tagging, on locations prone to the activity.  Utilizing organizations and youth from the impacted neighborhoods the thought is that taggers are less likely to tag a spot where they have crafted an artistic vision.  The program also helps channel and legitimize graffiti artistry. 

The first Deanwood site done under the direction of arts organization Ward 7 Arts Collaborative is at A-1 Grocery located at Division Avenue and Nannie Helen Burroughs Avenue.  Words Beats Life led the development of the newest site, A&S Grocery, at Sheriff Road and 48th St.  Juan Pineda was lead artist and proposed several Deanwood icons for the rendering, including the Carver School (now IDEA Public Charter School), Nannie Helen Burroughs, and the trolley car that ran along Deane Avenue (now Nannie Helen Burroughs Avenue).

A&S Grocery (4748 Sheriff Rd. NE), site of second Deanwood MuralsDC

Words Beats & Life draft of MuralsDC Deanwood site. 

Student apprentices; student in forefront Jean Martinez is lead student artist.  

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Passive Solar House Site Warming

Thanks to the immediate neighbors, stakeholders, and neighbors in greater Deanwood who came to the site warming at Gault Pl NE for the 2011 Solar Decathlon.  Here's an article from local real estate blog, DCmud.  Big shoutouts to the students and faculty of Parson, Milano, and Stevens!  Kudos to Habitat for Humanity for Washington, DC and the District's Department of Housing and Community Development for recognizing the innovation and replicability of solar housing when developing affordable housing.  Here are a few photos.

Kent Adcock, Executive Director, Habitat for Humanity of Washington, DC
Laura Briggs, lead faculty member, Parsons Design School
Immediate neighbors attend the site warming & get information about the Deanwood Solar House

Friday, September 10, 2010

Deanwood Gets Love from Ward 7 Neighbor

I couldn't write it any better!  Life in the Village writes up Marvin Gaye Park's recent press hits that coincide with the one-year anniversary of the playground installation at Marvin Gaye Park's Foote Street node. 
Watch out for great things from the neighborhood and the "little park that could." Check out All Things Deanwood!.

Photo courtesy:

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Deanwood's Energy Revolution Continues

The slots have been filled with innovative teams to compete in the biennial international 2011 Solar Decathlon.  Our beloved Deanwood's stake is clear--we will have an energy-efficient, modern and AFFORDABLE housing unit.  The Parsons team with help from the District Department of Housing and Community Development and Habitat for Humanity of Washington, DC have selected an ideally situated two lot area on Gault Place, just off Nannie Helen Burroughs and abutting the Marvin Gaye Park trail.  The school along with neighbors, guests and other celebrants will gather on Sunday, September 12, 2:00 p.m. to mark this milestone in the development and construction of EMPOWER HOUSE!

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Deanwood Community Center & Library Open House: You've Heard About it Now See It

The Deanwood Community Center & Library has been the pawn in the political game of the DC Mayor's race.  The Center has been name dropped in the Fenty go-go songs.  Gray has tauted the Center as part of his portfolio of successes as Ward 7 Councilmember.  Most recently, new DC beat reporter, Freeman Klopott, wrote about the push and pull

NOW YOU HAVE YOUR CHANCE TO SEE THE CENTER UP CLOSE, MEET THE STAFF, SEE THE NEIGHBORS WHO ACTUALLY USE THE CENTER.  I didn't realize how big a deal this open house will be.  I regret I'll miss it but PLEASE DEANWOOD RESIDENTS TAKE TIME TO PARTICIPATE.  All age groups of the neighborhood need to and must have their voices heard! 

Monday, August 30, 2010

It is DONE!

I filed my petitions for Advisory Neighborhood Commissioner 7C04.  (Big hugs and shoutouts to neighbors who enthusiastically signed the petitions AND took them to neighbors for me!) 

I am a second-termer; I've come back for more.  But why?  I'm being honest, why do I: take the let down of 10 residents coming to a meeting or deal with getting chewed out or contend with the push-and-pull called getting service from OUR government??  WHY, WHY, WHY?  Because:

5) Hmm... Hold on! I'm still thinking...
4) I'm a glutton for punishment.
3) I like being the center of attention.
2) I'm an overachiever.
1) Helping people understand we can make things better for ourselves is pretty gratifying.

Don't talk about it!  Be about it!  Join me (or your nearest Advisory Neighborhood Commission) in making government work with us and for us.
ANC7C04 Newsletter Issue3 Sum10

Friday, August 27, 2010


Mom, "If everyone was jumping off a bridge, would you do it?"
Me, "Noooo!  Dang..." (aloud)

Me, "Well, if the cool kids said it was ok, maybe..." (in my head)

Fast forward xx years, the cool kids say it's ok to follow the herd & Get on the list for The BIG reveal!

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Greening your green...

Deanwood is smack dab in the middle of a GREEN REVOLUTION, babeee!  In 2009 Deanwood was selected by national winner CarbonFreeDC to be a pilot neighborhood for green retrofitting of homes, called Extreme Green Neighborhood Makeover.  Deanwood is a neighborhood of oooold homes with ill-fitting windows, improper insulation, settling, and outdated appliances and this makeover for 10 families was welcomed.  

Deanwoodians were hopeful CarbonFreeDC would find additional funds to retrofit more houses but that's not happened yet.  Just as we were settling back in, lo and behold, Deanwood had the chance to be a site for solar passive house!  Renowned Parsons, New School was in town scoping out the 2009 U.S. Department of Energy Solar Decathlon competition to prepare for its own submission in 2011.  They were also looking for a working class DC neighborhood in which to actualize its brewing thoughts.  (BAM, Deanwood got in the mix! h/t Kim Morton, Shana Mosher, and Dennis Chestnut)  A new component of the competition is affordability of the end product--a house.  Parsons wanted to do more than just design and build a house that would just be a model down on the National Mall and packed up and shipped back to New York.  Noooo, they wanted to design and build a home and leave the home in DC.  Building a home would save on their costs but more importantly it would really embody the spirit of the Solar Decathlon--building real world homes for environmental sustainability and affordability for the builder and the homeowner. 

In March Parsons and its team of students held a community meeting with overwhelming turnout and excitement for this opportunity--still a lot of neighbors wanting retrofits but also wanting to actually learn about the process and help build the home (that's Deanwoodians for ya, always learning and helping).  Parsons had already committed to build the Deanwood-Parsons Solar House regardless of its selection into the Decathlon which makes it all the more sweeter to know Parsons WILL be one of 20 collegiate teams in the 2011 U.S. Department of Energy Solar Decathlon competition!

This weekend Deanwoodenizen is headed to NYC to get an update on the students' work to make the Deanwood-Parsons Solar House a reality.  I'm psyched about the opportunity to cross the intersection of affordability, quality housing, and environmental sustainability!  Stay tuned, better yet get involved!  Send a comment so you can get linked in to the GREEN REVOLUTION, babeee!

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Good lookin' out...

  • Mayor Fenty will give his State of the District Address at the Deanwood Community Center and Library (hopefully no changes).  The DCCL is the manifestation of a decades old battle neighbors fought to see come to fruition.  The opening is expected in June--just in time for summer swimming and lounging outdoors.  UPDATE: Washington Post's write-up of the SODA

  • A real "white linen tablecloth" restaurant is bursting open--Ray's the Steaks ribbon cutting is happening!  Politicos and local Joes will click glasses and forks over quality foods.  UPDATE: Check fellow Ward 7 blogger, Life in the Village's, coverage!

Monday, April 5, 2010


Deanwood Friend and Supporter, as a part of its budget balancing efforts the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority has proposed closing the Deanwood Metro Station.  The Deanwood station is in Ward 7 and is the only station in the District proposed to be closed.  We need as many people as possible to email by 5 p.m. on Tuesday, April 6, 2010 with the following message.

Office of the Secretary
Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority
600 Fifth Street, NW
Washington, D.C. 20001
ATTN: Docket B10-2
F: 202-962-1133

I oppose the WMATA proposal to close the Deanwood Metro Station, the ONLY station in Ward 7 and the District slated for closing. This shortsighted move will harm the neighborhood and the neighborhood's riders who rely on the station to get to jobs in downtown DC and in outer Maryland.

As WMATA searches for new revenue, I urge WMATA’s new joint development director Steve Goldin to move aggressively to implement the Deanwood Metro Station's transit-oriented development as proposed in the Deanwood Strategic Development Plan.  Please contact Gizachew Andargeh, Ward 7 Neighborhood Planner in the District Office of Planning, at (202) 442-7600 or email

My neighbors and I stand ready to work with Mr. Goldin and the Board to move the Deanwood Metro Station's transit-oriented development forward. Thank you.

It is my hope that this proposed closing will spur WMATA, Valerie Santos, Deputy Mayor for Planning and Economic Development, and Harriet Tregoning, the Director of the Office of Planning, to move AGGRESSIVELY with the transit-oriented development proposed in the Deanwood Strategic Development Plan.

UPDATE:  WASHINGTON CITY PAPER WROTE UP A QUICKIE ON THE "COST-SAVING" (hmmm) PROPOSAL.  WMATA's board meeting on the proposals will be Thurs., April 22.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Census 2010: It's in our hands!

Take a look at DC's Census 2010 "Hard-to-Count" (HTC) census tracts.  The Census Bureau has developed a list of HTC's based on underlying demographic and socio-economic indicators. These are the areas where community-based "get out the count" efforts should be focused. The higher the score the more difficult the region.  We've got 3 days to get forms in!

How are you actually "counted?"

Marvin Gaye Park Music Festival on Census Day, April 1, 4pm-8pm for music, healthy cooking demo's, football, basketball, live art and more!

Friday, March 26, 2010

Food desert or Economic Oasis

In the last few weeks a study has been released by DC Hunger Solutions detailing Deanwood as a food desert. Food desert, you ask? Yes, food desert. Just as it sounds Deanwood, along with all of Ward 7, Ward 8, Ward 5, and Ward 4, have few full-service grocery stores and even less healthy food options. Dominated by "mom-and-pop" convenience/liquor stores, carry-outs, and fast food joints we are sorely under-served. Contrast our neighborhood with Wards 2 and 3 which have "one grocery store for every 7,300 people" not to mention a new eatery serving cereal (?!).

The grocery gap and food desert are astounding social policy topics that fall under food justice, which deserves attention and a solution. At the same time food justice intersects quite well with economic growth and development. In the world of bottom-line retail development the trite slogan "rooftops drive demand" before amenities like a full-service grocery (i.e., 60,000+ sq. ft.) rules the decision-making process. (Read between the lines "rooftops" = a high income demographic.) Because of this erroneous perception chains and the mom-and-pop stores are missing out on dominating the market and building brand loyalty.

Deanwood has an opportunity, though, during this economic downturn. Making an opportunity out of a crisis gives us a chance to strategize, engaging our neighbors join an advocacy campaign that gets the City to implement the Deanwood Strategic Plan, the Nannie Helen Burroughs and Minnesota Great Streets, and the street cars plan, marketing our neighborhood.

We're at a crossroads; a crossroads that I think we're ready to march through to make things happen for us!