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Public Spaces

Is Chevy Chase's anti-pedestrianism DDOT's fault?

Richard Layman posts a letter from "Sue" claiming that "DDOT is eager to prove that ANCs are killing street life because DDOT constantly encounters ANC resistance" to projects like the drive-through Commerce Bank on Wisconsin, and "If a simple permit of the kind P&P needs to put its bench back out is a bureaucratic nightmare to get, is that Winstead's fault or DDOT's?" I'm skeptical, but what do you think?

Update: regardless of his transgressions on Comet and Marvelous Market, Winstead at least wasn't responsible for Politics and Prose having to remove their bench.

David Alpert is the founder of Greater Greater Washington and its board president. He worked as a Product Manager for Google for six years and has lived in the Boston, San Francisco, and New York metro areas in addition to Washington, DC. He now lives with his wife and two children in Dupont Circle. 


"Sue" is Sue Hemberger, a noted Friendship Heights anti-development activist. Of course she is going so take the position advocating for the ANC. She and her ANC have been stifling development in upper NW for years.

While the letter of the law is that a permit was required for the bench, the tables and the ping-pong table, the prudent politican would have worked through the public space department to ensure that the noted establishments received their permits, not act like Frank Burns from M*A*S*H and kill whatever vibrancy exists on that stretch.

by William on May 30, 2008 2:01 pm • linkreport

I agree with William in that the best solution is to be practical and help the businesses out. The ANC has an important role, but why can't we just let life happen a bit too? My family enjoyed the bench and ping-pong table. We also enjoy a bit of character and spontaneity in our neighborhoods.

by Allison S. on May 31, 2008 3:19 pm • linkreport

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