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Housing


Is new housing, most of it for low-income residents, worth giving up an acre of park space?

DC has plans to turn half of a park on Georgia Avenue into an apartment complex that will largely be affordable housing, much of which will replace a nearby public housing project that's in disrepair. Many residents support the plan, but some are opposed, with reasons ranging from not wanting to lose any park space to wanting the building to be shorter.


The proposed redevelopment of the Bruce Monroe site. Images from Park View Community unless otherwise noted.

Right now Bruce Monroe is a 2.5-acre park in DC's Park View Pleasant Plains neighborhood, on Georgia Avenue between Irving Street and Columbia Road. The site was a school until it was torn down in 2009. In 2010, the city proposed making it into a parking lot, but neighbors disliked that idea, so officials constructed a temporary park while they thought about what to do long-term.

Here are the proposals on the table

DC wants to turn half of the land at Bruce Monroe into new housing and keep the other half a park. The redevelopment would have a 189-unit apartment building, a 76-unit senior apartment building, and 8 townhomes (a total of 273 new units). 108 of these units would be reserved for households earning up to 60 percent of area median income (that's about $66,000/yr for a family of four). Another 94 units would be reserved for residents below 30% of AMI. So almost three quarters of the units would be set aside for moderate and low-income households.


The Bruce Monroe development; building A would be apartments; building B would be senior apartments.

To do all of this, DC's Office of the Deputy Mayor for Planning and Economic Development and its chosen developer, Park View Community Partners, are applying to build higher than the current zoning permits, through a process called a Planned Unit Development (PUD).

Building at Bruce Monroe means deteriorating units nearby

Aside from adding new units to the neighborhood, a big element of the Bruce Monroe development is that it would replace units at Park Morton, a public housing project a little under half a mile up Georgia Avenue, on Morton Street. To be clear, Bruce Monroe and Park Morton are part of the same project; if one gets blocked, the whole thing falls apart.


The Park Morton (top) and Bruce Monroe sites, with proposed redevelopments.

Right now, Park Morton is itself up for redevelopment as part of the New Communities Initiative, which started in 2005 under Mayor Williams. A central tenet of NCI says that when the city redevelops public housing, it needs to build replacement units before demolishing the old ones (a concept known as "build first"). That's the purpose of the units reserved for families at 30% of AMI and below at Bruce Monroe: to replace public housing units at Park Morton, and prevent displacing low-income residents.

New Communities has struggled to live up to this ideal: another NCI site, Temple Courts, was demolished in 2008, its residents scattered (there was no "building first"), and today it's a parking lot. The city is trying to do better at Park Morton, and Bruce Monroe is part of that plan.

Park Morton, meanwhile, would be redeveloped to have 183 units, with apartments and rowhouses mixed around a central park. 53 units would be replacement public housing and 40 units would be set aside for families under 60 percent of AMI.


Rendering of the proposed Park Morton redevelopment.

Together, the developments at Park Morton and Bruce Monroe would mean 302 units of affordable housing, a 1-acre park at Bruce Monroe, and another quarter-acre park at Park Morton. The south half of the Bruce Monroe site would remain a park, which would include a playground, community space and garden, a basketball court, and a dog park. And 4,545 square feet (about a tenth of an acre) of the community space wouldn't be eliminated, but incorporated into the buildings' footprint.

Some neighbors don't want to trade park space for affordable housing

Many neighbors support the Bruce Monroe development, especially given three fourths of the project is set aside for affordability. But others are "packing community meetings and flooding neighborhood email lists with their objections" because they don't want to give up half of the park.

Many opponents argue that the city should find another site. But as GGWash contributor and ANC 1A commissioner Kent Boese testified in November, no property owners along Georgia Avenue would sell their land for this "build first" element of the Park Morton redevelopment project when the District first tried between 2011 and 2014.

Boese was personally involved in the search for a suitable spot, and after four years he (and others, including DMPED), concluded that the city-owned site at Bruce Monroe made the most sense.

Many folks do want to see the project completed: ANCs 1A and 1B have voted on six separate occasions in support. And Park Morton residents might like new apartments; their current units were built in 1960.


Image from Google Maps.

Other residents are concerned that the buildings would be too tall (the proposal would make the two apartment buildings 60 and 90 feet tall). But the PUD allows more units, and more market rate units, which subsidizes the affordable units; a taller building means more affordable housing.

You'll have a chance to tell the zoning commission about your opinion on the proposal at 6:30 pm on December 5th and 8th. The meetings are at One Judiciary Square, 441 4th Street NW.

Housing


Public housing, explained

Public housing has long been a tool for governments to create and preserve affordable shelter, but many public housing complexes today are under threat.


Barry Farm, a public housing complex in DC. Photo by Matailong Du/Street Sense on Flickr.

After decades of neglect, many public housing developments have fallen into disrepair. Others have been demolished and replaced with market-rate housing units, especially as surrounding communities experience gentrification.

Once the most important tool for housing low-income families, public housing now makes up a shrinking share of the affordable housing options in the DC region and nation. Today, about 7,300 families in the District live in 40 public housing developments managed by the DC Housing Authority (DCHA).

In this explainer, I examine the challenges facing the current stock of public housing in the District.

Public housing developments were the United States' earliest form of affordable housing

In 1937, Congress passed the National Housing Act, which authorized the construction of public housing. The program was viewed as a way to jumpstart a slow economy in the aftermath of the Great Depression.

Initially, many public housing developments housed moderate-income families. However, demographic shifts resulted in changes to the composition of public housing. As poorer families moved to the city, where much of public housing was, and middle-class ones fled to the suburbs, public housing developments came to house an increasingly poorer set of households.

By the 1970s, the federal government halted the construction of new public housing developments

At this point, many existing developments had fallen into disrepair because they were poorly maintained.

Critically, policymakers realized that public housing concentrated poverty in certain neighborhoods by creating dense buildings comprised exclusively of low-income families. It contributed to racial segregation and limited opportunities for households to move to better communities.

Over the next couple decades, many public housing developments would continue to provide affordable housing, despite their deteriorating conditions. Others would be torn down and replaced with mixed-income housing developments.

During this period, housing vouchers would replace public housing as the primary tool for housing low-income Americans.

About 1.2 million households live in public housing in the US. Here are the numbers for our region:

As noted above, only 7,300 families in the District live in public housing developments. There is a long wait-list of families waiting to get into public housing.

Some of these are low-rise complexes spread over multiples buildings, like the Barry Farm development in Ward 8. Others are single, high-rise buildings, like Claridge Tower in Ward 2.

While the DC Housing Authority manages the public housing stock in the District, much of the funding to maintain and repair these buildings comes from the federal government. In the region, housing authorities in Fairfax, Alexandria and Montgomery County also manage a substantial number of public housing units.

Public housing provides stability for many families that would face the highest risk of housing instability or eviction on the private market

Like households with housing vouchers, housing costs are kept affordable for public housing residents by limiting the rent to thirty percent of their income.

According to a recent report by the DC Fiscal Policy Institute, the average income for a family of four living in public housing in the District is $16,050. (The federal poverty threshold for a family of four is $23,850.)

Ninety percent of households in public housing have an income below $32,100 annually, which is 30 percent of the AMI.

Households living in public housing are disproportionately headed by the elderly and people with disabilities. In fact, the DC Fiscal Policy Institute reports that fully one-third of households in public housing are headed by a senior citizen.

About twenty-two percent of households in public housing are headed by an adult with a disability.

Public housing developments across the country are struggling with maintenance and upkeep

In the District, the District of Columbia Housing Authority (DCHA) estimates that there are more than $1.3 billion in deferred maintenance costs, including repairs to buildings.

These concerns are shared in other cities, as well. In New York City, the public housing authority estimates more than $16 billion in deferred maintenance costs.

Critics argue that this neglect of public housing has resulted in buildings being uninhabitable. They refer to this deterioration as demolition by neglect.

Plans to redevelop public housing developments have been controversial

In 1996, Congress authorized the HOPE VI program to redevelop severely distressed public housing developments. Through HOPE VI, private developers redeveloped public housing sites, usually creating a mix of affordable and market-rate units.

In the District, one of the public housing developments to go through HOPE VI was Arthur Capper Carrollsburg. The low-rise public housing development underwent a massive redevelopment, creating a new mixed-income neighborhood.

Critics contend that the project, which took nearly a decade to complete, resulted in widespread displacement of existing public housing residents.

Although the HOPE VI program has now ended, researchers are actively trying to understand the consequences of redeveloping public housing developments into mixed-income neighborhoods through the program.

In the District, the New Communities Initiative similarly aims to redevelop public housing developments. The program is slated to redevelop more than 1,000 public housing units in three large developments across the city—Barry Farm in Ward 8, Lincoln Heights in Ward 7 and Park Morton in Ward 1.

The program aims for one-to-one replacement of affordable housing units. This means that residents of public housing would have the opportunity to stay in their communities following the redevelopment.

However, the New Communities program has struggled amid concerns about the disruption of community ties and the displacement of existing residents during the redevelopment process.

Housing


Can we develop communities for the people who already live in them?

Income inequality, gentrification, and neighborhoods changing in a short period of time—put them all together and the question is "who is left behind?" How can change happen in a city without displacing people?


Photo by Tony Hisgett on Flickr.

On October 3rd, HBO aired Class Divide, a documentary that provided a look into gentrification's effects on one neighborhood in New York City. The film examines the massive changes in the Chelsea neighborhood in Manhattan, spurred by the development of the High Line public park, looked at through the eyes of teens in West Chelsea. On one side of 10th Avenue, there are disadvantaged teens who live in the Chelsea-Elliot housing project, and on the other side, wealthy teens who attend the Avenues: The World School, a private school that costs more than $40,000 per year.

Last week, we attended a sneak peak that was followed by a panel discussion on how the larger issues in the film are also affecting the DC region. The participants were Class Divide director Marc Levin, 11th Street Bridge Park project director Scott Kratz, and Oramenta F. Newsome, the Vice President of the DC chapter of the Local Initiatives Support Corporation. Hyisheem Shabazz Calier, who participated in the documentary, also spoke about his experiences living in the Chelsea-Elliot housing project and experiences since leaving to attend college and pursue entrepreneurship. The panel was moderated by Urban Institute president Sarah Rosen Wartell.

After the first half hour of the documentary played, the panelists discussed gentrification, income and racial inequality, and the unintended consequences that come when planning large public projects like the Manhattan's High Line.

We (Joanne and Andrew) attended the event and later watched the full documentary. We discussed our thoughts in a chat format.

Andrew Ausel (AA): I thought the documentary was a good segue into a discussion on DC. Particularly because what New York is experiencing is kind of like mega-gentrification. And while what DC is experiencing is challenging, it's nothing near the extent to which West Chelsea residents are experiencing it.

Joanne Pierce (JP): You make a good point, that New York City shows us this mega-gentrification but DC could easily be a mega-gentrifier in its own way if we're not watching out for it. Oramenta made a great point about that, which is that developers are "finding" neighborhoods and finding these beautiful pre-World War II buildings they want to turn into luxury condos. These neighborhoods have been here for such a long time, and yet developers come in and seem to just swallow them whole with their shiny new buildings or luxury things.

AA: Absolutely. Neighborhoods with rich cultural and architectural features are attractive to developers and the residents treat them almost like ornaments that add to their property values. Exhibit AÖ the High Line in Manhattan.


The High Line in Manhattan. Photo by David Berkowitz on Flickr.

AA: An equivalent DC example would be Capitol Hill, Union Station, or any of the numerous historical landmarks that have been flipped. Look at the NoMa area as an example: the neighborhood runs just adjacent to the Uline Arena, which is set to become the fifth flagship REI. But look just north of Florida Ave., opposite of the Red Line to NoMa, and development isn't really happening there, primarily because it is outside of the Business Improvement District. I think more work needs to be done to bridge that gap.


Uline Arena. Photo by Ted Eytan on Flickr.

JP: One of the things I liked was how the High Line was used in this documentary. It was one of the three central structures, along with the Chelsea-Elliot Housing Projects and the Avenues school. Have you been to the High Line before?

AA: I have not, have you?

JP: I have, and I loved it. It's overwhelming in scale and sensory input.


The brick building in the middle of the frame is the Chelsea-Elliot housing projects and the building at the right of the frame is Avenues: The World School. Photo by Doug Kerr on Flickr.

JP: Scott brought up unintended consequences. I hadn't considered the High Line to be one of those, because it's so beautiful and it's brought so much joy to what was a desolate, unwanted piece of transit history. But we see in the documentary that it also created this real estate boom and I don't think I considered that the High Line had negative consequences because I had no idea there were housing projects nearby. So that brings up questions of privilege and how we can be really unaware of the circumstances that lead to social and income inequality, and how our desire for nice things and amenities has possibly made people complicit in gentrification, even when we don't live in the areas being gentrified.

AA: It really is a new development, and something that I think we have to start assuming will happen as we try and address urban blight. In generations prior, I don't think the desire for urban living was there, so we never asked "what happens when we fix this place up?" Now, as we fix it up, there is a demand and a market and its being filled by people who aren't from the community.

I think the real gap in understanding then comes from the "invading" ignorance to what was there before. The residents who purchase these $15 million condos don't necessarily appreciate all the different culture that was there before. Oramenta made a good point when she said that we do live in a free market, and those are the rules of the game.

JP: She said, "we have to remember that in our society, the [income] bar keeps moving."

AA: But what [Marc Levin] does such a good job of in his documentary is observing the issue from the perspective of the kids. Kids who don't necessarily want to be viewed as the rich white kids but want to be looked at as humans.

JP: What is wealth today may not be wealth ten years from now and what's striking about that idea is that people at the bottom won't necessarily get wealthier just because these areas like NoMa are becoming popular and revitalized. Looking through the eyes of the kids and without explicitly stating it, he showed that children aren't different from each other in their fears and uncertainties just because of their socioeconomic status.

AA: And he reflected on that during the panel when he said that this generation is truly unique in that they recognize the forces of free trade and the globalization of the economy and they are figuring out, where do they fit in? They are much more reflective and aware and you see this in the film.

JP: Even though the documentary doesn't really go into globalization, it's a huge concern.

AA: We have to answer anew, how exactly do we develop communities for the people in the community? Scott Kratz was particularly helpful in coming up with strategies for that.

JP: He was, and I appreciated how focused he was on the collaborative side of the 11th Street Bridge project. He was very clear that he wanted to understand, first of all, did residents even want something like that? It's a question that I don't think gets brought up enough.


The 11th Street Bridge. Photo by Ted Eytan on Flickr.

AA: Right. It was a much more communicative version of community organizing that represented bottom-up development instead of a planning commission or a developing company telling the people how the plan would look. It was truly encouraging and part of me honestly felt weird feeling optimistic when thinking about this issue. It was almost like I wanted them to dive more into the problem of gentrification so I could understand the issue, while what Scott really did was reject the challenges of community unity and figured out how to make it work. It really sounded like the community was the approval body for a lot of the design. And it made me realize something very important for any effort like this. It made me realize that communities have to have a unified vision and sort of be very homogenous.

JP: I looked up some information on the 11th Street Bridge project and the website says there are 76,000 residents within a two mile radius of the bridge. The kind of collaboration required to get as many of those voices heard seems stunning. I think the documentary brought up an interesting point about homogeneity by class, and not race: that the residents of the Chelsea-Elliot Housing Projects aren't excluded because of race, but because of class.

AA: It's definitely a good point and may make for a good lesson learned from the film, that communities are only as equipped to fight the forces of development as they are unified and empowered to fight it.

JP: What do you think about Ornamenta's point about race, that it's always present but in many cases what neighborhoods want to preserve is history and that is sometimes African-American history. Her example was Anacostia, which she says has only been an African-American community for two or three generations.


Anacostia. Photo by Axel Drainville on Flickr.

AA: I think that's true. To observe the inverse, Alexandria, which is a predominately white city, does a lot to preserve its history and highlight the positive aspects of their colonial culture. You don't see a whole lot of African-American festivals in Alexandria and that's for a reason. So much of human history is tied up in race, likely because so much of human identity is tied up in race. Which raises the question, is the only force that prevents equitable development economic?

JP: Alexandria has a lot of African-American history and there should be more opportunities to emphasize it. But we also have to talk about which Alexandria we are referring to. Old Town, the West suburbs (Seminary Hill), or Fairfax County and the immediate Route 1 corridor, which is probably more Hispanic and African-American.

AA: Very true. But that is arguably a more recent development. I think the important point here is that Americans in general feel a sense of community that is strongest with those who look most like them. That is true in DC, Alexandria, and NYC, among others. We need to be actively figuring out ways to compensate for this and foster communities of understanding and, really, pluralism.

JP: I read that immigrant communities aren't actually that mobile. They find an area they like and tend to stick to it. I think it can be trickier than that. Maybe on a more general scale, people do want to be homogeneous but there are some aspects of racial identity that may make that difficult. Anecdotally, I think younger Asian-Americans, for example, yo-yo between wanting to hang out with an Asian community and conversely don't think that's the most important or relevant. It does help if your "community" is all over the Northern Virginia and DC area, though. East Asian-Americans do have that.

AA: True. I think the documentary was revealing in the way the high-rise condo community treated the minorities who lived in their building. [One of the documentary participants] reflected that he often gets looks like he doesn't live there. But the interesting thing is that often times the white kids who lived on the top floors of these places didn't want to fall into that stigma. They wanted to understand. The challenge becomes how do we fight stigmas then.

JP: This is a pretty old question. We've had cultural and racial stigmas for a very long time. Gentrification seems to exacerbate that, in that you sometimes see the developers coming in and they're all well-educated, relatively wealthy people. They are proposing a dream that in some cases, means pushing other people out. As Scott said, it's "cultural displacement." The stigma behind that can be race or socioeconomic status, and what Scott and other community-focused organizers seem to focus on is bolstering the voices of people who would be marginalized or ignored by the planning community. Using their well-educated, relatively wealthy status for good and not evil, I suppose.

AA: It is a very old question, but the truth is that communities don't do the hard work to answer it and find ways to live together effectively in the face of the prospect of gentrification. There is a blind allegiance to the ideology that promotes quick development. But you are right in that the 11th Street Bridge Park team took the time to lead that discussion and really bolstered the voices of those that would have been washed out.

JP: I think Oramenta spoke about that as well. She said that there's a difference between diversity you see on The Mall and diversity in her neighborhood, whether it's due to income or race. She said there are people who can go home to a comfortable place, and she wants to create more opportunities to see others and be like, "I could live there." To me, that seems to also focus on preserving a neighborhood but also encouraging growth in a more organic way. Leading new people in by showing them what the neighborhood already has to offer, and how it's going to be progressive about its growth, but not doing it through only having shiny luxury goods and condos.

AA: I also thought that a big issue that was presented by the panel was the idea of renter empowerment. What were your thoughts on the strategies presented like community land trusts and homebuyers clubs?

JP: They mentioned TOPA, which is the Tenant Opportunity to Purchase Act. It allows renters to have first opportunity to buy their rental properties before a landlord can sell the building. I think TOPA is great but it also requires extensive education and understanding of DC housing processes and that's one area where the homebuyers clubs can really step in. They can provide that education. A lot of times, what shuts people out of the process, whether it's democracy or planning their neighborhood, is that it's overwhelming.

AA: Sure, and the challenges can seem larger and influenced by so many more things than one community can prevent. I think dispelling that narrative and empowering low-income residents to protect their homes through effective policies is an important lesson I took from the panel. Luckily for D.C. it sounds like they have a lot of good laws in place to protect the tenant

JP: We've seen through examples like the Wah Luck House [in Chinatown] that sometimes these fights take many years. I hope in the future that it won't be so hard.

AA: I'm hopeful. The panel actually really helped with that!

JP: It presents a good blueprint for that kind of collaboration to take place. It'll be interesting to see how the 11th Street Bridge project moves forward.

AA: Indeed. I think it's in a very preliminary stage which may mean I should temper my excitement just a little. Regardless, it sounds like they're doing everything right.

Housing


When housing mixes rich and poor, it's not instant harmony

To make cities inclusive for everyone, individual neighborhoods need to welcome people of many incomes. Unfortunately, that's not always an easy task. A recent panel discussed some obstacles to this important goal, such as how mixing rich and poor can create unexpected conflict.


Photo by Culture:Subculture Photography on Flickr.

The promise of mixed income

Mixed-income development aims to combine housing for low-income people with market rate units for higher earners. Part of the idea is that the wealthier neighbors create a higher tax base for an area, and their purchasing power attracts more retail and other services. That means more stores, parks, and jobs for everyone, including low-income neighbors. It's an attractive idea, for sure.

Plus, recent studies by Raj Chetty and Eric Chyn show that low-income children who grow up in mixed-income neighborhoods make more money throughout life—16%, in Chyn's study—than those in entirely low-income areas. Keeping poverty concentrated is a recipe for more poverty, while mixed-income could show a way out.

There are many examples of mixed-income buildings across DC. One, the Jefferson at Marketplace development, is near where I live in Shaw. Not too long ago, the Kelsey Gardens complex sat on the same block, offering 54 units of Section 8 affordable housing to low-income residents.

When redevelopment planning began, Kelsey Gardens residents were able to use their collective rights under DC's Tenant Opportunity to Purchase Act (TOPA) law to buy the building and negotiate to preserve their 54 units within the 281-unit final building.

A lot of people feel that this must be the model for how to ensure opportunity for everyone. A city can't just be diverse in its mix of people across the city if individual neighborhoods are highly segregated.


Photo by the author.

But... combining two extremes can lead to problems

There are challenges, however. Having people who can afford $4,000 rents living in the same hallway as some of the poorest residents can lead to clashes, panelists pointed out at the Urban Land Institute's recent Real Estate Trends conference.

For example, wealthy residents might call the police on teenage sons and daughters of low-income neighbors as they gather with friends. Adrianne Todman, executive director of the DC Housing Authority, said that she and her office too often have to deal with such conflicts, with both wealthy and low-income neighbors blaming and maneuvering against the other.

At one particular development Todman cited, it took years before the residents "finally accepted that no one was going anywhere," she said.

Derek Hyra, a professor at American University, said that this is evidence of "micro-segregation." He has researched how even seemingly diverse areas turn out to be entirely segregated on closer inspection, and have all of the conflicts that come with such segregation.

This also causes "political displacement," Hyra said, where within buildings, decision-making power about amenities and services is often unbalanced toward higher-income tenants. Neighborhood-wide, newcomers get elected onto Advisory Neighborhood Commissions and through their influence begin to shift the makeup of the neighborhood towards their own interests and incomes.

The panelists don't think the answer is to give up on mixed-income; rather, there are ways to make it work. Hyra said this kind of growth "must be done in a way that minimizes displacement and encourages meaningful social interactions among race and class." Vicki Davis, president of Urban Atlantic Development, added that developers need to think about how to "focus on integration and production in balance."

After a while, people do get to know their neighbors and build relationships. They overcome these obstacles, as Todman pointed out has happened in her agency's buildings. It's just that this takes time, and as Hyra mentioned, the building managers can take steps to help this process along.

One possible solution: The middle class

One suggestion from the panel was to incorporate middle-income residents into mixed-income buildings. Rather than simply force two dramatically different income groups together, the interests and needs of the middle would form a bridge between the two. Davis also mentioned how younger and middle income people often place higher value on diversity and are more interested in inclusive communities.

The problem is this mix is just not showing up—at least not yet. The obstacle, the panelists said, is economic. The profit on luxury units makes it worthwhile to build a large building on expensive land, while there are tax subsidies and other government programs pushing low-income units. But that leaves out middle-income households.

Some "affordable housing," such as that built under DC's Inclusionary Zoning law, is "workforce" housing, such as for people making 80% of the Area Median Income. This is good and needed, but as many activists point out, IZ units are only useful for the middle class and leave the lowest-income households out entirely.

In the end, because of the our current policies and economics, we get luxury + deeply affordable, or luxury + middle income. Rarely if ever do we see luxury + middle income + deeply affordable.

Cities and counties in our region and around the nation will continue to experiment with the best way to build truly mixed-income communities. The benefits are clear; making it work will take practice and creativity.

Events


Events roundup: Movies and more

Take an evening to relax and enjoy a documentary (or two)! The Summer in the City film series kicks off tomorrow with an illuminating look at public housing in America in the 1950s and 60s. If movies aren't your thing, RSVP for a reception to honor 50 years of the Urban Mass Transit Act.


Photo by Pruitt-Igoe Myth on Flickr.

Pruitt-Igoe on the big screen: Watch the tale of the infamous St. Louis public housing development and the residents who share their experiences and challenges living in public housing in the 50s and 60s. This film is the first of five films the Housing for All campaign is showing this summer. It starts at 6 pm, Wednesday, July 2 at the Southwest Library at 900 Wesley Place SW.

After the jump: Transportation Tuesday at APTA, more movies, and a women's health and biking workshop...

Happy 50th, UMTA! The American Public Transportation Association will be hosting a presentation and discussion to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the Urban Mass Transportation Act of 1964. The act has played a pivotal role in the mass transit renaissance in the US in the last half-century.

The event is July 8th at 1666 K Street NW, 11th Floor. A wine and cheese reception will begin at 5:00 pm, with the presentation and discussion to run from 5:30 pm to 6:30 pm. Please RSVP to Cynthia Owens at cowens@apta.com or 202-496-4851.

The Legend of Disco Dan: This film follows infamous graffiti artist Cool "Disco" Dan as he discusses the changing city he once marked. The documentary highlights the culture of DC during the crack epidemic and the evolution of Go-Go. See the film at the MLK Library, 901 G Street NW, on Wednesday, June 9th at 6:00 pm.

Biking and Women's health: Ladies! Join WABA's Women & Bicycles initiative to talk biking and women's health in Georgetown. Women's Health Expert and Roll Model Laurie from Proteus Bicycles is hosting a skillshare on women's health and biking on Sunday, July 13 at 1:00 pm at the Georgetown Library, 3260 R St. NW.

Do you know of an upcoming event that may be interesting, relevant, or important to Greater Greater Washington readers? Send it to us at events@ggwash.org.

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