The Advisory Neighborhood Commission (ANC) are hosted by local government councilmen through the District of Columbia Home Rule Act held a meeting for Ward 2C better known as Gallery Place or Chinatown to address the large amount of food truck trash and the infamous rat infestation problem.
Ward 2 Liaison, Richard Livingstone, spoke on Mayor Muriel Bowser’s behalf at the meeting on Nov. 13, 2017.
Livingstone said, “Rats are a huge problem.”
Directly acknowledging the issue he came prepared to present solutions. Heavily utilized and trashed alleys will be rebuilt to keep rodents out of buildings. New trash compactors constructed to keep all kinds of animals out will be installed for business or resident use. The mayor will also be doing a monthly walk through for rat sightings to add to her “Rat Stat” data. People of the D.C. community are encouraged to call in rat sightings due to barrows being found thanks to the pervious calls.
With only a small attendance of about ten people only one was an actual resident of the area. Resident, Howard Marks, raised the question of the food truck trash being an issue.
Councilman Kevin Wilsey said, “I agree, food trucks are an issue.” Livingstone noted this so he may bring it to the mayor’s attention.
The council has made an effort to promote proper trash disposal by placing numerous recycling pamphlets on a table before entering the meeting.
On a positive note this has not stopped businesses from wanting to open in the area. There are about 794,000 results on Google when Washington, D.C. gentrification is searched. Gentrification is the process of improving an area until it conforms to the middle-class economy.
Majority of this meeting attendees were business representatives or owners that will be launching a location within Gallery Place. The council had a few concerns. The first one was Circa restaurant presenting a permit that allows them to play music until closing hours but their representatives ensured the council this establishment is strictly a restaurant and does not turn into a dance club at night.
Resident Marks warned these businesses with claims of street performers causing him to walk into the street to get around them on the intersection of 7th and H Street in front of the Gallery Place Metro station.
Councilwoman Theresa Harrison agreed. Which raised more of the council’s concerns on how does the businesses plan on keeping their guest from loitering on the sidewalks to smoke cigarettes or wait for tables to be available. Tips for proper waiting areas within the business were suggested.