04 Apr 2024


Hill Buzz

It’s double cherry time! Thank you for tagging us, @districtinbloom!

By the time I’m done with this Hill Buzz, it’ll probably be raining again–– maybe even ice chunks! What’s been happening?

Unless you live under a rock (and oh, how I envy your cozy newsless abode), you have been at least aware that the District government has been hard at work with a new budget, which was unveiled Wednesday. While this is not a final draft and there is still wiggle room, the budget is a depressing one this year because something has to be on the chopping block due to big constraints in spending. In the initial budget proposal, it looks like the DC Circulator is on the chopping block for good, unless the word “eliminated” has the potential for future recovery (doubtful). Washington City Paper’s Alex Koma focused on what is getting cut on this Twitter/X thread and in an article here and here.

The day before, there was a council meeting to discuss the $515 million dollar deal with Ted Leonsis and Monumental Sports and Entertainment so they can stay put and grow in Gallery Place. Sam Collins of the Washington Informer covered this meeting meticulously. (And as a side note, it bears emphasizing that the MSE deal funds would come from capital funds and not from the operating budget, which is what the yearly budget is all about. It’s still all money, though.)

Looks like Ashkenazy may develop the very large parcel of land that contains the slowly-dying Hechinger Mall. Urban Turf shared some very April Fool-looking renderings along with some of the details of the deal. But frankly, we’ve seen what Ashkenazy has done before (most notably, taking poor care of Union Station) and we are not exactly enthused by the idea. (links here, here and here)

HUGE congratulations to Hollis Silverman and Eastern Point Collective restaurants for making it to the finalist round of this year’s James Beard awards in the Oustanding Restaurateur category! Another HUGE congrats to Michael Rafidi of Albi, for Oustanding Chef! We’re so lucky to live in an area where there is so much talent deserving of recognition. Check the whole list of finalists at the James Beard Foundation site.

Harvest Tide and sister restaurant Coastline Oyster Co., formerly owned by Danio Somoza of Lewes, DE, are now both closed permanently. Coastline Oyster has been awaiting for new ownership for a few months now. Capitol Hill Corner

Meanwhile, bollards and other safety measures around Eastern Market have been delayed. Hill Rag

Looks like it’s curtains for Turning Natural at 14th and H NE. That’s too bad. PoPville

And it looks like District Flow Yoga is not going to be accepting ClassPass for the time being. A reader sent us a message she received directly from the yoga studio, explaining that ClassPass users have engaged in unwelcome and abusive behavior toward staff and patrons. A couple of readers also pointed out that other studios are cutting back on their accepting ClassPass. You can read the message below and follow the conversation on Twitter/X here:

A screenshot of a message received by a reader, explaining why ClassPass will no longer be accepted at District Flow.

Beekeeper and friend of the blog Del Voss got some well-deserved recognition this past weekend, when a crowd of delighted and horrified spectators witnessed him and a fellow beekeper moving a bee swarm that had migrated from the rooftop of Union Market to a lamppost on Neal Street NE. You can watch the original video here and you can read an Axios write-up about it here.

Finally, an article about crime around Navy Yard over at the Daily Mail.

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