Glover Park, Washington, DC

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Update on the Changing Food Scene

Here is an update on the ever-morphing food scene in Glover Park, for better or worse:

MAYFAIR & PINE closed in late March after a very short stint at the former Town Hall location. Owners appeared to blame the residents for the failure (which annoyed some residents), implying that they had no competition, but that their creativity wasn't respected and people only wanted delivery. Whether or not there was any truth to that, they just could not bring in the patrons. The location was not ideal at the south end of the neighborhood.  The food and atmosphere was ok but nothing spectacular. I visited once and there was only one table occupied at peak time on a Friday, and they left when we arrived. It was empty with the big bar TV blaring - kind of odd, and did not feel worthy of a re-visit. The service was great, but the food didn't seem all that creative and was uninspiring. Again, did not feel worthy of a re-visit.

MAX'S ICE CREAM - Max has found out he might lose his lease after 20+ years serving the neighborhood. Max has been renewing his 5-year leases every 5 years and now has received a notice of termination.  Max tragically lost his wife last year yet continued to run the store. Neighbors are up in arms about the turn of events and some have vowed to help him fight to stay. The outcome should be decided very soon as the lease is up June 30th.

MALGUDI - Heritage India has replaced it's smaller downstairs venture, Heritage Asia Thai Bistro, with Malgudi (2400 Wisconsin), another of its ventures on 2/19/13.  They refer to it as a "South Indian Spice Cafe" serving fine south Indian cuisine.


ARCURI is expected to open in the former Kavanagh's Pizza Pub location (2404 Wisconsin) which closed at the beginning of the year, and was preceded by Faccia Luna in the distant past.  The Georgetown Patch describes Arcuri as a casual, Italian-American restaurant.  It is expected to open very soon.


Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Kavanagh's Pizza Pub has closed its doors permanently, as of 1/31/13. Kavanagh's had operated in the former Faccia Luna location (for those long-time residents) since 2004. It was a popular neighborhood spot with a value-conscious menu and decent pizza. The rest of the menu was nothing to write home about, but was adequate for their prices.

There seemed to be fewer and fewer people for dinner in recent years, though it is not clear if business was a factor in closing. The bar remained popular as a neighborhood hangout. Owners made a statement on their Facebook page that they are ready to move on with their lives and spend more with the kids.  The liquor license has been transferred apparently, and a new Italian restaurant is expected to open soon, though nothing official yet...

Concerned about the Wisconsin Avenue Project?

The Wisconsin Avenue Roadway Upgrade Project begun in 2012 and has been ongoing for nearly a year now. Stay up to date on goals and current events at the DC Department of Transportation website on the project: http://www.wisconsinavenueproject.com

The goals of the project are: improved pedestrian environment and safety through wider sidewalks, a pedestrian crossing, and new lighting; and maxize on and off street parking.  The result so far for drivers, though, has been a nightmare, with ongoing construction blockages and the elimination of a driving lane that now funnels traffic into one lane on this major thoroughfare. In addition, drivers have chosen to spill over onto 37th Street through the neighborhood to bypass the terrible traffic situation at certain times of day, and this has caused major bottlenecks though the neighborhood on streets not meant to be used as a thoroughfare to get north and south.  There has been much controversy between supporters and detractors of the project and the approval process guided by neigborhood committees, government officials and neighborhood activists, while certain residents felt they did not have input.  Nevertheless, the project is well underway and expected to be completed this year.

Another aspect of the project is the reconfiguration of the oddly-angled intersection of 37th Street and Tunlaw Rd, the location of much of the spillover bottleneck and cause of ongoing confusion about right-of-way in the four directions. See the unusual proposed design of the reconfiguration at the pic below, showing all 37th Street traffic redirected to a left turn on Tunlaw before rejoining 37th Street at an additional stop sign:



Monday, February 25, 2013

Glover Park "Victory" Gardens

Did you know?...

....that Glover Park's "victory" gardens were part of an initiative started during WWII to encourage citizens to conserve and aid the war effort by growing their own food?  Watch WETA's short video featuring resident Judy Guy.  See garden info at www.gloverparkdc.com/gardens.html


Watch Community Garden on PBS. See more from WETA Neighborhoods.

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Sprig & Sprout Vietnamese Restaurant Opening Soon!

Sprig & Sprout, a Vietnamese pho and sandwich shop, is opeing soon in the former Margarita's Mexican Restaurant space.  Margarita's closed a couple of years ago and the space has been vacant ever since. Sprig and Sprout will feature pho (a rice noodle soup) and rice dishes, as well as banh mi sandwiches. They also will offer egg rolls as appetizers. Soup or sandwiches will have choice of tofu or meat, including pork belly, brisket, flank steak, tripe, chicken and more. The planned opening is any day now (early November) but no announcement yet.  Below is a partial menu - click on it for larger version:

Friday, November 9, 2012

Leaf Collection in Glover Park

City leaf collection in Glover Park begins 11/19.  The neighborhood will get at least two leaf vacuums. The Department of Public Works has instructed residents to put leaves in the treebox area between the sidewalk and the street, not in the street itself, as that can cause a hazard for cars, buses, bikes and pedestrians and will clog sewer drains. The deadline for the first vacuum is Sunday 11/18, for collection between 11/19-12/1.  The deadline for the second vacuum is 12/16, for collection 12/17-12/29. If necessary, we might get a third vacuum between 1/7-1/12. Now of course if they don't come until the end the period, then those leaves in the treebox area will get blown out all over the place after a couple of good storms, but this is the schedule. They have asked for leaves only - no limbs, rocks, dirt, etc... which could damage vacuum equipment.  Can you imagine being one of the rakers who rakes miles and miles of leaves into the street ahead of the vacuum truck? I dread just raking my own tiny square of lawn.  These guys work hard....

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Farmers' Market


The Glover Park farmer's market closes for the season on 11/17/12 - only two more Saturdays this year! Make sure to come by and browse or buy. Lots going on there these days.  See website for events at: http://www.dcgreens.org

Friday, November 2, 2012

Hurricane Sandy

Hurricane Sandy thankfully spared Glover Park from the worst of its wrath. Most residents were expecting widespread power outage, considering we seem to lose power every time the wind blows. It ended up being nowhere near the devastation of the 15-minute derecho storm earlier in the summer. Scary winds peaked for a few hours Monday evening, and a couple of trees came down on Tunlaw Road and W Street, but according to PEPCO outage records only about 100-150 residents lost power and most were back up and running the next day.  The W Street tree did fall on two houses causing significant damage to roof and porch, but did not appear to be a devastating loss and the city had removed the tree within a couple of days. The storm moved north well before Halloween and the hoards of trick-or-treaters were able to enjoy cold but pleasant weather going house-to-house on Wednesday evening.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Mayfair & Pine Open for Business

Mayfair and Pine, a new restaurant in Glover Park, has opened in the space formerly occupied by Town Hall at 2218 Wisconsin Ave. Town Hall had moved up the street to the former Busara location last year. View their website, including reviews, menu and photos at: http://www.mayfairandpine.com/ or at the www.GloverParkDC.com restaurant link at http://www.gloverparkdc.com/restaurants.html  Labeled as a "gastropub", the space largely retains the ambiance of Town Hall and has been getting positive reviews on Yelp.

Shepherd's Pie is nice - lighter and simpler than one would normally expect; spinach dip is excellent.  Kids are welcome, and they have daily specials. Wait staff very attentive and knowledgeable. Interesting draft beer and wine choices. Weekday attendance has been light so go grab a table of your choice and spread out!

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Liquor License Moratorium

Glover Park’s ANC voted to extend the 16-year-old Liquor License Moratorium, while conceding a modification allowing two more licenses. The intense debate will continue to rage over whether the neighborhood should seek to attract businesses or risk continued vacancies with shuttered store fronts. Those opposed to lifting the ban worry about noise and drunken misbehavior, while those in favor see the potential to add to the diversity and vitality of our commercial strip.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Glover Park Resident Explorer Documentary

Glover Park resident explorer and environmentalist Robert Hyman has produced a documentary film after returning from an expedition to the Rio Platano Biosphere Reserve in Honduras. Link to video here: http://skyshipfilms.com/paradise-in-peril


Paradise in Peril Film Description


The Río Platáno Biosphere Reserve, Honduras – home to the highest level of tropical biodiversity in Central America, homeland of the Pech and Miskito Indians, and keeper of hundreds of unexplored archeological sites – is in danger. Non-indians are invading the Reserve from all sides, poaching endangered wildlife and fish, slashing and burning ancient forests to sow pastures, and forcing indigenous inhabitants off their ancestral lands. Paradise in Peril follows an expedition organized to document the destruction of this UNESCO World Heritage Site and collect testimony from the native peoples who rely on the Río Platáno for survival. Fewer than 400 individuals have ever completed this strenuous expedition from the rivers headwaters to the Miskito coast of Honduras.
Please go to http://skyshipfilms.com/paradise-in-peril  or http://vimeo.com/skyshipfilms/paradise-in-peril
to see this short documentary.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Stoddert Field Fencing Removed



The fencing around Stoddert Field finally has been removed after two years of being sequestered during its reconstruction, in tandem with the construction of the Stoddert Rec Center which was completed last year. The baseball/softball diamond has been completely re-built with dugout fencing, benches, backstop and a nice level infield. Unfortunately, the extensive engineering effort to improve drainage at the dugouts and home plate seems to have failed, as that corner remains swampy. Stoddert Field's new turf is amazing - let's hope it holds up to the onslaught of soccer games! The new field backs to a new Stoddert Community Garden, which was created by the efforts of many volunteers led by Glover Park residents Lauren Biel and Sarah Bernardi. This will be a great addition to help children learn about gardening.



The baseball diamond remains fenced but hopefully will be opened shortly so softball and Little League baseball can resume.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Chipotle to open in April!


Chipotle, the popular burrito chain, is planning to open a store in Glover Park in the long-vacant former Pizza Hut space next to the Post Office. at 2338 Wisconsin Ave.

See Chipotle's website: http://www.chipotle.com


And they are hiring now for the Glover Park location: http://www.simplyhired.com/job-id/w7vuwhibai/new-restaurant-jobs/

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Update on Glover Park Property Values

Glover Park houses continue to maintain their value despite the prolonged downturn in the economy and the real estate market nationwide. The chart below shows average rowhouse sale prices, number of annual sales, and percent change year-over-year for the past seven years. No, we are not seeing the double-digit (or even single-digit) gains in average property values that we experienced back in the first half of the decade, but we are not seeing the painful drops in property values that have upset the lives of so many homeowners in the region and across the country. Average prices in 2010 are roughly at the same level compared to the height of the market in 2005; and we've been creeping up ever so slightly since a modest drop from 2005 to 2006.












Why have we fared so well relative the region and the nation? There are a number of reasons:

- The obvious reason is the strong federal jobs market here in DC. While other cities are seeing entire industries decimated, Washington continues to attract qualified homebuyers accepting or keeping federal jobs as well as private sector jobs linked to the operation of the federal government.

- Our neighborhood has seen a bit of a demographic shift in the past 10+ years in which more and more families with small children are staying put rather than moving to the suburbs as soon as their kids are old enough to walk. Also, more and more families with children are buying houses in our area and sacrificing some space for a shorter commute and a vibrant urban (or less suburban) lifestyle.

- Glover Park continues to be a popular rental area near universities and for new workers who view their well-paying jobs as potentially transient and wish to rent instead of buy. Rents have risen significantly since 2000 and rental houses are in great demand, which buoys property values.

- Move-up mobility has decreased due to the tight credit market and lack of equity to roll over, so more and more homeowners are staying put longer. One of the most striking statistics from the chart above is the roughly 40% drop in annual turnover of houses (down to 30 houses in 2010). With a tight supply, and steady (unfrenzied) demand, prices levels will be maintained.

- Rowhouse foreclosures and short sales are rare. We’ve seen a couple of instances in the last few years, but they have not had any noticeable impact on property values. The condo market in the neighborhood has seen more short sales and foreclosures with a bit of an impact on their respective buildings in the short term, but still nothing like the experience of most of the rest of the region and nation.

- The run-up in the market through 2005 sparked a renovation boom. Owners flush with equity or cash from home equity loans felt secure in spending money to do major home renovations, and sellers often felt these renovations could get a good return on re-sale. Back in the 80's and 90's seeing an opened-up kitchen with extended granite counters and stainless steel appliances was a rarity, but now it is commonplace in the neighborhood. This trend helped to raise the average home price.

Will prices rise when the economy finally recovers? I don't have a crystal ball, but much of the eye-popping rise in prices in the early part of the decade was due to the lending free-for-all, in which you could get a mortgage if you could simply prove you had a pulse. The credit market has gone to the opposite extreme now, and it is difficult even for many qualified buyers to finance a purchase. These changes are likely to loosen somewhat in the years to come, but we will not be back to the free-wheeling days until our collective memory is erased and we forget about the crisis. It will happen again - it always does - but considering the magnitude of the economic disaster this time, that will not happen again for a long time to come. The good news is that as long as we don't experience some other major unexpected economic shock, we can feel secure in the value of our Glover Park properties.

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Glover Park Neighborhood Signs


Glover Park has two new neighborhood signs now installed along Wisconsin Avenue! One is at Calvert Street, which you see driving south, and the other is just below W Place, seen driving north into the neighborhood. Neighbors have long discussed the possibility of adding the signs as a visual enhancement and identity for the neighborhood, similar to the Palisades neigborhood signs installed along MacArthur Blvd. years ago. The signs are tastefully done and represent the typical streetscape of the Glover Park neighborhood with old brick and painted rowhouses along a tree-lined street.