Come out to Langdon Park on July 11!

The District Department of the Environment would like to invite you to Hickey Run Heroes’ Invasive Species Removal Service Project in Langdon Park.

Happening July 11th, 2015 from 9AM to 12pm. You will have a chance to learn from plant experts about common good, bad, and ugly vegetation in your community as well as how to deal with them. Please RSVP:



Thank you to those who came out Monday night!

Thanks to the nearly 30 people who showed up to testify (on short notice!) at Monday’s Department of the Environment hearing to protest two new auto spray facilities applying for permits to open in our neighborhood. One one person spoke in favor of the permits, everyone else was opposed.

I would especially like to thank Councilmember McDuffie, Advisory Neighborhood Commissioners Debbie Smith-Steiner, Walter Deleon, and Michael Morrison, Friends of Rhode Island Ave Executive Director Kyle Todd, Woodridge South Civic Association President Carlos Davis, and Brookland Neighborhood Civic Association President Tom Bridge.

We honestly don’t know if these permits will get issued or not. But we’ve come a long way in just having a hearing, and then turning out in reasonably large numbers for that hearing. In past years these permits would sail through for approval but Councilmember McDuffie has worked to empower the regulators to hold these hearings and I’m heartened that our community showed up in such good numbers. I’ll keep everyone posted on those permits.

Read Councilmember McDuffie’s full comments after the hearing here.


Neighbors: Act now to prevent auto spray paint shops from opening!

Apologies for the late notice, but I just became aware of this late in the week. We need to show up on Monday evening to prevent two environmental hazards from moving into our neighborhood!

There are TWO auto shops that want to open auto spray paint facilities in our neighborhood. One is diagonally across from the Woodridge Library construction site at 18th and Rhode Island. The other is just over the railroad tracks at 28th and Evarts. There is a real chance the city will deny these permits, but only if the community shows up at the hearing in large numbers.

The hearing is THIS Monday, January 12, at 5:30 PM at the District Department of Environment headquarters at 1200 First Street NE.  If you would like to speak at the hearing, please email Stephen Ours at with your name, address, telephone number, and affiliation (if any) by 4:00 pm Monday.

Locations of the two proposed auto spray paint facilities at 2615 Evarts Street NE and 1736 Rhode Island Ave NE.
Locations of the two proposed auto spray paint facilities at 2615 Evarts Street NE and 1736 Rhode Island Ave NE.

These auto spray paint facilities discharge toxic fumes and are nothing less than an environmental hazard. Again, I apologize for the late notice, but it is crucial that the impacted community testify to the negative impact these businesses will have on our neighborhood. The testimony doesn’t have to be formal – it should speak to, specifically, how you would be negatively affected by a spray paint facility.

Councilmember McDuffie opposes these permits and will be there Monday to testify. Myself and several of my Advisory Neighborhood Commissioner colleagues and other community leaders will also be testifying, but we need large numbers of people to show our opposition.

The details:

  • Hearing Date: Monday, January 12, 2015
  • Hearing Time: 5:30 PM
  • Hearing Location: 1200 First Street NE
  • In order to testify:
    • Email Stephen Ours at with your name, address, telephone number, and affiliation (if any) by 4:00 pm Monday
  • Reference the Permit Numbers:
    • 2615 Evarts Street NE – Permit #6962
    • 1736 Rhode Island Ave NE – Permit #6963

You can read each of Councilmember McDuffie’s letters of opposition if you want more details or information on the grounds on which to oppose these. Rhode Island Ave Letter and Evarts Street Letter.

Written testimony is also accepted, the following came from the public notice for the Evarts Street permit:

The permit application and supporting documentation, along with the draft permit are available for public inspection at AQD and copies may be made available between the hours of 8:15 A.M. and 4:45 P.M. Monday through Friday. Additionally, the draft permit is available on the DDOE website at Interested parties wishing to view the full file at the DDOE office should provide their names, addresses, telephone numbers and affiliation, if any, to Stephen S. Ours at (202) 535-1747.

Interested persons may submit written comments on this subject through January 12, 2015. The written comments must also include the person’s name, telephone number, affiliation, if any, mailing address and a statement outlining the air quality issues in dispute and any facts underscoring those air quality issues. All relevant comments will be considered before taking any final action on the permit application.

A public hearing will be held on this subject at the DDOE offices at 1200 First Street NE, Washington DC on Monday, January 12, 2015 at 5:30 PM. Interested parties wishing to testify at this hearing must submit in writing their names, addresses, telephone numbers, and affiliation, if any, to Stephen S. Ours at DDOE by 4:00 PM on Monday, January 12, 2015.

Comments on the proposed permit and requests to testify at the hearing should be addressed to:

Stephen S. Ours
Chief, Permitting Branch
Air Quality Division
District Department of the Environment
1200 First Street NE, 5th Floor
Washington, DC 20002

No written comments postmarked after January 12, 2015 will be accepted.