D.C. Seeks Residents’ Input on Comprehensive Plan

Posted September 20, 2005 at 4:14pm

Washington, D.C., leaders are inviting residents to take a trip into the future.

The D.C. Office of Planning will kick off an interactive set of workshops today designed to get resident feedback on citywide issues such as affordable housing, transportation and even neighborhood shopping.

Organizers hope that feedback will determine what is included in the District’s Comprehensive Plan, which will provide an outline for future district development.

“We’re doing it with the ideas and suggestions from the citizens,” Charles Graves, the District’s deputy director for long-range planning, said of the plan. “We’re not doing this plan just for us. We are actually doing it for the next generation.”

Based on issues raised by residents during meetings in January, the workshops are the second set sponsored by the Office of Planning, Graves said.

During the workshops, residents will be given a “passport” and will travel to stations set up throughout the room, each representing an issue brought up during the January meetings, Graves said.

“We’ve taken those ideas, suggestions and recommendations and put those into questions to affirm that this is what the residents of Washington want in terms of policies and ideas,” Graves said.

As residents complete activities set up at each station, their passports will be stamped and they can earn prizes, Graves said.

About 500 people attended the first set of meetings, Graves said. The Office of Planning is hoping to double attendance this time around, he added.

“We’re really trying to get the opinions, ideas and even new ideas from the citizens,” Graves said. “They can come in and voice their opinions and get back to what they need to do. Or, if they want to spend some time talking with the staff, there will be time to do that.”

After the workshops end, city officials will begin to formulate a draft of the Comprehensive Plan. They will hold another series of meetings to get resident feedback on the draft itself before presenting it to the City Council for adoption in the spring, Graves said.

The workshops are set to run from 6 to 9 p.m. Locations:

• Tonight: Kelly Miller Middle School, 301 49th St. NE

• Thursday: Thurgood Marshall Center, 1816 12th St. NW

• Sept. 27: Eastern High School, 1700 East Capitol St. NE

• Sept. 28: Woodrow Wilson High School, 3950 Chesapeake St. NW