If you planned on getting around by Metro rail this holiday weekend, you may want to re-think your transportation plans. Thanks for Ward 5 Councilmember McDuffie for spreading the word that the Rhode Island Metro will be closed, see the flyer below for more info.
Yesterday we learned that Brookland’s Stone Straw building will likely be sold for development purposes. The building is currently owned by Metro, which uses it to house records and for Metro Transit Police functions. It is located along the Franklin Street Bridge near 10th street NE, beside the Metro tracks.
What you may not know is that the Stone Straw building is the site of the development of the paper drinking straw, as well other wound paper products by the Stone Paper Tube Company. Check out the plaque in the photo set above that dates the building to the early 1930’s.
According to this story in the Washington Business Journal:
The transit agency plans to relocate its…functions currently housed in the 68,700-square-foot Stone Straw building at 900 Franklin St. NE in Brookland…it will also enable it to “dispose of Stone Straw, a long-sought goal, and save substantial capital funds for its repair.” The report describes Stone Straw as a “long-sought development site.”
Metro’s real estate team plans to propose leasing 11 properties the agency owns at stations across the region to real estate developers in the hopes of generating economic activity for its partner jurisdictions and new revenue for the agency.
One of those locations is none other than the 5.4 acres of Metro property at the Brookland-CUA Metro Station. This undoubtedly implies development the “Brookland Green”, an area to the east of the Brookland/CUA Metro parking lot that is the only open green space with mature trees remaining in that part of Brookland. For those of us who are fond of the Brookland Green, this doesn’t come as much of a surprise, since the Brookland/CUA Metro Small Area Plan, approved in 2009, calls for developing the space into a mixed use development. The Brookland Neighborhood Civic Association has long anticipated that the Brookland Green would face the threat of development and has been working to preserve it for years. I am not anti development at all, especially public transit oriented development, but I feel that development needs to be balanced with the preservation of green spaces for a multitude of reasons, not the least of which is that it would be would be a shame to see the large mature trees on the property felled.
This is not a done deal yet though, as the decision has to get past at a meeting of the Metro board’s real estate committee on Thursday. At the meeting Stanley Wall, Metro’s director of real estate and station planning, will propose that Metro solicit development agreements for the 11 properties. If that goes forward, then the Metro’s full board will also have to approve the plan as well. Enjoy the Brookland Green while you can!
All about Washington DC's Greater Brookland neighborhood