|523 - 525 Mellon Street SE|
Yet another group home.
It looks like SOME (So Others Might Eat) is moving forward on their earlier plans to turn this former apartment complex into 51 units of transitional/low-income/affordable/independent housing (or whatever they are calling it this week). I suppose it is only fitting, Ward 7 just got their press release about SOME's new project at the Benning Road metro.
I did a Google search on the Mellon Street property and couldn't find any recent information on the status of this project (surprise, surprise) but I did find an undated project narrative for this site and a request for bids for construction from 2012. I highly recommend reading the project narrative, it is an eye opener I tell you.
|This should be a park|
|Waiting on MLK Ave for the shelter to reopen|
I asked before and I will ask again, "why does my neighborhood have to suffer so yours can prosper?"
Sometimes I feel so helpless (and hopeless) in the face of so many efforts to keep my neighborhood as the designated dumping ground of the city's social service providers that I fantasize about taking a can of gasoline, lighting a match, and setting my house on fire. I really have felt that frustrated with our situation. I'm a strong person but even I have to admit that I have literally broken down in tears in the face of so many obstacles. A shame because there are so many things to love about my home, my neighborhood and my neighbors. I just wish that DC agencies and the city's social service providers and nonprofits would see more here than cheap land and an unending supply of consumers for their grant applications.
Sometimes I feel like my biggest mistake was believing the hype (and the press releases) all those years ago that Ward 8 was finally going to get a real shot at revitalization. Instead we watch Ward 8 home values continue to drop as west of the river home values rise. We still only have ONE grocery store (Giant) and THREE sit-down restaurants (IHOP, Georgina's and Uniontown) in an entire ward of over 70,000 people. Do you know what is at the corner of Martin Luther King Jr. Ave SE and Malcolm X Ave SE in my neighborhood? A Popeye's, a liquor store, and a check cashing company. Not exactly the monument befitting our nation's civil rights leaders.
Why is no one talking about that?! Why are there no panel discussions or tasks force to solve this problem?
There just seems to be so many forces constantly working against us; each one better funded and more connected than the last. It seems like no one is advocating for us, no one is looking out for our interest. I definetly don't see anyone in a position of power saying, "hold up, let this community get some traction economically before we saddle them with yet another transitional facility they can't support. Let's get these people some businesses, with jobs and amneties for their residents. Let's invest economically in Ward 8 because it is part of the city too!"
Lord knows I want to be optimistic but DC you are making it really, really hard.
Ghetto-fication is real.
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