The Near SE/SW Community Benefits Coordinating Council (CBCC) is looking for additional task force and board membership to strengthen and expand its work. In serving all of ANC 6D’s jurisdiction, CBCC spans both east and west sides of the largest redevelopment in the city, and is the only local organization with the explicit mission of ensuring that ANC 6D redevelopment sustains social diversity. As the uptick in interest in the redevelopment of the two parcels on either side of the intersection of 4th and M Streets SW suggests, many in Southwest are concerned about loss of several aspects of Southwest’s iconic character, including affordable housing and open space. CBCC seeks to deepen its connection to others working toward similar ends and to engage community members (who live or work in Southwest) in specific projects in order to strengthen the effectiveness of related efforts.

According to its bylaws, CBCC has two distinct missions:

  • “to ensure that ANC 6D sustains neighborhood diversity and improves residents’ quality of life; to participate in negotiating ANC 6D community-benefits agreements” [toward those ends]; and
  • “to address such issues as (but not limited to) creating/maintaining a community center or workforce center or both, maintaining housing diversity, providing quality education and increasing the supply of neighborhood-oriented retail.”

The mission requires a working relationship with the ANC (two commissioners sit on CBCC’s board), as well as working with other community organizations to ensure the broadest impact possible. CBCC sits on several advisory bodies that impact how well redevelopment meets these objectives (for example, Greenleaf Advisory Council, Wharf Development Group and Community Benefits Committee, SWNA Waterfront Task Force) and seeks more active relationships and joint membership with others (e.g., Amidon-Bowen and Jefferson PTAs, Waterfront Village) to reinforce and advance similar interests.

CBCC has helped secure many community benefits, among them: $200,000 from Bernstein Companies toward Randall Recreation Center renovation, and additional programming funds and the organization of a friends group to get the new center off the ground; additional stipends and slots for SW residents for pre-apprenticeship training in conjunction with the construction of the Wharf; a Build First commitment from the City Council in redeveloping Greenleaf. It continues to push for neighborhood-serving commercial development to provide needed services and communal gathering spaces for local residents, and CBCC has a formal Community Benefits Agreement with DC United including seasonal employment and soccer camp slots for SW residents.

CBCC’s PUD Task Force tracks PUDs as they develop in order to identify opportunities for community benefits, and to influence choices in, for example, housing, retail space, and common community spaces that might assist maintenance of neighborhood diversity and other iconic attributes of the community (see “Six Principles to Guide ANC 6D Redevelopment,” The Southwester, November 2015). CBCC testifies routinely at Council and Zoning Commission hearings on matters that affect Southwest and CBCC’s goals (e.g., Comprehensive Plan amendments, PUD applications, Waterways Management Authority, Council performance oversight and budget hearings that affect the community).

The board meets monthly. Other efforts and task forces ongoing meet as appropriate. Call 980-552-0024 for further information or if you want to help.

By: Fredrica Kramer

Vice Chair CBCC

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