Category Archives: FGC Activities

FGC Nearing 30 and Still Going Strong

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FGC Co-op President LaDora Brock

Although the buildings were erected in 1955, Florian Gardens did not become a tenant-owned property until May 1989. As the property is nearing its 30th year as a co-op, the estate which sold for $550,000 is now worth millions.

To convert or not to convert. For several months, the board of directors has been discussing with management the feasibility of converting FGC from a low-equity to a market-rate co-op. Purportedly, the primary benefit of a conversion would be the equity return. While the profit from selling a unit under market-rate would far exceed the return residents now receive when they vacate, the possibility of suddenly incurring a monthly carrying charge that is significantly higher than what is currently being paid to achieve that result is unappealing to many members. Residents who were with FGC from the beginning will tell you that the purpose of purchasing and converting the Florian Gardens complex was to preserve affordable housing for themselves and other District residents.

At a special meeting on Tuesday, October 11, 2016, members got the opportunity to weigh in on the discussion. Although there was less than 100 percent representation by the membership, the turnout was impressive.

Continue reading FGC Nearing 30 and Still Going Strong

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FGC Welcomes the New Year

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‘Twas the night before Christmas. The temperature outside was 64 degrees, but inside the old buildings where units lack controllable thermostats and cooks were busy preparing side dishes for the next day’s meal, it was hot as h#*l. The uncommonly warm December weather forced many residents to run their air conditioners. Ahhh!

But wouldn’t you know it, someone was not feeling the holiday spirit. A grinch stole one of the packages left by UPS in Building ’28. Another (or perhaps the same grinch) vandalized one of the Christmas ornaments in the lobby. It’s too bad that some people are so miserable in their life that they could care less about spoiling the joy for everyone else.

Continue reading FGC Welcomes the New Year

The Meters Are Coming! The Meters Are Coming!

Parking Meter

“The meters are coming!” That’s probably how Paul Revere would have shouted it, but I’ll just say, “Listen up. Parking meters are coming to a street near us.”

First Georgia Avenue and now Peabody Street. Don’t make me dig out my notes, but as I recall, at one of the numerous meetings that Walmart and city officials held with neighborhood residents, prior to the opening of the store, we were told that there would be several free parking spaces on the south side of Peabody Street adjacent to Walmart.  Well, that may have been true when Walmart opened its Georgia Avenue store seven months ago, but guess what. Parking meters are being installed in front of each of those “free” spaces. Perhaps that move, obviously intended to bring the city additional revenue, will force customers who prefer street side parking to utilize Walmart’s underground parking garage.

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It’s spring cleaning time and the FGC board has been working with a legal counsel to update some of the co-op’s outdated governing documents. Meanwhile, out in FGC’s parking lot, some uncooperative members continue to violate parking regulations. With the average cost of one and two BR units in DC ranging from $1000 to $1500 and up, one would think that all FGC members would follow the co-op rules and do your part to facilitate the effort of board members who strive to run an efficient operation. If you think no one is keeping track – think again. If you are one of the people who believes that rules and regulations apply to everyone else, consider the following quote by Franklin D. Roosevelt, “Rules are not necessarily sacred, principles are.”

 

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He Put A Ring On It

EricaBest wishes to FGC member, Erika Mercer-Epps, who got her M-R-S last weekend and now has a new name. Since many contemporary women — whether married or single — reject the title Mrs. in preference to the neutral alternative Ms., I’ll move on from my corny reference to titles and simply say  … Congratulations to the newlywed couple. Erica has promised to share some wedding day photos with us. Perhaps in the next blog post. Rings And on a different subject — some words about Listservs. Subscribers to various Listservs know that electronic mailing lists are an excellent and diverse source of information, especially concerning activities in the neighborhood. However, the downside to being a Listserv subscriber (especially to more than one) is that emails fill up your inbox faster than hot kernels turn to popcorn. Neighborhood Listservs contain information and discussions about nearly everything. They somewhat resemble a scaled down and modified version of Craigslist. Here are some of the topics that subscribers discuss:  reports about crime; inefficient city services, like trash trucks not showing up on schedule; local politics and politicians; yard sales; search for babysitters, nannies, roommates, and housing to rent or being rented; raccoon sightings, pets lost or uncollared dogs running loose; deaths of neighbors, and other miscellaneous subjects.

Thanks to my not so bright idea to subscribe to several Listservs, my primary email box stays busier than Georgia Avenue during rush hour. Over the years, I’ve gone from accumulating an average of 60 emails a week to over 100 emails daily. Add to the Listserv — correspondence from friends and associates, businesses, and junk email like newspaper coupons, and anyone can accumulate enough data to start a virtual library. For all of you Listserv junkies and avid consumers of information who also suffer from inbox overflow, I am going to share this tip:  How to quickly clean out your Inbox without reading every single email.

  1. After opening your Inbox, press and hold the Ctrl (control) button
  2. Beginning at the top of the page, scan the addresses in the From column and in the corresponding Subject column.
  3. As you move your eyes down the rows, if you see an unfamiliar email address, or if the subject line does not peak your interest, select (click) that line and continue moving down the list while holding the Ctrl key. If you come across an email that you want to keep to read later just skip it, do not select it. Move on to the next email. The purpose in continuing to hold down the Ctrl key is that it will allow you to skip lines; unlike holding the Shift key while doing this procedure. You do not want to hold the Shift key while selecting, doing so selects every line.
  4. As you proceed down the list, don’t stop to open any emails that you have not selected. When you have reached the end of the list, while still holding the Ctrl key, select Delete. All of your undesired emails will then be deleted simultaneously and those that you did not select will be left in place for you to read. If you accidentally deleted some emails that you did not intend to Delete, locate them in your “Delete” file and restore them to the inbox.

 

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How’s your FGC IQ?

The saying “No news is good news” would probably make your day if you are a fugitive on the FBI’s 10 Most Wanted List. But law-abiding and concerned FGC members welcome information that is relevant to where they live. So, while the news drought continues at the co-op,  your resident historian is taking the opportunity to provide some FGC trivia.

If you are a veteran FGC member you can probably answer many of the questions below lickety-split. Members who joined the co-op after the conversation can use this Q&A quiz to learn some of FGC’s history. Challenge yourself by making a good effort to answer the questions before you look at the answers.

  1. What Reality Company managed Florian Gardens before tenants purchased it and who was the property manager?
  2. The first FGC newsletter, pecked out on an IBM Correcting Selectric typewriter and distributed door-to-door, was published prior to the purchase of the FGC property. In what year was the first FGC newsletter published?
  3. Name the first two people from Project WISH who served as consultants to guide FGC through the purchasing process.
  4. Name of the well-liked, Fourth District Police Officer who helped FGC form a Neighborhood Watch group in 1986.
  5. Name the first president of the Florian Gardens Tenants Association (Note – the Tenants Association, not the Co-op.)
  6. Name the high-profile Chairwoman of the Kenilworth Parkside Management Corporation who addressed Florian Garden’s general meeting in November 1986.
  7. Originally only two of FGC’s buildings had laundry rooms. Which building did not have a laundry room until after the co-op was renovated?
  8. What month and year were the kitchens in each unit completed gutted and in-place renovation begun?

Answers:

  1. Washington Reality Company and Braxton Young
  2. April 1988
  3. Paul Battle and Martha Davis (later joined by Linda Leaks and Rozanne Look)
  4. Officer Eartha Hicks
  5. Derrick Williams
  6. Kimi Gray
  7. 5928
  8. August 1990

Project WISH Crew

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