In case there was any doubt about how the Citizens Association of Georgetown feels about the upcoming Georgetown University Campus Plan, CAG sent a special edition of their newsletter to approximately 4,000 area residents last week.
Entitled “GU vs. Neighborhood,” the ten-page letter laid out CAG’s opposition point-by-point to the Campus Plan, which the University is required to submit to the District of Columbia every ten years.
CAG points to five main areas of the plan that concern them the most: an increase in student enrollment, no additional housing on the “traditional” campus, the construction of the proposed 1789 block, the building of an 83-foot smokestack, and adding 700 parking spaces to accommodate anticipated additional traffic to the campus and hospital.
In a section attacking the University for trying to increase enrollment but not adding on-campus housing, the newsletter states that 48% of homes in Burleith are rented—often to students—and 113 houses in Georgetown have been converted to houses used by students. Despite these concerns, CAG continues to oppose the 1789 block plan, which would add 120 beds in the area surrounded by Prospect, 36th, 37th, and N Streets.
The newsletter also raises fears of increased crime in the area due to having more students living in the neighborhood. To illustrate their point, CAG included an infograph detailing the instances of 911 calls in close proximity to student housing. (This may have to do with the Burleith Citizens Association and CAG encouraging residents to call 911 on students.)
Not to appear biased, CAG included part of a column from the Voice’s Kara Brandeisky to express the students’ opinion on the issue. CAG, however, opted to not include the parts of the column that supported the Campus Plan.
CAG is currently encouraging residents to contact their elective representatives—including Mayor-elect Vince Gray, who recently said he was open to having more students at DC universities—to express their opposition to the plans.
In order to fund their opposition, CAG is accepting donations to their “Save our neighborhood” fund. The minimum recommended donation on the newsletter is $300.