Wednesday, December 02, 2009

Autoparts on Florida, and a Look at an Intersection

As I was waiting for the bus this morning I ended up talking to a neighbor about a new store moving in on the northeast corner of Florida and Montello. The discussion made me think about all the changes we see everyday, and sometimes don't even consider. Here's the result:
This is a 2006 photo (the building pictured is now yellow) of a building at the corner of Florida and Montello. An auto parts store is moving into the space. If this seems like a slightly odd place (no parking, Autozone 3 blocks away, ect.) for such a business you aren't alone. The place has been vacant for several years. At one point it was a drycleaner. Since then others have talked about opening a few different things, including a daycare. Right across the street you have a carryout (Eli's), a liquor store (Brother's), and a corner store (Darby's). Eli's and Brother's have both been there a while.
Darby's was a corner store before, but had closed down for a few years, and only recently reopened. I'm told the old name for the intersection (where 12th, Montello, Florida, and K Street all meet) is "Five Points."
The rounder looking callbox you see immediately above was taken out by a kiddie car thief a while back, but the nearby one is being transformed into public art as part of the Art on Call project.
At the corner of 12th and K you have Eastern Plumbing (which mostly seems to sell to professional plumbers).
Several years ago was walking home and found much of the block roped off with police tape. A you guy (I think he was 19) had been caught up in a drug bust over by Orleans. Because he was on probabtion he thought it would be a good idea to outrun the cops. They gave chase, but quickly called it off. But he didn't stop running. He drove at high speed through a red light, and killed two you siblings who were walking with their father. They were waiting on a new tire from Jimmy's Tire.
Jimmy's Tire used to stand across the street at 1215 K, but it was destroyed in a fire a couple of years back.
The fire started during the repair of a collapsed rear wall. The wall collapsed after a team excavating for nearby condos/townhomes dug too close to the structure.
The condos themselves are interesting. They are prefab structures. Here they are when they first arrived in town and were just chilling at the Florida Market.
Before they planned to build the townhomes (Capitol Hill Oasis), the idea was to construct a museum for the Negro Baseball League. They even had a "groundbreaking." But what was there before?
An interesting building that was long vacant. this shot is from 12th Street looking east. There were a couple of other attached structures on Florida. Apparently one used to be a funeral home, and a nightclub was located next door. A neighbor told me the running joke used to be that you could dance all night, and be buried the next day.
Here you see the temporary view (after the demolition, but before the townhomes went up).
Overall the block is pretty quite (except for traffic noise). Here's a couple of other photos to help give a sense of place.
While we're on the topics, if you haven't checked out the old maps on the Trinidad DC website you should. Click on them to view larger versions.


Anonymous said...

I live so close to the five points and yet have never even met Bill Cutting.

Kenny G said...

Nice post, Elise.

Anonymous said...

Speaking of the Autozone, is it true that the city owns that lot? Are there any plans for it?

Also, does anyone know what the plan is for the 1100 block of H St, which is referenced on the H Street Main Street website?

Liz said...

Inked -- Great post.

Michael said...

Elise -
Great photos. Any idea what the status on Oasis is? It has been wrapped in barbed wire for at least a year. Got any intel? I've called the cops a few times concerned about tresspassers and construction work late night. Anyone?

Chris said...

Bravo. You do the neighborhood a great service.

Anonymous said...

Sure would have preferred that old building (even as a shell!) to the weird "Oasis" prefabs.

The website is really strange, but not as strange as some of the floor plans. They just seem quite bizarre to this admitted non-architect:

danielle said...

I don't get Carquest either--where is the need? And their big semi truck was parked in the alley behind the shop yesterday. Not unloading, just parked for hours in our residential alley. Apparently they can't respect the neighbors and park on the street in front of the store. Yeah, I reported the illegal parking to 311. After all the illegal construction that went into renovating that space I am not surprised...

Anonymous said...

You're right that the Oasis floorplans are wierd, but you actually posted a link to the un-built adjacent condo building. Here's the link for the first two floors of the townhouses:

And floors 3-4:

Anonymous said...

(actually, it turns out the 1st/2nd floor plans and the 3rd/4th floor plans are on the same page, just scroll down)

Richard Layman said...

nice post.

H Street CDC owns the autozone site.