December 19, 2022
Good morning, Monday!
🌤 Today's weather: Mostly sunny with a high of 40.
🇦🇷 Congratulations to Team Argentina on the World Cup win!
Today's newsletter is 896 words — a 3-minute read.
1 big thing: A 14th and U makeover
D.C. wants to redevelop the Reeves Center on 14th and U streets NW, someday turning the municipal building into shops, offices, and hundreds of apartments.
Why it matters: This is a prime two-acre site in a bustling corridor, and an opportunity for D.C. to replace an aging landmark with something that fits the booming neighborhood and nightlife surrounding it.
Driving the news: The District government recently reset the process of choosing a developer to overhaul the block.
- Developers have until Jan. 20 to submit new proposals. The city received only two since opening up bids in July 2020.
🌃 State of play: Those previous proposals included a glassy apartment and office space, a food hall, a hotel, and a pedestrian walkway.
- One pitch included a Marion Barry Way in between new buildings, honoring the late four-term mayor who spearheaded the building of the Reeves Center in 1986 to revitalize the U Street corridor.
The redevelopment’s anchor tenant will be the new national headquarters of the NAACP, moving from Baltimore to a D.C. neighborhood rich in Black history and culture.
- Once known as “Black Broadway,” the area suffered after the 1968 riots that arose in the aftermath of the assassination of Martin Luther King Jr.
🔮 What’s next: D.C. plans to pick a redevelopment team in February. The anticipated groundbreaking is in the summer of 2025.
2. 🤧 'Tis the sick season
The flu and COVID-19 might threaten your holiday week.
Why it matters: The post-Thanksgiving surge has already overwhelmed local hospitals, making it all the more important to celebrate safely.
Yes, but: While the pandemic ruined many 2021 holiday celebrations, we have yet to see a similarly aggressive surge of Omicron since.
- Plus, this year we have a new weapon: Boosters specifically created to fight the variant.
State of play: The recent spike in COVID cases has prompted Montgomery County to encourage mask-wearing in indoor spaces and testing before gatherings, noting in a press release that the county’s case rate “is now more than double the recent low on Nov. 28.”
- Meanwhile, COVID cases in Virginia have been rising since Thanksgiving, although all Northern Virginia counties are still seeing low transmission rates.
🧠 Be smart: You can now order four more free test kits from the USPS.
3. 🏈 Commanders fall short
The Commanders lost 20-12 to division rivals New York Giants after late refereeing controversy on Sunday Night Football.
- The last minute was marred by a penalty call on Washington that erased a touchdown — and then a non-call for defensive pass interference that sealed the win for the Giants.
What’s next: Still hunting for a wildcard playoff spot, Washington (7-6-1) plays the 49ers on Saturday.
4. ⬇️ Stat du jour: 40.6%
That’s the amount that residential real estate sales decreased this November compared to the same month last year, according to GCAAR’s latest data.
What’s happening: The frenzied pandemic housing market has cooled down quite a bit, and with interest rates high and inventory low, buyers are taking their time.
Is a new job in your future?
💼 Check out who’s hiring around the city.
- Director, Federal Affairs at National Association of Community Health Centers.
- Business Development Associate at International Republican Institute.
- Director of Public Relations at American Gas Association.
- Senior Manager of Advocacy at DC Charter School Alliance.
- Advocacy Manager, Criminal Justice at Arnold Ventures.
Want more opportunities? Check out our Job Board.
Hiring? Post a Job.
5. Around the Beltway: 🦴 Ma'am, are those bones in your bag?
- Customs and Border Protection agents at Dulles seized giraffe and zebra bones from a person traveling from Kenya last month. The strange souvenirs violate endangered species rules. (WTOP)
- Antisemitic graffiti was found at Walt Whitman High School in Bethesda on Saturday. A similar incident took place last month near Bethesda's Trolley Trail. (Fox5)
- The Commanders have tweaked their Sean Taylor memorial after criticism from fans. In order to better reflect the late safety's signature look, the Nike jersey was replaced with a Reebok one, tape was added to the face mask and cleats, and different socks were added. (NBC4)
- Almost 100 alumni from Rockville's now-closed Robert E. Peary High School visited their former teacher Vincent Gibbs, a.k.a Mr. Christmas, whose usual over-the-top home holiday display is muted this year as he undergoes melanoma treatment. (Washington Post)
6. 😋 We tried the $65 sandwich
👋🏼 Hey, it’s Cuneyt. I once tried a McDonald’s McRib. It was the most vile thing I ever spit out.
So, when I heard about the “Colossal Short Rib Sandwich” at Joy by Seven Reasons in Chevy Chase, I was looking forward to burying that memory.
🏋️ Plus, I was on a mission. Chef Enrique Limardo told Washingtonian that his eye-popping $65 sandwich is estimated to weigh 2.5 pounds.
- Numbers don’t lie: I brought my own scale to the bar, and it read 1.625 pounds!
The experience: In most ways, the McD's McRib and the Colossal Short Rib couldn’t be farther apart:
- This is a beef short rib braised for 16 hours.
- Served on ciabatta with a steak knife through its middle, it’s stacked with pickled onions and smoked cheddar.
- There’s also a dainty pouch with black gloves to keep your paws free of veal demi-glace.
Plus, the colorful restaurant + bar is branded as: “Have fun, Get Crazy, Be Sexy, enJOY…”
👍🏼 Taste test: It lived up to the hype! The sweet and sour flavors were unlike anything I've had with short ribs. It's enough to feed two, but wouldn’t travel well in a to-go box so come hungry.
- Joy's Venezuela-born chef is also behind award-winning restaurants Seven Reasons on 14th Street and Imperfecto in West End.
🥩 One must-try starter for the meat journey: The carpaccio de lomo. The beef tenderloin is served with a blooming helping of petit basque sheep’s cheese.
❤️ Happy Hanukkah, and T-6 days 'til Christmas!
- Need a last-minute gift idea? Send your loved ones the link to subscribe to Axios D.C.
Today's newsletter was edited by Kayla Sharpe and copy edited by Patricia Guadalupe.