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Old 12-07-2011, 14:57   #46
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Re: Save the Anchorage In Washington DC

Greetings and welcome aboard the CF, Tom.

Thanks for your informed input.
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Old 12-07-2011, 16:12   #47
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Re: Save the Anchorage In Washington, DC

Tom, Unfortunately the developer and DC government have not updated their proposal and submission to USACE which is the document of record (PN 11-50). The anchorage you address near pier 4 is in an area where boats rarely anchor as it is too far from good dingy docks. Also the larger "Spirit" cruise boats often ask DC Police to move the anchored boats as they interfear with their docking and operations. How can we give up over 8 acres of prime navigatable (anchorable) water for docks... R, Phil
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Old 15-07-2011, 03:44   #48
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Re: Save the Anchorage In Washington, DC

Friday (today) is the last day you my submit you input to the U.S Army Corps of Engineers. If you believe the information provided in the Public Notice PN 11-50 will adversly impact your ability to anchor in the Washington Channel (and I strongly believe it will), you must submit a signed letter stating how it will adversly affect you, to USACE today. You may also faxed the document to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Baltimore District, Fax: 202-727-6072 . Please let your opinion be known, it would be a shame to loose this anchorage.
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Old 15-07-2011, 04:21   #49
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Re: Save the Anchorage In Washington, DC

Thanks for bringing this issue to our attention with Anchor. Otherwise, it might have slid by us. If anchoring rights are lost here in the Washington Channel, which has welcomed vessels for more than 150 years, then no anchorage is safe.

I sent my comments yesterday and hope others will send theirs today, the last day for comments.
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Old 15-07-2011, 14:56   #50
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Re: Save the Anchorage In Washington, DC

I, too, have sent my comments to the Corps of Engineers via email. I believe that in addition to the email, it is a very good idea to fax a signed copy of comments to 202-727-6072 just to be sure your input will be taken seriously.

FWIW, here are my comments:

"Dear Ms. Teresi,

I would like to register my concerns with the proposed plan to de-Federalize one half of the Washington Channel, and to make extensive changes to its physical layout. I am a member of Capital Yacht Club (since 1983) and am an active boater. I hold a 100-ton master’s license (inland and offshore) and have been a cruising sailor for several decades.

My concerns are the following:

1. The Existing Chart is inaccurate re: the “existing mooring field”. In fact, there is no mooring field, and yachts anchor in the Channel. I believe this has already been brought to your attention.

2. The proposed new mooring field (2-pt mooring 30' spacing) is unworkable and dangerous. Two-point mooring of sizable yachts in the Washington Channel with 30' spacing is asking for trouble, both in terms of the difficulty of boats picking up moorings and leaving the field, and in terms of the sometimes violent weather which besets the Channel. Anchored or moored boats are much better off being able to swing to the wind.

3. In effect, the proposal will deny visiting cruisers – U.S. and foreign – the ability to anchor in Washington near the museums and other attractions. The newly proposed anchoring area is clearly an afterthought. It is more open to the weather, it is a long way from the available dingy docks, from the Metro, etc.

4. The proposed public-access piers ("City Pier" and "7th St. Pier") are potentially troublesome and dangerous. The present arrangement allows visitors to walk along the waterfront seawall all the way from the Fish Market to the outer wall of the National War College...about a mile. Fishing is very common along that seawall. The fact that the average citizen cannot “go out on the docks” is really a good thing. Docks can be dangerous for non-boaters, particularly for those who have been partying. Note that Washington Harbor, National Harbor, and Baltimore’s Inner Harbor all do NOT have a public pier, i.e., a dock allowing the public to wander out over the water. In the case of the Washington Channel, public piers are just asking for trouble.

In addition to these four main concerns I would like also to register my strong disagreement with the details and thrust of the letter sent you by the Capital Yacht Club Board of Trustees (BOT) purporting to represent the view of the Club. In fact, the details of the plan have never been fully discussed with the general membership, nor has the membership had opportunity to discuss and to vote on an endorsement of the proposed plan.

The letter also included a misstatement, "anchoring in a Federal Channel is illegal". That is patently untrue. In fact, boats of all types -- pleasure, commercial, fishing, etc. -- have successfully anchored in the Washington Channel for well over 100 years.

Overall, while I believe that the redevelopment of the Washington Waterfront is a good idea and will benefit many people, I think that plans for the resizing and redevelopment of the Washington Channel itself are misguided and fraught with problems. The Washington Channel was authorized by the Congress in the 19th Century and has remained pretty much as originally envisaged for well over 100 years! I see no good reason to make extensive changes to that plan, especially changes which will deny access to visiting cruising boats.

With respect and in hopes the Corps will take these views into consideration before issuing a permit,

William H. Trayfors
Capital Yacht Club
1000 Water Street, SW
Washington, DC 20024"

Bill
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Old 19-07-2011, 05:24   #51
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Re: Save the Anchorage In Washington, DC

I have not heard anything from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers on the status of responses to the Public Notice 11-50.
I attended and spoke against losing the ability to anchor in the channel. It was clear that the Zoning Commissioners had read many of the inputs from concerned boaters. The Chairman and U. S. Park Services member attempted to ask anchor and harbor questions but because of their unfamiliarity with boating issues, it was lost in translation. The developer / applicant responded with their (fore / aft mooring at 30 feet) proposal and said there was room to moor 50 boats. The hearing lasted until almost midnite, did not finish, and is scheduled to continue next week.
My testimony is below.
SUBJECT: RESPONSE TO ZONING HEARING FOR PUD 11-03
I wish to respond to PUD 11-03 as it will adversely affect my and other visiting vessels ability to anchor in the upper reaches of the Washington Channel. As currently proposed by PUD 11-03, the developers plan will essentially end all anchoring in the upper Washington Channel. Furthermore the proposed fore-aft mooring system is inconsistent with that used by East Coast boaters and the general boating public who are accustomed to bow-on mooring systems. Additionally, the mooring spacing proposed (30 feet) does not support the size of vessels currently anchoring in the Washington Channel (normally vessels range from 40 to 60 feet) and is not sufficient to moor 12 to 15 boats. I strongly suggest the District of Columbia Zoning Commission not approve PUD 11-03 until such time as these concerns have been addressed and vetted to the boating community at large.
Areas of the upper (North and West) reaches of the Washington Channel are presently occupied by about 12 to 15 anchored vessels of approximately 40 to 60 feet. These vessels are predominately home ported outside of District of Columbia and are often visiting from other countries. Additional verifiable statistics are available from DC Harbor Patrol who requires all visiting anchored vessels to register with them.
I believe with regard to the boating side of the plan, the developers PUD 11-03 reflects a very local perspective and ignores the national (in congressional voting districts) and international aspect of visiting cruisers. These boaters traditionally anchor in the Washington Channel when visiting our Nation’s capital and the world class museums located in the District.
The plan also does not seem to have many slips for the ever increasing number of catamaran cruising boats both local and visiting because of their width and lack of docking facilities, these vessels usually anchor.
The currently installed docks on the east side of the Washington Channel consume approximately 250 feet in width of the waters in the channel. As a result, the navigable upper reaches of the Washington Channel are now only about 450 feet wide. Reducing the channel from 400 feet to 200 feet and extending the docks an additional 200 feet into the channel will leave only 50 feet for anchoring or mooring next to the East Potomac Park. That is simply not enough room and is too close to shore.
If change must occur, I would recommend reducing and splitting the current 400 foot wide channel into two 150 feet wide channels each placed east and west on the outer banks / docks. Then place a mooring field and anchorage sized for 50-60 foot boats using the remaining 150 feet in the middle. This would allow visiting traffic and tour boats to have an unconfused traffic pattern (inbound eastside – outbound west side) and a turning basin just before the Route 395 Bridge.

Taking approximately 10 acres of navigable water from the anchorage and existing Federally controlled channel is fine for those living in DC who wish to live aboard and stay, but what about the visiting cruisers? The Washington Channel is a National asset. National and international cruisers generally don’t like to dock and they rarely take a mooring. These cruisers anchor 70% - 95 % of their time. In summary, I'm against taking the anchorage away from the visiting cruisers and giving it to the developer for docks and boats that are not sea worthy, look like floating barges or shacks, and rarely if ever move.
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Old 19-07-2011, 05:40   #52
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Re: Save the Anchorage In Washington, DC

"In summary, I'm against taking the anchorage away from the visiting cruisers and giving it to the developer for docks and boats that are not sea worthy, look like floating barges or shacks, and rarely if ever move." That is to say, house boats, paying marina residents and local working people who live on them. There is a point on which Flipper really needs to focus. Transients are just that. They are visitors to Washington. And like a visitor that is invited aboard, hospitality is extended and curtisy is expected. It seems odd that folk who travel so far up river from the Chesapeake would whing about traveling from the dingy dock at Buzzards Point or James Creek Marina to the National Mall when a public busstop is no more than 100m from these marinas. Here is a reality check. The South West Waterfront is a two billion dollar development. What kind of leverage do you think people have when said people don't even live here?
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Old 19-07-2011, 05:45   #53
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Re: Save the Anchorage In Washington, DC

Very good statement, Flipper. You covered many of the concerns of boaters in a clear, concise way.

One thing you missed, however: the negative impact the Plan would have on dingy and very small sailboat users. At present, there are sailboat races regularly just north of the police and commercial docks, and small sailboats regularly come up the channel to the 395 bridge and even beyond.

With a narrowed channel as proposed, there would be insufficient room for small sailboats to tack against the wind up the channel, essentially making racing and pleasure sailing extremely difficult or impossible. And, those sailboaters who might try nonetheless to work with a narrow channel would be placing themselves in considerable danger from larger power and sail vessels navigating the channel.

Finally, the scenic beauty of multiple bright white sails playing about the Channel....something all visitors enjoy seeing....would be lost.

Bottom line: THE PROPOSAL TO DE-FEDERALIZE AND NARROW THE WASHINGTON CHANNEL IS MISGUIDED AND ENTIRELY UNNECESSARY.

Bill
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Old 19-07-2011, 05:52   #54
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Re: Save the Anchorage In Washington, DC

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sam Plan B View Post
........Here is a reality check. The South West Waterfront is a two billion dollar development. What kind of leverage do you think people have when said people don't even live here?
Sam, you said it in a nutshell: it's big money against the greater interests of the boating community (meaning, those boats which actually move).

And those "people who don't even live here" are Americans and visitors here to enjoy some of America's great treasures, including the Washington Channel.

B.
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Old 19-07-2011, 06:44   #55
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Re: Save the Anchorage In Washington, DC



Link to presentations and witnesses below:

Washington DC Zoning Commission hearing on 18 July. Use bar to move thru 5 hrs of the meeting.
Zone Commissioners Questions based upon letters received: 1:50 to 1:57
Zone Commissioner U. S. Park Service Member (absent questions): 2:07
Gangplank slip holder’s association group (cross exam to developer’s submission): 2:30
Capital Yacht Club submission in support of proposal: 4:21
Gangplank slip holders association: 4:31
Visiting cruiser concerns: 4:42


Link to 5 hr video below: http://view.liveindexer.com/ViewIndexSessionSLMQ.aspx?ecm=634466576686777919&i ndexSessionSKU=zjEMqttfvftlXExPlVzd6g%3D%3D&siteSK U=Pn3wYrQaZXkrVcHvd4xsfg%3d%3d
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Old 19-07-2011, 06:47   #56
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Re: Save the Anchorage In Washington, DC

Flipper, thanks for attending and keeping us updated. I know there is little chance of succeeding against greed of this proportion, but we must try or there is no chance at all.

Thanks - Greg
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Old 19-07-2011, 06:57   #57
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Re: Save the Anchorage In Washington, DC

Well folks, From an outsider who has seen what happens when big business gets a hold of waterfront. Everyone loses but them. Hope it works out for you.
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Old 19-07-2011, 07:22   #58
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Re: Save the Anchorage In Washington, DC

I believe the National cruisers can keep this anchorage. The waterfront development as presented requires the Federal government to de-federalize the Washington Channel. That requires an act of congress. Last time I checked, DC had no voting member, on the other hand, I see the transoms of the National cruisers (every home port in the union). We need to get the word out to our Congressional representation to vote no on Bill HR 723 and Bill HR 2297. Without the channel, the developer and City cannot move forward as proposed. R, Phil
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Old 19-07-2011, 12:23   #59
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Re: Save the Anchorage In Washington, DC

Congressional Bill HR 2297 needs to be tracked very closely, it is very cryptic and is running a very circuitous route. It was referred to the Subcommittee on Health Care, District of Columbia, Census and the National Archives on 30 June. Make your congressional represenitive aware of these bills and how you feel about them...
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Old 20-07-2011, 11:16   #60
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Re: Save the Anchorage In Washington, DC

I just recieved the following from The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers:

"Comments are still being accepted, although the comment period ended July 15.
As part of our permit process, we will consider all comments received. The
applicant will be afforded an opportunity to review all the comments and
provide a response/rebuttal."

So if you still wish to comment, check the fax number and email address earlier in the thread.
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