WASHINGTON, February 27 –Respect DC condemns the cancellation of a planned meeting between commissioners from Advisory Neighborhood Commission 6C and representatives from Walmart and developer JBG. The meeting, which had been in the works for several weeks, was originally scheduled for 9:30 a.m. Saturday, February 25th. It was canceled with less than 24 hours’ notice after Walmart and JBG found out Respect DC invited local residents to attend.

Since announcing in November 2010 their intention to build a Walmart as part of a proposed development at 801 New Jersey Ave NW, Walmart and JBG have attended only one community meeting that was open to the public. That meeting (held over a year ago in February 2011) happened because of the insistence of Commissioner Keith Silver, whose Single Member District includes the proposed site.

“I don’t understand why JBG and Walmart are so reluctant to meet with and answer questions from residents,” said Bobbi Krengel, a Ward 6 resident and member of the ANC 6C01 Impact Study Group. “They have begun construction on the site without even the most minimal opportunity for input from local residents. It doesn’t make any sense that our elected officials are allowing this project to move forward without any public meetings.”

Respect DC is calling on Walmart, JBG, and ANC 6C to work together to find a new date for a meeting that is open to the public. This meeting would begin a process for local residents to have real input into the development proposed at 801 New Jersey Ave NW. For more information respectdc.org.