Community Engagement Process Required for Francis Field Renovation
Posted: October 4, 2022.
Now that the new fiscal year has begun for the District of Columbia government, the $3 million in the 2023 budget of the Department of Parks and Recreation (DPR) for Francis Field improvements becomes available.
Precisely what will be done has not been determined. Nor has any date yet been announced for the beginning of a Community Engagement process.
Councilmember Brooke Pinto, who made the initial request based on a resolution from Advisory Neighborhood Commission 2A, described the funding's intent as "Francis Field repair and dog park expansion" in a May 2, 2022, letter to constituents.
The office of Mayor Muriel Bowser, in a May 28, 2022, press release, cited it less specifically as "$3 million for Francis Field improvements."
The Community Engagement process for DPR projects is detailed in a publication by the D.C. Department of General Services (DGS) which manages the contracting and construction of DPR projects. (A complete copy is on this website.)
It calls for several "community meetings," the first of which is to be held "before the architect or design-builder is under contract."
The guidelines state that the purpose of this first meeting is to "(1) introduce the project to the community, (2) work with the community to finalize the scope of work of the project, and; (3) explain the transition process with community stakeholders regarding programming/design to actual construction."
Recreation projects for all eight wards of the city were included in the 2023 budget, and most of the projects are considerably larger than the Francis Field improvements in Ward 2. Thus, DGS and DPR have a great deal of planning ahead, and many meetings to schedule.