D.C. news in brief

June 25
Groundbreaking for First Street Tunnel is set for Friday

Mayor Vincent C. Gray (D) and D.C. Water General Manager George Hawkins will hold a groundbreaking for the First Street Tunnel, First and Channing streets NW, at 10 a.m. Friday.

When finished, the tunnel will be almost six blocks long and Metro-size and will hold up to 6 million gallons of combined sewer overflows — wastewater and stormwater runoff — to give flood relief to the Northeast Boundary area of the District, including the Bloomingdale and LeDroit Park neighborhoods.

For information, go to www.dcwater.com.

FoodCorps to work with D.C. schools on better food choices

FoodCorps, a nonprofit group and AmeriCorps grantee, is placing 13 of its members in D.C. public schools and community-based organizations during the 2014-2015 school year to teach and encourage better nutrition.

The group will work with teachers on lessons in cafeterias, classrooms and school gardens to identify best practices for nutrition education, such as taste tests and garden-based activities.

The D.C. Healthy Schools Act of 2010, which aims to reduce obesity and push better food choices among D.C. students, mandated school gardens and farm-to-school efforts to provide students with fresh fruits and vegetables. The new program is part of a partnership with the Office of State Superintendent of Education to implement the act.

For information, go to osse.dc.gov.

City seeks proposals for U Street/Uptown redevelopment

The District government is seeking proposals for the redevelopment of the historic Grimke School, 1923 Vermont Ave. NW, and an adjacent District-owned parcel at 912 U St. NW. The two parcels, in the mid-city U Street/Uptown neighborhood, are near major thoroughfares, multiple bus stops and the U Street Metro station.

The District is looking for development plans compatible with surrounding neighborhood development, community preferences and the project’s proximity to mass transit.

The Grimke School building is 52,000 square feet with about 14,850 square feet of lot area that houses the African American Civil War Museum and provides off-street parking. The U Street parcel, currently used as a parking lot, is about 5,900 square feet.

The request for proposals is available at dcbiz.dc.gov. Responses are due by July 29. After a review process, which may include a further request for a best and final proposal, a developer will be selected by winter.

Nominations sought for Mayor’s Arts Awards

The D.C. Commission on the Arts and Humanities is seeking nominations of artists, organizations, art patrons and arts teachers for the 29th annual Mayor’s Arts Awards.

Categories are artistic discipline, emerging artist, service to the arts, contribution to arts education, innovation in the arts, and teachers in the performing arts, visual arts and language arts fields. Full-time arts teachers in the District and city residents and nonprofit groups are eligible for the teaching awards. Nominees must reside or have a street address in the District. Individuals and groups may nominate themselves or others.

Nominations are submitted through the arts commission’s online grants application portal at wapo.st/artsgrants.

Nominators will need to create an account and password. Work samples, support materials and a biographical résumé of the nominee are required. The deadline is July 11. There will be a fall ceremony to announce the winners.

For information, e-mail steven.mazzola@dc.gov or call 202-724-5613.

Group offers mentoring program for girls in grief

Left Behind, a nonprofit group that provides grief support and mentoring services to girls in the Washington area who have lost a parent or sibling, is accepting students for its mentoring program in September. The mentoring programs and services are free.

The program is open to girls in grades six through 12. To enroll, participants must submit a parent and participant form along with a copy of the most recent report card.

For information, go to www.facebook.com/alegacyleftbehind, www.twitter.com/alegacylftbhind or www.instagram.com/alegacyleftbehind.

— Compiled by Terence McArdle

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