October 13, 2010
Present: Commissioners Brown, Dixon, Docter, Hamilton, Richardson, Silver, Wirt
Absent: Commissioner Phelps
The meeting was called to order at 6:58 p.m.
Motion: Ms. Wirt moved/Mr. Silver seconded a motion to accept the agenda as presented. The motion passed without objection.
Motion: Ms. Wirt moved/Mr. Richardson seconded a motion to accept the minutes as presented, with the proviso that corrections will be accepted for one week. The motion passed without objection.
- Treasurer’s Report
Mr. Richardson presented the Treasurer’s Report for September. The opening balance was $105,542.09, and there was an interest payment of $.84. There were disbursements of $382 to Karen Wirt for a reimbursement of payment for the ANC mailbox (Check #1183); $240 to Roberta Weiner for transcribing and preparing minutes for the September ANC meeting (Check #1184); $3000 to Girls in Action for a grant (Check #1185); and $2500 for a grant to the Innovation School of Performing Arts (Check #1138), leaving a balance of $99, 420.93.
Motion: Ms. Wirt moved/Mr. Dixon seconded a motion to accept the September Treasurer’s Report as presented. The motion passed without objection.
Motion: Ms. Phelps moved/Mr. Hamilton seconded a motion to increase the money being paid Ms. Weiner to $18 per hour, to account for a COLA over the time she has worked for the ANC. Mr. Silver said the increase was timely, and that she deserves it. The motion passed without objection.
Motion: Mr. Richardson moved/Mr. Hamilton seconded a motion to approve an expenditure of $264 for payment to Ms Weiner for transcription of minutes .The motion passed without objection.
Motion: Mr, Silver moved/Ms. Wirt seconded a motion to approve an expenditure of $65 to reimburse Ms. Wirt for business cards. The motion passed without objection.
- Community and Commissioner Announcements
Mr. Michael Sindram spoke to the Commission about legislation that would establish a veteran’s court that is now pending before the Council ad he is seeking assistance to get it out of committee. He can be reached at 722-6281. Mr. Silver complimented him on the work he is doing.
Roberta Weiner announced the time and place of early voting prior to the November 2 election.
Award to Mr. Dixon
Mr. Dixon announced that he received a community service award from CSOSA.
Golden Rule Groundbreaking
An announcement was made of a groundbreaking to be held on Friday, October 12 at 1st and L Streets NW, for the Golden Rule apartment building that the ANC had recently approved and is now moving forward.
- ABL Committee
In the absence of committee chair Ann Phelps, Ms. Wirt presented information on two establishments seeking licenses:
Mandu – 453 K Street NE
This is a new application for a full-service restaurant license with a full bar, recorded music and a sidewalk café. Mandu has another location in DC, were 75% of their business is food, and they expect the same at this City Vista location. Mandu has applied for the full hours allowed under the law, consistent with other license holders on the block (Busboys and Poets, and Kushi), but will likely have shorter hours in practice (like other establishments on the block). The application was posted to the Mt. Vernon Square Neighborhood Association and ANC 6C listservs and to another local blog in that area. One positive comment was received. Motion: Ms. Wirt moved/Mr. Silver seconded a motion to support. The motion passed without objection.
The owner, in response to questions, said that there is seating for about 20 people outside, and a mezzanine inside. Seating capacity is 96, and total occupancy load is 104. Their other restaurant is at 18th and S Street NW and is similar. Mr. Silver said he would like to make an appointment with the owner. Mr. Richardson said he had heard nothing but good things about the restaurant. The owner can be reached at 703/674-8943. Motion: Mr. Richardson moved/Mr. Silver seconded a motion to accept the Committee recommendation to support Mandu’s application for an alcoholic beverage license. The motion passed without objection.
Tynan’s Coffee and Tea – 1275 1st Street NE
This is a new application for a tavern license for a limited-service restaurant serving coffees, teas, light foods, beer, wine and coffee-themed specialty drinks. There will be a sidewalk café. The seating capacity is 46, the total occupancy is 75. They also have other locations in the metro area. Motion: Mr. Richardson moved/Mr. Silver seconded a motion to accept the Committee’s recommendation to support the application of a tavern license for Tynan’s Coffee and Tea. The motion passed without objection.
- PZE Committee
Central Union Mission – Massachusetts Avenue and G Street NW
This was a presentation by the Central Union Mission and its representatives—David Treadwell of the Mission, Chris Graae, of Cox, Graae, + Spack Architects; and Kevin Keegan of Brailsford and Dunleavy—of their plans to restore the Gales School property at Massachusetts and G Street NW as a shelter, location for training programs and a place to provide some amenities. The property, to be turned over to the mission by the City, would be developed with no subsidy fees or renovation funding from DC.
The mission plans to provide overnight shelter with a capacity of 150 beds, kitchen and dining areas, and counseling medical and dental facilities. There will be vocational training programs, particularly in the area of food services (in partnership with DC Central Kitchen), and supervised outdoor activities. The goal, according to Mr. Treadwell is to get men off the street and into the mission’s property.
There will be a complete renovation of the 29,40 square foot shell, a new 4200 square foot addition and the conversion of an attic space into a usable 4th story. The roof had earlier been replaced/rebuilt after it had fallen into disrepair. There will also be an outdoor courtyard and a “café-type space”.
The committee expressed concerns about the fence around the property and the use of public space for trash and loading when it can be incorporated into the property.
Mr. Silver wanted to know about the vocational training and was told that it will be primarily food service area, and the training will be throughout the City. He also wanted to know about the fence planned around the perimeter, and was told that men have to be in by 5 p.m. and leave at 7:30 a.m. Mr. Treadwell said they want to be open during the day, and draw people into the building, not throw them out. There are some programs that people use long-term, like for seniors, but able-bodied young men can stay for 30 days, and then go out for 15 days, and then 15 days in, 15 days out. Mr. Silver asked about volunteers and Mr. Treadwell said they had over 1000 per year—doctors, dentists, mentors, reading trainers, etc. Mr. Silver said he would like to tour the facility and even stay overnight. Mr. Treadwell was enthusiastic about the prospect.
Mr. Dixon asked whether they worked with the Gospel Mission. And was told they did. He also asked if Mr. Treadwell would come to the Public Safety Committee as the GPO police are concerned. Ms. Wirt asked how the overflow of men was handled, and was told that they work with other shelters to place them when Central Union is filled.
Mr. Hamilton asked about a spiritual transformation program that Mr. Treadwell had mentioned. Mr. Treadwell said it’s an 18-month program that deals with anger management, drugs, and includes bible study. The men stay in except for training.
Ms. Wirt said that any vote the ANC takes will have to be preceded by a community meeting. There is strong opposition to the project by the Dubliner restaurant. The Committee did not vote on the issue, saying it required more discussion.
Althea Holford of the Department of Real Estate Services (DRES), 478-2428, said the ANC should request to leave the record open so that its views are heard.
Motion: Ms. Wirt moved/Mr. Silver seconded a motion to support the application for transferring the property with the understanding that the shelter will reach out to the community and its residents for comments on the project.
Mr. Hamilton asked whether we would be able to act if we’re not happy with the outcome of the community response? The motion passed 6-1 with Mr. Hamilton in opposition.
100 K Street NE
This is a request for support for a BZA application for special exceptions from the parking requirements and the roof structure setback requirement at a new office building at 100 K Street NE. Christy Shiker, of Holland and Knight, representing the developer, aid that they wished to reduce the number of underground parking spaces from 114 to 94, and the removal of an 18’6” setback requirement. The special exception would not be required if the building had been designed as a block.
The setback requirement is undoable because the building, with two 210,000 square foot “sides” and a center structure with an outdoor courtyard, is not deep enough to accommodate the required setback.
The building will include small retail, and seek LEED Gold certification. The building is central to mass transit and so the reduction in parking spaces is not a problem, according to the Committee.
Ms. Phelps, in whose SMD the building is located, supports the request. Ms. Wirt said that the building backs up against the bus terminal and there are many tall buildings in the area. Motion: Mr. Dixon moved/Mr. Docter seconded a motion to accept the Committee’s recommendation t9 support the BZA application for two special exceptions for the building at 100 K Street NE. The motion passed without objection.
1211 4th Street NW
This is a request for support for a Historic Preservation application for a concept design for the new construction of a three-story residential structure at 1211 4th Street NW.
This is a “sister” structure to a building at 1213 4th Street that the Commission had previously approved. It is being built on the site of a building that collapsed last Christmas Day. The owner wants to start construction a soon as approvals and permits are obtained. A problem was noted that in the drawings the basement windows did not line up with the windows on the upper floors. The developer said it was a problem in the drawings, and would be corrected. Motion: Mr. Dixon moved/Mr. Richardson seconded a motion to accept the Committee’s recommendation to support the request for Historic Preservation approval for the building at 1211 4th Street NW, with the specific request that the basement windows line up with the windows on the first and second floor. The motion passed without objection.
1212-1218 4th Street NW
This is a request for support for a Historic Preservation application for the new construction of two four-story multi-unit residential building and a third-floor addition to two-story apartments. The property is in Ward 2, but it is directly across the street from Ward 6, and it would have a significant impact on SMD 6C02. The HPRB has agreed to keep the record open so that the Commission can comment.
A third story will be added to the historic two-story building at 1212 4ty Street NW, and the four-story building will be constructed to the right of the historic building. Originally, it was planned as two separate buildings, but that would have not permitted the third story additions. There will primarily by one- and two-bedroom units, with some three. Ten parking spaces planned for the rear of the property. The committee recommended that trash receptacles be placed closer to Ride Street to lessen the impact on neighbors on trash pick up days, the possible reduction of parking and an increase in the green space and landscaping.
Historic Preservation has told the architect to 1/ remove the bay window along Ridge Street so as not to distract from the Street frontage to shorten the cornice and straighten the roofline on the 4thStreet side. The committee disagreed with those findings and wants to preserve the architect’s vision of frontage along both 4th and Ridge Streets. There was no neighbor opposition to the plan. There is an empty lot across the street, which will have town houses built on it. Motion: endorse the architect’s original vision of a Ridge Street frontage that includes Me. Dixon moved/Mr. Richardson seconded a motion to accept the Committee’s recommendation to support the request for Historic Preservation approval as presented, and to preserve the architect’s vision of the Ridge Street frontage which includes bay windows, extended roof lines and an extended cornice. The motion passed without objection.
Comprehensive Zoning Regulation Review: PUDs
This section part of a comprehensive rewrite of the Zoning regulations and covers PUDs. The process for approving the revised regulations involves a hearing to take public comment. The hearing will consider general recommendations for conceptual changes regarding planned unit developments (PUDs). The recommendations [propose dividing the regulations for bonus density, public benefits, community involvement, review process and enforcement for all types of proposed processes, a point system for acceptance of public benefits, guidelines for community input and various pre- and post-application requirements. The hearing record is open until November 14th
The revisions are designed to streamline the PUD process and would divide the existing PUD process into three separate parts: clarifying regulations for bonus densities, amenities, public input and the review process. It also recommends a point system for the acceptance of public benefits, guidelines for community input and application requirements.
The three separate processes are: 1/ Type 1 Design Review: no additional density granted (no FAR increase) and no map amendments. It is the least intense. 2/ Type 2 Deign Review- limited bonus density, no map amendments, and the granting of bonus density based on public benefits (limited density increases-more closely related to traditional PUD); and 3/ Type 3 – “Project specific re-zoning” – Design Review, PUD map changes permitted, bonus density (above Type 2) and the granting of bonus density based on public benefits (combines Type 1 and 2 with rezoning – traditional PUD with map amendments).
Mr. Amos reported that the Committee thought that the proposal seems like a 0generally reasonable attempt tot streamline what is now a cumbersome, adversarial and confusing process. It is clear and there is an attempt to define what the process can be applied for and what benefits can be derived.
Committee concerns include
Has adequate public input been sought and incorporated into the public benefits list?
- I am concerned that many of the proposed benefits look good on paper but will in reality be difficult to implement, maintain and enforce. Also, some of the items seem geared towards shifting responsibility for public infrastructure to the private realm. We already pay taxes for maintenance of things like median strips so I don’t understand why this is a public benefit. Other items seem geared towards the advancement of a specific social agenda, which may or may not reflect the values of the majority of our citizens (i.e. why are environment, transportation and housing public benefit categories, but public safety, education and employment are not?). Also, is it appropriate to include public benefits that provide a direct financial benefit to specific private companies (i.e. LEED and ZipCar)? The final public benefits list will need to be carefully drafted and vetted and will require extensive community input (and updated periodically as proposed).
- We should ensure that public benefits proffered are not things that the developer would be doing already without the additional PUD benefit. For example, a new condo developer will likely seek to make streetscape improvements in front of the building or provide Zipcar parking spaces because those items help make the project more marketable. He/she doesn’t need an incentive do those things. The market already demands it.
iii. Has OP considered the cost impact of these revisions? Will this new process cost the taxpayer more or less than the current system? It seems to me that it could involve considerable more time and effort to administer – perhaps the extra cost is worth it but a cost analysis is appropriate.
- Regarding design reviews, if either the ANCs or Zoning is going to dictate issues of design, specific criteria should be put into place so all parties understand the goals and parameters of the process. Creating zone specific design guidelines might be useful.
Ms. Wirt said that the ANC should support the Committee report and that more information be gathered on the point system.
New Committee Members
Bill Crews and Joel Kelty were welcomed as new members of the PZE Committee.
- Grants Committee
Ms. Brown reported that Girls in Action and Southern Baptist Church had requested extension of their reporting deadlines, Girls in Action to May 21, 2011 and Southern Baptist Church to May 31, 2011. The extensions were granted without objection.
Jeri Ingram has requested a grant of $2000 for a program called Innovative Tennis, which provides tennis instruction to 1st through 4th graders at Walker Jones Education Academy. The program provides tennis instruction and teaches the children the importance of fitness, nutrition and the value of discipline, and teaching children the history and significance of the game. The students have already won a citywide tournament. It’s an after school program from 3-6 p.m., and doesn’t require uniforms. Mr. Richardson suggested raising the amount of the grant to $3000. Motion: Mr. Richardson moved/Ms. Brown seconded a motion to provide a grant of $3000 to Innovative Tennis. The motion passed without objection.
- Transportation Committee
Valet Parking at Carmine‘s
Kevin Wilsey has been working with the people at Carmine’s on the issue of valet parking.
They have identified three spaces
Motion: Mr. Docter moved/Mr. Dixon seconded a motion to approve the valet parking agreement with Carmine’s Restaurant. The motion passed without objection.
Mr. Docter introduced Mr. Wilsey who is running to succeed him. He is the General Manager of the Lansburgh, and has worked with the Penn Quarter Neighborhood Association.
Valet Parking Application
Motion: Mr. Docter moved/Mr. Dixon seconded a motion that the ANC adopt the application that was used for Carmine’s for valet parking in public space. The motion passed without objection.
- Community and Commissioner Comment
Mr. Silver said that a bike station had been put in outside Busboys & Poets, and although it is a public space issue, there had been no input solicited from the ANC or the community, Mr. Crews added that he’s not sure there was enough public outreach about the stations. He mentioned the problem at 12th Street and Independence Avenue that had people in that area upset.
Height Act Forum
Mr. Crews announced an event at the Sumner School on October 12th marking the 100th Anniversary of the Height Act.
The meeting was adjourned at 8:30 pm