Wednesday, January 11, 2012
214 Massachusetts Avenue NE
Present: Commissioners Crews, Dixon, Goodman, Richardson, Silver, Wilsey and Wirt
- Swearing In of New Commissioner
Councilmember Tommy Wells was present to swear in Scott Price (6C04), the Commissioner who is taking the seat of Tom Hamilton, who resigned. The Councilmember spoke highly of Mr. Hamilton’s contributions to the ANC and to the community. He then congratulated Mr. Price and swore him in. Price.
Motion: Ms. Wirt moved/Mr. Crews seconded a motion to approve the agenda as presented. The motion passed without objection.
- Election of Officers and Committee Chairs
Motion: Mr. Crews moved/Mr. Dixon seconded the nomination of Karen Wirt to be Chair of ANC 6C for 2012. There were no other nominations and Ms. Wirt was elected unanimously.
Motion: Ms. Wirt moved/Mr. Crews seconded the nomination of Mark Dixon to be Vice Chair of ANC 6C. There were no other nominations and Mr. Dixon was elected unanimously.
Motion: Ms. Wirt moved/Mr. Richardson seconded the nomination of Tony Goodman to be Secretary of ANC 6C. There were no other nominations and Mr. Goodman was elected unanimously.
Motion: Ms. Goodman moved/Mr. Silver seconded the nomination of Tony Richardson to be Treasurer of ANC 6C. There were no other nominations and Mr. Richardson was elected unanimously.
Planning, Zoning and the Environment
Motion: Ms. Wirt moved/Mr. Crews seconded the nomination of Mark Eckenweiler and Ryan McGinnis to be co-chairs of the Planning, Zoning and the Environment Committee. There were no other nominations and they were elected unanimously. It was noted that Mr. Eckenweiler would oversee zoning cases, and Mr. McGinnis historic preservation cases.
Transportation and Public Space
Motion: Ms. Wirt moved/Mr. Wilsey seconded the nomination of Joe McCann to be chair of the Transportation and Public Space Committee. There were no other nominations and he was elected unanimously.
Alcoholic Beverage Licensing
Motion: Ms. Wirt moved/Mr. Goodman seconded the nomination of Kevin Wilsey to be chair of the Alcoholic Beverage Licensing Committee. There were no other nominations and he was elected unanimously.
Youth and Education
Motion: Ms. Wirt moved/Mr. Crews seconded the nomination of Flora Lererman to be chair of the Youth and Education Committee. There were no other nominations and she was elected unanimously.
Motion: Ms. Wirt moved/Mr. Silver seconded the nomination of Bill Crews to be chair of the Grants Committee. There were no other nominations and he was elected unanimously.
- Treasurer’s Report
Mr. Richardson delivered the Treasurer’s Report. It showed an opening balance of $82,517.81. There was an interest payment of $.70. Checks were written for $162 to Roberta Weiner for taking and transcribing minutes for the September meeting (Check #1223); and $352 to Roberta Weiner for taking and transcribing minutes for two November meetings (Check #1226) leaving a balance in the checking account of $82,004.26. Motion: Mr. Richardson moved/Ms. Wirt seconded a motion to approve the Treasurer’s Report as presented. The motion passed without objection.
Motion: Mr. Silver moved/Mr. Richardson seconded a motion to allocate $25 for the ANC Security Fund. The motion passed unanimously.
Motion: Mr. Richardson moved/Mr. Crews seconded a motion to allocate $146 for payment to Roberta Weiner for the taking and transcription of the ANC meeting in December. The motion passed without objection.
Motion: Mr. Richardson moved/Mr. Crews seconded a motion to allocate $125 for the rental of the ANC’s Post Office box. The motion passed without objection.
Motion: Mr. Crews moved/Ms. Wirt seconded a motion to accept the 2012 ANC 6C budget as proposed by Mr. Richardson. Mr. Richardson said he had given Mr. Crews with the 2011 expenditures as he requested. The motion passed without objection.
- Brief Community and Commissioner Comment
Capt. Tony Carroll
Capt. Tony Carroll of Fire Station #3 at New Jersey Avenue came to introduce himself. He said the station is a special ops engine company and that they are there in case the community needs them for any reason. He was very upbeat and said that there are a lot of firefighters available. He also pointed out that the third floor of the firehouse is a museum that’s open Monday-Friday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. He also said that the fire station is a safe place if someone needs a haven from domestic violence or other frightening situation.
Scope it Out 5K Race – March 25
Michael Sapienza presented information on the Scope It Out 5 K Race to be held on March 25 on behalf of colo-rectal cancer. They will be setting up between 6:30 and 7 a.m. and the race will be between 9 and 10 a.m. Motion: Mr. Wilsey moved/Mr. Dixon seconded a motion to send a letter to the Emergency Management Task Force supporting the race. The motion passed unanimously.
Walk for Lupus Now – April 21st
Brian Wachtel gave a presentation on his event, which will be on Saturday, April 21st. the walk will be, including set-up and tear-down, from 6:30 a.m. to 1130 a.m. and they will be using Freedom Plaza, using Pennsylvania Avenue between 12th and 14thStreets, Mr. Wilsey, whose SMD is affected, said that Joanne Neuhaus, head of the Downtown Neighborhood Association, is opposed to the race because it closes the Avenue until 1 p.m. on a Saturday. The Marriott Hotel also complains about the early set-up time outside its windows on a Saturday. Mr. Wachtel said they have spoken with the Marriott about setting up the night before. Mr. Wilsey suggested further discussions all around to see if a more amenable arrangement can be worked out. Motion: Mr. Wilsey moved/Mr. Goodman seconded a motion to table the discussion of the Lupus Now event until the February meeting to enable the organizers to find ways to mitigate the problems. The motion passed unanimously.
Maryland Avenue Study
Mr. Price reported that the study of Maryland Avenue NE from 2nd Street to Benning Road is proceeding and announced a January 28th meeting at which the results of the study will be presented, after which there will be two community meetings at Sherwood Rec Center on February 1at and 3rd. He said he is working with ANC 6A on the issue. Mr. Goodman added that he is working with 6A on Florida Avenue traffic,
Youth and Education Committee Seeks Grants
Youth and Education Committee chair Flora Lererman asked that if local residents know of groups and projects and schools in the ANC area that can use funds through the ANC to please let her know at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Local CAC News
Mr. Dixon said that he has been named Vice Chair of the local CAC and he made a plea for the ANC to join the CAC (Community Advisory Council) Motion: Mr. Dixon moved/Mr. Silver seconded a motion to allocate $10 for ANC membership in the CAC. The motion passed unanimously.
News on the Crucible
Mr. Goodman reported that the Crucible has opened and is hosting events. Mr. Crews and Mr. Richardson are appealing their building permit. Mr. Goodman reported that the Fur Factory has been purchased by Starska, who has pushed the Fur Factory out. The Fur Factory, The Crucible, and Ibizia are now all in the 5th District between New York and Florida Avenues.
They are performing sex acts at the Crucible. They say it’s a private club, and they can’t sell tickets at the door so they’re selling them from a bus parked at the door. There are 500 apartments open there, and another 1000 under construction—and three clubs on the block. Mr. Goodman said he has talked with Robin Eve Jasper, the former head of DRES, who has taken Liz Price’s place as the head of the NoMa BID (Ms. Price has moved to Germany), and the neighborhood is on the upswing, with the summer film festival, the Hayes School Wellness Center at 500 K Street with the Office of Aging, with a playground, meeting rooms, newbie racks, and there’s a new restaurant in the Loree Grand and still those three clubs are there.
- Planning Zoning and Environment Committee
100 K Street NW
This is a request for a letter of support for the approval of a $3.5 million loan to The Severna, Phase II Golden Rule Apartments. The Committee had not made a recommendation on the issue because it didn’t have sufficient information.
This is a loan from DCHD, and is a repeat of the loan they were given for Phase I in the same amount, which was supported by ANC 6C.
Yvonne Williams and Elizabeth Askew, representing Mission First, the developer, presented information on the project, saying that Phase-in covers the balance of the project, which will be 70% affordable housing and 30% market rate with one level of underground parking, Mr. Silver said that this project represents what community development is supposed to be about. He said they have very actively gone after the people displaced by the project and have excellent case management. Ms. Williams said 30 out of 60 displaced persons will be back in the development .Motion: Mr. Silver moved/Mr. Dixon seconded a motion that the ANC write a letter of support to DCHD for the $3.5 million loan being requested for Phase II of Severna Golden Rule apartments. The option passed 7-0, unanimously.
480 New York Avenue NW
This is a request for variances and special exceptions to renovate convert and expand an existing warehouse building for residential (63 units) in the DD/C-2-C district.
This project was approved by the Zoning Commission several years ago, but has been simplified so that all they asking for now is a single special exception from parking regulations. The building has been reduced from 13 stories to 23 and the number of units has been reduced from 84 to 63. The required number of parking spaces is 36, and they can only be installed through a lift system to stack the cars on the first two floors of the building. They require the variance for permission to use the lift system.
Douglas Seidel, representing the developer, said that marketing reasons had led them to reduce the number of units, Mr. Dixon asked about trash removal because of the building abutting the warehouse. He was told the trash pick-up would be on L Street, and on the first floor, not immediately adjacent to the next door building. Motion: Mr. Dixon moved/Mr. Crews seconded a motion to support the request for support of a BZA application for a special exception for parking modifications. The motion passed 7-0, unanimously.
658 E Street NE
This is a request for support for a BZA application for a special exception to build a one-story porch addition on the rear of an existing one-family row house that does meet the lot occupancy, the court and nonconforming structure requirements in the R-4 district.
The applicant wants to replace an existing deck ad second floor balcony with a new one-story screened-in porch and deck addition. The lot occupancy would increase from 64.97% to 70%, above the 60% maximum. The rear court width goes from 3.8’ to 5’, still below the 6’ minimum, and there would be a 6.18% increase in the total square footage of the house. Motion: Mr. Crews moved/Mr. Price seconded a motion to accept the Committee’s recommendation that the ANC support the request for special exceptions needed to build a one-story porch addition. The motion passed 7-0.
700 Constitution Avenue NE
This is a request for support of a Historic Preservation concept review for a project on the south portion of the square and the original 1928 building and 1956 additions. These buildings will be retained and rehabbed for residential use and the 1928 building will be restored. IBG developers has entered a 75-year lease with Dr. Peter Shinn, who will have no say-so in the project. There are no zoning exceptions or variances required and the building is designed within the confines of the existing zoning designation.
The PZE Committee requested that the HPRB application be amended to reflect that work will have to be done on public space, and that conversations needed to continue with St. James, and that any recommendation by the ANC should include the following caveats: 1/ investigate ways to address the interior court cornice; 2/investigate lowering the height of the penthouse; 3/correct the HPRB application to state that they will have to work in public space; 4/ Make a good faith effort to reach a mutually-acceptable agreement with St. James Church on the impact of the structure; and 5/ agree that no cell towers be added to the property.
Motion: Mr. Price moved/Mr. Crews seconded a motion to not accept the Committee’s recommendation. Mr. Price said that this is a rush to judgment, and the speed is unnecessary because this is a matter-of-right project without information from DDOT, Public Space, and other agencies, and the plans should be reviewed by these agencies. Mr. Crews said that he’s concerned because of the project’s history of promises unkept, deals not fulfilled. Specialty Hospital, for example, made a commitment they were only going to be there five years and it’s been much longer. Mr. Amos said the developer has said that the landlord—Dr. Shinn—has no control, that he doesn’t know what the relationship is between them but he won’t keep coming back and coming back. Mr. Price said he is impressed that the new developer has offered to meet with the community.
Mr. Crews said the rezoning was a good move on the part of the Zoning Commission when the ANC appealed the parking. Mr. Crews said the facades look very ice, it could be the highest use for the property, but there’s all this baggage. He said he would like to see the building plat, because he understands it’s all one plot.
Andy Adams, an architectural historian working for the developer, IBG, said that the lease distances themselves from the owner. She said IBG is meeting with the Zoning Administrator, and re-iterated that this is a concept hearing and nothing else is on the table. She said they would like a vote this month to see where the ANC stands on the project to take to the lender; it could be problematic without a vote from the ANC. The HPRB meeting is January 28..
Mr. Crews withdrew the original motion, and offered instead a motion to table the discussion until more information is available and the community, which feels there was very short notice about the project.
Joel Kelty said that there are a couple of historic preservation issues that need to be addressed, Mr. Price said this is a good discussion, and the applicant can see that there are only issues that people who are intimately involved need resolved. Bobbi Krengel said that the concept review is the only opportunity the community will have to weigh in and there are outside issues which there is no other opportunity to discuss.
Jerri Martin said she is representing St. James, and any construction is going to affect the church, they have to go to the Vestry and we don’t know if there’s enough information to reach an agreement.
Mr. Price said the community needs a little more time. The final vote to table was 5-2, with Commissioners Goodman and Richardson In opposition.
Meetings were scheduled for January 25th and the 31st of January with the developer, and then there will be a community meeting to discuss the issues.
Capitol Place Station Townhouses
This is request for support of a modification to internal plats providing additional units, a reduction in the total number of parking spaces and no changes to the approved building height, design or density. Dreyfus is no longer the developer of the building and has been replaced by Capitol Place Station Townhouses LLC.
In September 2012 the ANC had supported modifications to this project. These changes focus on an increase in the number of residential units from 302 to 375, but no increase in the gross floor area; a reduction in the number of parking spaces from 318 plus 60 tandem spaces to 309 with no tandem spaces—42 retail and 244 residential and 23 unassigned spaces; and a reduction in the width of the residential” bars” by five feet to make them more optimum for residential use, There are also design changes which require slight modifications to the exterior of the building including a revised entry on 2nd Street the professional office space on the 3rd floor has been replaced with two residential units and the H Street entry on 2nd Street has been moved further east on H Street; Relocation of retail and tenant space on the ground floor; two additional residential units front on G Street; and slight refinements to exterior detailing (Cornice projects, roof trellis elements, and etching..
Motion: Mr. Richardson moved/Mr. Goodman seconded a motion to accept the Committee’s recommendation that the full ANC support the applicant’s modifications to the previously approved plans. The motion passed 7-0, unanimously.
Capitol Hill Village
Mr. Amos reported that representatives of Capitol Hill Village had come to the PZE meeting to discuss a new Housing Committee they have established to speak with developers about following legally-mandated requirements of the Fair Housing Act (FHA) with respect to design features in their projects,
Committee member Bill Sisolak raised the issue of having the PZE Committee review the work being done by the Housing Committee, and it was placed on the Committee’s February agenda for discussion.
Mr. Goodman suggested that deaf architecture be among the subjects under discussion,
- Grants Committee
Motion: Ms. Wirt moved/Mr. Dixon seconded a motion to extend the reporting period of the grant to the diploma program at the Southern Baptist church through May 2012. The extension was approved 7-0, unanimously.
- Alcohol Beverage Licensing Committee
Chairman Kevin Wilsey had two announcements.
Po Boys had a protest hearing. They agreed to sign a VA but have a patio added onto rooftop restaurant and there is a problem with enclosing the space. They are going to mediation.
Xclusive at 707 H Street NE has had a roll call hearing, Mr. Wilsey said he spoke with the owner, who wants to have a DJ, but there is a petition with 70-80 neighbors saying no. There is no resolution as of yet.
- Gale School Public Space Permit
This is a request for support for modifications to public space outside the Gale School renovation to its use as a 150 bed shelter for men. David Treadwell, the Mission’s director, and his architect are working with the community and various agencies to make the place as appealing as possible, both to the community and potential clients. This is a request for support of a public space permit to close a curb cut on Mass. Avenue and one on G Street while opening one on G Street. They want to shrink the amount of paving in public space to create a park-like area and leave seven parking spaces for staff spaces. There will be a gate and security cameras and the area will be well-lit. There will also be bollards with pedestrian lighting along the paths. There will be an arched gate with a sign. They are trying to make the area as attractive as possible for prospective clients by improving the paving and the landscaping. Mr. Goodman commented that it is open to the street, and there is a lot of landscaping. He suggested moving the discussion to the February agenda.
The meeting was adjourned at 9:10 pm.