During Tuesday’s ANC 6B meeting, Commissioner Jared Critchfield (6B06) and I will ask our ANC 6B colleagues to support sending a letter to the Zoning Administrator urging him to allow construction to begin at the old KFC site (1442 Pennsylvania Avenue SE) without further Board of Zoning Adjustment (BZA) review.
Why are we making this request? In 2008/9, ANC 6B supported and the Board of Zoning Adjustment approved Douglas Development requested variances from floor area ratio requirements, rear yard requirements and off-street parking requirements for a two-story commercial building on the site. At the time, Douglas signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with nearby neighbors that outlined agreed upon uses, construction timelines, etc. View the 2008 plans (pdf).
While Douglas would like to proceed with construction under terms of the 2009 BZA Order (pdf), the firm’s updated plans (pdf), which include design changes to the building facade, may trigger an additional round of review by the BZA. The BZA review process could delay construction of the building by 6 months or more.
Given that Douglas is:
- requesting the same variances as they did back in 2008 (FAR, rear yard, parking)
- committing to abide by terms of the MOU with nearby neighbors, and
- only changing the facade of the building (and changing it for the better, in my opinion),
Commissioner Critchfield and I believe that a letter from ANC 6B could help persuade the Zoning Administrator to allow construction of the building to proceed without requiring another round of BZA review. The request would only apply to BZA review – Douglas would still have to get appropriate permits for construction.
Since this is a late breaking addition to ANC 6B October agenda, please post any feedback or comments below, or contact me directly. You can also attend ANC 6B’s October Commission meeting tomorrow night (Tues., 10/9), 7 pm at the Hill Center (921 Pennsylvania Avenue SE). I expect the letter to be considered during the 8 pm hour.