City Paper Widget

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

1740 Church Street: More "Pop Outs" in Historic Districts

A row house next to the Keegan Theater (1742 Church Street NW) near Dupont Circle is the latest example of "pop outs" in historic districts. The homeowner wishes to add a garage with a roof deck at the rear of the property at 1740 Church Street.

The rear of the property as it looks now (credit below)
A committee of Advisory Neighborhood Commission (ANC) 2B/Dupont Circle heard about the proposal at a meeting on September 3. Property owner Bryant Gardner along with representatives of the
Patrick Art Team made the presentation to ANC2B's Zoning, Preservation and Development (ZPD) Committee.

The proposed structure is an 18- by 22-foot garage with a staircase on the inside of the property. This staircase would allow the homeowners to access the proposed roof deck on the rear of the property.

This property is already "non-conforming" for lot occupancy, meaning, the footprint of the existing building is larger than foreseen by zoning regulations. As it stands now, the lot is zoned so a house should not cover more than 60% of the property. The house on the property currently covers over 67%. With the addition of the garage, over 90% of the lot will be covered. So the property owners will have to seek a zoning variance from DC's Board of Zoning Adjustment (BZA).

Additional zoning variances will be required because both the size of the rear yard as well as the size of the closed space in the interior of the property are not as large as envisioned by zoning regulations.

The proposed new structure has an abundance of support from the neighbors, according to publicly-available documents from the web site of the BZA. One document in support of the project contained signatures of 29 residents of the 1700 block of Church Street.

At the meeting, ANC2B Commissioner Mike Silverstein (district 06) said the design seemed to be compatible with the neighborhood.

Commissioner Mike Feldstein (district 01) said a resolution in support of the project would be presented at the next regular monthly meeting of ANC2B.

Feldstein is the chair of the ZPD Committee.

This case is on the agenda for ANC2B's next regular monthly meeting, which will take place tomorrow (Wednesday, September 10) at the Brookings Institution (1775 Massachusetts Avenue) at 7pm. The case will then move to the BZA for consideration at a public meeting on September 23.

The documents related to the zoning case for this property can be accessed at the BZA's Interactive Zoning Information System and entering case number 18824 in the search bar.

See here for a July 27 SALM blog post about the recent increase in "horizontal pop-ups" in historic districts.

(photo credit: from public documents available online from the BZA)

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