City Paper Widget

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

1420-1422 12th Street: ANC Asks for Sanctions on Logan Circle Renovation

UPDATE: There is a stop work order on this house while the DC government does an investigation. See details here.

"We formally request that the owner of 1420 & 1422 12th St NW be investigated and, if the ... facts are confirmed, sanctioned for illegal construction and be required to submit the proper documents ..."

Was the renovation here legal?
The above is from a letter that Advisory Neighborhood Commission (ANC) 2F/Logan Circle is sending to Rabbiah "Robbie" Sabbakham, Director of DC Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs (DCRA). DC Councilmember Jack Evans (D-Ward Two) is cc'ed on the letter.

The ANC voted unanimously at its regular monthly meeting on November 5 to send this letter to "address concerns about unpermitted and illegal construction" at the address, "as well as DCRA's lack of enforcement." The matter was brought to the attention of the ANC by Joel Heisey and Helen Kramer, community members who also are on the ANC's Community Development Committee, according to an account of the November 5 meeting on ANC2F's web site.

1420 and 1422 12th Street are adjoining row houses which previously had the same owners and were sold together as one property last year.

The ANC's letter says the two properties "have undergone complete gut renovations without the proper permits". A permit was issued for 1420, but the permit was for replacement of existing electrical fixtures only. There seems to be no permit at all for 1422 -- the permit in the window of 1422 is the permit for electrical work on 1420. According to a supporting document to the letter, 1420 also has an unauthorized rear carport with studio and deck. The property, the document claims, is also in violation of zoning regulations in that the footprint of the house is more than permitted.

"A resident has repeatedly tried to get DCRA's illegal construction division to investigate with little success," the letter says.

"Two calls to the Supervisor of Illegal Construction have gone unreturned," the letter also says.

"It's like the bad old days over there," said Helen Kramer at the November 5 ANC meeting, referring to DCRA's lack of responsiveness.

"One has to wonder whether they can be so oblivious or whether money has changed hands," she also said.

I could find no records for either property in the Interactive Zoning Information System of DC's Office of Planning.

Online records show the building was built in 1889 and sold for $1.1 million in May 2014.

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