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Kalorama Road Neighbors Seek to Overturn Condo Project Approval

By P.L. Wolff

Accompanying images can be viewed in the current issue PDF

Neighborhood residents recently learned about a plan being undertaken by Lock 7 Development to transform two adjoining townhouses located in the Kalorama Historic District at 2012-14 Kalorama Road, NW into a 17-unit condominium by completely filling up the rear garden spaces with what have been characterized as massive structures which

will be built all the way out to the property lines on both sides. Residents in the adjacent apartment buildings, the Stratford to the east and 2101 Connecticut Avenue to the west. Residents on the lower floors of both buildings contend they will be faced with a substantial reduction in light and air as a result.

During prior meetings and review, the Adams Morgan Advisory Neighborhood Commission (ANC 1C), the Historic Preservation Office staff, and the Historic Preservation Review Board (HPRB) were under the impression that the adjoining neighbors had been shown the plans by the developers based on their having so indicated in Section 6, “Community Consultation” of the required Application and Referral document filed with HPRB.

The affected neighbors, however, claim that, unknown to both the ANC and HPRB, there had in fact been no consultation with them, thus leading to the assumption that there was no opposition and therefore no reason for the ANC and HPRB not to approve the project as presented by the applicant.

Once the abutting owners learned about the situation, they immediately asked both the ANC and the HPRB to retract the approvals and allow the neighbors to be heard fully on the merits.

On December 5, 2012, the ANC adopted a resolution urging HPRB to grant reconsideration. At its December 30, 2012, meeting, HPRB announced that abutting owners could submit material on January 14, 2013, showing “new and substantially different” information not before HPRB when it originally granted concept approval.

On January 7, 2013, representatives of the 2101 Connecticut Avenue residents submitted to the ANC reports of architects, architectural historians and other experts showing why the project cannot lawfully be built and why it is incompatible with the historic character of the historic district. Two days later at its January 9th meeting, based on that submission, the ANC adopted a second resolution authorizing a request to the HPRB to retract its concept approval and grant full reconsideration.