Another single-family development west of Rock Creek Park is experiencing a hiccup.
Last month, the Chain Bridge Road/University Terrace Preservation Committee filed to appeal the zoning determination which qualified construction of seven detached houses on Chain Bridge Road NW (map) as matter-of-right. At least seven of the committee members live within a block of the 2700 block of Chain Bridge Road, which the application identifies as the subject site. The lot subdivision diagrammed above and descriptions of the site throughout the appeal application more closely resemble what would be the 3000 block of Chain Bridge Road NW.
The Zoning Administrator certified the subdivision concept as compliant with by-right zoning in November 2018. The resulting lots on the 3.28-acre site range in size from 12,350 to 34,557 square feet. These exceed the R-21 zone minimum developable lot area of 9,500 square feet; it is unclear whether the planned houses would meet other lot measurement requirements, although it is feasible.
The appeal application asserts that construction of the seven planned houses would have detrimental effects on the neighborhood's trees, topography, and stormwater management capacity. The application also questions the validity of the lots created by the subdivision.
"The seven extremely irregularly shaped lots are a contrived and artificial attempt to nominally meet the lot frontage and lot width requirements never reasonably contemplated or supported by the Zoning Regulations," the application explains. A zoning hearing has not yet been scheduled.
Interestingly, landowner and developer Dorchester Associates was denied a zoning special exception in 2007 for a lot subdivision which would enable construction of 13 detached houses at 2901 University Terrace NW, an address which abuts the Chain Bridge Road site.
A similar appeal was filed a little over a year ago to halt the addition of one detached and five attached dwellings to the site of the Polish ambassador's residence in Forest Hills. That project also received approval from the Zoning Administrator.
This article originally published at https://dc.urbanturf.com/articles/blog/association-appeals-seven-detached-houses-in-palisades/16290.
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