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Parking Holds Up Planned Micro-Units in Logan Circle

  • January 7, 2014

by Lark Turner

Parking Holds Up Planned Micro-Units in Logan Circle: Figure 1
An earlier rendering of the development, facing Church Street NW. Peter Fillat.

A parking issue is preventing a proposed micro-unit project in Logan Circle from moving forward.

The development at 1456-1460 Church Street NW (map) would house about 38 micro-units, but it made headlines last year when the developers proposed a parking prohibition plan.

Because the developers are hoping to move forward without any parking spaces at the new project, residents would be required to sign a lease that would not allow them to apply for a residential parking permit or any guest permits. Developers Brook Rose and Gregg Busch have proposed giving the building’s first residents a one-year subscription to a car- or bike-sharing service.

But the Board of Zoning Adjustment (BZA) wasn’t ready to sign off on the idea on Tuesday.

The BZA asked the developers to come back in late February with more evidence that the parking plan would work, and asked them for a study that proves the building wouldn’t add to parking problems in the area. The proposed plan has already received support from the Office of Planning, the Historic Preservation Office, the local ANC and other agencies.

The developers also plan to check whether residents were adhering to their lease by periodically requesting parking permit information for the address from the DMV. The BZA wants to see that in writing from the DMV or DDOT.

Before Tuesday’s meeting, Rose told UrbanTurf that it isn’t possible to provide sufficient parking for residents on the small and narrow lot, which will incorporate three rowhouses currently standing on the property. But he argued that the lack of parking adds to the downsizing ethos the building would aim to promote.

“The zoning plan calls for high pedestrian activity. I think it’s a shining example of increasing density while maintaining the historic fabric of the street,” Rose said. “People are willing to give up space and their cars to be in the city center where the action is happening.”

The parking prohibition plan was particularly hounded by the BZA’s Peter May, who shared more than a few pointed opinions at Tuesday’s meeting. He asked the developers to explore the feasibility of offering every resident who signs a lease a free year-long subscription to a car- or bike-sharing service, instead of just the first residents to sign up. He also vehemently rejected the developers’ claim that a structure on the roof didn’t violate the Height Act, saying it “flies in the face” of the Act.

Rose and Busch agreed to change the design plans in response to May’s objections. They’ll also be submitting those updates next month.

See other articles related to: micro units, logan circle

This article originally published at http://dc.urbanturf.com/articles/blog/lack_of_parking_holds_up_planned_micro-units/7967

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