Meeting to Reconsider Plans for McMillan Reservoir Scheduled for March

by Nena Perry-Brown

An updated rendering of the McMillan Reservoir redevelopment

The plan to redevelop the McMillan Sand Filtration site roughly bound between Michigan Avenue and 2501 First Street NW (map) was dealt a major setback in December when the DC Court of Appeals sent the project back to the approval process.

Following the decision to remand the project back to the Office of Planning and the Zoning Commission, the city and Vision McMillan Partners (VMP) are returning to the community to state their case.

A public hearing has been scheduled for March 10th to give VMP and the Office of the Deputy Mayor for Planning and Economic Development (DMPED) an opportunity to address points highlighted in the court’s decision. The applicants are expected to discuss the following:

  • Whether the historic preservation benefits of the proposed project outweigh its historic preservation harms, along with legal analysis of how to quantify that using the Historic Landmark and Historic District Protection Act and portions of the DC Code.
  • What the project’s architecture, land planning, and/or community benefits package offer that qualify it as a project of special merit.
  • Whether the demolition and subdivision proposed for the project is necessary to deliver the identified special merit benefits, or can a viable mixed-use development be created with less (or no) demolition and subdivision while conforming to the comprehensive plan and constituting “special merit”.

While the hearing is meant to give the applicant an opportunity to explain its position, the Friends of McMillan Park, McMillan Coalition for Sustainable Agriculture, and DC for Reasonable Development are also invited to share their testimony and rebuttals to the applicant and the proposed development.

Correction: This article has been updated to include that the project was also remanded to the Office of Planning.

This article originally published at https://dc.urbanturf.com/articles/blog/upcoming_public_meeting_to_reconsider_plans_for_mcmillan_reservoir/12042


  1. Bloomingdale said at 5:52 pm on Thursday January 12, 2017:

    This project is exciting for the area, and I sure hope the city will get the paperwork right this time around.  This project is too important to be held hostage by the small group of litigious NIMBYs, many of whom don’t even live in the neighborhood, any longer.

  1. EckingtonNEDC said at 9:52 am on Friday January 13, 2017:

    Wow, this project analysis has been on-going for what, 20 years now?

  1. Andrea Rosen said at 10:48 am on Saturday January 14, 2017:

    The approvals of the Zoning Commission and the Mayor’s Agent for Historic Preservation were not vacated and remanded to those respective agencies as well as OP because the paperwork was flawed. They were overturned because the rubber-stampers failed to demonstrate that the project was lawful in terms of the Comprehensive Plan and the D.C. Preservation Law. That is what people who are not paid by the development industry and maintain some vision for what makes a great urban place have been arguing since VMP’s 1960-vintage “town center” was forced down our throats in 2007.

  1. Eric Schultz said at 2:58 pm on Saturday January 14, 2017:

    The city needs to rethink this plan. It is overwhelmingly disliked by the people. There is nothing unique or special about it. The people shouldn’t have to lose a park to build office buildings and condos. It’s a bad plan. Thank goodness the court stopped it.

Comments are closed.

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