At the Jan. 13th meeting of Advisory Neighborhood Commission (ANC) 6C, commissioners continued discussions about restaurant licensing, alcohol licensing and discussed proposed changes to Zoning around penthouse additions.
All six ANC commissioners: Christine Healey (6C01), Karen Wirt (6C02), Jay Adelstein (6C03), Mark Eckenwiler (6C04), Joel Kelty (6C05) and Drew Courtney (6C06) were in attendance.
Application for Internet Alcohol Sales
The ANC voted to protest a liquor license application from Bro Weekend Collective (25 K St. NE) in pursuit of plans to sell beer, wine and spirits online out of a U-Haul self-storage facility. They are applying for a retailer’s Class A internet-only license which allows them to sell spirits or beer, wine and spirits over the internet. The license would not allow them to sell to the public from their premises.
Commissioner Joel Kelty spoke in opposition to the application, citing the licensee’s plans to store their product in a U-Haul facility. He suggested the ANC commission send letters to the Department of Consumer Regulatory Affairs (DCRA) regarding the storage of products in a self-storage facility.
“Is it legal to store distilled spirits in a U-Haul facility?” Kelty asked. “I’d have to check with the Construction Code. That probably classifies as a high hazard occupancy because it’s flammable.”
Opposition to Rear Addition
The commission voted to send a letter to the Board of Zoning Adjustment (BZA) expressing concerns with an application for special exception from lot occupancy and rear yard requirements to construct a three-story rear addition at 1165 Third St. NE. The application was initially brought before the ANC Planning, Zoning, and Economic (PZE) Development Committee in November. The ANC supported their opposition to the application, saying there were no letters from adjacent neighbors or sun/shade studies. They also argued the penthouse structure did not comply with setback requirements.
PZE Chair Mark Eckenwiler said the applicant returned before the committee January with some “modest” adjustments, including a partial sun/shade study and drawings showing a revised penthouse plan. The committee again opposed the application, noting that there were still no letters of support from neighbors and that the project still lacks compliance with penthouse zoning requirements. They also argue that the rooftop addition is not in keeping with the streetscape.
Views on Changes to Penthouse Regulations
The commission voted to support a letter to the Zoning Commission (ZC) offering views of the ANC on proposed changes to the definition and regulations concerning penthouses. The definition would remove roofless structures and create new terms for features without roofs. The committee called for clarification on certain terms, such as “roof.” It also asked that changes to the setback requirements should not apply to buildings in the RF zones in order to preserve protection to rooftop elements such as cornices.
Finally, in order to open rooftops to bigger mechanical spaces, the proposal would remove the area limit on penthouses, currently capped at 1/3 of the area in zones with a three-story height limit. The PZE suggested that ZC restore a cap of some kind, expressing concern that applicants would build large mechanical spaces and later convert these to living spaces.
- Commissioners voted to re-affirm all incumbent executive officers together as a slate. Officers elected are: Karen Wirt, Chair; Mark Eckenwiler, Vice Chair; Joel Kelty, Treasurer; Christine Healey, S
- The ANC also voted unanimously to confirm at-large committee members as a slate:
- Gerald Grossman, ABL committee.
- Dale Griggs and Jason Star, Grants
- Tiffany Aziz, Caitlin Morocco and Brianna Battle, Environment, Parks and Events Committee.
- Mary Albert, PZE Committee
- Mark Kazmir and Andrew Turner, Transportation and Public Space (TPS) Committee.
- TPS Committee Chair Christy Kwan reported that 16 benches will be installed in the spring throughout NoMa. The Public Space committee raised concerns about the bench style, but voted to recommend that ANC support the design and location of the benches.
- A Public Space Construction application from Press House Artwork (331 N St. NE) was supported by the commission. The TPS committee posed questions about the sharp edges of some of the metal artwork and was told that they would round the edges in the materials.
- The commission voted to take no action on an application from The Boiling Crab (400 H St. NE) for a change to the hours of their license, asking to extend their closing time from 10:00 p.m. to midnight. O’Neal said the restaurant group has been “amenable” to limiting hours of the sidewalk cafe to 10:00 p.m. as originally stated and closing the windows to their second floor dining space.
- The commission voted to protest the application for a liquor license from Uncle Kenny’s Smokehouse (732 Maryland Ave. NE) permitting the sale of beer and wine as well as outdoor seating, in pursuit of an SA. The restaurant is under new ownership, requiring a new alcohol license application. Steve O’Neal, Chair of the Alcohol and Beverage Licensing (ABL) Committee, reported that the restaurant also requested a sidewalk cafe with outdoor tables, to be open from 7:30 a.m. until 10:00 p.m. He said the ABL committee hopes to work with the restaurant to reduce the hours of application to make them closer to the restaurant operating hours.
ANC 6C will meet next on Wednesday, Feb. 10 at 7 p.m. virtually via Webex. Find the link to the meeting, agendas and more information about the commissioners at www.anc6c.org.
Sarah Payne is a History and Neuroscience student at The University of Michigan interning with Hill Rag. She writes for and serves as an assistant news editor for Michigan’s student newspaper, The Michigan Daily. You can reach her at [email protected].