Daily Archives: September 18, 2015

Housing: Consumer Protection Forum

Pop-ups. Flips. Illegal Construction Activity. These are things you may be seeing in Trinidad with so many changes in the real estate markets in the past few years.

Attorney General Karl A. Racine is holding a Consumer Protection Forum on Construction Violations, Foreclosure Scams, and Mortgage Regulations, which will take place on Monday, September 28, 2015, from 6:30 to 8:00 pm at the Benning (Dorothy I. Height) Neighborhood Library located at 3935 Benning Rd. NE, Washington, D.C. 20019. The purpose of the Housing Forum is to educate the community on the most common types of housing scams in the District, particularly illegal construction and house flipping. Many neighborhoods are seeing a significant number of houses that are being bought, rehabilitated, and sold for large sums of money. Many residents may also be confused about foreclosure and mortgage regulations. So, Attorney General Racine wants to allow you to hear from and ask questions directly to the relevant local and federal agency experts.

This will be a great opportunity to learn more and how to protect your property or yourself from scams.

Housing Forum Benning Flyer

UPDATE: Zoning Cases on Bladensburg and Montello Ave NE

There are three updates to zoning cases for Trinidad properties that were scheduled in the September 15, 2015 hearing of the Board of Zoning Adjustment (BZA).

  1. The review of parking variance for the proposed dialysis facility on Bladensburg Road was delayed until October 20th. This is case 19004.
  2. Review of the parking variance for the Thornton Development property at the corner of Florida and Montello Ave NE was delayed until October 27th. This is case 19061.
  3. Case 19062 for parking variance on the Thornton Development property at 1112 Montello Ave NE, between Eli’s Carry Out and the alley, was reviewed and approved by BZA. Thornton Development requested exception from the width of two standard parking spaces. The 9-unit building has to have 5 parking spaces to meet requirements. Based on lot size, 5 spaces only fit if 2 spaces are sized for compact cars to save 1 foot and 3 inches of space. Interesting points of discussion from the publicly available video of the meeting include:
  •    DDOT did not have objection if Thornton Development also installed 3 long-term bike racks and 1 short-term bike rack. They agreed to do so.
  •    ANC 5D did not submit a letter or attend the hearing. The project had been discussed in previous ANC 5D06 Single Member District meetings. There was discussion on ANC 5D, the current “situation with internal conflict”, and difficulties of getting zoning cases on the Chair’s agenda. The Zoning Chair also noted that “They are having some serious issues in ANC 5D.” The discussion continued and the case was voted on without input from ANC 5D.
  •    There was opposition from a resident in the 1100 block of K Street NE who cited Zone 6 parking issues. He noted that he has had to park as far as three blocks from his house as Maryland residents park on their streets, clients of  H Street businesses park on their streets, and the additional parking pressure coming from new condos being built on Florida Ave NE in Zone 6 and Zone 5 will exacerbate the problem. He requested that ANC 6A be consulted on this issue with DDOT and BZA and that the case be delayed until such time and then heard in conjunction with BZA Case 19061. Mr. Anthony Hood, Chair of the Zoning Commission, noted that there has never been an issue with ANC 6A weighing in on projects that border two ANCs in the past. Mr. Lloyd Jordan, BZA Chair, noted that they would continue with the hearing as scheduled. What is important to note here is that ANC 5D, when better placed to react to zoning issues in the future, should also be consulted on projects in the neighborhood across Florida Ave NE.

The transcript of the hearing and other documents related to the BZA cases can be found on the Office of Zoning website.  Case numbers cited above can be used to search for documents related to these specific cases.

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