BZA DECISION ON JAM DOUNG 'S APPLICATION FOR A VARIANCE IN USE AT 1724 NORTH CAPITOL ST., NW
On March 6 by a vote of 4 to 1, the Board of Zoning Adjustment (BZA) APPROVED Jam Doung’s application for a variance in use. Specifically, Jam Doung was approved to use of both the 1st & 2nd floors for a restaurant at 1724 North Capitol, as well as use of a sidewalk cafe ( on Randolph Pl.) and a 2nd floor rooftop garden.
BZA also approved numerous ‘stipulations’ or conditions of use that might moderate any adverse impacts on the neighborhood due to variance approval. These included:
- allowable hours (Inside: 8 am to 12 midnight, Sun - Sat. ; Outside: 10 am - 10 pm, Sun - Thurs. ; 11 am - 11 pm, Fri. & Sat.);
- no live, recorded or amplified music in outside areas;
- various stipulations related to conservation of street parking and abatement of traffic backups;
- installation of bike racks;
- use of plants & planters on sidewalk cafe and rooftop terrace for noise abatement;
- installation of sound- absorbing material on existing and any future walls of the rooftop terrace for sound abatement; and
- no illuminated sign on the Randolph Pl. exterior facade.
BZA also added the stipulation that the sidewalk cafe and rooftop garden would be approved by BZA for a period of only 5 years after issuance of a C of O. Thereafter, the owners would apply for an extension of approval through use of a request for a 'modification of significance', which requires a public hearing.
Most of these stipulations were suggested by neighbors and agreed to by Jam Doung owners. Through civic engagement, discussion and negotiation, 'common ground' was successfully pursued, whereby no one wins all, but everyone wins something.
Jam Doung's co-Owner Janet Stedman expressed her appreciation for the support of customers and neighbors.
Bertha G., Holliday, PhD
Commissioner, ANC 5E07
Fellow, American Psychological Association