Thursday, May 16, 2019

WBJ post - DC Court of Appeals rules against McMillan project challenge

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The McMillan redevelopment's backers just picked up a win in court. But plenty of hurdles remain.

May 16, 2019, 1:24pm EDT
Alex Koma, Staff Reporter
Washington Business Journal

The backers of one of the District’s most challenged development efforts just picked up a victory in court.                        

A three-judge panel of the D.C. Court of Appeals ruled against a challenge to the McMillan Sand Filtration redevelopment effort Thursday, reaffirming a previous decision by city officials to let the $720 million project move ahead.                                         

But the developers behind the redevelopment — EYA, Jair Lynch Real Estate and Trammell Crow, known jointly as Vision McMillan Partners — aren’t out of the woods yet. The court still needs to resolve a legal challenge to the D.C. Zoning Commission’s order approving the project, then the city’s Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs will need to certify that the developers look set to complete the development.  

                                           
Even still, the appellate court’s ruling strikes a blow to the persistent efforts to block the project. A group known as the “Friends of McMillan Park” has challenged the development on a variety of grounds, with arguments touching on everything from historic preservation to the density and size of proposed buildings.
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3 comments:

  1. District of Columbia Court of Appeals last page of FOMP Mayor's Agent decision: page 52
    "Thus, as long as legal obstacles to the completion of the entire project remain, demolition of historic structures on the Filtration Complex will not be consistent with the purposes of the Historic Preservation Act. One remaining legal obstacle is the on-going appeal of the Zoning Commission’s approval of the PUD application for the project. Until that appeal and any
    other obstacles to the applicants’ ability to complete the project are resolved, the applicants may not commence demolition."

    Look at what VMP and Bowser have done to OUR Sand Filtration site, de-nuded every vine(historic features planted by the Army Corp), and in 1987 they cut down 500 trees, both in violation of their deed covenants from the start.
    This development plan is in violation of Federal law, and Federal law pre-empts DC law (their deceitful conspiracy from day one), they never had the authority to plan this "monstrosity" that violates all the Secretary of interior's Standards for rehabilitation of historic Buildings.
    Our elected officials wasted $9.3 million dollars and WASTED in racist discrimination, the 25 acre green-space for the next 32 years, but supposedly spent $250,000 a year to mow the lawn for nothing. The theft of enjoyment from our community and shear financial malfeasance is stunning. Consecutive DC administrations collude with well connected developers to steal public land from us, the people of D.C. This is who they are, cynical, destructive, environmental morons. In 1987 they cut down 500 trees, now just to be vindictive, de-nuded the site to make it an eye sore, all that lush living healthy plant life killed off, probably using herbicide, though I hope not.

    The DC govt. has been in violation of the Federal covenants since the first year and any city government, not corrupt, would be thrilled to deliver to it's people a great big open green recreation space, so desperately necessary, including the West side park, and the reservoir that Bloomingdale enjoyed for decades, until closed by racist housing discrimination in the 1940's. They decided to exclude the public, relegate the civil rights history and culture to the ash heap of memory, held it (one of the most beautiful 92 acre parks designed by Olmsted in the united States) back, and wait 32 years for a roaring real estate market, with insane profits, for their overlords, the "growth machine".

    Friends do not reward corruption and embarrassment, FIGHT BACK such mediocrity and vandalism,put the super market in Washington Hospitol Center's master plan, or in compliance with the covenants..
    We are ready to file this Federal Claim, but we need representation to make the suit solid. There is money for attorney fees in the National Hist Pres Act, so please send your recommendations for legal help and co-plaintiffs to our collective and Park Conservancy at dangoldon@gmail.com

    DC Court of Appeals decision in favor of Mayor's Agent against FOMP was full of VMP opinion but court made one last offer to let us win, last page of DCCA decision.
    page 52
    "Thus, as long as legal obstacles to the completion of the entire project remain, demolition of historic structures on the Filtration Complex will not
    be consistent with the purposes of the Historic Preservation Act. One
    remaining legal obstacle is the on-going appeal of the Zoning Commission’s
    approval of the PUD application for the project. Until that appeal and any
    other obstacles to the applicants’ ability to complete the project are resolved, the applicants may not commence demolition.

    Our Federal Claim will "stay" the demo and is our best chance to WIN our park for our families and the whole nation. join the fight, Dangoldon@gmail.com, a 92 acre Olmsted Park is not where you pave it for mediocrity.

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  2. Deed covenants Federally assigned by U.S. GSA 1987, agreed to by DC, convey with the land:
    #7 "Any and all rehabilitation and renovation work at the parcel shall be undertaken in accordance with The Secretary of Interior's Standards for Rehabilitation and Guidelines for Rehabilitating Historic Buildings"(Standards) including "open space", "view sheds", "historic context", "orientation" and does not permit "demolition!"

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  3. From Dc Court of Appeals: No. 18-AA-357 - Decided May 16th, 2019:

    “The filtration complex has always been industrial in nature and inaccessible to the public, except for a landscaped walk around its permimeter that the federal government closed in WWII and never reopened. Since then, apart from a few tours conducted in recent years, the entire Filtration Complex has been closed to the public.”

    Link to document: https://www.dccourts.gov/sites/default/files/2019-05/18-AA-357.pdf

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