Thursday, May 06, 2021

another McMillan lawsuit filed -- in federal court -- based upon historic preservation covenants

 Link: PRESS ALERT: McMillan Supporters “Finally” Submit Federal Case to Stop “Demolishing the Site” Based on McMillan Park Deed Restrictions – Fit to Print DC (

Press Alert from Committee for the McMillan Park Conservancy
Contact: Daniel Wolkoff, 202-232-8391,

McMillan Supporters “Finally” Submit Federal Case to Stop “Demolishing the Site” Based on McMillan Park Deed Restrictions

Washington, DC – On May 5, 2021, McMillan Park supporters have filed their long-planned federal case about the protective restrictions found within the McMillan Park Deed.  See below attached.

These restrictions “run with the land” and is binding upon “all successors or assigns of any real property interests” in this special 25-acre public site and one of the first de facto integrated spaces in DC at North Capitol Street and Michigan Avenue, NW.

The complaint filed by several residents on May 5, 2021, explains:

The controversy from which the federal claims in this action arise involve the District of Columbia’s purchase of the Site from the federal government of the United States of America in September 1987 for $9.3 million, during which transaction the United States as seller, acting through its General Services Administration’s Acting Director, Patricia E. Bailey, imposed severe restrictions on the purchaser’s (Defendant and present owner of the Site, the District of Columbia) ability to alter, destroy or modify the historic features located on the Site, by virtue of historic-preservation covenants that run with the historic property in perpetuity and which inure to the benefit of the public at-large, including Plaintiffs, to this day.

“We are finally getting to the elephant on the plinth, that is the restrictions that ride with the McMillan Park deed that were skillfully and unlawfully ignored by the Mayor, the City Council, the DC Zoning Commission, the Mayor’s Agent on Historic Preservation, and they even dipped under the radar of some advocates,” said Jerry Peloquin, plaintiff in the case and longtime Ward 5 resident and McMillan Park supporter. “The McMillan deed restrictions say the city’s proposed high-density corporate privatization plan that suggests demolishing most of the historic McMillan assets and paving over most of this important open green public space is simply not allowed, period.”

The plaintiffs — Jimmie Boykin, Linwood Norman, Jerome Peloquin, and Daniel Wolkoff — have filed the case without an attorney but are in touch with several attorneys quite interested in coming on board soon to complete the litigation.

The complaint explains what is at stake:

The 1987 Deed to the Site contains restrictive preservation covenants specifically requiring that any work at the Site, inter alia, renovation, rehabilitation, construction or demolition activities, will be in accordance with the federal Secretary of Interior’s Standards. Defendant, District of Columbia, by and through its officers, has previously admitted that the plans for and on-site work implementing the VMP PUD Project at the Site are not in accordance with the Secretary Interior’s Standards because of the proposed demolition and destruction of historic resources at the Site and subsequent redevelopment plans that shroud existing cultural resources at the site with several very large commercial and residential buildings.

Below find the filed complaint to the:


Daniel in brookland said...
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Kevin Rapp said...
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Kevin Rapp said...

Good luck, Daniel

Daniel in brookland said...

I'm certainly not part of filing this in Federal court to spite you Kevin, just a little good natured humor.

I am fighting this outrageous abuse of our people, our public green space in the city, McMillan Park, by the very stewards elected to husband our resources not collude with corporate welfare abusers.

Where did they get the audacity to keep this amazing outdoor site fenced off since 1987, and actually since U.S. govt owned it, it has been fenced off since 1941. The shear arrogance, and in my opinion. racial discrimination is atrocious and tells you who these corporate profiteers are. The miserable handling of Senator McMillan's gorgeous memorial fountain, The Three Muses, shows the level of ignorance and contempt for our local culture the DC govt is about, when they can benefit THEIR insider conglomerate buddies VMP.

Senator James McMillan was responsible for planning the growth of DC, with
The L'Enfant/McMillan Plan, The Senate Parks commission planned healthy green swards for a gracious city, recognizing the health and environmental benefits 110 years ago.

There is right now planned 5o McMillan town Centers in Bowser's 36,000 new residences for the rich. A dicatorial, an anti-environmental overcrowding of the city, and YES we can SAVE one McMillan, saved for our recreation and historic views, our place for our benefits, and force the govt. to plan proper mass transit up North Capitol and cross town,real regional planning.

A capitol city plans its culture and its outdoor environment with more interest in the public good than destroying this great Olmsted park. This is not how democracy is done, successive DC administrations collude to steal our land,and they have no business ramming mediocrity down our throats, with not a single exploration of alternative options, for our PUBLIC LAND.

The govt's "stewardship" of our treasure, our land, and our priorities shows massive financial malfeasance, real arrogance and racial discrimination.
Requires DC officials and subordinate agencies (described in Rebecca Mills recent biased and narrow post)to manipulate their regulatory and evaluative roles to "rubber stamp"this MISTAKE!They have committed a consistent pattern of deception, even resisting providing proof there is or is not asbestos in the 1.35 million cubic feet of historic concrete structures they illegally try to demolish, the fascinating subterranean galleries.
My fellow Washingtonians, help put the "monstrosity on Michigan Avenue" down, cancel it and look to the restoration of a unitary Olmsted urban green treasure, that is already there, and get better solutions to local retail than the theft of our assets and land. McMillan is ready for urban gardeners to recover the meadow, replant the bucolic vines, grow trees, and give the children their property for them and everyone to enjoy.

DEMAND immediate safe access RIGHT NOW to our historic site, down comes the fence, open the gates, for everyone to experience a "great place" in the outdoors for our city.
OPEN THE SITE NOW, right now, today, stop the LIES about an unsafe site, recover the gorgeous McMillan memorial fountain, by Herbert Adams. PLAN YOUR park and outdoor recreational ACTIVITIES on McMillan now, ENJOY!