Zoning Commission approves raising cap for Arts Overlay to 30 percent

A few weeks ago there was concern that the U and 14th Streets, NW area had reached its cap of 25% for eating and drinking establishments. On twitter @dcra reports, “Zoning Commission approves raising cap for Arts Overlay to 30 percent immediately – agrees to consider further increase at June”. While we heard that the cap could’ve increased to 50% an initial increase to 30% should at least allow a few more new places to set up. Presumably the percentage will increase a bit more in June.

9 Comment

  • This is great news!

    Glad to hear that DC government sort of made up for the fiasco that they created with this one.

    The cap should have been raised months ago.

  • Nice – Refreshing to see the prevailing of sanity.

  • Can I assume that THAT’S where the new Waffle House is going to be located?

  • It’s very refreshing to see DCRA and our government quickly respond to what was clearly a hastily enforced law that everyone had been ignoring for decades. Who insisted on the sudden enforcement of 25% limitation anyways? Was it Estrada and Raia again? I swear they are always at the center of these things.

    • the 25% cap has been on the books for at least ten years. It was never enforced because until recently, there weren’t enough restaurants to trigger the cap. The reason for the cap is to prevent the situation that has occurred in Adams Morgan where restaurant and bars predominate.

      I don’t really have an opinion whether a cap is a good thing or not, or whether 25% is the right amount for a cap if there is one, but not everything is a conspiracy.

  • Looking at the spreadsheet earlier posted somewhere on the web, that means there is 470.6 linear feet extra (current: 2751.66; total: 10740.85; 30% of that: 3042.255) now that can be built as bars/restaurants, which should be enough to accommodate everything in the pipeline. Would be enough to fit almost 25 more restaurants/bars (looking at the spreadsheet, most place range between 18-23 feet), though some places are huge (Alero-78 feet).

  • This should bode well for the Waffle House District.

  • What’s wrong with restaurants and bars? It doesn’t seem to have hurt real estate values in AdMo or near H St. any.

    • I don’t think the cap is motivated by a belief that restaurants and bars are “wrong.” Instead it’s a belief that once an area becomes a popular location for bars and restaurants, market pressures will drive out other kinds of businesses that would make the neighborhood a desirable place to live. And I don’t think high real estate values are the only yard stick to measure whether the cap is a good idea.

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