Judging New Row Houses – 1400 block W St, NW

I’m 99% sure that this new row house has been built on what was a vacant lot. At this point do you think it’ll fit in on the block?

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  • It is on its way to fitting in by just being the right size and includes historical reference points.

  • It was an empty lot before.

  • Why is it not attached to the house on the right?

  • There is an existing gate to the little walkway on the house to the right, so it looks as if the neighbor owns that space and uses it to access the rear of the house. This block has no alley.

  • Me & my dog walk by this every morning. Impressive work they are doing – it is looking nice. It won’t totally fit aesthetically – but I think it will be fine.

  • A good example of an infill in a historic district: the house fits in with terms of scale, but you can still tell its new construction. We processed the facade easement for the green house next door, which was built in 1890. The owner got a sizable tax deduction, which is another advantage to owning property in a HD!

  • I thought that was a big red flag to the IRS when you give a facade easement in a HD.

  • Couple of tax court cases decided in favor of legitimate easement holders. Bottom line: easements exonerated, it matters very much with whom you place your easement.

    In Simmons vs. Commissioner, the IRS held that the easement had zero value, therefore no tax benefit to the owner. The Court found against the IRS, saying easement was valid and had value.

    In Kaufmann v. Commissioner, the IRS held that the easement documents were insufficient resulting in the owner having failed to give over sufficient ownership rights to the easement holder. The Court found in favor of the Commissioner. This case involved one of the easement “mills” that sprung up during the Bubble and was specific to the mill. The effect is that the mills have basically shuttered.

  • that lot was disgusting before…I used to live a few houses down from there and walking past it at night freaked me out. It looks like they’re doing a halfway decent job trying to have the architecture fit it with the street (though the random houses on 15th just before W don’t blend in…at. all. It’ll be interesting to see how the final product fits in after we can see the finishes.

  • It’s nice to see another “tooth” filling in the smile of this block!

  • This might be a 3-unit townhouse. That lot was for sale for quite some time (I think on market for around 300k), and came with city-approved plans for a 3-unit building, including a drawings for a small roof deck and solar panels on the roof. Not sure if they’re using those plans, but it does look similar so far.

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