Update on ‘All Souls’ Neighborhood Bar Hoping to Come to Shaw

Thanks to a reader for sending an update from the Ledroit Park Listserv. We learned initial details about the plans for All Souls after speaking with owner David Batista on Jan. 12th. All Souls hopes to come to the vacant space at 725 T St, NW.

Details in the Voluntary Agreement from All Souls’ lawyer via Commissioner Moss:

-to allay concerns about the exposure of schoolchildren to the business, the application would be amended such that the establishment would not open until 5 p.m., at the earliest

-the patio will be relocated such that it is at least 10 feet from the property line of the closest neighbor north of the property

-to ameliorate potential noise from the patio, applicant shall erect a wall perpendicular to the street, on the north side of the patio seating area. The wall will incorporate materials that are sound absorbent, subject to approval of the public space committee

-Patio service shall cease, and all patrons off the patio at 11 p.m. Sunday through Thursday, and midnight Friday and Saturday

-No recyclables shall be emptied after midnight

In response to a question on the listserv Commissioner Moss answers:

The commission supports the compromise however we are suggesting additional provisions no music on the patio no recyclables after 10 pm patio seating in front of business not on the side signage inside establishment informing residents they are in a residential neighborhood, patio hours 10pm Sun – Thurs 11pm Fri Sat I did not state our position because provisions needed to be discussed with residents and the commission.

Mediation hearing just completed. Residents and Commission (not Myla) provided a counter offer to applicants provisions. Applicant will review provisions proposed by residents and the Commission. Applicant will respond by Monday Feb. 6, 2012.

More info as it becomes available.

Update 1pm from Commisioner Moss:

the applicant has agreed to open @5pm, which is after schoolhours. The applicant is considering the ANC’s counter offer. The following is being considered by the applicant:

Opening @ 5pm

Patio seatng in front and not on the side of establishment

Close of patio seating 10 pm Sun -Thurs and 11pm Fri -Sat

No music on the patio

No recyclables shall be emptied after 10 pm

There will be a status hearing on Feb. 8 @ 9:30 pm the purpose of the status hearing will be to report the result of the 1/31/12 mediation hearing.

32 Comment

  • I am enthused that our city’s young people will not be exposed to drinking at All Souls Bar on their walk home from school.

    Instead, they’ll be exposed to drinking and drug use in the alley ways, street corners, and stoops on their walk home from school.

    Thank god, we’ve saved them from seeing people drinking at a bar, though.

  • What are we doing to allay the concerns about the exposure of schoolchildren to DC schools?

  • Support local small businesses!!!

  • Also, how will a wall on one side make that much of a difference… there wont be more than one wall or a roof, how is that going to control sound very well?

  • From Google Street View there might be two…three tops….residential units that may be able to hear something from the bar/patio. The corners of the street look to be non-residential places and then there’s a parking lot.

    This is the first time I actually looked at the specific location of this place and Christ. If Ms. Moss is so upset about noise how about complaining about the noise coming out of that Boost Mobile shop a block away. I won’t even mention the CVS corner…also a block away.

    • +1

      Emptying recyclables is so far down on the list of potential noise in this spot.

      • are you both implying that you’ve never had your picture taken with one of those funky spray-painted backdrops in front of the CVS on a warm summer night while sipping a cool one out of a brown bag or plastic cup?!

  • NIMBYism at it’s finest. It’s a wonder anything gets done in this city.

  • I cannot stop laughing at the “exposure of schoolchildren to the business” part.

  • springroadintoaction

    Somebody should enlighten Moss on the wonders of punctuation.

  • Isn’t there a Shaw Civic Association? I realize that this Moss lady is an ANC, but I find it hard to believe that the gentriciation community is either supporting her or being run so roughshod over by her. If I lived in Shaw, I’d start a petition supporting All Souls and opposing her.

  • When is Myla Moss up for reelection? I am going to run against her.

  • “No recyclables shall be emptied after midnight”

    So they are going to have to keep all the trash bags from 12-last call in the bar overnight until they can throw them out in the morning? I give this place a month tops before people start complaining about the smell that won’t go away.

    • Do you have a restaurant in your back yard that empties loads of glass bottles between 12am & 2am?

      I do — as I live down the block.

      9th Street is a similar situation. The 1900 block of 9th Street was never planned as a commercial/restaurant/bar block. It has NO alley access for garbage/recycling disposal for a vast number of the properties on the West side of the block. We have a major rat problem due to this issue and it is VERY annoying to be awaken numerous times during the night from the bars emptying all their bottles. Once you open the door on a block to start allowing restaurants/bars that sets the standard for opening additional ones and then you have the same situation as 9th street.

      This 700 block of T is a very similar situation — it is NOT zoned for restaurant/bar use. Therefore the RESIDENTS have EVERY right to raise concerns that need to be addressed in order to give this business a VARIANCE to open.

      • Umm…the 700 block of T Street (where the proposed restaurant is located) and the vast majority of 9th Street between T and Florida IS zoned for commercial use! I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: if you don’t want to live near anything that could house a commercial use, THEN DON’T MOVE NEAR ANYTHING THAT IS ZONED COMMERCIAL!

        • Per Zoning regulations. They are in a C-2-A zone. If they want to open a “food delivery” business they MUST comply with these zoning regulations or request a variance.

          734 FOOD DELIVERY SERVICE (C-2-A)

          734.1 Food delivery service shall be permitted in the C-2-A District if approved by the Board of Zoning Adjustment in accordance with the conditions specified in § 3104 for special exceptions, subject to the provisions of this section.

          734.2 No part of the lot on which the use is located shall be within twenty-five feet (25 ft.) of a Residence District unless separated therefrom by a street or alley.

          734.3 If any lot line of the lot abuts an alley containing a zone district boundary line for a Residence District, a continuous brick wall at least six feet (6 ft.) high and twelve inches (12 in.) thick shall be constructed and maintained on the lot along the length of that lot line. The brick wall shall not be required in the case of a building that extends for the full width of its lot.

          734.4 Any refuse dumpster shall be housed in a three (3) sided brick enclosure equal in height to the dumpster or six feet (6 ft.) high, whichever is greater. The entrance to the enclosure shall include an opaque gate. The entrance shall not face a Residence District.

          734.5 The use shall not include a drive-through.

          734.6 The use shall be designed and operated so as not to become objectionable to neighboring properties because of noise, sounds, odors, lights, hours of operation, or other conditions.

          734.7 The use shall provide sufficient off-street parking, but not less than that required by § 2101.1 to accommodate the needs of patrons and employees.

          734.8 The use shall be located and designed so as to create no dangerous or otherwise objectionable traffic conditions.

          734.9 The Board may impose conditions pertaining to design, screening, lighting, soundproofing, off-street parking spaces, signs, method and hours of trash collection, or any other matter necessary to protect adjacent or nearby property.


          This particular business will need VARIANCES for at least:

          734.2; 734.4; and 734.7

          Then in addition per zoning they must comply with 734.6 & 734.9


          It is NOT a matter of right that this property be used as a restaurant/bar as you would ignorantly suggest. They need exemptions and will need to work with the ANC representative and the neighbors they will directly effect.

          The same goes for the situation that has developed over decades with the 1900 block of 9th street. It was originally residential that morphed into a bar/restaurant corridor. It does not have the infrastructure or access to alleys required to properly deal with trash etc. amongst other issues.

          The residents have every right to demand answers and agreements be put into place to deal with these concerns/regulations for the issuance of the business and liquor licenses.

          • You need to chill. The proposed location for this bar/restaurant has long been an eyesore attracting nothing but vagrants and drug dealers. The majority of the neighbors are begging for an upgrade, and that’s what this is — and a major one at that. And as you say, you live “down the block” and not right on top of this place. Whatever happens here surely won’t affect you.

        • I need to chill? This is my immediate neighborhood and I’m fully aware of that block. We bring our clothes to the taylor next door, do you? How many prostitute and drug dealers have you chased out of the neighborhood? How many buildings in this immediate area have you forced the city to do something about?

          I fully support Commissoner Moss and any immediate neighbor
          who want their concerns addressed. This is the proper process in
          which any business who wants a zoning variance must go through. If those immediate neighbors have issue with it they have every right to protect their own long term property values.

          As commenters on this own blog have pointed out previously on properties for sale near the 1900 block of 9th street… Couldn’t get past the strong smell of Ethiopian food…

          The people who need to chill are the ones who don’t live on the block and the ones calling Commisioner Moss names. Let the process work.

          • I do live immediately on this block and I am happy to have something move in here. We have drug deals and people going to the bathroom in our backyard. It is ridiculous to not be OK with a restaurant/bar coming in when we have so many other issues to worry about. Bringing in some regular foot traffic is a GOOD thing. I am very sad that it won’t be open in the day time since many of these problems occur during the day. Cleveland Elementary would be just fine with a bar/restaurant in front of them where people enjoy their lunch.

      • We have a NIMBY here! Me me me me me me me me.

      • Yeah, you kind of have issues there, anonymous. This entire area has been gentrifying for years now and it’s in the heart of a city that’s been rebuilding itself for some time. You’re completely off base here, it’s all commercial around there.

        • I’m not opposed to them opening a establishment. However, they do have to come up with plans on how they will deal with impact of their business on the surrounding properties as it will be a non-conforming use.

          I fully support any neighbors objections to the business though and their grievances should have greater weight as the business is requesting variances.

          It is as simple as that. I have been in this neighborhood before it rapidly started changing and have helped with pushing development forward.

          Not all business should go anywhere they want — that is the reason we have zoning laws.

      • Why don’t you put your time into taking on actual problems in the neighborhood?? Maybe complain about the daily dance party that occurs outside of the Boost Mobile shop on the corner. Or, maybe you can do something about the nonsense that occurs in front of the CVS at night on weekends when people are preaching into microphones. Shall I continue?

        • Have you tried addressing those issues? I do and continue to do so. shall I continue?

          Let the process work and don’t lambast people that want to see the process work — request variance, work with ANC, zoning commission, alcohol board etc and affected neighbors. If this wasn’t a zoning variance issue it would not even come up. If the owners don’t want to deal with that process choose a location that doesn’t require a variance. Those exist on the U Street corridor and in close proximately to this location but would most likely cost double in rent prices.

          My initial response was to ____ “No recyclables shall be emptied after midnight” ____

          That is a problem and there should be a plan put in place to deal with it as to not impact beyond a reasonable mean the directly adjacent residential neighbors.

          If you don’t like the process, petition to have the zoning laws changed.

          And additional foot traffic — while usually good — does not always have the desired affect. I had a group of girls who just parked in front of my house last year where one of them determined she had to relieve herself right then and there. She dropped pants right between the cars and relieved herself.

  • In considering any liquor license I think it important to keep in mind that the license lives longer than the tenancy. KIP Mood Lounge. Bebar was a great neighbor and lived up to their side of the voluntary agreements. Then they’re bye-bye. Mood Lounge then moves in takes over the liquor license with no fanfare and does basically whatever the heck they want, with little legal repercussion and a very bad situation for the neighbors. I have no horse in this Batista/All Souls race but if/when the issue arises again in my neighborhood I’d think of the future and a worse case scenario. I do not begrudge Commissioner Moss for asking for so many seemingly small things.

  • It’s like a joke. If the wall is there, what does it matter what time they open?

  • Maybe shaw tavern should board up their windows so children aren’t exposed to what happens in there when it opens.

  • All Souls owner here

    Thanks again for all the support and encouragement. We are moving forward with the licensing process and continue to address concerns that some residents of Shaw have voiced. I would like to say that Myla Moss has been supportive of us from the beginning and is helping us work through the process, while listening to all concerned parties. We hope to reach a satisfactory agreement before the Status Hearing February 8th, in front of the ABRA board. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact me at [email protected].

    Thanks again,

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