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  • MadMax

    I want to be friends with this person.

  • Ava16

    Thanks to Dacha, I always get that clue correct in the crossword!! Yes to Dacha!

  • Truxton Thomas

    There’s a dacha at the Hillwood Estate. The other kind.

  • OTBerbur

    This house is on the 1300 block of S St., well away from current Garden District din, much less potential Dacha din. The signs against Dacha are on the 1400 block, much closer to the site.

    • PoPOverWork

      Also, this looks like an apartment building. Although I guess it could be a condo.

    • Dacha Supporter

      Ahh so only residents within a certain distance get a say in what happens in their neighborhood. Got it.

      • Anony

        Yes that is actually true. It’s why, for instance, zoning and ABRA matters, first go before the local ANC before the zoning board or ABRA.

        • Dacha Supporter

          Sure, but I’m fairly certain these neighbors could be in the same ANC zone.

          • OTBerbur

            They aren’t. The 1300 block of S is in Ward 1; the 1400 block is in Ward 2. ANC districts are subdivisions of wards.

          • Dacha Supporter

            Ahhh, so even though they literally live within a block of this, they get no say. Makes even more sense!

      • MadMax

        People in apartment buildings probably sleep easier at night not having to worry about that constantly rising property value.

        • maxwell smart

          i’m assuming rising property values also = rising rents.

  • Ugly Betty

    We’ll see what the ANC extracts from them for a voluntary agreement. I live 2.5 blocks away and still feel 400 for an outdoor beer garden is NUTS! Plus, they were bad actors in Shaw with a huge fine from ABRA, which I hope factors that into their decision.
    NO to DACHA on S

    • Dacha Supporter

      Why should it factor into their decision? Capacity should be set based on what makes sense for the space. If, as in Shaw, they violate their capacity restrictions they can, as they did in Shaw, pay the price for it. That’s how this works. Just like any other business that might have moved into this space.

      From what I can tell, in the last year or more, Dacha has been following the law as far as their Shaw location goes.

      • ustreeter

        to me once a violator, then you can’t be trusted.

        • Dacha Supporter

          And? Again, there’s a mechanism for poor behavior. These neighbors aren’t powerless if Dacha violates the rules.

        • MadMax

          We need more people like you in the DC prosecutor’s office.

        • Rich

          Past behavior is the best predictor of future behavior, esp. when the opening volley is a maximum number of patrons out of whack with anything reasonable.

          • DachaSupporter

            If past behavior is prologue, then recent past behavior should be given more weight than anything and by all accounts Dacha has cleaned up its act in Shaw.

      • Q-Street

        Are millions on excess-capacity sales vs $40k in fines paying a price or turning a profit? ABRA didn’t exactly provide a disincentive there; they set a precedent which establishes that non-compliance pays.

        • Duponter

          Take it up with ABRA then.

          • Q-Street

            We did take it up with ABRA. We made the outrageous request that Dacha abide by the deal to which they had agreed, but had never fulfilled. ABRA tore up the agreement and doubled their capacity, with a fine that is irrelevant in the context of years of over-capacity revenue.
            .
            The point being; Dacha did not pay a steep price for their bad behavior. The ABRA board is feckless, so the S Street neighbors may find it useless to “take it up with ABRA” once Dacha is in there.

          • DachaSupporter

            To clarify, I mean take it up with ABRA in the sense of where their responsibilities are generally and how they handle situations like this. Sounds like an issue with that regulatory body.

        • Tsar of Truxton

          Dacha took the message it seems. Stop by the Q location sometime.

        • MadMax

          Millions? What kind of margin do you think they make?

          • DachaSupporter

            I laughed at this. Jose Andres is like, WUT?

          • Q-Street

            Over 250k in sales tax in 2014. Over 500k in 2015. Math doesn’t require laughing or Jose Andres; that’s millions in revenue.

          • MadMax

            You quoted millions in EXCESS-CAPACITY sales. Nevermind how you supposedly even calculate that, your figures do nothing to support it.

          • Q-Street

            You cross the ‘millions’ threshold at 26% of total sales. They’re regularly hosting up to 350% of their capacity. Even if you assumed they were regularly serving 126 on every week day, and 450 only on weekends, the over-capacity sales comes out to 42%. But the reality was if it’s raining on the weekday, no one is there, and when it’s sunny on the weekends 400+ were there, and regularly crowds of 200+ on those in-between days. So yes, I think ‘millions’ from their excess capacity sales is a conservative assumption.
            .
            I also think that when they’re hosting 324 people more than they’re allowed, they’re making about $2,500/round from those people. That would cover their entire fine in 17 rounds of beer. I think it’s also a safe assumption that any number of sunny weekend days, they cleared over 17 rounds of beer to those folks.
            .
            So the penalty was meaningless, and the violations were not just simply to keep the business out of the red.

    • Jake

      I love seeing all this No to Dacha on S st stuff. These people bought next to land that is zoned for medium-density mixed use development, and now they’re mad it’s being redeveloped into that very same use. It’s like buying in a flood zone and being shocked and angered your property was flooded. If they didn’t want to be near higher density property uses, why did they buy right next to that land use.

      • FridayGirl

        Here we go again…….

      • Q-Street

        Right, so aside from this neither being medium-density, mixed use nor a development, they should have totally seen this coming?

        • Jake

          How is this not mixed-use? http://handbook.dcoz.dc.gov/zones/special-purpose-zones/mixed-use-uptown-arts/arts-3/

          You do realize that the lot owner doesn’t have to have multiple uses on his particular lot? The area is allowed mixed-uses and the city wants the focus to be on employment. People need to read and understand zoning laws. Otherwise, you’ll find yourself adjacent to density that is the 2nd highest allowed by law.

          • Q-Street

            You may want to take your own advice Jake. A beer garden does not meet the definitions of medium density commercial under DC code, it doesn’t promote residential use as the ARTS zone requires (quite the opposite), it doesn’t lend itself the the physical design standards of the zone.
            .
            There are also appropriateness standards within the DC code (§ 25–313) that set forth criteria for evaluating the impacts of a drinking establishment, under which a 600 person beer garden fails miserably.
            .
            The entire purpose of zoning law is to prevent incompatible land uses from being located next to each other. A textbook example would be something like locating a 600 person beer garden next to residential. The stakes for this purpose are raised in densely populated area like a city, not lowered. The “it’s a city, so anything goes in a commercial zone” flies in the face of urban planning.
            .
            If it were an apartment building with a street level gallery and restaurant with sidewalk seating, they should absolutely expect something like that to be developed in the ARTS zone. However, whether you’re invoking zoning laws generally, the ARTS zone specifically, or additional protections within the DC code, there is no reason that any of these residents should have expected, let alone accept, that a 600 person beer garden be located adjacent to them.

          • Jake

            Q-Street, The ARTS-3 zone requires a focus on employment, not residential like the ARTS-2 zone. The ARTS zones in general seeks to foster 18 hours of activity a day as other goals per the zoning, feel free to read at your own pleasure: https://dcoz.dc.gov/sites/default/files/dc/sites/dcoz/publication/attachments/SubtitleK_0.pdf

            While I understand your concern with the § 25–313, I don’t see how this is any different from the many other establishments like Garden District, Black Cat, Masa 14, El Centro, etc etc etc that have large capacity liquor licenses.

            Also, the code already has a limitation that no square can have more than 50% of the ground floor frontage occupied by eating and drinking establishments. Square 0207 doesn’t appear to have that issue with so many other businesses like Logan Hardware, West Elm, Crown Pawn, Flowers on 14th, among a few others occupying most of the frontage.

            I get it, NIMBYs hate anything new being developed next to their properties. Change is scary. My property is literally adjacent to the 14th st ARTS-3 corridor , and my family and I see this change all the time. However, these folks were naive to buy next to the corridor if this sort of development is to much for them. There are PLENTY of less dense or single-use residential areas in DC as well as VA & MD. People need to understand what they’re getting into when they buy a property, and be aware of what the zoning law allows. If you’re not comfortable with what could happen, I’d suggest buying a property elsewhere.

          • Q-Street

            I’m not expressing concern about the appropriateness standards within the DC code. You’re pretending they don’t exist, that anything goes in a commercial zone, and that there should be no expectation of residential property protections. I’m saying that’s unequivocally not the case in DC code specifically, and doesn’t comport with zoning law’s purpose generally.
            .
            The difference between Garden District and the Dacha proposal is 500 people. The difference between Masa, El Centro and Black Cat and the Dacha proposal are entire buildings. These are not subtle differences. High density is not the same as highly disruptive.
            .
            The ARTS-3 zone does have a ‘focus’ on employment, but all ARTS zones are ‘required’ to encourage residential use. A 600 person beer garden would cut against that requirement. My previous points on how a beer garden doesn’t satisfy some of the zone’s basic criteria stand, but the ‘focus’ on employment also raises the question: is seasonal employment (weather permitting) compelling for an employment-focused zone?
            .
            Regarding NIMBYism pejorative; the Shaw neighborhood supported the original Dacha before the ANC and the city. There was not an automatic NIMBY reaction to a beer garden. The problem here is the scale of Dacha’s new proposal and the owners’ history of ignoring their license and commitments. The S Street neighbors have every reason to think that this project will severely impact them as it did my neighbors, and they have every right to expect the protections afforded to them under DC law.

          • Jake

            Q-street, at no time did I pretend the appropriateness standards don’t exist. Making up false statements is unbecoming a District Resident. Also, is the Garden District legal capacity only 100? Do you mind sharing the source?
            .
            Again, the ARTS zones (1-4) “Require uses that encourage pedestrian activity, especially retail, entertainment, and residential uses” as well as many other standards the code spells out such as “Foster eighteen (18) hour activity and increased public safety”. Your argument that this specific lot doesn’t have residential uses doesn’t make any sense. It’s not a residential zoned lot nor zoned for a another use that requires a minimum percentage of residential use.
            .
            The seasonal employment discussion I’m sure will be a topic that is debated further. I don’t pretend to understand that aspect of city planning fully.
            .
            We’re likely never going to agree on the interpretation or application of the zoning law, but fortunately there are public entities that will handle this. ANC 2F will also hear residents comments on the matter this week.

          • Q-Street

            Your fundamental premise that residents should have expected something like a 600 person beer garden cannot be reconciled with the existence of the appropriateness standards. You have continued to peddle that position, so yes, you’re pretending it doesn’t exist to accommodate a pre-determined view.
            .
            My argument is not that the proposal is problematic because it doesn’t include residential, it’s problematic because is discourages residential use in a zone that requires it be encouraged.
            .
            When you cannot distinguish the difference between an enclosed restaurant and a 600 person beer garden, I agree that discussing anything more specific would be a waste of time.

          • Jake

            Q-Street, the ARTS-3 zone doesn’t require residential in every lot! Read the zoning law. You can have residential, but aren’t required to have it. The zoning law is very clear, and is there to prevent such statements as yours clouding as issue such as this.
            .
            Also, I’m not denying the appropriateness standards exist. They do, and the city will make the call on whether or not this proposal exceeds what the city deems appropriate. In my opinion, your interpretation would rule any establishment with drinking inappropriate. Is that how the city has ruled? No. Does the current 450 outdoor seats exceed what the city has ruled in the past or willing to rule in favor of for this location? I don’t have that data, and I’m still curious how you know Garden District only has a outdoor capacity of 100. Where did you find that, or was it made up? I’m just curious.

          • Q-Street

            This is the second time I’ve explicitly explained this in as many posts – I have never asserted that the zone requires to have residential in every lot. A proposed use that is in conflict with other uses a zone is required to encourage, is NOT the same thing as a proposed use that does not incorporate a use the zone is required to encourage.
            .
            I also did not interpret the appropriateness standards to preclude every
            bar or restaurant. When you could not divine the difference between Dacha’s proposal (600 people), Garden District (100 people) and Masa14 (building), I pointed out the obvious differences between them. If common sense is doomed to failure, then a relevant measurable can be drawn from Dacha’s 2015 operations when they generated noise levels exceeding industrial zone limits, let alone commercial zone.
            .
            Garden District was limited to a maximum occupancy of 99 in their settlement agreement with the ANC back in 2010. They had applied for an occupancy load of 170 with seating for 130. If anything has changed there, I’m unaware.

          • Jake

            So you saying “A proposed use that is in conflict with other uses a zone is required to encourage”.
            .
            But the zoning says ““Require uses that encourage pedestrian activity, especially retail, entertainment, and residential uses”
            .
            Your assertion seems to conflict with the zoning. This proposed use would contribute to these uses by generating more pedestrian activity that would benefit that ARTS-3 area. Your logic seems more like a personnel disdain for the proposed use at this point. Which is completely fine by the way. Everyone doesn’t have to like a beer garden.
            .
            Also, I do agree that the business would need to comply with noise restrictions. That would be silly not to expect and enforce that. Is 450 outdoor seats & 150 indoor seats to much? I’ll let the city decide at this point, with plenty of input from the community. However, I think the proposed use will contribute to zones goals more so than a parking lot. As a ANC 2F02 property owner, I welcome the increased activity. But I suppose you can call me a YIMBY.
            .
            So Garden District may or may not have a 100 outdoor capacity. Thank you for clarifying that is what you remember seeing from 2010.

      • Einarr

        How can you even think this, let alone take the time to type those words? Are you seriously arguing that homeowners should meekly accept whatever businesses choose to move into their neighborhood?
        Just for future reference, is there *any* potential development it would be OK for me to oppose?
        What I see people saying here is not “no more bars”, it’s “maybe if you’re opening an business within a stone’s throw of single family homes, you bar should have walls and a ceiling.” This isn’t NIMBYism, it’s just common sense.

        • Jake

          Elinarr, you can oppose anything you like. There is no such limitation on that choice. It’s your to make.

          I just disagree with the NIMBY argument that this sort of development is to close to the residential homes. That lot is zoned ARTS-3, and residential happens to be adjacent to it. My property is one of those on the corridor. There are many bars along the corridor, to include those with outdoor seating.

          I think common sense comes into play when those homeowner’s purchased their properties. If you aren’t comfortable with this sort of activity, don’t buy adjacent to land zoned for that use. It’s really that simple, and the area has a huge amount of land without these issues.

  • Anon

    I far prefer the dacha at Mar-a-Lago.

  • Carey

    When will people be voting on this ballot initiative?

  • Andrew_DC

    I live right in an apartment building right on that corner, and I think Dacha would be a great addition. Other than posting a message like this, how do I voice my support for it?

  • Andrew_DC

    Regarding the nearby residents posting “no” signs: Everyone has a right to their opinion, but nearby homeowners have made a small fortune by reason of the development of the neighborhood (particularly the addition of bars and restaurants), so to me, their complaints are not very sympathetic.

    • Dupont Resident

      I moved to Swann and New Hampshire 5 years ago. I can tell you that most of the homes on S between 16th and 14th were not renovated and in the condition they are today and that they were bought in the current state after being flipped by developers. So, from what I can tell, most of these people have not made a killing off their purchase and probably see their value lowering from a beer garden at the end of the street.
      ****
      That being said, I am not sympathetic. What did you think you were buying into so close to 14th street which has only been growing in the past 5 years? You weren’t buying there because it was still the Red Light District….

      • Duponter

        This is patently untrue.

      • Mark

        The person making the killing on real estate aren’t the homeowners, it’s the the out of towner who’s banking rent from a 600 person surface parking lot. I wonder if it has any UST’s.

        • Duponter

          I’m sorry, but the idea people who own homes in Logan Circle that were bought anytime before the last five years or so aren’t making a killing on them is complete nonsense. I suppose that is how one defines “a killing,” but any homeowner on that block has seen their property value increase steadily for over a decade and by percentages that exceed the city average.

          And if anyone bought their home on that block in the last five years, there is even less empathy here because by then 14th Street was booming and they knew what they were getting by moving so close to it.

          • textdoc

            They have to sell in order to “make a killing” on their homes. Many people’s main priority with their homes is continue living in them, not to make $$$ off them.

          • Duponter

            Or rent, but of course. That wasn’t really pertinent to the discussion. It’s still equity you hold in an asset.

          • Dupont Resident

            I would venture to guess that the “killing” or “steady increase” they are “making” in the last ten years IF they bought a renovated property would not be significant when considering any real estate fees and the wonderful DC recordation tax (1% in and out). So I maintain that if you bought in the past 5 years you are not making a “killing” and would barely make anything at all if you tried to sell.

          • dcd

            @Dupont Resident: Wait – your argument is that in the last 10 years, in Logan Circle, the increase in property values just barely keeps up with real estate transaction fees, including the DC transfer tax? So, 7% or so? A place purchased for $500,000 in 2007 now is sold for around $535,000?
            .
            Come on. You can’t really type that with a straight face, can you?

          • Dupont Resident

            @DCD – first of all, I’ve said in the past *5* years (2007 is 10 years, right?). Okay, so 5 years. I also said the homes along s st. between 14th and 16th which are mostly row homes. If you can show me a $500,000 row home (or even more than a broke down condo) sold in the last 5 years along S st…well you couldn’t. Okay so there’s that. Then, if you sell using a realtor (I get it, there are ways not to but most people do) you’ll pay 1% taxes in, 6 % in realtor fees, 1% taxes out and about 4% in closing costs (combined) in and out and other fees (mortgage lender, etc). then you’d need to have an appreciation of about 12% just to cut even. We’re ‘discussing’ how you can claim people are making a “killing” if they bought in the last 5 years. They’re not. You may break even in 5 years but that would be considered not making anything at all.

          • dcd

            Actually, what you said was, “I would venture to guess that the “killing” or “steady increase” they are “making” in the last ten years IF they bought a renovated property would not be significant when considering any real estate fees and the wonderful DC recordation tax (1% in and out). ”
            .
            In your words, no significant profit in the last 10 years.
            .
            Moreover, if you pay 6% while selling a place in Logan Circle, you don’t have the sense God gave a turnip, and those other numbers are on the high end. That aside, using your numbers, if you believe that the rowhouse that sold for 1.5 million in 2007 would only sell for enough over $1.68 million to generate an “insignificant” profit, you’ve been taking too liberal advantage of DC’s relaxed rules on marijuana. Or perhaps are suffering from a head injury.

          • Duponter

            I just looked actually and on the 1400 block of S Street, only 6 homes on that block sold in the last 3 years. Out of over 50 on that block. So, I think your point is probably a weak one whether one actually thinks recent purchasers of homes are seeing property value increases (they are by the way) or not.

  • Rational Human

    In more news you can use, everything is polarizing. And arguments will be raised by both sides claiming to have intimate knowledge about everything related to the issue at hand.

    If capacity is the issue, then voice that through propper channels and in forums. Blanket statements (or signs) anti Dacha don’t really make sense.

    What don’t you like about Dacha? Beer? Drinking outside? Germans? Russians? You prefer parking lots? Etc.

    • textdoc

      I don’t see a problem with signs against (or for) Dacha. The idea is to raise awareness and motivate others; the signs aren’t an end in themselves. Presumably folks with strong feelings will put up signs AND contact their ANC rep, ABRA, etc.

      • Rational Human

        @textdoc I believe in free speech, so in theory I agree with your statement about the purpose of the signs – They can build awareness. If it makes them feel better, have at it, but, like you said, without informed participation in the hearings, ANC meetings, etc its just silly to me. The sign people are really just talking to themselves.

    • just my opinion

      If people want to drink beer with hundreds of others in an open air parking lot, one can do that in a devloping country bus station. The new Dacha sounds like the least fun bar idea to me second only to the shipping container bar on U Street. But that said, I don’t think having the means/luck/to buy in a popular area means one formats the right to an opinion on their neighborhood, which seems to be implied on this discussion. DC has, whether one agrees with it or not, a mechanism for neighbor input into ABRA decisions, and this is part of that process.

      • textdoc

        +1 to “I don’t think having the means/luck/to buy in a popular area means one formats the right to an opinion on their neighborhood, which seems to be implied on this discussion.” (I think you meant “forfeits.”) And for people who bought on S Street ~10 or more years ago, it was a very different neighborhood.

        • just my opinion

          Ooops, yes, thanks. [Autocorrect and I are on the outs this week.]

        • Duponter

          And? The property in question was never zoned residential. Are those people truly complaining about the changes on 14th Street in the last 10 years?

          The issue is really that people understandably want their cake (all the development that adds amenities to your property, increases your property’s value, reduces crime, etc.) while eating it too, by saying they get to decide exactly what development gets to be there or not. I think there’s a balance of course and that balance is having a process to speak up about occupancy or hours of operation, etc. but I don’t think you get to say, I won’t support this unless it is precisely the business model I want. I mean you can, but I have no sympathy for that argument.

          • textdoc

            “Are those people truly complaining about the changes on 14th Street in the last 10 years?” It sounds like they aren’t — just about this particular beer-garden proposal by an entity that made bad blood with its neighbors at its Shaw location.

        • Duponter

          It’s also just funny to me because I have owned in parts of the city where I would have killed for a fraction of the development these owners have experienced.

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