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“The Dacha backlash has already started.”

by Prince Of Petworth — May 5, 2017 at 12:30 pm 211 Comments

no dacha

Whoa thanks to John for sending:

“The Dacha backlash has already started. I counted 17 “No Dacha on S Street” signs during my walk down S Street, NW.”

Yesterday we learned about Dacha’s plans for the current parking lot at 14th and S Street, NW (1740 14th Street, NW):

“New Class C Tavern serving American fare. Sidewalk café with 150 seats and a Summer Garden with 450 seats. Total Occupancy Load of 600.”

Update from Greg Pulscher: “I found this yards sign combo far more entertaining.”

signs

  • Mark

    That’s a beautiful outdoor bathroom.
    I’m a little envious.

  • PetworthGuy

    Do I spy a re-planted christmas tree?!

    • PetworthGuy

      Actually – not sure if that’s possible without the roots.

      • Nathan

        You can buy a potted Christmas tree (made specifically to replant after indoor use), so it is possible.

  • L2

    Good for these neighbors for organizing. Occupancy of 600 outside is HUGE.

    • Mark

      Probably 4x the combined total occupancy of all the other structures (they’re single family homes) on that block.

  • MadMax

    That’s going to be super effective, I’m sure.

  • Chad

    Time for these people to cash out and move to Bethesda

    • KenyonDweller

      Let me guess–you grew up in the suburbs and are under age 30.

      • textdoc

        +1.

      • anon

        What?

    • Q-Street

      Oh yes, prospective buyers are just lining up to purchase a home next to a perpetual 600 person party. It has absolutely no impact on property values.

      • anon

        LOL at the idea that we should worry about property values in Logan Circle adjacent to 14th St. Seriously LOL. If this were to organically temper housing values, it’d be doing the world a favor. But it won’t.

        • anon

          Also I own a condo just a block south, before anyone accuses me of being jealous or something.

        • prgkmr

          seriously, are these people high? Property values in logan circle are the highest in the city BECAUSE of the nightlife around 14th street, not in spite of it. Do people realize 10 years ago what property values on logan street were? Hint: the nightlife then was hookers and crack.

          • prgkmr

            *in logan cirlce/14th street

          • tke98

            No, ten years ago, it wasn’t hookers and crack. You’d have to go at least 15, maybe 20. Didn’t the whole foods come around 13 or 14 years ago?

          • RC

            In general, yes. But for the people directly next to this location? Nope. They are about to lose a ton of value in their homes. I sure as heck wouldn’t buy there, even if I were rich.

    • jaybird

      I’m afraid Bethesda is coming to them(us).

    • Anonthony

      Time for Dacha to put their beer garden in Bethesda.

    • Mike

      Because when they bought their homes they were told, hey we’re gonna build an outdoor bar for 600 people next door to your house?

  • KenyonDweller

    No matter where you are from, we’re glad you’re our neighbor.*
    * Unless you’re a beer garden filled with 600 loud drunk yuppies.

    • FridayGirl

      +1. I agree with the sentiment.

    • tassojunior

      +1

    • c

      patrons aren’t neighbors.

      • LittleSympathyForMillionaires

        But business owners are. Regardless it is still pretty ironic.

  • anon

    Pretty awesome next to the “We’re glad you’re our neighbor” sign!

  • Anonthony

    I love a beer garden as much as anybody, but I sure as HELL wouldn’t want one anywhere close to my home. Drunk people are by their very nature obnoxiously loud, especially those who grew up without learning about the concept of common courtesy. Maybe they can put up a huge wall to deflect the sound, like the ones that you see between freeways and residential neighborhoods.

    • Anon

      “Maybe they can put up a huge wall” – go on…

      • Admiral Yi

        Haa! comment of the day!

      • ANON

        outstanding

      • AMDCer

        And make Dacha pay for it…?

    • JohnH

      I live 2 blocks off U Street and still deal with a lot of drunks and all of those associated issues. I can’t imagine living right next to it. That being said, it doesn’t make it ok, when you buy right off a main commercial road, you never know what you can get. Coulda been a strip club.

      • Anonthony

        A strip club would probably be less disruptive.

        • FacePalm

          And definitely better regulated. Plus likely more discreet.

      • Anon

        Damn, now I want to see a strip club on 14/U, and that’s not even my jam.

      • Anonymous

        Actually, it couldn’t have been a strip club. ZR16 (our zoning regulations) allow a sexually-oriented business establishment there only if no portion of the establishment shall be located within six hundred feet (600 ft.) of a residential zone, church, school, library, playground, or the area under the jurisdiction of the Commission of Fine Arts. (See Subtitle U.)

        • anonymous2u

          How is “The House” on Georgia Ave located right next to a school then?

          • Anonymous

            You would need to determine the zone and check the regulations for that specific zone. (information on both available on the Office of Zoning web-site.) The language I gave was for the ARTS-3 zone. If it is in a zone that specifies that it cannot be within 600 feet of a school, and you are concerned, you might recommend that enforcement action be taken. Not everything that we see on the ground actually complies with the zoning regulations. Sometimes uses and structures are grandfathered, and other times, there are blatant violations of the regulations.

          • saf

            It predates the school by many many many many years.

          • stacksp

            The house has been there maybe 20+ years before that school. The house remodeled when the gentrification started. It was called, “The Penthouse”….

      • S Streeter

        We’ve been on S Street for 20+ years. There was no commerce on 14th Street, nor any hope of it, when we bought.

        • Jake

          The land has been zoned for mixed-use medium development for decades. Buying next to it was a decision. I bought adjacent to it as well, and fully understood what I was getting into. There are plenty of areas in the area that don’t permit other uses outside residential. How would you like it if other people told you that you couldn’t use your land in accordance with what’s been allowable by the law for decades?

        • prgkmr

          and you’re complaining that your property value has probably gone up ~500% or more in that time? Because you know, you can move to another quiet street. 14th street isn’t ever going to be quiet again…

  • Joe

    I can see both sides of the issue. The neighbors will potentially have those long lines of kids waiting to get in like the location does now which will be a loud nuisance. Those homes are worth almost a million or more.

    • mkdgoodman

      I know one of them is worth 1.5 mil.

    • prgkmr

      the homes wouldn’t be worth > $1 million if it wasn’t for the nightlife on the street…

  • JL

    Bring on the Dacha! It’s going to be awesome. An nice beer garden would be fantastic. Move to the burbs if you want to be a hermit.

    • Kingman Park It

      lol

      There may be a middle ground between “want to be a hermit” and “want to live directly next to a 600 person beer garden”.

      This stuff happens, but let’s not act like they’re unreasonable for not being thrilled.

      • DC_KT

        Why is it always “move the burbs” any time someone doesn’t want lots of outdoor noise and drunks puking on their lawn? True, they might have to just learn to deal with it because it’s obviously going to happen regardless, but they were there first, not Dacha. Only a few years ago there was nothing like this anywhere near Shaw, because all those people who love Dacha so much were partying in Clarendon, aka the burbs.

        • SWChris

          Because outdoor noise is part of city living. If you want to live in a place where you hear a minimal amount of noise and never have to encounter people, they have them. They’re called….suburbs.

          • DC_KT

            Street noise, sirens, etc. may be a part of city living (sirens especially in DC), but I disagree that having a 600-person open air bar next to your house is an unavoidable or expected part of city living. I’ve lived in “hip” areas in several cities and now I very much enjoy living in the very quiet and relaxing city neighborhood of Capitol Hill. If a beer garden moved in across the street I’d be excited for a minute and then after it sunk in I might put one of these signs up too. I often find that the people who snidely insist that noise, crime, rats, vermin, etc. are “just part of city living” have lived in a city for all of 5 years or less and just like to tell everyone else to go away so they can not have to deal with neighbors, also a part of city living.

          • dc_anon

            Hey now. We all know that folks don’t raise families in the city. Cities are just neighborhoods transitioning from The Wire that only exist to make newcomers feel edgy or bars to satiate their thirst. A city is most definitely not having to deal with living in very close quarters with people of all ages that have different lives from your own.

          • tassojunior

            Beer gardens in Germany are in the suburbs, not in the middle of downtown.

          • Ben

            “Beer gardens in Germany are in the suburbs, not in the middle of downtown.”

            Wait what? Have you been to Munich? They squeeze one every few blocks! Unless you’re referring to the real gardens that hold 10k+ folks… but still Chinesischer Turm holds 7k+ people and is in the middle of the city!

          • lizcolleena

            Munich does have plenty of beer-drinking venues all over the city, but the Chinese Tower is a poor comparison as it’s in the middle of the English Garden, and no one lives adjacent. In my experience, their beer halls (many of which are subterranean) are easy to come by but outdoor drinking establishments are actually fewer and farther between.

        • Jake

          DC_KT, you’re missing the point. The zoning laws allow this type of development. That land has been zoned for mixed use medium density for decades. It’s not like people weren’t aware. That plot of land has been zoned commercial use since the creation of the zoning code in the 1920s. This is clearly time for a “move to the burbs” for these folks. There are plenty of quiet residential areas in the city that don’t permit other uses outside residential.

          • HaileUnlikely

            A normal person could have envisioned a restaurant, or a bar, or an auto body shop, or a Radio Shack. Outdoor beer gardens were not on anybody’s radar 10 years ago; it is unfair and nonsensical to fault somebody who bought their property in 1985 or 1995 or even 2005 for not imagining that they might have an type of business that for all intents and purposes didn’t exist yet serving alcohol to a crowd of 600 people *outdoors* in a few years.

          • textdoc

            Amen to HaileUnlikely.

          • lizcolleena

            No one is objecting to commercial activity, per se, but rather a 600+ beer garden, specifically. That doesn’t really feel “medium development” to me, and homeowners will have to deal with a lot of nuisance from patrons of this place. I think it’s reasonable to be concerned and voice those concerns now, in the hopes that the capacity will be downgraded or something else to that effect.

          • Jake

            That plot of land has been zoned for commercial use since the creation of the DC zoning code in the 1920’s and also mixed use since the delineation came about int he DC zoning code. The street has evolved many times since then, and will continue to do so. ALL of these property owners bought next to this land knowing it was zoned for non-residential uses and not low or moderate density commercial/mixed-use. A 75 foot tall building could be put up by-right. Complaining that the neighborhood isn’t quite is crazy and amounts to some people telling other property owners what they can and can’t do on their land regardless of the law. There are PLENTY of other areas of the city that they can move to that don’t have any commercial zoning near it. They should go there if the 14th St mixed-use corridor is that unappealing to them.

          • HaileUnlikely

            Jake – serious question, as I can’t tell. Do you have a problem with the neigbhors engaging in the civic process and making their opinion known, or do you want them to just bend over and/or move silently? Is it your opinion that area residents should not be allowed to express their opinion regarding new businesses that wish to open in their neighborhood. If that is your opinion, that’s cool, you’re entitled to your opinion, but they are entitled to theirs, too.
            .
            It doesn’t seem that the neighbors have a problem with commercial activity generally. I don’t recall seeing a bunch of yard signs opposing the opening of Ted’s Bulletin, Garden District, or any of the many many other businesses in the area. It seems to be something specific about Dacha, which has a reputation for being a sh!tty neighbor at their other location under a mile away, and/or the concept of 600 people drinking alcohol in a little outdoor cage around the corner from them.

          • Jake

            HaileUnlikely, I’m a homeowner on 14th st whose residential zoned property is adjacent (I can physically touch their land from mine) to the mixed-use medium density corridor. I’m very aware of the discourse that transpires when you find yourself in that situation and properties redevelop into new purposes. I wasn’t naive though when I purchased and understood what could be developed on that mixed-use medium density corridor.

            Personally, I think this is a sad case of NIMBY property owners that are stomping on the property rights of the owner of that plot of land. If you don’t want this sort of develop near your home, don’t buy next door to where it can be built. Plenty of other homes are on the market in lesser dense zoned neighborhoods.

            And it’s only 450 “outdoor seats”.

    • dc_anon

      You must have grown up in the burbs w/ the attitude that the city is only a playground for adult manchilds such as yourself.

      • FacePalm

        +1

    • HaileUnlikely

      There is already a beer garden diagonally across the street from this site. I think homeowners on the block can be forgiven for having not anticipated that they would get *another* one.

      • prgkmr

        I mean, yes that is surprising, but odd that they would be so upset over something that literally already exists across the street.

    • Shaxton

      Because Garden District (which is across the street) isn’t good enough?

  • welp

    These people are delusional. You live a block off of 14th street… If you don’t like the neighborhood, move- because the nightlife is going to last a lot longer than you.

    • L2

      I’m sure it’s the 600 outside part that is a concern. Yes, 14th street is a business area with plenty of existing businesses, but the existing nearby businesses do not have anywhere near a 600 person outdoor capacity. Plus the fact that Dacha has a reputation for not working with neighbors (whether that’s a deserved reputation or not, you could debate all day). I don’t blame the neighbors for trying to get under the issue at the start. In the end, they’re probably hoping for a lower capacity and some say in the operating hours.

      • flieswithhoney

        Agreed. I have no idea how they will even fit 600 people on that lot and you can hear Garden District from a block away and that’s what, 100-200 people outside? I love Garden District; it’s scaled for a neighborhood setting.

        • FridayGirl

          +1. 600 people is absurd and I’d be angry too.

        • JohnH

          Garden District is pretty scaled back like you said – but it’s still LOUD. I would hate living in those townhouses across the street. I’m sure it’s very noisy. I’d normally be tough to be sympathetic because you are right off a main commercial street, but the size alone is the problem.

        • FacePalm

          Yup, as a nearby resident it’s pretty much this. 600 people in that lot is far, far too many, especially with a crowd already incredibly-well served in the area. Want to build it, fine, but permitting 600 people for a lot that size is crazy and disruptive. I’d frankly rather have the suggested strip club. It’d probably be more discreet and better regulated and it’s not like grabby drunk 20 something peers is my ideal walking home experience.

          I’d add that as a childless non-property owner in their 20s who loves beer I’m basically Dacha’s ideal clientele and I love Garden District already. This is just not a good fit for that many people with an already loud (and frankly far quieter) competitor sharing air space.

      • tassojunior

        This is almost 200 feet on residential S Street, only 18 feet on 14th. Big difference for having 600 drunk yuppies on 14th vs. S Street.

    • DC_KT

      Is it? How’s the nightlife doing in Dupont or Adams Morgan these days?

      • d

        Uh, still quite robust actually.

    • anon

      my favorite comment on Dacha comes from Wesley Lowry quoting the barber across the street calling it “the cage of white people” and this exchange

      Barber 1: “What’s up in the cage today?”
      Barber 2: “Someone brought chips and dip and a puppy”
      Barber 1: “That cage of white ppl don’t quit”

      • anon

        Holy racism, batman. DC has a long ways to go yet.

        • welp

          Chances someone who would make a moronic comment like this is an ACTUAL racist = about 100%

          “We need to deal with the REAL racial issues in this city, like barbers making fun of drunk white yuppies”

        • ajse

          ……. that’s not racism

          • INWDC

            Agreed, but if the roles were reversed (white people talking about a cage of black people) would you feel the same way? There’s a real problem with racism coming from any “side” and if it’s not acknowledged/dealt with effectively then we’re guaranteed to make the same mistakes over and over and over…

          • dcgator

            It’s racialism, not racism.

          • dcd

            The barber’s comments are not racism (and are pretty funny). If the roles were reversed (white people talking about a cage of black people), they still would not be racism, but would be highly offensive and not the least bit funny because white people ***actually did*** keep black people in cages in this country. Historical context matters.

          • anon

            That’s absolutely racist. Saying “that cage of [race]” and making fun of an entire racial group is practically the textbook definition of racist behavior. Unless you’re using an idiosyncratic definition that’s at odds with the common usage of the word, I have no idea how that’s not racist. I’m Asian-American, and I can assure you that I would be very offended if someone was making racist jokes about how “that cage of Asians don’t quit.” I have no idea how someone could find this to not be an example of racism.

          • HaileUnlikely

            He’s not making fun of an entire racial group; he’s just making fun of the patrons of a certain establishment. That almost all of the patrons of said establishment happen to be of the same race is part of what makes it funny.

          • dcd

            @Haile – absolutely. And even if it were racist (and it isn’t), the white people can take it. Few things irritate me more than white people complaining about an innocuous comment because “If I said that about a black person I’d be a racist!” (Or, in this case, generic complaints of racism without taking into account the historical context.) So what? You also can’t call young black men the N word even if they use it that same word themselves. Sometimes life’s unfair. I’m sure if you offered to trade the crushing unfairness of your inability to talk about black men in a cage to then in return for the unfairness they have experienced, they’d be willing to take you up on it.

          • Jay

            … so how about this: the barber is making an architectural criticism. I mean, if there’s a solid wall there or if it’s cordoned off by a velvet rope, would anyone say they’re in a cage? It would certainly have a different look to it…

            And, of course, when you say the people are “in a cage”, it suggests that they’re being held there involuntarily more than it does that they’re behind a certain type of fencing. In the case of Dacha patrons, they’re there by choice. You know that, I know that, the barber knows that. It’s just that the building materials used on the premises carry certain historical echoes that remain relevant (yes, historical context matters) and make it ironic that white people are putting themselves in that position.

            It’s a funny bit of ironic observation, even if it loses a bit when it has to be explained…

          • tassojunior

            I’m white and can certainly can say it’s a cage of obnoxious drunk white yuppies.

          • anonymous2u

            Agree with INWDC 3:19pm

      • FacePalm

        +1 This was the best.

      • mark

        Hillarious.
        Sorry but the cage thing *is* weird.

        • Anon

          nope, the cage thing is quite astute commentary, and hilarious to boot. I wish I came to that realization myself. Note: I like going to Dacha every once in a while, but I’m fully willing to accept the “white people in a cage” POV for those from the outside.

        • anon

          yes, but maybe less wierd than Bardo, which looks like a dystopian off-the-grid community

          barbers’ comments could apply there too

      • chris

        This is trolling.

  • Mug of Glop

    I just don’t understand how they’re even going to fit 600 people in that lot unless they build something big and multi-level like Sauf Haus in Dupont.

    • anon

      600 people is the number they came up with to start negotiations with the neighbors to get an agreement on the 300 person beer garden they wanted to begin with.

      • andy2

        And I encourage the neighborhood to push for 150. 300 is too big and isn’t pleasant for patrons and neighbors alike.

        • Duponter

          Patrons can decide with their money and feet what is pleasant for them.

          • prgkmr

            seriously the commenter above is ridiculous. Let the business and customers worry about what they find pleasant.

      • Mug of Glop

        Ah, okay. I didn’t realize that the ABRA requests/negotiations could be so fluid that asking for more capacity than could physically fit in the space was allowable, but then I don’t know why I was surprised.

        • tassojunior

          It’s not. A different department decides what legally-permissible safe capacity is, not ABRA. And a license can’t change that effectively.

          • maxwell smart

            This is correct. Occupancy isn’t determined on a whim or by negotiation. It is determined by building codes and will be reviewed by the city for compliance. My rough area guess from the zoning map would suggest, baring any construction, the lot could only support an occupancy of about 400 people. So I would assume that if they are aiming for 600, they are planning to build up at least 1 level.

      • tassojunior

        It’s 3 or 4 times the physical size of the Garden District beer garden across 14th street and away from residences. Legal capacity is garbage, hard to enforce.

        btw Dacha on 7th has numerous serious infractions of liquor codes (75?) and another may close them.

        Not just the yuppy customers are obnoxious.

  • kd21

    Yeah, good thing there aren’t any drunk people around 14th street right now! Let’s keep it that way!

    • JohnH

      I will say – as far as bars go – 14th Street is not as “lively” late night as U Street, Adams Morgan, etc. Most of 14th Street are restaurants – by 11 pm, there’s still people from the bars that are there, but it’s hardly a street lined with bars open til 2 am.

    • tassojunior

      It’s S Street 200 feet and 14th Street 18 feet. Huge difference.

  • Q-Street

    Dacha hasn’t exactly given any prospective neighborhood a reason to believe they’ll be good neighbors. ABRA hasn’t given residents any faith that there’s any recourse once they’re established; all of Dacha’s violations in the past were rewarded by having their occupancy doubled. There’s a lot at stake for these residents.

    • AP

      That’s simply not true. They had to pay a huge fine ($42,500) and had their liquor license suspended for 21 days. After that, Shaw’s ANC endorsed them to expand to 250 people. The neighborhood and ABRA allowed them to expand. They could have just said no.

      • Duponter

        Thank you. It’s such nonsense that POP has helped contribute to when it comes to Dacha. Shaw was a shit hole 6 years ago but let’s bemoan a popular spot that has drawn housing and tax dollars to a neighborhood.

        I’m even less sympathetic with anyone living off 14th Street at this point. Console yourself with your ever rising home values.

        • Jay

          Right… because *Dacha* was the reason for the development in Shaw. But hey, maybe we can test your theory by sticking one of those in a struggling neighborhood east of the river? I mean, it’s not like 14th Street needs that kind of help…

        • mmm

          Classy. A “Shithole” in which people have lived and worked for generations.

        • Q-Street

          Yeah, that’s a fantastic rewriting history. There was $3 billion of investment in Shaw prior to Dacha. Half of the single family homes, including three abandoned ones, had been bought and fully renovated years earlier. The beautiful home right next to Dacha used to be a full-blown crack house, but that was turned over and renovated before Dacha. The abandoned Section 8 Kelsey Gardens across the street was just delivering on Jefferson Apartments. The old Giant had become the new City Market at O.
          .
          Everyone likes drinking outside; that’s no secret. But lets stop pretending that when Dacha threw down some gravel and porta potties, that they were the saviors of the neighborhood. None of Dacha’s current customers would even set foot in the neighborhood if not for the massive residential investments that preceded many of the successful businesses that have opened up. There is a symbiotic relationship there, and Dacha’s owners abused it.

          • Duponter

            It isn’t rewriting history because I didn’t actually say what you’ve inserted as your interpretation of what I said. I’m not crediting Dacha for the revitalization of Shaw. I’m simply pointing out that it is one of the many draws for young people who have moved into the neighborhood. I lived in Shaw for many years well before any development so yes, I think I can probably speak to what a shit hole it was. I shopped at that old Giant with its nasty produce and crime ridden parking lot. I have been mugged on that very corner. So yeah, I think I know Shaw a bit better than the scores of people who feel the need to comment on here. Meanwhile, even today, there are still drive by shootings right in the middle of that area, but yes, the biggest problem with Shaw is Dacha! Got it!

        • tassojunior

          Spoken like a typical yuppie turd.

          • tassojunior

            I am entitled to be an obnoxious drunk anywhere I damn well want. I’m white and upclass.

          • FridayGirl

            Sigh. Just sigh…

          • Duponter

            Or, like someone who has lived in DC for 20 years, isn’t white, and knows Shaw better than most of you.

      • Q-Street

        A huge fine and 3 weeks eh? Dacha was serving 450 people on a 126 person license. Assuming an average beer price of $8, they only had to sell 17 rounds of beer to the over-capacity customers alone to pay the fine. Two of the weeks they were closed were weeks they were not traditionally open. So, for years of violations, they were fined 16 rounds of beer and closed for a week.
        .
        To put things in perspective; they sold $5million in beer in 2015 alone (based on their change.org disclosure of over $500,000 in DC sales tax). Their violations were never about the survival of a small business; it was purely profit. If ABRA’s ‘huge’ penalty sends a message of any sort to other proprietors, it’s that you can make literally millions by ignoring ABRA.
        .
        Pretty fantastic outcome when all the neighborhood wanted was the original agreement honored. Also an eye opener that so many people would align against the very families that supported Dacha when they actually needed help with the ANC and the city, JUST so Dacha could be a little more crowded.

        • GK

          As a fellow neighbor, this is exactly right. If I were one of the folks on S St, I’d be working my butt off trying to stop Dacha from opening up on 14th St.

          • tassojunior

            Opening on S Street.

          • FridayGirl

            It’s at S St & 14th St tasso junior. #gohomeyouredrunk

          • tassojunior

            It’s 18 feet on 14th Street, 200 feet on S Street. That’s “S” backing on 14th.

            And their wait line will stretch all the way down S, not 14th. It would be too disruptive there.

            #putdownyourlatteand read

          • FridayGirl

            Oh my god, you don’t need to correct everyone just because you have so little of a life that you know exactly how many feet on each corner this will be. #idontdrinklattesyajerk

  • maxwell smart

    This has about as much merit as people who move into a neighborhood near an airport and then complain about the noise.

    • flieswithhoney

      The current location is a vacant lot. I think your analogy would be a better fit if people moved into a neighborhood with a vacant field that could be used for a small airport and instead the developer wants to put in O’Hare. There’s regular noise and then there’s noise so disrputive that area schools have to be soundproofed. Source: I attended one of those schools.

    • Adam

      Makes no sense, when I moved in it was used car dealership. There wasn’t a 600 person bar there.

    • maxwell smart

      My point is that 14th street is already a place with many bars and restaurants, many with outdoor patio spaces. I could maybe buy the outrage if this was opening in the middle of Chevy Chase, but – sorry not sorry – you choose to live in the city near a fairly busy nightlife corridor.

      • Anonymous

        Doesn’t mean that you lose the right to protest against any form of business that chooses to open up in that “fairly busy nightlife corridor.” Especially one promising many multiples of any outdoor patio space currently being used anywhere in that corridor.

      • RNG

        But it wasn’t a pretty busy nighlife corridor even just 3 years ago. The revitalization of 14th street is very recent and quickly moving.

        • Duponter

          And?

        • mmm

          most of the nightlife on 14th street has been around for far longer than 3 years.

          • HaileUnlikely

            If we really want to split hairs, maybe 5 or 6 years. The only restaurant/bar that I can think of that was there longer ago than that and is still recognizable as more-or-less the same establishment is Saint-Ex. If you would like to see for yourself, Google StreetView can help. You can take a virtual drive down 14th St as it appeared in August 2007.

        • prgkmr

          and the property values have more than doubled in the past 5 years from that development. those people can move now if they want their peaceful residential neighborhood. They’ve already lost that battle years ago on 14th street.

        • RC

          I’ve lived in the neighborhood for 13 years, and yes it was a pretty busy nightlife 3 years ago. Just ‘cuz you hadn’t discovered it yet meant it was dead. I’ve been hitting 14th street since 2006. Saint-Ex, the Cat, Bar Pilar, Cork, etc. Heck, Estadio opened 7 years ago and that wasn’t even a pioneer; same with Policy which opened 8 years ago.

      • Anonthony

        There’s quite a difference between a restaurant patio with a dozen or two guests, and a beer garden that packs hundreds of people in a small space.

      • FacePalm

        Patio space does not equal 600 person outdoor beer garden. Even a large patio space is early Saturday Garden District or Matchbox. What Dacha wants is to be the front lawn of a frat party and there’s definitely no precedent for that anywhere near that strip.

        • Duponter

          This is such nonsense. The original Dacha is not a frat party. Sorry you hate a bunch of young white millennials drinking, but get over it really.

          Sincerely,

          Not a young white millennial.

          • dcd

            “bunch of young white millennials drinking”
            That is pretty close to the definition of a frat party (for recent grads).

          • Duponter

            Or, the definition of the demographic that represents most of that neighborhood now. God forbid they be allowed to drink in their own neighborhood.

            There is no end to the number of white folks on this blog that bemoan other white folks moving into the same neighborhoods they gentrified themselves. Get a clue, get a life, and get over it.

      • Anonymous

        As recently as 2009-2010, the only “spots” on 14th were the BYOB jazz club HR-57 and Black Cat. There was pretty much nothing else that would attract hoards of drunken yuppies. The only drunk people on 14th were the actual homeless. A lot of the home owners on S Street have been around since those days. No way in hell they imagined a 600 person outdoor beer garden, let alone 30 restaurants opening within the span of 3 years.

        • DC_KT

          Yeah, all these comments about how 14th street has always been a hot nightlife district and “you knew it when you moved there” lose all credibility instantly. Not only did they not go to 14th street 5 years ago, they’re not even aware that it used to be something other than what it is. In another 3 years they’ll be onto whatever the new nightlife district in DC (or Columbus or Brooklyn or wherever they move off to) is, and yelling at the people who live there that they need to get out of the way of progress. The homeowners probably still hope to be living there in 3 years.

          • textdoc

            Agreed.

        • maxwell smart

          So you would rather drunk homeless people in your front yard?

          • textdoc

            False binary.

          • Duponter

            Not really false. If you gentrify a neighborhood you can’t be surprised when businesses that cater to the new residents open in that neighborhood.

      • HaileUnlikely

        Per property records the owner of the house pictured bought it in 2001. This was not a place with a lot of restaurants and bars in 2001.

        • textdoc

          Agreed. In 2001 there was the Black Cat, the Metro Cafe, and HR-57. Fourteenth Street now is almost unrecognizable from what it was then.

        • Duponter

          No, it was an area with a lot of crime and the property values were about half or less than what they are today.

          You don’t get it both ways. If they are unhappy with the new neighbors, at least they will make a pretty penny when they cash out to move to quieter pastures.

          • HaileUnlikely

            Not my point. I’m just responding to the assertion that people should have anticipated this when they moved to an area with a lot of bars and nightlife. No, they didn’t move to an area with a lot of bars and nightlife.

          • textdoc

            Not everyone’s primary interest is in “cashing out.” People who’ve spent time making their home here want to continue living here — just without a 600-person beer garden.

          • FridayGirl

            I don’t understand why people think it’s so easy to up and move. You don’t know who lives in these houses. If it was your 60 year old mother who bought there 20 years ago and she now is ill or otherwise settled in one place, would you tell her to up and move? The gall people have on this post…..

          • Duponter

            But, you have no gall for assuming you know that everyone on that block disagrees with Dacha? Or has an issue with any of this?

            You have no gall for assuming someone’s 60 y/o mother lives in one of those houses?

            The gall here is assuming that the neighborhood you buy a house in will forever stay the way it was when you bought your house. That has never been what life is like for anyone living in a city. Anywhere.

          • HaileUnlikely

            You moved the goalpost. Maxwell says this was a busy nightlife corridor when the protestors bought. That is factually wrong and that’s all there is to that aspect of the discussion. (What neighbors should reasonably expect when they buy around the corner from a commercial-zoned street is another discussion, which is taking place elsewhere on here.)

      • tassojunior

        and the neighbors have not complained and have supported all those bars and cafes including the small beer garden across 14th. Capacity of 600 drunk yuppies on cool hip S Street is outrageous. How many 600 person beer gardens in your block? Oh that’s right, you,you,you,your situation is different.

        • Brightwoodian

          I would 100% welcome a 600 person beer garden on my block. Hell, I long for it. If Dacha gets shut down here, I hope they’ll consider coming to Brightwood. Open one right on Georgia Avenue near me. Please!

          • samanda_bynes

            hell yeah bro, i’d kill for a garden – throw in on madison and 3rd. party hard.

    • HaileUnlikely

      There is already a beer garden diagonally across the street. Don’t you think the neighbors could be forgiven for not anticipating *another* one?

  • Confused

    Potentially dumb question, but I walk by this lot all the time – how the heck are they going to fit 600 people in there? I’ve only been to Dacha once but it seems about the same size and it does not seem like 600 people could fit – IIRC their maximum occupancy is around 200. Are occupancy loads typically overstated? Are they building a second story? What am I missing here?

    • L

      it’s a beer garden for ants!

      • K

        They’ll have to make the beer garden at least… Three times bigger! Wait.

    • Anon

      600 is just a bargaining figure. Start high, meet somewhere in the middle.

    • MadMax

      Once they pass out it’s easy to stack them.

      • dcd

        If they let kids in, they take up a lot less space.

  • landbanker

    beer gardens, great way for land-banking commercial property owners to make their low tax empty lots spit out mountains of cash.

    • anon

      ding ding ding! ^^^ we have a winner!

    • anon

      it’s the new urban surface parking lot

      • landbanker

        conveniently plopped on top of the old urban surface parking lot. The tax incentives on 100% vacant lots encourage the beer garden over infil. hell, if i was the owner i do the same thing. tax laws should change though.

        • anon

          the math never adds up for the ones used for parking. they fit a few dozen cars and may generate a few hundred bucks a day tops. Obviously an excuse for the land to not be deemed vacant and taxed accordingly. Popular drinking spot seems far more lucrative than a few parked cars.

    • Anonymous

      Yes, until the beer garden thing gets played out – which it surely will since everyone and their step-cousin is opening a beer garden.

      • asdf

        Yep, “being outdoors and drinking beer simultaneously, is just a passing trend – you’ll see!” said somebody in 9500 BC when beer first hit the scene.

        • Anonymous

          People like going out to eat. Yet 60% of new restaurants close within one year, 80% close within five years. The question isn’t whether people like drinking beer outside; it’s whether there are enough people who like drinking beer outside to support a beer garden on every corner – who are also competing with bars and restaurants with outdoor areas.

          • landbanker

            not quite, the questions is why the real estate tax codes are such that a potentialy massively profitable bee garden (empty lot with people drinking on it) can be taxed at an artificially low RE tax bracket (this one pays ~$30k a year) that throws off huge amounts of profit undeveloped to its owner at its current vacant state while lots a few doors down with improvements (eg the West Elm building) pay quadruple the RE tax.

          • Ben

            Have you ever been to a Munich? If anything we need more beer gardens!

  • stacksp

    How weird is it that suspected “gentrifiers” because I don’t know for sure do not want a beer garden in their neighborhood? Is this a case of nimby-ism?

    • Anon

      You wot mate?

    • Anonymous

      I don’t think there is a disconnect between being a “gentrifier” and being a NIMBY.
      Having said that, if you move to a developing neighborhood to get in on the ground floor, you should not be surprised when things take off and it becomes more crowded because the amenities that arrived with new residents like you also brought a bunch of other people.
      And having said that, you don’t lose your right to be upset when someone proposes an addition to the area that goes far beyond what any other business in the area is doing in terms of impact on the quality of life of the residents.

      • prgkmr

        be upset all you want, just don’t expect anyone to care.

  • PM

    Time for S Street residents to invest in some floor fans, I guess.

  • Steph

    To be fair, the current Dacha is so loud – you can hear it a couple blocks away. Just because 14th St has a booming nightlife doesn’t mean it should be without *any* bounds. I’m sure the final lower capacity limit will be just as loud as 600 people though.

    • JohnH

      The good thing about the proposed space is that it’s more “open” as 14th St is very wide. But proximity wise, S is a very narrow street, which is not good for noise whatsoever.
      .
      14th Street nightlife is heavily restaurant-oriented. There are bars on 14th St, but not as densely as other areas like Adams Morgan, Dupont, etc. Driving through that area at 11 pm on a Saturday is nothing like doing so in those other areas.

      • tassojunior

        The proposed location is almost totally on S Street, not 14th.

  • Guillermo Brown

    I’ve been to a lot of outdoor beer gardens in other cities–Chicago, San Diego, San Fran–that restrict the outdoor use and capacity to very strict day time hours. Is this not an option here? I could see this being a lucrative and respectful-of-the-neighbors option as a happy hour/weekend day drink-only spot…

  • loslobos

    600 people? The city should revoke their business license for showing such bad faith. Don’t they have some issues in their other site for violating their capacity? They owners of Dacha are clearly starting on the wrong foot and do have a extremely concerning track record.

    Those with the “move to the ‘burbs” attitude should keep in mind that living in a city is not a free for all and there are rules. I’m not sure if the process for greenlighting this beer garden includes input from the neighborhood, but if it does, then it is fair game.

  • anonfortoday

    Theres another beer garden going up at 15th & Q — that sure makes a lot of beer gardens per square mile…

    • anonfortoday

      Sorry, i meant 15th & church!

    • Anonymous

      And yet they will all be packed.

    • MadMax

      Until people stop liking beer and being outside I can’t see how it would be bad business.

      • Anonymous

        That’s like saying that opening a restaurant is inherently a good idea because everyone needs to eat. Or “until people stop liking cupcakes, opening a cupcake store can’t be bad business.”
        Lots of people like drinking beer and being outside. Whether there are enough of those people to support multiple beer gardens in a particular area, along with all of the bars and restaurants in the same area where you can drink outside, is a different question.

  • Duponter

    Sorry, but it’s 14th Street. If you survived the 400 other new places that have opened up and completely changed that neighborhood (and increased your property values) then you’ll survive this too. Work to get the occupancy down, but what else did they think would happen? Would you prefer a tall condo building that blocks your light? Another damned restaurant?

    Get over it. You moved next to a commercial artery of the city. This is what happens and you’re not allowed to pretend you’re surprised and upset by it.

    • textdoc

      Except it wasn’t a commercial artery of the city. It used to be full of used-car lots.

      • mark

        Yeah, it was a commercial district.
        Until recently it even had an arts overlay capping the % of restaurants/bars. Back in 2001 the 1400 block of S was just another quiet side street in what was then still called Shaw.

        • tassojunior

          1400 Block of S has never been “Shaw”. It’s been home to one president of the Dupont Circle Citizens Association and one of the Logan Circle Citizens Association in the 40 years I’ve been here. Midtown over to 15th Street was all part of what was in the 1950’s called the “Shaw School Urban Renewal District” but that was just an urban renewal district composed of parts of several neighborhoods.

          Dupont/Logan is most used even though the block was originally built as part of the Logan Circle subdivision in 1880-.

          The most unique thing about the block is that from 1900 to present it has always been multi-racial with famous black writers and poor white immigrants and artists early on. Why a boatload of all white spoiled drunken yuppy suburbanites trashing the ‘hood on S revulses the residents rightly. They’ve not opposed any of the other bars and cafes and in fact those bars and cafes are fighting Dacha’s application.

          • Mark

            It’s within the boundaries of the Shaw Revitalization District, from which the neighborhood takes it’s name.
            The boundaries of Dupont end at 15th Street where Shaw begins. “Logan” was a sub-neighborhood of Shaw, as was Mount Vernon Triangle, Blagden, and the Convention Center.
            That the president of the civic association lived on that block is neither here nor there, especially since that civic association lays historic claim to everything South to K Street..
            Mid-City is the more accurate historic (pre-shaw) name for that neighborhood.

      • Ben

        And hookers. Lots of hookers

    • HaileUnlikely

      FWIW, I live 6 miles away and really don’t care what goes in this specific location, but if I were to live on this block, I’d much rather have another restaurant or a condo building than an establishment that will draw a crowd of several hundred people to drink and make noise outdoors late into the night. And there’s a perfectly good beer garden across the f*cking street already. By all reports they make a halfway decent effort to be a good neighbor, unlike Dacha’s existing location.

      • textdoc

        Agreed.

        • FridayGirl

          +1.

      • Duponter

        If there are too many beer gardens, then the free market will take care of that, truthfully. But it sounds like there are not.

        Look, I get not wanting the noise. And I get the issues people purport to have with the original Dacha, though I don’t truly get it because every time I’ve gone by there, it isn’t a bunch of rowdy drunk white people trashing the neighborhood. It seems quite pleasant. I understand if you live on that block it probably is loud at times. And obviously Dacha should obey the rules it has agreed to.

        I imagine if this wasn’t Dacha proposing a beer garden on 14th and S, there’d be less vitriol to it. But based on the last 100 times I’ve walked down 14th Street, I don’t see how it will change anything. It’s already chock full of white millennials or “yuppie trash” as others have referred to them on this thread. Lock them into some heavy rules up front. But in the scheme of things, it is really hard for me to think I’d rather have a large condo building with retail there in the long run. Blocking my sunlight, causing a year or more of loud messy disruptive construction beside me and forever ruining the aesthetics of the block since we know very well any condo building put up here would never get the approval of the commentariat of POP.

        By all accounts the beer garden across the street operates without any issues. Why should this one be any different?

        • HaileUnlikely

          “By all accounts the beer garden across the street operates without any issues. Why should this one be any different?” Because the owners of the proposed new one own another establishment less than a mile away and we can see how they run that one.

          • textdoc

            Exactly.

  • Shawboi

    I live on Q Street within eye and ear shot of Dacha’s 7th Street location. We could not be happier that they moved into the scary old parking lot and then took over the Chinese takeout location next door and made a big difference to that corner. Yes you can sometimes hear a dull roar when they are particularly crowded, but only when outside. Yes there is an occasional drunk staggering down the block. But 14 years ago when we moved to Q Street there was far worse things going on. We love the vital and alive feeling we sense when walking down 7th Street at night. This is a vibrant city with places to eat and have fun within walking distance. We are clearly not in the popular demographic for Dacha but we (both in our 50s), as neighbors, have always found the Dacha management team helpful at addressing concerns. My advice to prospective neighbors would be to work with them on noise, trash, and crowd management issues. Make them aware that you will hold them to their commitments and, I suspect, they will do their best to be responsive. Yes, there are $1M homes along our block and yes they did reach that value AFTER Dacha arrived…and they haven’t gone down.

    • FridayGirl

      I think half the issue, though, is this area doesn’t need that type of development. The neighborhood doesn’t seem to want it…. unlike your neighborhood, which seems like perhaps it did….

      • Duponter

        But for that very reason, it’s hard to justify shutting it down. You’ve let plenty of other locations come onto 14th Street. Why not this one? Does 14th Street need another condo building without parking? Or another restaurant? There’s one beer garden that is arguably pretty small within walking distance of the neighborhood. Why not have one more?

        Again, if the concept isn’t needed or doesn’t make sense, the business won’t work out. I think the issue is you and the others opposed to this know it will work out and the demand is there. Otherwise, what would your beef really be with it?

      • Jake

        Per the zoning code it’s mixed-use medium density by-right. That level of density is the 2nd highest level for mixed-use areas and seeks to serve the city, not just the neighborhood. The code hasn’t changed for 14th st ever, and if these folks didn’t feel comfortable living this close to that level development they shouldn’t have bought there. Many of them bought when the homes cost north of $1 million, they knew what they were doing.

  • Jake

    Those homes are adjacent to the ARTS-3 zoned 14th St corridor. That land is zoned for mixed-use medium density development and has been for decades. Those particular homeowners might be upset, but they bought a house adjacent to land zoned for this sort of use. I’m sure they were well aware of what could be built there. Personally, I’d welcome a beer garden over a 75 foot tall development, which is permitted under the zoning code.

  • Nathan

    Drove through the 1400 block of S over the weekend, appeared that nearly every house now had one of the No Dacha signs.

  • Loganres

    Working with Dacha on realistic wishes will go much farther than simply opposing them. Most NIMBYs go with the no option is good enough essentially meaning they want nothing developed. The root to their fears of development is the fear of more people living in their neighborhood. Ironically, they want the shops and retail but fail to understand that the shops and retail will only come with density. If a 7 or 8 level residential building were proposed for that lot, they would be opposing it as well claiming it’s too tall, too massive, etc.

    • Jack Love

      Guess that this is where the neighborhood and Dacha will end up. This is just the first skirmish.

  • c

    half a 1200 number of people? that will ruin the mystique of the neighborhood!

  • Jack Love

    This is cool. I wish they would open one in my front yard. That would make stumbling home a lot easier.

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