This development is wrong for the lot
Sunrise wants an extraordinary number of exceptions and variances to the R-1-B / residential (single-family) zoning for the Tenleytown, D.C. lot in order to be able to build a commercial facility. These include:
to allow a ‘continuing care’ retirement community at this site at all;
to increase the allowable number of stories;
to increase the allowable percentage of the lot that can be occupied;
to eliminate a side yard setback of eight feet next to the National Park Service land
to build a retaining wall three times of what is allowed.
To be on this R-1-B lot at all, the Board of Zoning Adjustment must find that special circumstances warrant that a 'continuing care retirement community' be allowed on the site. This special exception can be granted only if the specific location is deemed appropriate and "does not create a condition objectionable to the neighbors."
There are numerous conditions that are objectionable. This site is not appropriate for granting a 'special exception.'
It Encroaches on a neighborhood of single-family and historic homes
The Tenleytown neighborhood between Wisconsin Avenue and Reno Roads is one of the last contiguous single-family home, residential neighborhoods in D.C.
Single family homes surround the development lot on three sides: Alton Place, Yuma Street, and 39th Street. The fourth side, facing Tenley Circle, is owned by the National Park Service and is part of the historic Fort Reno landmark.
Just beyond the National Park Service land, there are three Civil War-era homes on Grant Road that are within 200 feet of the proposed development.
The development would be a matter of feet away from five single family homes on 39th Street that share a property line with the development.
A large truck ramp would enter and exit on two residential roads, Alton Place and Yuma Street, that ban through-truck traffic.
Traffic, Pollution, Noise. In an area where through-truck traffic is banned.
The operation of the facility would require 20+ trucks per week for deliveries, and a 7-ton shuttle bus running multiple times a day. All adjoining residential streets prohibit through-truck traffic above 1 1/4 ton. Other objectionable traffic implications for the neighborhood include:
Trash haulers for a large facility three times a week, including noisy emptying of large garbage containers;
Large food trucks 2-3 times a week, other trucks and suppliers throughout the week;
UPS and Fed-Ex trucks 10-12 times per week;
7-ton shuttle running multiple times a day;
10~ + fire and ambulance trucks per month;
75 employees daily require parking for their cars;
Sunday and daily church traffic for a church that seats 250 people;
Construction would be directly above the DC Metro tunnel, near the main DC gas line, and within 200 feet of Historic Civil War-era homes.
The lot for the development is directly above the Tenleytown Metro line, and a block away from the main natural gas line servicing the entire city.
There is no assurance that there would not be damage to either gas lines or Metro tunnel.
WMATA and Washington Gas should be very concerned, given that excavation for the buildings and parking lot would be occurring in highly sensitive areas.
There are numerous historic homes in the preserved Grant Road historic district, where some homes are located within 200 feet of the development. Grant Road is a Civil-War-era neighborhood listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
"Vibration experts" have already been offered to the adjacent houses, and vague promises have been made to repair any damage incurred to houses during construction.