Posts Tagged ‘Vacant Properties’

Lost and Foundering

The red rowhouse at 430 Manor Place NW has seen better days, but not many people remember them. Four of the five windows are boarded up, while the last is filled with stacks of cinderblocks. Ivy climbs up the walls and supports, a small mulberry tree grows out of a widening crack in the walkway, [...]

Long-Empty Mt. Vernon Site May Finally Get New Condos

Way back in 2010, we learned about the Home Again program, the District's attempt to return vacant and abandoned properties to productive use by acquiring them and selling them in bundles to developers, who were then required to renovate them to certain standards. It worked, some of the time. Other times, developers would cherry pick [...]

A Bad Case: When Condo Owners Go Missing

The stench of piss floods the stairwell. There are broken bottles, footprints on the carpet, and in one corner is what looks to be dried human feces.
“Never thought I'd be doing this for a living,” Reuben Pemberton III chuckles, as he checks behind a stove after moving it off the wall. It’s the type of [...]

Douglas Development Making Noises About Residential For Rhode Island Avenue

Another apartment project on the boards! Maybe.
For the last ten years, Douglas Development has owned a cluster of empty warehouses behind Mt. Calvary Baptist Church off Rhode Island Avenue NE. Today, they came to ask Advisory Neighborhood Commission 5B's approval to change the zoning from industrial to commercial on part of the site, which would allow [...]

No Vacancy: How Nuisance Properties Turn Around

My column this week looks at one example of how the blight tax gets results. The story has repeated itself, by the hundreds, all around the District—mostly because of a guy named Reuben Pemberton.
Pemberton is in charge of the Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs' Vacant Building Enforcement Unit (recently renamed from the Vacant Property [...]

Protip: If You Want a Building to Move Faster, Check Tax Records

It's easy to bemoan the decrepit state of an historic building. Fortunately, the District has a couple of powerful tools to compel landowners to take care of them.
Take the building on the northeast corner of 11th and K Streets NW. Doug Jemal's Douglas Development bought it in 2003, and wrapped in one of the 32 [...]

Nobody Knows All The Trouble Vacant Properties Cause

Vacant properties are not a sexy topic, and the Government Accountability Office is no Danielle Steele, but the agency's recent report on the matter is a pretty interesting read for anybody who cares about how all those empty buildings came to be that way and their effect on local governments. Even though loan servicers are [...]

Mapping the City’s Vacant Properties

The other side of building new housing units is making good use of the ones we already have. According the D.C. Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs, there are now 2,257 vacant properties in the District, some of which are characterized as "blighted," and many of which have exemptions from the steep tax because they're [...]

Hoagie House Owner Gets A Pass

Hoagie House: The red building on the corner of 4th and N Street NW in Shaw that's been vacant and boarded up as long as most people can remember. Finally, the top tax rate for blighted property taxes is kicking in, and the local Advisory Neighborhood Commission is supporting the owner's bid for a break [...]

Ontario Theater Owner Dreaming of Condos

With the housing market going absolutely bonkers in D.C., the longest-stalled projects are creeping closer to reality—even the Ontario Theater on Columbia Road in Adams Morgan, which has been empty for years now, is likely slated for condos.
A few months ago, owner George Pedas told local ANC commissioner Steve Lanning that he wanted to move quickly on a [...]