Archive for August 3, 2017

723 Morton Street to be Razed

August 3, 2017

723 Morton Street, NW

In February 2016, DCRA issued a raze order for 723 Morton Street noting that the structure was unsafe to inhabit and a danger to public safety. Shortly thereafter, the owners filed a case with the Office of Administrative Hearings and secured a Temporary Restraining Order from the D.C. Superior Court which forbidding DCRA from razing the structure.

In mid-July, the D.C. Superior Court lifted the Stay on the Order to Raze the Structure at 723 Morton Street, N.W. clearing the way for the structure to be razed. Neighbors may have noticed some activity on the site as the preparation for razing the structure has begun.

The property has been a source of concern among neighbors for roughly a decade. The building was constructed as a new eight-unit apartment building without permits for anything beyond a foundation — and does not conform to the RF-1 zone within which it is located. It also exceeds its allowable height. Mayor Fenty, during one of his walks through the neighborhood ordered the building razed during his administration, however DCRA at that time decided to work with the property owner to “bring the property into compliance.” For this to happen, the building would have to be converted into a two-unit building.

During the ensuing years, work has progressed on the building off and on, with additional stop work orders and concerns about the structure’s impact on the neighbors. There was also continued concern that the building would not end up as two units, but rather as an 8-unit apartment building without going through the required community and zoning processes.

With DCRA getting the green light to raze the  structure, it seems that this longstanding issue may be coming to an end.


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