I am a tenant in one of the 11 buildings discussed in your Jan. 13 article “The Painmaker,” which exposes the legal practices that Richard Luchs and other lawyers engage in to sell D.C. apartment buildings. Thank you very much for doing this.
In this article, Luchs makes a comment, or as you refer to it, a “swipe at the transplanted [Councilmember Jim] Graham,” that “I’m a fourth-generation Washingtonian. I’m not going to criticize these people on the council who came from other places and have their own opinions.”
I wonder if in more candid settings this thinly veiled xenophobia extends to some of the many tenants whom he claims not to want to evict or otherwise harm, but that would be speculation.
Focusing on the situation in my and 10 other buildings, I find it ironic that the buildings in question were sold (and yes, it was a sale) for over $80 million dollars to Carmel Partners, a San Francisco–based development company.
Before taking issue with those who haven’t been residents in D.C. as long as he has, Luchs should consider disclosing that he apparently has no problems working with people 3,000 miles away to snap up real estate behind the backs of his fellow Washingtonians.
Separately, I wanted to note that Patrick Canavan, whom you describe as “a fierce DCRA critic with a reformer’s reputation,” has not put that reputation to use for us.
At least Luchs and lawyers like him have the option to come clean and admit that they did it for sizable legal fees, but why Canavan has decided to hop up and become their lapdog remains a mystery.
Perhaps it is just another one of those Washington traditions.
Member Park East Tenants Association