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Last August, I wrote the story of a small church on Sherman Avenue that had been trying for a decade to buy the falling-apart house they’re attached to. When I visited, Pastor William Spence told me how it was dragging on the foundation and sending water into the basement, not to mention making community members think that his congregation was responsible for it. The District had sold it to a developer as part of the dubiously-successful Home Again initiative, which was supposed to get vacant properties renovated in short order, but sometimes just kept them mired in paperwork.
Looks like Spence has lost his fight to purchase the property from the District outright. 2901 Sherman Avenue, along with ten other properties, will be auctioned off by the District on November 10th—-a quasi-regular fire sale where you pay not very much in exchange for a promise to renovate according to District rules. Spence will have as much of a chance to purchase the neighboring house.
Also going on the block: Two other properties, 1031 6th Street NW and 445 S Street NW, that were bundled with the Sherman Avenue house and disposed to a developer who failed to deliver on all of them. Somebody please build homes there!