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Yesterday, I got a couple of distress calls from the vicinity of 2910 Garfield Street N.W., the large corner lot in Woodley Park slated for subdivision into two gigantic single-family homes by the Chevy Chase-based Zuckerman Partners. Even after enlisting Councilmember Mary Cheh and getting a letter opposing the development signed by almost half the City Council, construction crews were starting work on the sidewalks, and taking down the majestic trees on the slope behind the existing house.
The Zuckermans may have been emboldened by a mid-August court order dismissing the neighbors’ appeal for a preliminary injunction—the Superior Court ruled that since permits had been issued and there was no requirement to notify the ANC, razing and tree-clearing could proceed. The neighbors, now displaying yard signs that read “NO Subdivisions, NO McMansions,” have two last chances: An appeal before the Board of Zoning Adjustment, and a sympathetic ruling from DDOT on Zuckerman Partners’ public space application.
For the former, neighbors have retained planner George Oberlander, who spent 31 years with the National Capital Planning Commission, mostly as associate director for D.C. affairs. His pre-hearing memo for the BZA hearing contains this illustration of what the houses are projected to look like: