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This is an advertisement for 22 West, a luxury condominium building in the West End, with penthouse apartments going for $1.8 to $3.86 million. Early summer, 22 West was completed, and the property is currently roughly 40 percent sold, according to developer Anthony Lanier of Eastbanc Inc. The high-rise has billed itself as one of D.C.’s most quietly decadent buildings: Check out that rooftop pool! Look at those floor to ceiling windows! And perhaps the most luxurious amenities are the ones you’re supposed to take for granted or not even think about. Already this newspaper and the Washington Post have reported on a green roof sitting atop an unsightly Exxon station attached to 22 West’s highrise. Ask Lanier what the building has to offer, and he’ll talk about something that’s truly invisible: air. “It’s very rare that you have a building with good exhaust. I can assure you that…Most buildings have a fifty cubic feet per minute constant exhaust. We go between 600 and 800 cubic feet per minute.” Pardon?

What that means, essentially, is cook all the liver you want. Your apartment’s not going to reek.

So why is a building like this, presumably built without government assistance, providing exposure for a council member who was up for re-election this month? Oh sure, the “exposure” is tiny…but it’s easy to spot if you look for it. (Take a peek now before the detail is revealed below.)

There’s a campaign sign for Ward 2 Councilmember Jack Evans on the corner!!! That’s nothing a little photo shopping couldn’t fix in less than a minute. I asked Lanier point-plank: What was this all about?

He had no idea. “What was the sign on the streetlight?” he said. Lanier stated that their was no kind of public funding for the project, and that he “wasn’t aware that there was an Evans sign. That’s a funny coincidence. I’ll have to go and look for it now.”

I sent Lanier the image above as a PDF, and a few hours later got this reponse:

“Since its so small than only your inquisitive mind could have noticed it, I am confident that there was no intent behind this picture. We should be more sensitive to the matter, I agree.”

Sweetheart deal-makers beware! Housing Complex will remain ever vigilant …and inquisitive!