January 4, 2006

New Canopies Approved for Cleveland Park Metro Station
(File Number 6200)

The Commission approved preliminary and final site and building plans for a modified canopy design to be installed above the east and west entrances of the Cleveland Park Metro Station. For this station, the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority adjusted the standard canopy design—approved by the Commission in 2003—to complement the narrow sidewalks and small-scale historic buildings along Connecticut Avenue. The canopy form, which is reminiscent of the well-recognized coffered ceiling vaults of the interior of the Metro stations, will appear identical to other metro canopies in material, structure, and installation.

See the Commission Action and Staff Recommendation

NCPC Reviews Proposed Street and Alley Closings
(File Number 6632)

The District of Columbia is proposing the closure of several L’Enfant streets in Southeast Washington, D.C. to permit the construction of a new ballpark facility for the Washington Nationals baseball team. The involved streets include Half Street, O Street, P Street, Potomac Avenue, and all public alleys in Squares 702-706 and in U.S. Reservation 247. The Commission determined that the proposed closures would adversely affect the L’Enfant Plan and federal interests that relate to protecting and maintaining the L’Enfant Plan. The Commission also made the following specific comments on the proposal:

• Closing portions of Half Street, O Street, P Street, and Potomac Avenue should take effect only if the ballpark is located within the 19.75-acre property situated adjacent to South Capitol Street and Potomac Avenue.
• The D.C. Sports and Entertainment Commission should consult with the Historic Preservation Review Board and adopt any mitigation recommendations by the Board.
• The stadium design should maintain and enhance ground-level pedestrian views along the Potomac Avenue; and pedestrian entrances to the stadium should be located at the terminal points of O and P Streets along South Capitol Street.
• To minimize unbroken expanses of the stadium wall, retail space should be used along the South Capitol Street side of the stadium.
Before the land is transferred for the purpose of establishing a ballpark, the District should agree on a covenant to re-establish Half Street, O Street, P Street, and Potomac Avenue in their original locations—according to the L’Enfant Plan—in the future, at such time as the site no longer serves as a ballpark use.

See the Commission Action and Staff Recommendation

Zoning Amendment Allows Relocation of Asphalt Plant
(File Number Z.C. 05-20)

The D.C. Zoning Commission submitted to NCPC a proposal that would allow asphalt plants as a permitted use within C-M (commercial/light manufacturing) and M (heavy industry) zone districts subject to special exception review. Asphalt plants are not currently permitted in any zone, but the proposed amendment would allow a plant already located on P Street, SE to relocate to a parcel within D.C. Village. The move would make the site on which the plant is currently located available for constructing a new stadium. As part of its review, the Commission advised against permitting asphalt plants in areas that could adversely affect federal interests; and advised the District to undertake an environmental review under the D.C. Environmental Policy Act of 1989 and add a definition to the text for “asphalt plant” and “concrete plant.” The Commission recommended that the text amendment include a protection of the vista from the Anacostia Freeway and its viewshed to the north by minimizing visibility of any portion of the asphalt plant facility or equipment from the freeway. The Commission noted that evergreen trees could be used to screen the western and southern edges of the site.

See the Commission Action and Staff Recommendation

Technical Amendment Corrects Authority Reference
(File Number 2598)

The Commission adopted a technical amendment that corrects errors referencing NCPC’s authority to review antenna placements. NCPC’s authority should be referred to as “Provisions in Section 5 of the National Capital Planning Act of 1952, as amended” in NCPC’s “Guidelines and Submission Requirements for Antennas on Federal Property in the National Capital Region” and in related documents.

See the Commission Action and Staff Recommendation

Delegated Decisions: Projects for which the Commission delegated decision-making authority to the Chairman, Executive Committee, or Executive Director.