3515 Woodley Road Update: CPHS Submits FOIA Request to DCRA

CPHS has submitted a Freedom of Information Act request to the DC Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs seeking the complete administrative record relating to permitting, construction, and demolition at 3515 Woodley Road. That letter is reproduced below.

(Read our earlier statement on the case here.)

December 2, 2015

Ms. Tania Williams, FOIA Officer
DC Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs
1100 Fourth Street SW
Washington DC 20024

Re: FOIA Request

Dear Ms. Williams:

On Friday, November 6th, the house at 3515 Woodley Road NW was razed after the DC Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs (DCRA), in consultation with the DC Historic Preservation Office (HPO), ordered an emergency demolition.

On behalf of The Cleveland Park Historical Society and pursuant to the District of Columbia Freedom of Information Act, codified at D.C. Code § 2-532 et seq., I request the following records:

  1. the administrative record related to the permitting and construction activity at 3515 Woodley Road NW, including, but not limited to, any application for a construction permit, together with exhibits, if any; any written findings adopted in connection with the issuance of the permit; and any plans associated with the proposed construction, including any plans for underpinning the structure during construction and any communications with the property owner or other parties in interest in connection with those plans.
  2. the administrative record related to the demolition or razing of 3515 Woodley Road NW, including, but not limited to, any application for a raze permit, together with exhibits if any, and any communications with the property owner or representatives thereof or other parties in interest in connection with that permit; any written findings adopted in connection with the issuance of a raze permit; any plans associated with the proposed demolition; and any minutes, notes or other written record of any consultations by the applicant or other parties in interest with the Historic Preservation Office in connection with the proposed razing or demolition.

If DCRA contends that it is authorized to withhold one or more records (or portions of those records) that are responsive to this request on the ground that such information is exempt from disclosure, please specifically identify each record or portion thereof that DCRA has withheld and state the specific ground for withholding such information. In addition, please produce all nonexempt portions of any records partially withheld.

The Cleveland Park Historical Society represents the Cleveland Park Historic District and its residents in matters before the DC Historic Preservation Office. Accordingly, The Cleveland Park Historical Society requests that you waive all fees for locating and duplicating the requested records in accordance with D.C. Code § 2-532(b). This waiver is “in the public interest because furnishing the information can be considered as primarily benefiting the general public.”

If fees may be incurred, then please advise me of the amount of any proposed search, review, and reproduction charges before those activities are carried out.

I will expect a response within 15 business days as provided by law. If you have any questions
regarding this request, please contact me.

Sincerely,

Nicholas A. Netchvolodoff
President
The Cleveland Park Historical Society
president@clevelandparkhistoricalsociety.org

cc: DC Mayor Muriel Bowser
DC Chairman of the Council Phil Mendelson
DC Councilwoman Mary Cheh, Ward 3
Nancy MacWood, ANC Commissioner (ANC3C SMD09)
Gina Polidoro, Cleveland Park Citizens Association
Barrett Evans