Sunday, December 5, 2010

The Neverending Story Continues: ANC Officially Withdraws Hank's Protest, ABC Board Yet to Rule

Believe me, if you're sick of reading about the ongoing drama related to the proposed expansion of Dupont Circle eatery Hank's Oyster Bar, we're even more sick of writing about it. It's one of those issues that seems to polarize the neighborhood--with most neighborhood residents either supportive or unopposed, and a small cadre of residents opposed to the expansion and insistent upon dragging the process on for a seemingly unendurable length of time.

There's no need to re-hash the issues at play here--click on one of the links above, or head over to Borderstan where Tom Hay should be considered for a Pulitzer for his work documenting the situation over the last several months. But here's where things currently stand:

At last week's meeting of ANC2B, the ANC voted unanimously (with one abstention) to withdraw its protest of Hank's expansion, which includes taking over an adjacent building and expanding both a sidewalk-facing patio as well as a "summer garden" in the back of the building. The ANC also voted unanimously to support the placarding of the changes because they were deemed to be "substantial" changes.

This leaves Hank's with the final hurdle of approval before the ABC Board before the expansion can proceed. The ABC vote will also be the last opportunity for a small but vocal group of resident protesters to derail the expansion plans, although that seems highly unlikely. As we've previously noted, the resident protesters, through multiple meetings and hearings, have been unable to demonstrate an adverse impact to the neighborhood to such a degree that the ABC Board would refuse to approve an otherwise legally permissible expansion.

In other words, come 2011, this nearly year-long saga might finally draw to a close. And we'll have to find something new to write about.

No comments: