The Proposed Adams Morgan Hotel,
brought to you by
Councilmember Jim Graham.

Jim Graham Councilmember Washington DC -- Bribes are his fancy

Can poor planning about large projects in low-scale residential neighborhoods become a form of disrespect & discrimination?

  • Yes, when your Councilmember brokers a sweetheart City tax break for a luxury hotel with almost no public notice, all the while eliminating beds for the poor by closing homeless shelters.

  • Yes, when the DC Zoning Commission prevents people who live and own businesses within 200 feet of this proposed hotel project from participating as parties in Zoning Commission hearings.

  • Yes, when the Office of Planning ignores key policies and action strategies of DC's Comprehenisve Plan that seek to protect the unique diversity of Adams Morgan, expand affordable housing and prevent small business displacement.

  • Yes, when local Advisory Neighborhood Commissioners provide limited notice of meetings and little to no interpretation at meetings and translation of flyers and materials to what is a neighborhood with many immigrant families.

  • Yes, when the developers only view our community as a place to invest and make money... with little regard for those families directly impacted by a project of this size and this use in a residential neighborhood.


Adams Morgan Hotel Project Wins Approval Based on Conclusory statements by District Zoning Commissioners

Councilmember Graham Does Not Request Postponement and Opposition Issues Are Completely Dismissed

Washington, DC -- On the night of Monday, November 19, 2012, the District of Columbia Zoning Commission decided to pass initial approval for the proposed Adams Morgan luxury hotel.

Hotel developers still require Zoning Commission approval of a text amendment to the Reed Cooke Overlay regulations so that this hotel can be built at the corner of Euclid and Champlain Streets at the edge of the residential community. And, the National Capital Planning Commission will also need to review and approve the plans.

Parties in opposition to the hotel were left wondering how any of this hotel project discussion can be considered appropriate planning in the 21st Century in the Nation's Capital.

The Kalorama Citizens Association suggested various conditions for approval, all of which were ignored by the Zoning Commission. Directly impacted residents living on Champlain Street and represented as a party called the Champlain Street Neighbors submitted twenty pages of analysis and sixty pages of attachments all of which received two minutes of review and dismissed entirely by Zoning Commissioners.

Zoning Chairman Anthony Hood finished his quick evaluation of opposition documents proclaiming, "This has come a long way... everyone was accommodated... everything was vetted... I am ready to move forward with this case." (

In a most conclusory manner, Zoning Commissioner Peter May, one of two Federal appointees on the Commission, highlighted how the Champlain Street Neighbors and small businesses along Columbia might get hurt, "The mere truth of it is that there may be some effects on some folks they regard as quite negative but in the long run it will be a superb project for the neighborhood."

These "negative" effects are those brought to light by the most directly impacted residents living on the same block as the proposed hotel site -- like rising rents, commercial gentrification, noise, pollution, traffic, two-years of construction, pedestrian safety, and bringing the 18th street party further into the residential neighborhood, among other concerns.


News about Jim Graham Councilmember Ward One Washington DC

Breaking rules, accepting corporate contributions, and helping developers get City handouts is something Jim Graham seems to excel at:

Small Adams Morgan Businesses wonder how 2+ years of major construction work will affect them and why Jim Graham won't meet with them to discuss ways the City can help mitigate hotel impacts

Small businesses lining Columbia Road east of 18th Street are nervous about the proposed Adams Morgan luxury hotel project. Many of these businesses are long-standing, minority owned/or operated, and focus their services and goods to serve local Adams Morgan residents.

Given that the proposed luxury hotel may be bringing in out-of-town wealthy patrons, these small businesses don't believe they will see the promised foot-traffic underlying key support from Councilmember Graham who championed a 46-million dollar tax break for the luxury hotel developers.

"Where's our tax break?" pondered Mr. Walid Abuelhawa, owner of Old City Cafe right across the street from where the hotel may be built. "Small businesses along Columbia Road provide jobs and services for the Adams Morgan economy right now and are key to neighborhood diversity, but we haven't gotten assistance from the City like millions in tax breaks that the rich hotel developers are getting."

Seņora Blanca Aquino, owner of Latino Connection on Columbia Road says she's been totally sidelined by Jim Graham's office going back before the Zoning hearings began. "Columbia Road businesses asked Jim Graham to meet with us to discuss how we will survive two years of major construction and increasing rents due to the hotel project he supports, but he will not respond directly to these requests."

In December 2010, Councilmember Jim Graham claimed it was emergency to provide a 46-million dollar tax gift to the hotel developers, otherwise Marriott hotel would walk away from the deal. Marriott did walk away from the deal in the summer of 2012, but a new hotelier replaced them named Sydell Group. Graham also said the hotel would be unionized, but Sydell Group has chosen not to yet sign an agreement with the local hotel union.

For more information:


Hotel Opponents Submit Initial Round of Appeals Documents; Small Adams Morgan Businesses Disappointed in Councilmember Graham's Absence

In late October 2013, opponents of the proposed Adams Morgan luxury hotel, potentially located at Euclid and Champlain Streets, NW, submitted their initial round of legal filings to the DC Court of Appeals.

Petitioners are asking the Court to reverse the DC Zoning Commission's decision to grant major public entitlements in the form of zoning relief resulting in a large-commercial project -- eight story, 227-room luxury hotel and accessory restaurant, bars, spa, meeting rooms, and pool -- and with no commercial buffers to the surrounding residential neighborhood.

There are three petitioners, the Champlain Street Neighbors, Mr. Ron Gluck, and Mrs. Teresa Lopez, plus an Intervenor, Mr. David Schwartz. All four parties live and work within 200 feet from the proposed hotel location site and they all submitted legal filings to the Court in October.

For example, in an October 21, 2013 filing, Mr. Schwartz states, "I cannot understand the way this zoning process had been conducted. ... There is a disconcerting lack of fundamental analyses regarding the impacts on public street parking, noise, and the impacts of disruptions to the residential community during both the construction and the operation of a very large and entirely commercial project."

On October 18, 2013, Teresa Lopez wrote, "[T]here is no sense whatsoever that the Zoning Commission took into consideration how the construction impacts will affect the surrounding community, especially due to the illegal commercial encroachment on the adjacent residential community."

The DC Court of Appeals is reviewing the Petitioner's filings now, see DCCA Consolidated Case Nos. 13-AA-394, 13-AA-443, & 13-AA-531.

No More Corporate Handout Jim Graham





Jim Graham's corporate buddy, Brian Friedman, Adams Morgan Hotel

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