Local grassroots group Empower DC and leaders of the Barry Farm Tenants and Allies Association are calling for the D.C. Office of Zoning to include residents’ right to return to the Ward 8 property that many were forced to leave prior to the onset of the coronavirus pandemic.
While the zoning commission is slated to meet Monday for a previously delayed hearing on the application process, both Empower DC and the tenants’ organization want a set of other priorities established for the property’s redevelopment, as well as an enforceable covenant to their zoning order, according to Empower DC.
The groups charge that approval of the zoning commission’s map amendment will allow developers to proceed without review hearings and cut residents out of a process for which they would typically have input.
Empower DC said the city’s poor track record for replacing demolished public housing and ensuring return of residents has been a hindrance.
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