Speak up for Actual Planning at the National Capital Planning Commission

On July 1, 2021, the National Capital Planning Commission will consider and possibly approve the changes to DC Comp Plan recently approved by the DC City Council

Last Friday, June 25, 2021, NCPC staff issued their written report about the DC Comprehensive Plan’s impacts on the Federal interests.

The NCPC staff report: “Commends the District of Columbia for its significant effort in amending the District Elements of the Comprehensive Plan for the National Capital and appreciates the collaboration with NCPC staff to address federal interest concerns.”

NCPC staff did not and would not acknowledge the lack of any planning impact studies associated with any of these changes by the Mayor or the Office of Planning. There is no environmental review of how the density increases along our coastlines may in fact direct flooding to areas of federal interest, a direct threat to our central government activities. The inducement of population growth and those effects on our central government and its activities is almost entirely unreviewed in this report (words and language have replaced metrics and study).

The report’s conclusion and claims as to no negative impacts to federal properties and federal interests despite NCPC acknowledging the substantial changes to the Plan and planning maps is specious and offered without basis.

WE ARE GOING TO TESTIFY ON THURSDAY JULY 1 AND TELL THE NCPC COMMISSIONERS TO REJECT THE STAFF REPORT AND CONCLUSION THAT ITS OK TO APPROVE MAJOR CHANGES TO DC’S BUILT ENVIRONMENT WITHOUT PLANNING STUDIES ON THE RECORD.

===== REGISTER TO TESTIFY AT NCPC JULY 1 AT APPROX 2PM =====

  • Sign up to speak at NCPC meeting on the DC Comprehensive Plan, you will have 3 minutes to speak I believe.
  • July 1 2021, Meeting starts at 1pm. Public comment probably around 2pm.
  • To register, go here and click register >> https://www.ncpc.gov/participate/guidelines/
  • Or send an email to Melissa Lindsjo and ask to register to speak. Write an email to :: melissa.lindsjo@ncpc.gov

Before you speak on Thursday, if you send in written testimony by Wednesday at noon, all the NCPC Commissioners will be able to read it ahead of time. Again send your written testimony to :: melissa.lindsjo@ncpc.gov

SOME MESSAGING

1. The DC Mayor and City Council failed to ensure environmental and geographic impact assessments were completed before passing the large volume of amendments to the Comp Plan and planning maps. These planning impact studies are not only expected by American Planning Association planning protocols and basic common sense, they are required by law.

2. The NCPC staff report on the Comp Plan wrongly concludes there won’t be any negative effect on the Federal interests by DC’s changes to the Comp Plan, which includes the “unblocking” of 200 million square feet of new developable land and air rights.  The NCPC staff conclusion there won’t be negative effects on the Federal interests rests on no real quantitative or even qualitative basis especially without the required planning impact studies. We know that by changing the planning maps to induce more people to bigger denser projects in the city, it will imminently affect the environment, infrastructure, transit, and emergency services that the adjacent federal interests, properties, and environs rely upon daily.

3. The NCPC staff report ignores the many Federal Element policies in the Plan that not only encourage but require coordination with local DC officials in studying short- and long-term impacts of inter-related planning decisions that obviously cross the invisible line between DC and Federal properties and environs. See these Federal Element policies: UD.B.2.4(2); T.C.6; T.G.7; T.H.2; FE.A.8; FE.A 10; FE.A.11; FE.C.1; FE.C.7; FE.C 10; FE.A.11; FE.D.1; FE.D.2; FE.D 3; FE.E.4; FE.F.2; FE.G.5; HP.D 2, among many others.

Conclusion:

NCPC Commissioners must ask that the required planning studies are completed in order to get a much more accurate understanding of the kinds of effects, environmental, transportation, and emergency response logistics, and negative impacts will be on the Federal properties and interests here in the District of Columbia.

Thus, the Commission has the authority to send it back to the Council to do the planning studies and coordination work as required.


WE ARE GOING TO TESTIFY ON THURSDAY JULY 1 AND TELL THE NCPC COMMISSIONERS TO REJECT THE STAFF REPORT AND CONCLUSION THAT ITS OK TO APPROVE MAJOR CHANGES TO DC’S BUILT ENVIRONMENT WITHOUT PLANNING STUDIES ON THE RECORD.

===== REGISTER TO TESTIFY AT NCPC JULY 1 AT APPROX 2PM =====

  • Sign up to speak at NCPC meeting on the DC Comprehensive Plan, you will have 3 minutes to speak I believe.
  • July 1 2021, Meeting starts at 1pm. Public comment probably around 2pm.
  • To register, go here and click register >> https://www.ncpc.gov/participate/guidelines/
  • Or send an email to Melissa Lindsjo and ask to register to speak. Write an email to :: melissa.lindsjo@ncpc.gov