There has been a lot of things going on in regards to the two clubs along Queens Chapel Road, NE. The first issue revolves around how the Stadium Club received permission to locate there after claiming not to be a sexually-oriented business. The second is the ABC License renewal for the nightclub, DC Star.
I received this press release from the Ward 5 Improvement Association. Apparently there is some very interesting issues coming to light in regards to how this strip club became to be in Ward 5 near RIA.
Ward 5 Improvement Association
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: OCTOBER 28, 2010
CONTACT: Don Padou
(202) 832-4038, cell: (209) 728-4407
BZA Holds Hearing on Spread of Red Light District in Ward Five
Washington DC —The Board of Zoning Adjustment held a hearing yesterday on whether strip clubs are “sexually oriented businesses” under DC regulations. The Board’s decision is due December 7 and will determine if a red light district is allowed to spread in Ward Five.
The hearing was the result of an appeal brought by the Ward Five Improvement Association, which challenged the Stadium Club’s Certificate of Occupancy issued by the DC Zoning Administrator. The Stadium Club is a strip club that opened at 2127 Queens Chapel Road NE in April 2010.
The Association presented evidence that the Stadium Club provides lap dances and that strippers engage in sexual fondling in exchange for payment from customers inside private “champagne rooms.” James Redding, an owner of the establishment, said customers pay $600 per hour to spend time with a stripper in the 8’ x 6’ private rooms.
Matthew LeGrant, the Zoning Administrator, testified that he determined the Stadium Club was not a “sexually oriented business” based on a review of the architectural drawings and a promise from the owner of the establishment.
“The Zoning Administrator didn’t do his job,” said Don Padou, President of the Ward 5 Improvement Association. “He is required to investigate before issuing a certificate of occupancy, but he did nothing of the sort. He simply took the owner at his word. Mr. LeGrant never once visited the establishment or even looked at its website.” Mr. LeGrant provided the Stadium Club with expedited, personal service by approving the Stadium Club’s certificate of occupancy the same day the application was submitted.
Mr. LeGrant also testified that his staff “made a mistake” when they put a hold on the building permit for another strip club in the same area, Club AKA 555 at 2046 West Virginia Ave NE. Mr. LeGrant said that he was reversing the hold and would allow the building permit to be issued so the strip club could renovate and open its doors.
“The Zoning Administrator is willfully looking the other way on this one,” said Mr. Padou. “These strip clubs are sexually oriented businesses and they are the last thing we need in Ward 5.”
I find it interesting, if true, that LeGrant could not see clearly what the Stadium Club’s intention was unless the owners falsely presented themselves to him. Getting approval at the time of submission, if true, is suspect beyond measure.
In regards to DC Star (the club next to Stadium Club) has a liquor license renewal hearing coming up on December 20, 2010. If you would like to testify on this ABC renewal license, you must register by 12/06/2010. This blog will post further details in the near future on this process.
I have heard from a lot of residents in the area that have concerns on both of these night clubs. Majority of these residents live close to the area and are constantly battling the trash and loud noises from having these clubs so close to their neighborhood and homes.
4 thoughts on “Stadium Club and DC Star”
This is truly interesting! At the PSA 505 meeting last month, the community was told by the police that DC Star and the Scene are causing problems in that area. There was no mention of the Stadium Club. One resident asked whether the liquor license for the Stadium Club was approved. They said it was. You would think the police would also be investigating what goes on inside the Stadium Club. On RIA, the area between 18th Street, Irving, and 20th, has been designated a “Prostitution Free Zone.” Large signs were posted in September announcing this on utility poles. I asked a police officer on RIA whether the Stadium Club could be a contributor to the increased prostitution activity on RIA. He said it was unlikely, that you have to pay $80 just to get into the Stadium Club.
I’ve also seen signs on RIA posted by the ANC for a liquor license renewal for The Lace Club and one possibly for a club called Taste at the former Saints Bourbon Club on Hamlin and RIA. What’s going on at these places?
This is a city, there are going to be night clubs and strip clubs. While I have never been to either of these establishments, they bring money and jobs to the area and are NO WHERE NEAR any kind of residential areas, they’re near the train tracks, in an industrial area. This nimby crap should stop, these places haven’t done anything wrong and for people that would like to frequent places like this, I say let em, please bring your money and spend it in Ward 5. As for Lace, I live very near Lace and have seen no problem with the patrons there, as for a new ANYTHING in the space that was Saints Bourbon Street, ring it on, we need more places to go and enjoy in our neighborhood and shocking!!! these places might serve alcohol.
i am much more worried about the continued semi-presence of hookers on RIA in the mornings, the history of RIA is that it is a prostitution area, we need to kill this problem and let a few night clubs in a warehouse district jsut be.
I’ve sent emails to Vincent Gray, Harry Thomas, Linda Argo, and Muriel Bowser with my disgust of what’s going on in our neighborhoods. I say we bring attention of what’s happening to the local media as well.
Was anyone able to attend the liquor license renewal hearing on December 20 for DC Star? I left for the holidays that day and was unable to attend. I’d be curious what happened. Also, any further word about any neighbors taking action against the 4 clubs in our neighborhood. I was unaware until a recent visit to the MPD offices on Bladensburg that all 4 clubs are open until 4 am. How can that happen? Also, more than one MPD officer told me that they have to work overtime when these clubs are operational on weekends. That pulls our hard-working officers away from preventing crime and protecting our streets in every other part of the 5th district. Why do our elected officials including Councilmember Thomas think this is acceptable?
Oh, and to the person who commented that these establishments “aren’t near any kind of residential areas” I would love to invite you to my house at 4 am on Sunday mornings when loud patrons, squeeling tires, and speeding cars wake up my family and me. It’s always a treat for us.