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DCRA Launches Blitz on Illegal Construction

Thursday, July 26, 2018

Washington, DC – This summer, The Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs (DCRA) began its “Illegal Construction Blitz” in Ward 1. The initiative, which will continue through the fall, deploys inspection teams who identify and take action on illegal construction projects and housing code violations.

than 20 stop work orders (SWO) were issued for illegal construction taking place in Columbia Heights, Shaw and Parkview. The SWOs also resulted in notice of infractions (NOI) and potential fines to the property owners.

“Our teams did a great job covering a lot of ground in Ward 1 and were a visible presence in neighborhoods where a lot of construction is taking place,” said DCRA Director Melinda Bolling. “This very proactive tactic will help us ensure that the work being done is legal, safe and within the scope of a permit.”

The “blitz” consisted of inspection teams that covered a pre-determined route within Ward 1. Each team was comprised of an illegal construction inspector who served as the lead and a staff member who assisted with navigating the route and assessing potential violations. The routes were developed in part by analyzing historical data for postcard permits issued and SWOs posted since October 2016.

In addition to illegal construction cited by DCRA inspectors, teams also identified other egregious property maintenance violations that they came across.

Any construction in the District of Columbia done without required building permits is illegal and presents a public danger that can hurt people and damage property. Please report illegal construction activity in your community by calling 311, texting DC311, visiting 311.dc.gov, or tweeting @311DCgov.