&pizza Looks Again to Barracks Row for New Gourmet Pizza Outlet
by Larry Janezich
Last Tuesday night at Hill Center, &pizza chain owner Steve Salis told ANC6B that he hopes to open a sixth location at 405 8th Street, SE, the current location of OXXO cleaners. Veteran readers of Capitol Hill Corner will remember that Salis flirted with Barracks Row in 2011/2012, when he announced plans to open in the space at 415 8th Street, currently occupied by Chipotle/Kraze Burger.
Salis is again reaching out to engage ANC6B, Barracks Row Main Street, and the community, saying he will apply for a fast food exception which will allow him to open up on Barracks Row.
Barracks Row zoning requires a special exception for fast food restaurants. &pizza falls into the fast food category because you have to pay for the food in advance, even though inside seating will be provided. Zoning regulations provide some 15 or requirements an applicant must meet in order to qualify for an exception. The request will come before ANC6B, likely next summer and approval by that body will send the request to the Board of Zoning Adjustment for final approval.
The issue is a sensitive one for nearby neighbors who have been vigilant in policing food venues on the 400 block of 8th Street because of operational issues contributing to rodent and odor problems. Salis said he is aware of these concerns and is prepared to address them.
In February of 2012, Salis said he pulled the plug on the Barracks Row project after it became clear to him that he could not launch the business according to schedule in spring of that year. He cited the uncertainty involved in getting a fast food exception – even though the Capitol Hill Restoration Society had already signed off on it – and uncertainty as to when Streetsense could deliver the store space. In addition, Streetsense had asked Salis to “put down a substantial amount of capital as a deposit in order to hold the space.” He said he found his position untenable being faced with “a bad use of my capital and no guarantees” on how the process would be resolved.
&pizza’s website and menu can be found here: http://www.andpizza.com/