DC Zoning and Land Use

To discuss real estate issues, contact Martin Sullivan

(202) 503-1704


Sullivan & Barros, LLP, has extensive experience and capability in D.C. zoning and land use matters.  Marty Sullivan is uniquely qualified to handle all manner and size of zoning, land use, and related municipal matters.  Marty has focused almost exclusively on zoning legal issues for the past 12 years, most of that time spent with the esteemed zoning groups at Wilkes Artis and Shaw Pittman.  Marty also spent time as General Counsel for a regional homebuilder.  Marty chairs the Zoning and Land Use Practice Group at Sullivan & Barros.


With this extensive, focused background in D.C. zoning and land use matters, Marty is well positioned to successfully represent their clients before the Board of Zoning Adjustment, the Zoning Commission, the Office of Administrative Hearings, the D.C. Court of Appeals, and any other District board or agency that touches zoning, land use, and other real estate regulatory issues.


The local expertise of firm partner Tony Barros and strategically complement S&B’s municipal affairs capability.  Tony is actively involved in public/private partnership issues locally as well as nationally.


In addition to our extensive knowledge of zoning law and the players involved in the real estate entitlement process, we partner with other key professionals in the local real estate industry, including trusted architects, permit expediters, engineers, and others.  These strategic partnerships enable us to coordinate an applicant’s entitlement/redevelopment/approval effort from start to finish, providing our clients with a sense of control over the process, allowing them to conserve their valuable resources in what can be a time-consuming and stressful experience for a business or property owner.  With the additional transactional and dispute resolution capabilities of other lawyers in the firm, Sullivan & Barros, LLP can advise our clients of potential missteps and hurdles, while safely navigating them through the entitlement process.


We can handle all size and types of zoning matters, from §223 residential additions to major redevelopments and new construction; residential and commercial.  Our typical engagements include:


  • BZA Special Exceptions, Variances, and Appeals of Zoning Administrator Decisions
  • Appeals of BZA and Zoning Commission Decisions at The D.C. Court of Appeals
  • Appeals to the Office of Administrative Hearings
  • Fast Food Establishments and Restaurants
  • Single-Family Home Additions and Decks
  • Redevelopment of Residential, Commercial, and Mixed-Use Structures
  • Child Development Centers
  • Youth Residential Care Homes and Other Community Based Residential Facilities
  • Negotiations/Agreements with Neighbors and Other Stakeholders
  • Retail Establishments
  • Animal Boarding Use and Other Pet-Related Uses
  • Home Occupations
  • Zoning Opinions/Due Diligence
  • Zoning Reviews and Analyses
  • Historic Preservation and Commission of Fine Arts Issues
  • Parking Lot or Parking Space Approvals/Renewals
  • General Permitting and Licensing


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