Philly Pizza makes its bid to reopen to DCRA

If I were a betting blogger, I’d say that the city probably won’t let Mehmet Kocak reopen Philly Pizza. Call it superstition, but when your entire neighborhood is organized against you, the mayor’s attorney compares you to a brothel, and Mayor Adrian Fenty himself shows up at your store’s fresh grave to dance on it, that spells death for your chances of making it in Georgetown.

But Kocak isn’t so easily phased, and this week, he continued his bid to get a new Certificate of Occupancy from the Department of Consumer Regulatory Affairs—the same department that shuttered the same storefront back in March of this year. The Georgetown Dish reports that he went before the DCRA to make his case earlier this week. And while they’re light on the details, it’s clear from the attendance at that hearing—DCRA Director Linda Argo, a lawyer from Attorney General Peter Nickles‘s office, ANC Commissioner Bill Starrels, and the residents who fought to shut him down and their lawyer, Marty Sullivan—that Kocak is going to be under a lot of scrutiny.

Sullivan says that they already have reason to worry if Kocak does reopen Philly Pizza, or some other store at the Potomac Street location. While he’s advertising his new store concept as a prepared food shop, akin to Subway, Commissioner Starrels said that Kocak has also applied to operate a 500-degree-plus oven—for pizza.

“I don’t think [Kocak] has earned any credibility,” Starrels told the Voice in July. “I hope that Peter Nickles will do everything in the law and his power to protect my constituents from having to suffer under these people again and from this place reopening.”

I’m going to go look up the Vegas odds, but I’m guessing they’re not in Philly Pizza’s favor.

9 Comments on “Philly Pizza makes its bid to reopen to DCRA

  1. Awful story. I ordered Papa John’s last Friday and was completely surprised to open my door and find Matty [Mehmet Kocak] delivering the pizza. I had a long chat with him; he said this saga has pretty much driven him into bankruptcy as legal fees alone are well over $200k. He is going to try to break-even with the new store he is opening up and then move elsewhere.

    The Georgetown neighborhood is the worst.

  2. Or, he could have run a legal business that wasn’t a nuisance (with better food, I might add), and been a success. It’s his own fault he’s delivering pizza.

  3. maybe he could have a tray of cupcakes for sale inside his storefront, then the residents wouldn’t mind seeing a line outside

  4. starting to get the impression gu students do not quite understand meaning of laws and regulations. or do laws only apply to people other than gu students? too bad for them, especially since it is their university that forced them into this no-win situation.

  5. @maybe
    wait…what? How does this have anything to do with the University or GU students? I think you may need to read the article before you engage in anti-georgetown trolling…

  6. @haha

    Yeah, then he could have had a TV show instead. Especially if he switched to pretty pink boxes instead of that tacky white styrofoam.

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  8. “Maybe lack of understanding” is just being consistent with the doctrine of most neighborhood activists: always find a way to blame GU or GU students, for anything and everything they don’t like. I remember a meeting in which Burleith activist Suzi Gookin complained about the behavior in some houses where the occupants were not GU students or affiliated with the school in any way. University officials responded that if it’s not a university property and does not involve students, there’s nothing they can do. Gookin insisted that it was GU’s fault and that somehow they were responsible for taking action in this situation. None of the other neighborhood activists at the meeting spoke up to acknowledge that she was making a ridiculous request or to suggest another approach- it was all about attacking GU.

    I remember a meeting in Glover Park where some residents were upset about a recent race (5K, I think) that had led to temporary street closings and traffic jams in the area. GU had not been involved with the race in any way, but it didn’t matter, the usual anti-GU complainers spent about ten minutes blaming the University. It wasn’t about the truth or helping neighbors, it was about wanting to smear the school at every opportunity.

    There are many other examples, but the point is that if neighbors really want better relations with students, they need to start by telling the truth for a change.

  9. Pingback: Vox Populi » Philly P’s granted new certificate of occupancy

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