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HPRB April 24 and May 1, 2014

The Historic Preservation Review Board met to consider the following items on April 24 and May 1, 2015. Copies of staff reports related to cases listed below may be requested by email.

Video archives of the hearing are accessible on the office website.



Present: Gretchen Pfaehler (Chair), Rauzia Ally, Andrew Aurbach, Maria Casarella,  Graham Davidson, Nancy Metzger, Robert Sonderman, Joseph Taylor and Charles Wilson. Absent: Robert Sonderman.

Walter Reed Army Medical Center Historic District, 6900 Georgia Avenue NW, Cases 14-10 and 10-08.
The Board designated the entire post-1922 extent of the Walter Reed Army Medical Center (WRAMC) campus a historic district to be entered into the D.C. Inventory of Historic Sites, adopting the lists of contributing and noncontributing resources put forth by the Army’s nomination, including the lobby, Pershing Suite and Presidential Suite within Building 1.  The Board requested that Army or the State Historic Preservation Officer forward the nomination for listing in the National Register of Historic Places as of national significance, meeting Register criteria A, B and C, and with a period of significance of 1905 to 1956, and meeting NR criteria A, B and C.  The Board recommended revision of the nomination to further discuss the influence of the topography on the decision to locate the hospital there and on the campus’s layout and evolution.  Vote: 8-0.   

1259 U Street SE, HPA 14-289, second-floor addition to rear wing of two-story frame house.
The Board did not recommend clearance of the permit as presented, but approved in concept a frame addition eight to twelve feet shorter than drawn, with the condition that the applicant revise the concept to include the use of wood or fiber-cement siding and appropriate window casings.  If the project is so revised, the Board delegated it to staff for further review.  Vote: 7-0.

1901-1903 Martin Luther King Jr. Avenue SE, HPA 14-257, raze one-story building.
The Board determined that: (A) the subject building retains sufficient historic integrity (of location, design, setting, materials, workmanship, feeling and association) to continue to contribute to the character of the Anacostia Historic District; (B) the demolition of a contributing building is incompatible with its character and inconsistent with the purposes of the preservation law; and (C) the building is being demolished by neglect.  Therefore, the Board recommended that a permit to raze the building not be cleared by the Historic Preservation Office or the Mayor’s Agent, nor be issued by the Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs.  Vote: 7-0.  (Wilson recused)

640 Lexington Place NE, HPA 14-218, concept/rear addition/roof alteration.
The Board found the project consistent with the purposes of the preservation act and delegated final approval to staff with the condition the applicant work with staff to ensure the roof modifications will not be visible from street view.  Vote: 8-0.

313 9th Street, NE, HPA 14-224, concept/rear addition.
The Board found the project consistent with the purposes of the preservation act and delegated final approval to staff with the condition the applicant work with staff on the design for the deck. Vote: 8-0.  

630 A Street SE, HPA 14-237, concept/rear addition and roof deck.
The Board approved the addition as designed, but recommended the applicant work with staff to minimize the size of the roof deck, stairs and dumbwaiter.  Vote: 7-1 (Metzger opposed)

415 M Street NW, HPA 14-177, concept/three-story side and rear addition.
The HPO recommends that the Board find Alternative #4 for a 3-story, flat-front, side addition with basement entrance, and rear stair tower at 415 M Street NW compatible with the character of the historic district and consistent with the purposes of the preservation act, and delegate final approval to staff.

1852 3rd Street NW, HPA 14-246, concept/add third story on rear wing of two story rowhouse This case is deferred to May 22 at the request of the Advisory Neighborhood Commission (ANC)


Present: Gretchen Pfaehler (Chair), Andrew Aurbach, Rauzia Ally, Graham Davidson, Nancy Metzger, Joseph Taylor. Absent: Maria Casarella, Robert Sonderman, Charles Wilson.

901 L Street NW, HPA 14-040, concept/alteration, addition affecting seven historic buildings and demolition of two historic buildings for 12-story hotel and apartment building.
The Board made the following findings: (A) Demolition of 911 and 913 L Street is inconsistent with the purposes of the preservation act and should be forwarded to the Mayor’s Agent upon receipt of a demolition permit; (B) The removal of floor and roof assemblies at 919 L Street would constitute demolition as defined in the preservation regulations and is inconsistent with the purposes of the act; it was recommended that the applicants evaluate alternative ways to achieve code compliance that retains these structural features in whole or significant part; (C) Due to a loss of structural integrity, the removal and replacement of floor and roof assemblies at 1114-1104 9th Street is consistent with the act, as it is necessary to adapt them for current use, and the extent of demolition of the later and deteriorated rear portions of the buildings appears acceptable but should continue to be coordinated with HPO; (E) A preservation plan and scope of rehabilitation for the retained historic buildings should be developed; (F) The new construction should continue to be developed and refined, with attention to the glass connection next to the Lurgan apartments, better integrating the new construction with the historic buildings, and studying the design recommendations outlined in the staff report; and (G) the project should return to the Board for further review when ready. Vote:  6-0.

1441-1449 U Street, NW (Portner Place), HPA 14-176, concept/11 story residential building on U Street; 8 story residential building on V Street.
The Board approved the modified concept, finding the revisions responsive to the concerns raised in the previous review, but recommended that the applicants continue to study how to improve the verticality of the building.  Final approval was delegated to staff.  Vote:  6-0.

1427-1429 Rhode Island Avenue, NW, HPA 14-269, concept/new construction of eight-story apartment building,  
The Board approved the general concepts for both Option A and Option B as generally compatible with the character of the historic district but found the use of a single projections incompatible in size and scale; the Board recommended the study of options that included either no projection or smaller width projections more in scale with those in the district.  The Board also found the entrance to be incompatibly elevated and the top floor needing to more strongly reinforce the composition’s tripartite design.  Vote:  6-0.


The Board approved all of the following items on the consent calendar on April 24 by a vote of 8-0.  

Western High School (Duke Ellington School of the Arts), 3500 R Street NW, HPA 14-322, partial demolition permit.

1322 9th Street NW, HPA #13-091, permit/demolish and reconstruct stable/garage.

712 5th Street SE, HPA 14-251, concept/new garage.
419 8th Street, SE, HPA 14-134, concept/second story addition and storefront alterations.

320 U Street NW, HPA 14-292, concept/alter roof slope at rear, 2-story w/ mansard rowhouse.

931 R Street NW, HPA 14-295, concept/roof deck, exterior alterations.
919 T Street NW, HPA 14-297, concept/new 2-story alley structure with loggia connector.

2737 Woodley Place, NW, HPA 14-299, concept/rear deck and porch.