Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Residential project at 15th and V adds to growing list of area projects

Last month, we noted the announcement of a forthcoming residential project at 14th and T set to bring new residents, retail, and some really staid architecture to the 14th Street corridor. Although, as recently launched blog U Street Dirt (welcome to the blogosphere, guys) reported, the Historic Preservation Review Board didn't look to fondly upon architect Eric Colbert's plan for the building, and basically sent him back to the drawing board.

Earlier this week, the Meridian Hill Neighborhood Association blog broke the news that yet another large (by DC standards) residential project is forthcoming, this one for the parking lot of the Paul Revere Dunbar Apartment complex at 15th and V streets.

The project, which is being developed by Jair Lynch Associates and was designed by WDG Architecture PLLC, is proposed to stand 9 stories tall and will contain 96 units. It does not appear that any ground level retail will be included as part of the plan, but two levels of underground parking will be included.

Pardon us, if you will, but the rendering for this project looks remarkably similar to a number of residential buildings that have either been proposed, are under construction, or have been built throughout the neighborhood in recent years. In fact, it doesn't look tremendously dissimilar to the Colbert-designed building that was just rejected by HPRB (although, it should be noted, HPRB personnel had other, specific reasons for rejecting the 14th and T building--namely, its size in relation to nearby structures.)

According to Jair Lynch, the senior citizen residents of the Dunbar building have given their full support to the project, which will also include a complete renovation of the existing Dunbar building.

The plans for the building are currently with HPRB, who could discuss and vote on the matter as soon as their July 28 hearing.


Anonymous said...

I actually think this one looks much better than others. It does look like one that was built recently in Friendship Heights though (not a bad thing, as those are super high-end). The proposed one at 14th and T is much fuglier.

I think we should really encourage them to add at least one retail bay, if only for a convenience store, drycleaner, or coffee shop.

Anonymous said...

@ Anonymous, There are two new Georgetown Valets within a stone's throw of the new building -- one at 14th & V (Next to Eatonville) and one at 13th & U (where George's Shoe Repair was formerly located). I don't think there is a shortage of dry cleaners in that neighborhood.

Steve S. said...

What do people want? Some non-functional titanium fantasia by Frank Gehry? Provided they're 9-10 stories and not made of concrete panels, who cares if the architecture is a little prosaic? The area needs more housing.

Mr. Other Upper NW said...

For me, it's the fact that we end up living with these buildings for 40, 50, 60 years or more. Yes, DC has a housing shortage, and yes it's great that projects are coming online to fill that gap. But it seems in the rush to put up residential housing, developers and architects are forgoing much in the way of thoughtfulness or creativity for the sake of getting the building up as fast as possible. I think there have been some interesting residential buildings constructed in DC over the last 10 years, but much of what has constructed, to me, is quite unremarkable and nondescript.

Anonymous said...

What is the Paul Revere Dunbar apartment complex? Are they market rate apartments? I hope the renovation that is mentioned will gut the first floor of Paul Revere Dunbar and put in street level retail. The north side of U Street from 14th to 15th needs help.