Dear Mr. Bellamy:
In its meeting of 15 November, the Commission of Fine Arts reviewed a concept submission for a new streetcar maintenance barn and training center to be located at the intersection of 26th Street and Benning Road, NE, and did not take action on the proposal, offering the following comments for the development of the design.
The Commission members supported the siting of the building at the street intersection and the intent to develop a relationship with the Spingarn campus, balancing the massing of the complex of schools fronting 26th Street. Noting the potential strength of the design in the juxtaposition of the utilitarian car barn with the training center, they recommended that the building design be further developed as a simpler composition of two volumes, not three as presented. They criticized the overly complex configuration of curving elements at the proposed corner lobby, suggesting that the one–story volume be simplified and the facade of the training center be straightened and parallel the main volume of the building to achieve a more harmonious design. They also recommended development of the relationship of the training center to the sidewalk to create a more urban and civic condition of a public building along an ample sidewalk with optimal conditions for street trees.
The Commission looks forward to the review of a more developed concept proposal and as always, the staff is available to assist you with the next submission.
/s/Thomas E. Luebke, FAIA
Terry Bellamy, Director
D.C. Department of Transportation
55 M Street, SE, Suite 400
Washington, DC 20003
cc: Ali Shakeri, Program Manager, DDOT
Otto Condon, ZGF Architects