CFA 15/FEB/07-6


United States Institute of Peace
23rd Street and Constitution Avenue, NW
United States

U.S. Institute of Peace
Headquarters Building
Landscape design for new headquarters building
Review Type
Previous Review


Dear Mr. Nelson:

In its meeting of 15 February, the Commission of Fine Arts reviewed the proposed landscape design for the Institute of Peace headquarters planned for the corner of 23rd Street and Constitution Avenue, NW. The Commission members expressed appreciation for the lyrical quality of the design and approved the general concept while suggesting refinement of how the landscape relates to the building architecture and adjacent urban form.

The Commission members observed that the building's architectural strength comes from using curves in contrast to a generally rectilinear building, commenting that the proposed landscape for the south and west areas relates successfully to the building architecture and the site. However, they suggested that the landscape to the east along 23rd Street could relate more directly to the orthogonal order of the city. The Commission members expressed interest in how the landscape design would extend to the two Navy buildings north of the site that may be transferred to the Institute, where an orthogonal design may also be appropriate. A conceptual design treatment of this potential future extension would be helpful to include as part of future submissions.

Regarding the development of the entry plaza, the Commission also suggested further emphasis on the water feature and commented on the importance of providing sufficient shade in the large plaza.

The Commission looks forward to reviewing this design at the next stage of development. As always, the staff is available to assist you in future submissions.


/s/Thomas Luebke, AIA

Charles Nelson, Vice-President
United States Institute of Peace
1200 17th Street, NW
Washington, D.C. 20036-3011

cc: Moshe Safdie, FAIA, Moshe Safdie & Associates Inc.
Diana Balmori, Balmori & Associates