Bounded by 13th Street, Quincy Street, and Kansas Avenue, NW
Dear Mr. Weaver:
In its meeting of 16 June, the Commission of Fine Arts reviewed a new concept submission for the triangle park in Reservation 323E, bounded by 13th Street, Quincy Street, and Kansas Avenue, NW. The Commission approved the general concept for the park design with the understanding that future improvements for other triangle parks would be submitted as site-specific designs rather than using this design as a prototype.
The Commission members acknowledged the improvements made in response to their previous comments, but they found that the design would benefit from further simplification and development to address the site’s sloping conditions and tight geometry. Recognizing that the central circular form proposed is a programmatic choice that constrains the design, they suggested several ways to maximize the use and enhance the experience of the park for visitors. First, they suggested that the central circle should be nearly flat within the sloped site, which could be resolved with stepped edges on the uphill and downhill sides of the circle; the outward-facing lower edge could function as a seat along a perimeter path that could allow people to pass by the central space without having to enter it. They also suggested consolidating the many small mounds within the rest of the site as a single, longer earthen berm which, in concert with a more robust planted edge at the park’s western side along 13th Street, could create a more sheltered landscape within the triangle.
In its general support for the initiative to improve the many triangular parks formed by Washington’s distinctive street pattern, the Commission suggested that the D.C. Department of Parks and Recreation explore options for a range of sites by sponsoring a design charrette with the goal of developing guidelines for the rehabilitation of these small neighborhood parks.
The Commission looks forward to the submission of a revised concept for further review. As always, the staff is available to assist you.
/s/Thomas E. Luebke, FAIA
Christopher Weaver, Director
D.C. Department of General Services
2000 14th Street, NW, 8th Floor
Washington, DC 20009
cc: Adrienne McCray, Lee and Associates
Brent Sisco, D.C. Department of Parks and Recreation