CFA 20/OCT/11-8


Poplar Point Pumping Station
Site within interchange of South Capitol Street, Suitland Parkway, and Anacostia Freeway (I–295)
United States

DC Water
Poplar Point Pumping Station
Replacement pumping station
Review Type


Dear Mr. Ray:

In its meeting of 20 October, the Commission of Fine Arts reviewed the concept design for the replacement of the Poplar Point Pumping Station to be located within the interchange of South Capitol Street, Suitland Parkway, and the Anacostia Freeway (I–295). The Commission approved concept alternative #2 with several recommendations for refinement of the design.

The Commission members emphasized that the pumping station is a service building set within a highway landscape and is not a public destination; they cautioned that the structure should not appear to be a signboard nor be used as a branding opportunity. For the exterior of the building, they recommended that the colors be muted rather than using the bright blue proposed for the metal panels in alternative #2 or the bright white concrete proposed in alternative #1.

Noting the limited number of workers and vehicles that will enter the site, the Commission members suggested that the amount of paving be reduced; more pervious paving or landscaping where appropriate will further contribute to the mitigation of stormwater runoff. The Commission members encouraged the design team to explore additional green strategies for the site that anticipate the future reconfiguration of the roadways and the resulting urban landscape.

The Commission members expressed appreciation for DC Water's initiative and commitment to high-quality architectural design for its infrastructure projects and looks forward to further review of this building and other projects of the DC Clean Rivers program. Please coordinate the next submission with the staff which, as always, is available to assist you.


/s/Thomas E. Luebke, FAIA

Carlton M. Ray
Director, CSO Long Term Control Plan
District of Columbia Water and Sewer Authority
5000 Overlook Avenue, SW
Washington, DC 20032