CFA 21/OCT/10-9


The H. Carl Moultrie I Courthouse
500 Indiana Avenue, NW
United States

D.C. Courts
H. Carl Moultrie I Courthouse
Building addition and site modifications
Review Type


Dear Mr. Sanchez:

In its meeting of 21 October, the Commission of Fine Arts reviewed a concept design for an addition and alterations to the Moultrie Courthouse at 500 Indiana Avenue, NW. While the Commission did not approve the design of the addition, the members acknowledged the thoughtful presentation and ingenious resolution of the internal planning of the proposed addition and offered the following comments.

The Commission members expressed concern about the monolithic scale of the addition, its weak relation to the existing building, and the lack of modulation in the proposed facades. They commented that the uniform facades of the addition need further articulation to create an intermediate scale across the 425-foot-long elevation; they suggested that the individual courtrooms and offices could inform the expression of the facades. They also suggested that the articulation of the addition could be more sympathetic with the existing building's other elevations, possibly to appear less like a completely new building; and that to incorporate stone into the facades would not deny the possibility of a contemporary design. The Commission requested that alternatives be presented in the next submission.

Regarding the proposed landscape design, the Commission questioned the appropriateness of the undulating berms in the southern building yard, requesting that the landscaping in this area be studied further in recognition of the extreme length of the frontage and the need for humanizing its scale.

As always, the staff is available to assist you with the next submission.


/s/Thomas E. Luebke, AIA

Joseph E. Sanchez, Jr.
Capital Projects and Facilities Management Officer
The District of Columbia Courts
500 Indiana Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20001-2131

cc: Michael Kazan, Gruzen Samton
Roger Courtenay, AECOM