3700 O Street, NW
Dear Ms. Tiberi:
In its public meeting of 17 November conducted by videoconference, the Commission of Fine Arts reviewed a revised concept design for the demolition of two buildings and the construction of two replacement residence halls at Henle Village, a dormitory complex located on the campus of Georgetown University at 3700 O Street, NW (case number OG 23-013). The Commission members present recommended adopting the report of the Old Georgetown Board (OGB; enclosed) to approve the revised concept submission, providing the following comments, and delegating the permit review of the project to the OGB.
The Commission members expressed appreciation for the revisions to the design of the courtyard and east elevations as requested in their previous review, as well as for the presentation of solar studies within the courtyard. In their adoption of the OGB report, they recommended Option 2, using a panelized system for the upper story of the east elevation similar to the treatment proposed for the courtyard elevations, and they endorsed the configuration and proportions of the courtyard. However, they recommended that the proposed pavilion structure should remain within the courtyard as a scale-giving element, but without an actual roof, which they agreed would not be necessary for shade in this space. They also endorsed the intention to use a mediumtone variegated brick, and they cited the importance of rehabilitating the remnant dormitory building, Henle A, designed by John Carl Warnecke and the Ehrenkrantz Group, as part of this project.
As a quorum was not present for the review, these recommendations will be placed on the administrative agenda for confirmation at the Commission’s next meeting. Please coordinate the final submission and associated materials mockups with the staff which, as always, is available to assist you.
/s/Thomas E. Luebke, FAIA
University Landscape Architect and Asst. Director of Capital Projects
3700 O Street, NW
Washington, DC 20057
cc: Kevin Smith, Robert A.M. Stern Architects
Jonathan Mellon, Goulston & Storrs
Encl.: Report of the Old Georgetown Board, 17 November 2022
OG 23-013 (HPA 23-017)
3700 O Street, Street, NW (Square 1321, Lot 833)
Demolish two Henle Village buildings and construct two new residence buildings
(Reviewed in concept as OG 22-189: Jun 2022, Sep 2022)
REPORT: Following two concept reviews, in June and September 2022, the Old Georgetown Board approved the proposal for the demolition of two existing buildings in the Henle Village complex, to be replaced by a pair of 7-story dormitories above a base with common and support areas. The Board has consistently supported the proposed scale, massing, and overall configuration of the new complex, and has also encouraged the applicant to refine the design to be less generic in character, incorporating elements that convey the architectural language of the Georgetown University campus. The project was approved by the OGB and the CFA in September, with the advice to study further the configuration and architectural character of the courtyard and upper stories on the secondary elevations, particularly on the east facing Georgetown Visitation Preparatory School. The CFA also requested analysis of solar access within the courtyard.
The applicant returned in design development for the November OGB meeting with a proposal that is responsive to many of the OGB and CFA comments, including changes to the east elevation design of East Henle (facing the Visitation School) and revisions to the north and south elevations of West Henle. In its review, the OGB recommended approval of the project, expressing support for the layout and dimensions of the courtyard footprint, but recommended the applicant refine the courtyard elevations to emphasize architectural detail and remove the freestanding pavilion from the project. For the east elevation of East Henle, the OGB recommended further articulation of the vertical piers at the upper floors, which could be accomplished with the incorporation at the top floor of a panelized system, similar to the system seen on the top floors of the courtyard elevations. The OGB requested that the materials be mocked up and that the permit drawings include 3D renderings of the entrances for clarity.
RECOMMENDATION: NO OBJECTION to the revised concept design for demolition of two existing buildings located in Henle Village, the retention of one existing Henle building, and the construction of two new buildings, per supplemental materials received 27 October 2022, PROVIDED the architectural character of the project as a whole is incorporated into the design of the courtyard elevations and east elevation of East Henle, with better articulation of the upper-story masonry piers, and the pavilion is removed from the courtyard. File permit submission at DOB with detailed and dimensioned drawings, including documentation for treatment of Henle A and 3D renderings of the entrances, for review by the Commission. A materials mockup should be reviewed by the OGB prior to submission of permit application.