SL 15-109

HPA number
HPA 17-297

1501, 1503-1505 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW & 730 15th Street, NW
United States

Museum of the American Educator
Addition & renovations
Review Type


Dear Mr. Lesser:

In its meeting of 21 May, the Commission of Fine Arts reviewed and approved a concept design for the renovation of and addition to the former Riggs Bank Building at 1503 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW, for use as the Museum of the American Educator (case number SL 15-109).

The Commission members expressed appreciation for the clear presentation of the proposal, which will restore daylighting to the interior banking hall of this historic building. Noting the composition of institutional buildings in this block, each with metal-clad roof forms, they commented that the design of the proposed rooftop addition gracefully contributes to the existing ensemble. For the conversion of the western window on Pennsylvania Avenue to an accessible entrance, they recommended that the existing stone frame with scrolled brackets be retained.

The approval for this concept design does not include an occupiable roof terrace overlooking Pennsylvania Avenue; any barrier required by safety code or the U.S. Secret Service for such a terrace would likely create a significant visual impact and would require further review. The Commission looks forward to the review of the next submission and, as always, the staff is available to assist you.


/s/Thomas E. Luebke, FAIA

Lawrence Lesser
Senior Vice President
Milken Family Foundation
1250 Fourth Street
Santa Monica, CA 90401-1353

cc: Shalom Baranes, Shalom Baranes Associates
David Maloney, D.C. Historic Preservation Office
Joseph Dipieto, U.S. Secret Service