7901 East Beach Drive, NW (formerly 7981 East Beach Drive, NW)
Dear Mr. Cooper:
In its meeting of 17 March, the Commission of Fine Arts reviewed a concept submission for a new single-family residence on an undeveloped, newly subdivided lot at 7981 East Beach Drive, NW (case number SL 16-066). The Commission did not take an action and provided the following comments.
The Commission members observed that the location of this site—a sloping, curving property along a tributary stream of Rock Creek and facing Kalmia Bridge—provides a context of natural beauty that presents the opportunity to create a distinctive and elegant house. They commented that the proposed design does not take sufficient advantage of this special setting, and they recommended developing a new concept design that responds to the particular qualities of the site. They recommended that the front of the house should respect the prevailing curved frontage of East Beach Drive, and should not protrude atypically into the green setting of the street. In general, they advised careful consideration of the relationship of the house to its site—both in plan and in section—to understand how the house and the associated exterior spaces will sit within the terrain. They suggested that the house could better express its context, perhaps by curving the facade to reflect both the geometry of the street and the gently rounded contours of the site; they also recommended simplifying the complicated composition of boxy forms and cautioned against the creation of a walled, inaccessible landscape behind the house.
The Commission looks forward to review of a new concept design. As always, the staff is available to assist you with your next submission.
/s/Thomas E. Luebke, FAIA
Compass Design and Development
1380 Monroe Street, NW, Suite 204
Washington, DC 20010
cc: Colin Bruce, 1740 Poplar Lane, NW