411 New Jersey Avenue, SE
27 February 2020
Dear Mr. Aslanturk:
In its meeting of 20 February, the Commission of Fine Arts reviewed a revised concept submission for two new row houses to be located on an undeveloped lot at 411 New Jersey Avenue, SE (case number SL 20-072). The Commission approved the revised concept with the following recommendations for the development of the design.
The Commission members reiterated their support for the design approach of this project to establish a strong differentiation in architectural language between the front and rear of the houses in response to the varied urban context; they expressed appreciation for the simplification and refinement of the scale of the architectural elements on the front facades. However, they recommended additional study of how the articulated Victorian style of the front of the northern house shifts to the simpler modern treatment of the rear by reducing the height of the rear portion of the third floor, adjusting this transition by reconfiguring or reversing the positions of the stair and elevator. In addition, they recommended that the small horizontal windows on the rear portion of this house be replaced with either square or vertical units to create a more appropriate composition for this residential use; likewise, they cautioned against using excessively large panels for the exterior cladding. For the front facade of the southern house, they commented that a two-story brick bay or a one-story wood bay would be a more historically appropriate configuration for this style of the house than the proposed one-story brick bay, which they described as awkward in its proportions. Finally, the Commission recommended that the final selection of exterior colors for the two houses be refined to be more harmonious, avoiding a juxtaposition of warm and cool hues.
The Commission looks forward to review of the final design for the project. As always, the staff is available to assist you with the next submission.
/s/Thomas E. Luebke, FAIA
1200 Potomac Avenue, SE
Washington, DC 20003
cc: Mateusz Dzierzanowski, DZ Architecture
David Maloney, D.C. Historic Preservation Office