Friday, August 05, 2011

Eastern Market Concepts OK'd by Historic Review Board


The biggest development on Capitol Hill in recent memory - development of the old Hine Junior High School - was reviewed before the Historic Preservation Review Board (HPRB) yesterday, with the board approving designs for the C Street public plaza, overall landscape plan, and both the north and south residential buildings.

In keeping with Capitol Hill's style, the design includes: newly added cornices, brick sidewalks, granite curbs, 36-inch iron "hair pin" fences, and a continuous perimeter of trees in 6x6' tree boxes. New design elements (since April) include: a 2-foot reduction in height of the North residential building, whose fa├žade has been split into five distinct sections - what was one long continuous gallery has been broken down "into a series of repeating storefront windows."

With recommendation from HPRB for architectural diversity appropriate to Capitol Hill, the South residential building (on 7th) now takes inspiration from Late Victorian architecture (not High Victorian) and boasts a "tripartite" facade (lighter gradations in masonry color). It has also been separated into vertical sections, like the North residential building (shown above), with an addition of 3-story protruding retail bays.

Located at Eastern Market on Capitol Hill, between 7th and 8th Streets along Pennsylvania Avenue, SE, and across from the Metro station, the 3.2 acre Hine Development is most notably where the flea market portion of the Market has been held every Sunday, year round, since the 1970s.

The development team led by Stanton and Eastbanc and Escoff & Associates has been seeking ongoing conceptual review with HPRB since April, when the mixed-use project was first reviewed in its entirety.

A small chunk of the project was unanimously approved by the Board last month, with the remainder also unanimously approved by the Board today. The development team was selected in July of 2009, and in turn selected landscape architect Oehme, Van Sweden & Associates, and lead architect Escoff & Associates.

The open meeting was a showcase for some heartfelt lamentation of the overall size, but most passionate were those who spoke out against a decrease in public space, and in the flea market operations (down to 68 tents). It was agreed that approximately 120 vendors are currently on site (in the Hine School yard/parking lot) at any one time on Sundays.

It was also generally agreed that this does not fall into the jurisdiction of the HPRB, and so all parties (interested in the number of tents on site) will reconvene at the Deputy Mayor's office, where the future of the flea market vendors will be determined.

Last month, HPRB approved revised designs for the 8th Street residential building and the Pennsylvania Avenue and 7th Street office and retail buildings.

HPO staff reviewer Steve Callcott stressed the desire for the development's new retail components - along 7th Street - to serve as a connector between Eastern Market and Barracks Row.

The next step for the development team, after a visit to the Deputy Mayor's office, is a trip to the Zoning Commission for PUD approval, which could be in September, if the project is to keep the timeline set by the District.

Washington D.C. real estate development news

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

The elevations are improving, but why stop at a cornice and vertical recesses to articulate a "row house" street rythem? Bust out some moldings or do some old school brick work.

The plan could also be improved by regualrizing the public space. Make it square proportioned & kitty corner to the old market building rather than having the spaces energy leach out of the funnel shape.

As for the expressionist Louis Khan elevations on Pennsilvania Avenue...what are you going to do?

Anonymous said...

@Anonymous 7:28

Or, we could just let the architects do their job.

Anonymous said...

Architects that, I presume, can spell and write correctly in english, unlike anon Aug5th 7:28. I hope they continue redevelopment further along both sides of Penna Ave and 11th through 14th streets.

 

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