Friday, October 19, 2012

GW Approves New Foggy Bottom Residence Hall


Moving forward with plans to add density and retail to its growing mixed-use kingdom in Foggy Bottom, George Washington (GW) University today announced plans to build a new, $130 million residence hall. The dorm will be constructed around and between the existing West End, Schenley and Crawford residence halls that front H and Eye Streets between 21st and 22nd Streets.  The structure will include ground-floor retail on Eye Street.  GW has retained Ayers Saint Gross as architect for the project.
2007 Foggy Bottom Campus Plan Development Sites.  Image: GWU

The residence hall adds to the university's growing list of high-dollar, ambitious construction projects, all part of a university plan to add density and retail to the parts of Foggy Bottom and West End neighborhoods the university controls, via the 2007 Foggy Bottom Campus Plan.  The Campus Plan includes 16 projects.

In summer 2011, the university started construction on a $265 million dollar, 400,000 s.f. Science and Engineering Building.  Also last year, the university announced plans to demolish townhouses on Pennsylvania Avenue and part of a large building at 2100 Pennsylvania Avenue, now occupied by Kaiser Permanente, to make room for a new office building.  The university will argue before the DC Zoning Commission in November that it should be granted an exception to a 90-foot height limit on part of the site and be able to build the office tower to its planned 130-foot height.

According to a GW press release, the planned residence hall will house mainly second and third-year students and have accommodations for short-term staff and faculty. Units will be two-bedroom apartments, studio apartments, or units in a concept called "affinity housing."  The affinity housing concept, according to the university press release, will "provide space for groups of students to create their own living communities." Michelle Sherrard, GW's director of media relations, further detailed the concept in an email to DCMud. "Students in clubs, organizations or athletics teams can create their own living community around their interests," she explained.  She said the housing units would feature large common kitchen and living areas and beds for 16 to 20 students.

With 270,000 s.f. of above-grade space, plans also call for 64,000 s.f. of underground space for student activities.  The University will preserve the West End, Schenley and Crawford halls, which were constructed in the mid 1920's. GW acquired the buildings between 1960 and 1997.  According to officials, construction on the new residence hall will begin in mid 2013.  It could be completed in time for fall semester, 2016.

6 comments:

Wkepley said...

Great Article.

Anonymous said...

I hope they do not demolish those rowhouses on Penn Ave for another soulless glass box. Incorporate them into the design as originally planned.

Anonymous said...

The row houses on Pennsylvania Avenue will be demolished, unfortunately...and the local, thriving small businesses that are in them will have to try to find new homes.

Anonymous said...

This is sad. All over the city, new developments are incorporating old townhouses into their design. I'm guessing the HPRB has no say in this matter. Last bit of character is being sucked out of this block.

Tattooed Stringbean on Nov 8, 2012, 2:35:00 PM said...

Washington D.C. used to be a city full of character, but it seems as though older buildings are being demolished left and right. Shame on all of the people (developers) responsible for doing all of these things.

Anonymous said...

Its still a city full of character.

 

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