Housing Complex

Wait, Have I Seen That Building Before?

Copycat architecture is a familiar thing in the District, especially in times of such rapid development as these—a cupola or a window pattern will show up in several new buildings at once, either because one firm is designing lots of things around town, or because they pick up on a feature that was successful somewhere else. Eric Colbert, the city's quintessential reliable guy, sees an "emerging style" in the kind of vaguely industrial spareness evident on the Allegro in Columbia Heights.

Lately, I've seen a lot of the prominent, floating facade that just showed up in PGN Architects' plan for 2337 Champlain Street NW in Adams Morgan, which is being built by Federal Capital Parters. It's also in the design for the new Walmart at Fort Totten Square, and the apartment building rising at 2400 14th Street. Three makes a trend!

Another common feature in new designs these days is bar code-like irregular windowframes, which you can see in the plans for 50 Florida Avenue NE, part of the Hine School retail and residential building by Amy Weinstein, and CityCenterDC.

Pictures of all this after the jump. 

Here's 2400 14th Street NW:


See that floating wall there?

Here's the Fort Totten Walmart:

And here's the series of similar windowframes.

An earlier design for the Hine School (the windows got regularized in a later version):

Here's CityCenterDC downtown:

Here's the Devrouax + Purnell's design for 50 Florida Avenue NE:

And here are some more renderings of the Champlain Street building, just for fun:

The courtyard.

  • http://twitter.com/elcolin Colin

    Tell me more please about this 2337 Champlain Street project. Is this going to get underway anytime soon?

  • acg

    Hi Lydia- That is the Hine School Plaza Building (Retail 1st Floor/ Res on Other Floors) not the office building which is on Penn & 7th.

  • er

    "zip code-like irregular windowframes,"

    is that similar to "punch card-like"?

  • concerned

    Architects have been using design elements and cues from other buildings for like 1000 years easily all across the globe. This is nothing new or unique to DC.

  • Lydia DePillis

    @Colin - I'm not sure. FCP asked the zoning variances they needed last week, and a decision's scheduled for May.

    @acg - Thanks! Fixed.

    @er - Oy. BAR CODE like, not zip code. Thanks for the catch.

    @concerned - I didn't say it was new or unique, just pointing out some examples.

  • RT

    Lydia- any word on the old Ontario Theater building? Is it being developed a la 2337 Champlain?

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