1718 Connecticut Avenue, NW, Washington, DC.
This project is a new construction speculative office building in a legislatively preserved urban historic district. The major architectural challenge was to place the full allowable bulk on the site in a manner which would be compatible with and even contribute to the character of the historic district.
The architectural solution involved recessing the upper two stories behind a roof at the height of the neighboring buildings and designing the facades in a spirit of freely adaptive eclecticism similar to the 19th century historicism which established the character of the historic district. By breaking back the massing at the 6th floor with a terrace and dormer Mansard roof, the building appears from the sidewalk to be the same height as its neighbors.
The projecting bays of the front facade help maintain the rhythm and scale of the historic townhouses even though this site is as wide as three townhouses. The towers of the front facade contain roof top mechanical equipment.
The street facade is designed to relate to the adjacent preserved buildings. The limestone from the building to the south is brought together with the brick from the building on the north. The arched opening and round windows occur in both neighboring buildings. The gabled dormers are adapted from the building to the north. The main cornice is set at the height of parapet of the north building.
Completed November 1982