Dear Mr. Cowasjee:
In its meeting of 18 April, the Commission of Fine Arts reviewed a new concept design for alterations to the building facades and an addition to the eleventh floor of an existing office building at 601 D Street, NW (case number SL 19-128). The Commission approved the concept submission with the following comments.
The Commission members expressed appreciation for the development of the design for the ground-level facades, observing that the details at this level—the shaping of the metal-framed openings and the provision of integrated stone benches—improve the way the building meets the street. However, they expressed regret that the previously proposed replacement of the building facades with a copper-colored metal and glass curtainwall system has been abandoned in favor of modifications to the existing precast panels, finding that the new scheme is more horizontal and less kinetic in comparison with the previous. They therefore recommended layering a vertical grain within the facade design, as well as varying the placement of the thinner, secondary vertical mullions to provide relief from the regular module of the panels. The Commission members also recommended careful specification of the textured finish of the stone benches to encourage sitting, and they reiterated their previous advice to increase the quality and volume of the soil for the street trees to ensure their long-term viability.
The Commission looks forward to further review of this project. As always, the staff is available to assist you with the development of the design.
/s/Thomas E. Luebke, FAIA
Rustom Cowasjee, Managing Director
Tishman Speyer Properties
1875 Eye Street, NW, Suite 1200
Washington, DC 20006
cc: Joey Shimoda, Shimoda Design Group