Dear Mr. Bonanno:
In its meeting of 18 July, the Commission of Fine Arts was pleased to hear an information presentation on the planned alterations and additions to the Newseum building at 555 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW, for use by Johns Hopkins University (case number SL 19-194). The Commission expressed support for the project and provided the following comments.
The Commission members found the initial design ideas presented to be strong, demonstrating an improvement over the existing building in material, massing, and relation to the surrounding context of Pennsylvania Avenue, particularly to the adjacent Canadian Embassy building. They recommended that the design be developed with a more subtle treatment for the projecting glass volume proposed for the Pennsylvania Avenue facade, as well as for the articulation and detailing of the stone panels on this facade, suggesting that the proportion of stone could be increased.
The Commission looks forward to review of the concept design for this prominently located project. As always, the staff is available to assist you.
/s/Thomas E. Luebke, FAIA
Mitch Bonanno, Chief Real Estate Officer
Johns Hopkins University
3910 Keswick Road, N3100
Baltimore, MD 21211
cc: Richard Olcott, Ennead Architects