Architectural Review Committee Report: January 2017

Cleveland Park Historical Society Architectural Review Committee
Monday, January 9, 2017

ARC Members attending: Phil Eagleburger, Christine Hobbs, Stefan Hurray, Ron Ngiam, Lois Orr, Anne Weir.

Also attending were Carin Ruff, CPHS Executive Director, and Emma Hersh, ANC3C-05 Commissioner.

HPA 17-126
3700 Connecticut Avenue, NW
Concept/new construction of a single-family house
Architect: Dynerman Architects PC: Alan Dynerman, Bill Putnam
Owner: Donald Malnati, Murillo/Malnati Group LLC

The proposal is for a three-story house to replace the existing house. The new house would be clad in brick, with a main entrance on Connecticut Avenue and a secondary entrance on Rodman Street. The footprint of the existing house would be extended somewhat to the north.

The existing house was originally a 1920 bungalow like its neighbors on Rodman, but it was declared noncontributing by HPRB in 2006 because of the extent of changes it had undergone prior to the creation of the historic district. The property is subject to a National Park Service conservation easement dating to 1998 which limits any replacement structure to a single-family house, no more than 40 feet high, “substantially in the same location, type, and general dimensions” as the existing house. The design for any replacement structure is subject to the approval of the National Park Service. The owners intend to seek NPS approval after completing the HPRB review process.

The ARC previously saw plans for this property in February and March 2016. After reviewing the first version of the plans, the ARC requested that the applicants reconsider the Rodman Street entrance to provide a better transition from the house to the parking area. The ARC voted no objection to the revised design presented in March 2016. The current plans have been redesigned to reduce the massing somewhat, reduce the extent to which the new house would impinge on the Rodman Street driveway area in response to neighbor and ANC concerns, and simplify the design of the Connecticut Avenue entrance by straightening the stair in response to an HPO staff request.

The architect reports that the neighbor to the west on Rodman has been contacted and has expressed an intention to support the project.

The ARC has no objection to the project as presented. However, the ARC believes that the property’s setting in the Cleveland Park Historic District and on Connecticut Avenue demands high-quality materials and detailing. The ARC would like to see careful attention to these matters as the project is developed further following concept review.

The motion passed 6-0.