Bolder Concept for West Heating Plant Approved

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Architect David Adjaye and landscape architect Laurie Olin returned to the Commission of Fine Arts Sept. 20 to present their revised design for the redevelopment of Georgetown’s West Heating Plant on 29th Street NW. The new concept came in response to the commission’s request, at its May 18 meeting, that Adjaye be bolder and less literal in his articulation of the reconstructed portion of the building. In addition, Olin was asked to find a way to integrate more of the site’s industrial history into his vision of the public park that will cover the former coal yard, more than one acre in extent.

The first indication of the commission’s response was an emphatic “Wow!” from one of the commissioners at the completion of Adjaye’s presentation. Before their unanimous vote to approve the bolder vision, the commissioners offered supportive comments, declared that the design “exceeded expectations” and shared constructive suggestions to consider as the project moves forward.

On Nov. 2, the development team — comprising the Levy Group, the Georgetown Company and the Four Seasons — will go before the D.C. Historic Preservation Board.

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