The Historic Preservation Review Board (HPRB) held its conceptual review of the developer’s plans for buildings on the 8th Street and Pennsylvania Avenue sides of the Hine site on June 30th. I was unable to attend so cannot provide my impressions of the hearing. Commissioner Norman Metzger (ANC6B03) was there, however, and here is his synopsis of the results:
“The HPRB unanimously supported the proposed height, scale, and massing for the parts of the project up for review today, and accepted the HPO Staff Report. A number of design matters were raised that the Board will consider likely when the project returns after the PUD process is done; for example, the design of the corner at 7th and Pa to provide a visual bond btw 7th Street and Barracks Row, an issue raised by Ken Jarboe today and at [the ANC] Special Call meeting. The 7th and Pa Ave height issue was hardly mentioned by the Board, other than by the Chair who emphasized that the approval of the height was not to be considered as a precedent, given the special nature of the site. Next up for the July 28th HPRB is the remainder of the project. ”
On June 21st ANC6B voted 6-3 in support of a statement that was presented at the HPRB hearing by Commissioner Brian Pate (ANC6B05). Commissioners Metzger, David Garrison (ANC6B01) and I (ANC6B04) had voted in opposition, fundamentally because the statement was crafted in such a way that would have required the 3 of us who voted against the first Hine resolution (April 26th) to abrogate that vote. Thus, we provided our separate, individual non-ANC6B official testimony at the HPRB hearing on June 30; delivered by Commissioner Garrison. [Note: Commission By-laws permit such testimony.]
As you can see from the above synopsis, the next step in the HP review of the Hine project will be a conceptual review of the height, scale, and massing of the balance of the proposed buildings on the site: North Residential and 7th & C. Since HPRB is planning its review on July 28, it seems the ANC will have to schedule a special meeting in July on a date prior to the 28th. In the Fall, we will all move into the PUD (Planned Unit Development) zoning phase of the project review where a whole different set of issues will be raised. (If you want to know more about PUDs, go Commissioner Metzger’s <www.ancnorm.org>; for an excellent overview.)
For HPRB background information, such as the staff reports for both the April 28th and June 30th hearings, go to the Historic Preservation Office website <http://planning.dc.gov/DC/Planning/Historic+Preservation>; and click on HPRB Meetings.