shalom baranes associates, washington, d.c.

This condo building may evoke the International Style, but it does so while paying respect to Washington, D.C.'s historic identity. The judges praised its sensitivity to context and its “understated, great architecture.”

Located in a downtown historical area, the original site contained four down-at-heels 19th-century townhouses. Three of these structures were restored to their original glory and retrofitted for retail and residential, but the fourth—deemed historically insignificant—was razed to make room for a new structure. “Despite being in a historic area, the clearly modern building adheres to the surroundings,” says design principal Robert M. Sponseller, AIA. “It's not about the architecture; it's about the scale and the proportion.”

A portion of the new 12-story building sits recessed from the façades to create a preservation setback and maintain the scale of the street. Flats and duplexes in the tower receive light from exposures on the north and east, and a series of balconies provide outdoor spaces.

managing principal: Shalom Baranes, FAIA, Shalom Baranes Associates
design principal: Robert M. Sponseller, AIA, Shalom Baranes Associates
project manager / principal: Barry Habib, AIA, Shalom Baranes Associates
project architect: Claudia Russell, AIA, Shalom Baranes Associates
project team: Jose Bou, Nissane Farah, Jose Fioretto, Chris Hoyt, Bohd Ramdeo, and Samantha Shron, Shalom Baranes Associates
developer: Douglas Development Corp., Washington, D.C.
development manager: Faison Associates, Washington, D.C.
general contractor: James G. Davis Construction Corp., Rockville, Md.
project size: 760 square feet to 2,370 square feet per unit
site size: 0.31 acre
construction cost: $190 per square foot
sales price: $400,000 to $1.6 million per unit
units in project: 62
photography: Maxwell MacKenzie