The building facade looks intact…


A nondescript commercial building….

Like many houses on this portion of Washington Boulevard, today’s property was repurposed for commercial use. However this building has been seriously transformed through a series of additions. On one hand, the additions are proportional, and brick cornices hint at the original intent. On the other hand, the conglomeration is too visually overpowering, because it is visible from over a block away, due in large part to the football field just south of the building providing no cover. The additions overwhelm the original house, plain and simple.  Another detail that is very distracting is the after-the-fact ramp tacked on the side; it could at least be painted like EVERYTHING ELSE HERE! (Implied reading: ramp users are not entitled to the same aesthetic standards as the stairs…)

We’re thankful that the original house survived, but can’t we do better? Hopefully, new owners will acquire the property (it’s currently for sale) and improve the situation. We’d recommend integrating non-stair access in a more congruent way with the building. As a cliché, landscape architects are often called upon to ‘hide’ ugly moments in buildings. In this case a large specimen tree could provide a frame for the most historic part of this building and delineate the subsequent additions. That could be done at a relatively cheap price, we might add!