Raze Permit Applied for Horse’s Ass Award Nominee at 11th and K St, NW

Back in March we looked at this oft nominated horse’s ass award candidate at the corner of 11th and K St, NW. It has always seemed like there was tons of potential here. Thanks to the Location blog for sending an email saying that a raise permit has been applied for to demolish the building. Sad development.

37 Comment

  • Raze?! Ugh! I like those buildings.

  • o hell no!

  • longtime eyesore. raze ’em.

  • We need some NIMBYs to stand in front of the bulldozers. For once, I’ll be on their side.

  • I saw a raze permit on the door of CK Hotel by Quincy St and 14th Street.
    Does anybody know when that will happen.

  • If they tear this building down, what they’ll put up in its place is one of those aluminum/glass condo monstrosities that would cost more to build (plus the razing), than it would to rehab this beautiful, old piece of property.

    Of course, that takes vision, not just a taste for quick development cash.

  • I’ll be sitting at Brasserie Beck, sipping something expensive, listening with glee to the sounds of destruction nearby. Hail Progress!

    • Judging by what you envision as “progress” (thankfully, your opinion is not shared by most Washingtonians), you’d be positively orgasmic over what cities like Houston do with their historic buildings. The thing I don’t understand is why would you want to destroy the historic fabric that makes DC special and probably made you want to live here?

  • why do we have to keep every decrepit vacant building when it can potentially be torn down and something much better built in its place? restoration of existing structures in many instances costs more than just starting from scratch

    • The Howard Theater

    • I’m actually reading Jane Jacobs’ book The Life and Death of Great American Cities. One of her key recommendations for a vibrant and diverse neighborhood is to have a variety of buildings that were built in different periods. The argument behind that is too complex for me to explain here but the reason that building has been an eyesore for so long is because of the willful neglect of the developer to bought it. They also threw up a billboard around it and rolled out a barbed wire fence. Deny the raze permit. If the developer doesn’t want to fix it up then let them sell it to someone who will.

    • Maybe more expensive, but more sustainable since it requires less energy and fewer raw materials to restore rather than replace.

  • Do we know what will be built in its place?

  • But where will we look to for offensive billboard advertising of Apple and Verizon products?!?!??

  • Sad, could be an amazing property if fixed up. Oh well more looks like one more glass box built to last 40 years is on the way.

  • I know we can’t save every old building, and this one may have issues that make renovation prohibitively expensive, but what really gets me is that all the great architectural details will probably go to the dumpster. A lot of people would kill for those cornices and window decorations, and I’m sure there’s alot of stuff we can’t see that could be salvaged, and those kind of things can’t be reproduced nowadays for less than a small fortune.

  • Douglas strikes again…

  • This really sucks! The City needs to keep some of it’s historical fabric for future generations to know about the city’s history. I’m not saying we need to preserve every single old building, but these (although they are covered up) are truly amazing examples of what DC was like back in 1875.

    I hope our elected city leaders listen to the current residents and don’t just get blinded by Developer’s wallets!

  • Damn… I thought they were going to “raise” the building a few stories.

    If the HPB could raise such hell regarding the church demolition near the White House on 15th, surely they should be involved in the saving of this facade.

  • There is a good mix of old, brand-new, and recently built buildings in the neighborhood. Lets keep the mix and save this building that owners let deteriorate. Jack Evans – you listening?

    • I contacted Jack Evans’ office – they are working with the Office of Historic Preservation to stop this.
      I say call your council person and make sure this building isn’t destroyed.

  • “restoration of existing structures in many instances costs more than just starting from scratch”

    Yes. It’s called demolition by neglect. The owner has done little in the way of basic maintenance to protect this building in the 20 years I have lived here, e.g. covering the windows to keep the rain out. I encourage everyone that believes razing this building is progress to read a book called Capital Losses by James Goode. It depicts key pieces of architecture in DC that were razed in the name of progress like the apartment building at 18th and Q. A thing of bland 70s beauty that one is!

    I agree with dcnick 100% +1. Unfortunately, the owner of this building is merely waiting out the patience of the city and its residents until the majority say: OK…tear it down and “hail progress.”

  • If you really want to see cool photo’s of that neighborhood, and other lost treasures of architectural DC heritage go to


    you’ll be in tears to what happened to K. Street

    • UGH! The pictures of Thomas Circle on that site make me sick.

    • Yeah, the loss of the architecture on K Street is particularly sad, given how bland that area now looks.

      Problem is that K Street is such an integral part of the business core, it’s hard to imagine how the old residential structures could have been converted into enough office space to keep the city growing.

  • orderedchaos

    A raze permit is better than the rotting eyesores we’ve had there for so many years… I generally prefer preservation of old properties, but sometimes starting fresh is the best option. This news is good.

  • No! No! No!
    This is not 1962! Either save this, or move it like the ones in Mt. Vernon Sq. I don’t get it…this is such a unique building with so much potential!
    I’m going to contact the DC Preservation League.

  • Ah-Ha!
    I thought this didn’t sound right! You can’t just tear down a historic structure like this these days. It must go through a review board first.
    Here’s the latest….looks like it might be saved.

    • Luckily this building will get a review, but it’s only because a application to declare it an historic landmark has already been filed. For most other buildings – those that are just old, but not officially labeled historic in any way – there are few constraints on an owner who chooses demolition.

  • It will be “interesting” to see what he does do with this. That building next to it has windows facing the to be razed property which will factor into proximity and/or height – because I don’t think he can build something that covers them up.

  • It looks like the demolition of this building maybe isn’t a “done deal” after all:


    In 2008, Rebecca [Miller, executive director of the D.C. Preservation League (DCPL)] filed an application with the District to have the circa 1875 buildings made historic landmarks. [. . .] In April, owner Douglas Development filed a request to raze the buildings. That request prompts an automatic review, and now the DCPL’s 2008 application goes to the top of the pile. [. . .] The Historic Preservation Review Board will consider the application at its June 28 meeting.

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