21 Comment

  • Oh the sturdy construction of particle board. Built to last

    • Probably picked it up at Ikea. They are putting together Bjorn-Sven Pop-Up with those hexagonal wrenches. I heard they drove the boxes back to Kenyon Street via ZipCar.

      • You can buy an Ikea house (designed by a firm in Portland in collaboration with Ikea) for $86,000.

        • brookland_rez

          Sears used to sell houses too, that’s where the whole Craftsman style comes from. Many of them are still standing in places like Brookland.

    • That’s not particle board, it’s OSB (oriented strandboard), which is widely recognized by wood scientists and building engineers to have the same structural integrity as plywood, provided it’s properly installed and not exposed to water over time (i.e., no leaks in roof flashing, etc.). OSB is also considered superior to plywood from an ecological/sustainability perspective because the manufacture of plywood requires older, larger trees. Actual particle board (e.g., MDF), by contrast, is much weaker than both OSB and plywood and has poorer fastener retention. Building codes don’t allow use of particle board as wall sheathing.

      • Fine, it’s still OSB or as you put it similiar to plywood. Where is the Big Bad Wolf when you need him

        • There’s been very, very little solid brick construction over the past 30 years or so. The new construction you see around DC appearing to be brick is typically brick veneer–meaning a single-brick-width wall adjacent to the main building structure made of 2x4s and OSB or plywood. The brick layer serves mainly aesthetic purposes (though the bricks are typically perforated these days and the air spaces offer some insulation). By contrast, traditional solid brick construction (like the row house I live in built in 1907) is made of brick walls that are 2 bricks thick. Such solid brick construction hasn’t been the norm for decades, so it seems odd to judge this house on the fact that it’s not solid brick construction.

      • brookland_rez


        OSB is actually pretty good stuff as far as wood construction goes. I guess some people would rather see a pop-up made of masonry, which would be better.

        I will hold judgement on this house until I see how they finish it out. If it ends up with ugly vinyl siding, then that would be bad.

    • So while it isn’t brick construction, OSB (not partical board) isn’t exactly an unusual building material. While I’m withholding judgement on the finished project and haven’t seen anything on the interior, I don’t have any issues yet. The building style seems reasonable and the geometry of the pop-up is consistent with the style of the house.

  • Anything is better than the monstrosity on V Street NW. Not too bad.

  • Wait, this is in Mt. P right? How did they ever get approval over there. Mt P NIMBYs are infamous.

    • As the post says, it’s on Kenyon between 11th and 13th St, NW. There’s no way this would ever get historic preservation approval in MtP, thank goodness.

    • No – Kenyon between 11th and 13th is Columbia Heights.

  • Sweet split-system AC unit on the neighbor! Gotta love the tasteful placement!

  • I used to rent a room in the house next door with the janky AC unit setup on the front. Construction on the pop up house was slightly nightmarish to live with. Ownership has changed hands multiple times over the course of the project and essentially none of the work has been permitted. At one point, they removed a stop work order sticker on the front of the house by breaking the window pane it was placed on.

    They’re also popping out an addition into the alley out back, and in the process of demoing they tore down an adjoining exterior wall without notice or permission and sledgehammered a hole through my bedroom wall. The rear addition, three floors with a deck on each level, also didn’t have a foundation poured for it … which seems, um, dangerous.

  • The city REALLY needs to stop approving these. Seriously.

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