16 Grant Circle – raze permit and 6 units coming? Some Suggesting becoming a ‘Historic District’ to Oppose it?


“Dear PoPville,

Do you have any information on this property that the developers are trying to tear down and build into 6 units on Grant Circle? I hear there is some neighborhood group starting to form a historic district in Petworth as a way to oppose it? Also wondering if you might want to highlight the predatory nature of this large sign saying “we buy houses for cash”.



108 Comment

  • What a nice house. Shame if it gets redeveloped. I’m not predicting anything classy.

    • Agree about the unlikely chance it will be something nice, but I am strongly in support of landowners right to develop as they wish – within the allowed zoning rules.

    • Other than Logan, it’s probably the only residential circle. And that would be a basis of the land value for others (and for an owner of this property with a long-term horizon).

  • Hardly predatory, IMHO.

    • So, I’ll admit, I’m thinking about buying in 456 Randolph. I don’t love the pop-up, but I love the space. Is this a horrible idea? Will I be the pariah of the neighborhood?

      • By no means does it look traditional, but I think it’s a pretty cool mix of contemporary and classic. The inside is beautiful. So is the back yard space! Good luck! Buy the home that YOU love and that is right for YOU, and try not to worry too much about what others think! Hopefully your neighbors will be welcoming to you because of the person that you are, and not unwelcoming because of their opinions of your home!

      • Why do you think it would be a bad idea? I biked by that site everyday when it was under construction and it looked like the crew was doing a quality job. Unlike most other sites, these guys were in hard hats, there was clearly a foreman on the job — looked very professionals. I think they did a great job overall — if you like it, that’s all that matters anyway.

      • Do you guys all realize that the 456 Randolf is a $775K 2-level CONDO, taking up half of the popped rowhouse?

      • Only if you pay half the list price. Those prices are insane. You could get a full rowhouse for that much.

  • As long as the design isn’t horrible, I don’t really see the issue. The city needs more housing. This is fairly unremarkable house in a close in, walkable, transit rich neighborhood. This is the natural of cities; smaller houses with big lots are replaced with denser uses. If we stop building and demand keeps growing, we all know the results: a housing shortage and even higher prices. Sure one individual development won’t make a difference, but the aggregate impact of lots of small developments matters at the city level.

  • The same developer developed this condo building in Petworth as well –not pretty (actually i think it looks bad) https://www.redfin.com/DC/Washington/456-Randolph-St-NW-20011/unit-2/home/62367835

    Grant circle is a historic place with beautiful homes, would be a shame if this developer is issued the permit to raze the house.

  • I think this might be my first time getting a good look at the front of this house — it’s so hidden by trees that it’s hard to see when you’re driving around the circle.
    I don’t think the house looks all that special as-is, but it’s a rarity in this area to have a fully detached house, and I bet a good renovation could make it look as nice as similar freestanding houses in 16th Street Heights or 14th Street Heights.
    The quality (or lack thereof) of the construction company’s signage made me think that they were going to add an ugly pop-up. I’m not sure if this is worse or better.
    It’s a pity that this house didn’t get bought by WSD, who did a really nice non-pop-up renovation right around the corner (on New Hampshire Avenue, just north of Grant Circle).

    • There are actually a few blocks with detached homes nearby – 4th, Illinois, 7th, 8th, and Webster all have stretches of deatched houses.

      • Oops — I don’t know the geography here as well as you do. 🙂
        I guess I was thinking more of the rowhouses on Grant Circle itself, and the rowhouses you can see on the other streets as you drive around the circle.

        • Ha, no problem – I run around the area a lot and try to hit every block. It’s interesting to see what’s left over from before the area was developed as rowhouses.

          • The area was never redeveloped for row-houses. South Petworth’s street grid (including Grant Circle) were laid out about 1905 and row houses (at least on the southern side of the circle) went in around 1910. North of the circle got developed a little later, but not much. There are only a few houses that actually predate the grid, but this doesn’t look like any of those.

            What’s special about this house is that it’s the only detached house on the circle aside from the church’s rectory. As a corner unit on a circle, it also has a relatively large lot size (maybe not actually owned, but usable), so it’s got so much potential. It’ll be a shame to see it go.

  • I’d be interested to know if the Commission on Fine Arts will have to weigh in on the design. They were involved in 1444 Taylor due to the fact that property abutted NPS land; if I’m not mistaken, Grant Circle is under NPS jurisdiction as well. That might be one avenue to ensure that quality design & materials are used in the development.

    • Ahh, good point.

    • CFA doesn’t have jurisdiction over NPS land, they have jurisdiction over federal land like RCP, the Mall and some other areas stipulated in the 1930s federal legislation. CFA does not have jurisdiction over circles or the hundreds of triangular parks throughout the city. Use propertyquest.dc.gov to check jurisdiction for any address in the city.

  • That’s a shame. I hope it doesn’t happen.

  • Folks,

    We are strongly in favor in doing something nice and respectful to Grant Circle.

    Although our group did build the 456 Randolph project, we did not own that property or have control over the design.

    Our group owns 16 Grant Circle, thus will have control of the design.

    Although I believe that every citizen has a right to voice their opinions concerning development in the neighborhood, I also think that responsible development is inevitable.

    Folks also don’t understand that the building is in horrible shape, and most of the lower story framing is basically gone due to extensive water and termite damage as well as foundation problems.

    To try and have this building classified as some sort of historic structure will not save the building, it will only condemn the property to fall down and/or be torn down due to structural difficulties. Since the building is balloon framed and stucco, the only way to correct the problems is to take the entire house down, making preservation impossible.

    Further, to respond to the predatory buyer comment, we are far from that. We pay more than what the property is worth, since it has development potential. Our group paid just under a million dollars for this property, double what it is worth as a single family home in this condition (actually it’s not worth anything as a single family home right now since its not even habitable). Further, Ms Edwards (the former owner) had neglected the house for years, which contributed to the damage of the structure. Ms Edwards was subsequently able to pay all her debts off and buy a newer house, that wasn’t falling down.

    We welcome comments on the project, but also would like to point out that we are only fulfilling the demand for housing and trying to do it in a reasonable and respectful manner.

    • Perfect response, and thanks for setting the doubters straight. Fully support your project!

    • pworthy

      Appreciate the response and background on the condition, but is it necessary to give us personal and financial information about the past owner, including her name?

      • It’s publicly available information – you can look up the owner of a District property going back to at least 1949 using the DC Library’s website.

        • You can also look up information on any mortgages on their house on the dc public records website.

        • pworthy

          Yes, I know that. I find it unprofessional (and tactless) to announce by name that she’d neglected the house and was in debt.

          • +1. I think they were trying to say “Our buying this house wasn’t just good for us, it was good for the seller, too!”… but it was unprofessional for them to release that kind of nonpublic information.

        • Blithe

          ‘While the previous owner of the property and the price paid for the property may, indeed, be public information, Landmark’s — sorry, while the poster identified the previous owner by name, s/he failed to do that for him/herself — response included possible debatable statements about the owner’s supposed “neglect” of the house; a statement about the owner’s “debts” — which may or may not be true, and which are unlikely to be public knowledge; and possibly debatable statements about the condition of the house and it”s value as a single family home. These statements may be true, they may be self-serviing, or both. But I agree with pworthy — providing personal information about the previous owner of the house is not necessary. It’s also not nice, it’s self-serving, and it’s a violation of privacy, that may be compounded if the previous owner, unlike the savvy people at Landmark, is not likely to check out a blog to see if her business has been put out in the street by the company that bought her home. But I’m glad that the goal is to develop a “respectful” design.

    • Ignore the haters. This house isn’t anything special — as long as you build something that isn’t hideous you’ve got my support.

    • Thanks for taking the time to reply, and for the background on the condition of the house. Can you share with us a rendering (when it’s ready) of the design for the new building?

      • We’d be happy, when we have one, to share information and/or renderings with folks that are directly impacted by the project. Broad strokes; it will be a classically based design (not modern), that will blend in well.

        • Fair enough, but be aware that if you share your rendering only with immediate neighbors, many others will (rightly) be concerned that the reason it’s being kept under wraps is to forestall any objections to the design.

        • Minor pet peeve of mine that we and/or neighborhood residents have been addressed as ‘folks’ at least three times in this thread. Perhaps find an alternate synonym if you’re looking to build community.

          • Any suggestions? And what’s wrong with “folks?”

          • Really, why? “Folks” seems completely reasonable to me. You can’t please everyone.

          • Fair enough, and it’s probably just a personal preference. But you’ve made me think seriously about why it bothers me! To me, it often comes off as condescending and seems to impose intimacy and/or solidarity at a level that I might not share. Especially when it’s used three times, it seems a little forced, and (dare I raise the word?) inauthentic. A pretense of relatability and friendship to serve one’s own purposes. It drives me crazy when Obama uses it, too.

            As far as alternatives, I don’t know. ‘Neighbors’? A simple ‘Hello everyone’ or ‘PoPville’ or ‘we’d be happy to share with anyone impacted’… etc. Why do we have to be ‘folks’?

            Kudos for forcing me to try to articulate myself, though.

    • Thanks for chiming in. I live nearby and fully support this project. It will be nice to see a long neglected property developer I matter what. I’m particularly pleased you have considered the aesthetic concerns of neighbors.

    • Let’s be honest. You didn’t pay more than what this property was “worth.” You paid what it was “worth” to you. You wouldn’t be in business if you went around overpaying for properties just to “do right” by homeowners. And there is absolutely nothing wrong with that. The homeowner took what it was “worth” for her to sell.

      • This. Let’s not kid ourselves, Landmark is doing this for profit. You’re obviously allowed to do this – no need to pretend you’re doing this out of good will.

    • Greetings from Florida:
      Sorry to hear about your snow issues. I’m enjoying the sun here.
      I neglected the house because I’m old- surprise. The house is old- surprise. I had debt- another surprise (by the way it was not excessive debt, just my mortgage and car note)
      There- enjoy the snow

      • PoPville – since you can see the IP address, can you confirm this came from Florida? Otherwise, this impersonation is rather tasteless.

    • Landmark,

      Since you own or are involved with other buildings in Petworth, at least one other on Randolph, do you plan on building more multi-unit buildings in the same style as 456? Will you share plans and/or take neighborhood feedback? In a sense, can developers and concerned citizens work together towards a common goal, such that unsightly and incongruous buildings like 456 are not built? If you do not own the building, do you think those that do would be willing to engage in the same conversation?

    • Ugh. Pop, would you consider editing the name of the previous owner out of the developers’ comment?

    • In my experience, when a developer says that restoration is impossible, what they really mean is they don’t know how to restore it, or they don’t want to spend the money restoring it. And I’m not saying this house deserves to be preserved, but let’s be honest.

  • jim_ed

    A historic designation for Petworth is a TERRIBLE idea, and as a Petworth home owner, I would strongly rally against it. You really want to make people jump through historical review hoops to remove the green astroturf that tons of houses in Petworth still have on their front walks? Or what about removing metal sunshades? Or how about the numerous cheaply walled-in porches that have aged terribly? No thanks.

    • I believe all of the existing crap (Astroturf porches, metal awnings, vinyl windows) gets grandfathered in when a place is made a historic district — the deal is just that you can’t make _future_ changes without HPRB approval.

      • That’s the problem jim_ed has identified. Why should anyone need to go to the HPRB to take the hideous astroturf of their porch. The answer is they shouldn’t.

        This makes sense in a high income neighborhood interested in preserving some features, but it imposes a lot of costs. Low income neighbors, I’m guessing, would object to having to buy wooden windows with individual panes if they ever want to replace their windows. And I wouldn’t want to force this on them.

        I think in 20 years this might make sense for Petworth.

        • As with other neighborhoods before it, this neighborhood is changing from a lower-income neighborhood into a higher-income one.
          What D.C. really needs to do is to have a “conservation district” — something that would help preserve historic architecture by requiring approval only for major changes, leaving owners free to do what they want regarding windows, etc.

          • I agree. I think that’s why some people were pushing to reduce the high of houses from 40 to 35 feet. It’s a way to limit pop-ups without going historic for everything. I’m concerned about how big this condo is going to be in order to have room for 6 units. I hope Landmark keeps it low.

    • That’s not how historic designation works.

  • This deal highlights one of the dangers of downzoning. With the current designation there’s a pretty big incentive to redevelop neglected properties. Without the opportunity to redevelop many more might go unsold.

    We’re on 8th St. and a useful comparison might be the place at 8th and Crittenden. It’s been on the market several times for just under 600. It’s a huge property which could easily be divided into 3 units without adding much structure or looking incongruent. It’s just a really large house and large lot. The problem is that we’re zoned 5-D so there is no by right conversion, which I’m guessing is the primary reason it has not sold. Furthermore the current owner rents it out as a rooming house (per DCRA website) – although the three units are numbered and look separate. I’m guessing the price is high because the income stream from three units is high. Until a developer is able to subdivide this house will likely go unsold.

    And that’s a glimpse into the future of downzoning. Unfortunately it doesn’t always make sense to preserve SFHs. The current use of the structure shows the intense demand for housing. Rather than downzone all 4-D areas, I would strongly support rezoning most of North Petworth as 4-D.

    • Also I should note I am definitely not saying the current tenants are poor neighbors. Just that it would be nice to see a pretty dilapidate property turned in to something else.

    • “Without the opportunity to redevelop many more might go unsold.” WSD developed a large SFH rowhouse just around the corner, at 4325 New Hampshire Avenue NW… and kept it as a SFH. It sold for $810K last summer.
      Not every developer is seeking to subdivide into the maximum number of units and squeeze every possible ounce of profit out of a project.

      • Yes, but WSD bought that house for 399. The 8th and Crit house would probably not sell for over 800 as a SFH, so there’s really no way to make money if you buy it at 595. Even if you could sell for 850 that’s a pretty tight margin. The problem is that given the income stream from it’s current use as a boarding house, that’s a completely reasonable price. The current situation just creates an incentive to rent dilapidated houses as multiple units rather than refurbish them.

        • $595K for a dilapidated boarding house sounds pretty optimistic on the seller’s part — it doesn’t sound like it reflects the property’s condition.

      • Actually, I think you are wrong. Given the margins for renovations, I will wager that the vast majority of developers are trying to squeeze every possible ounce of profit out of a project. I know of several SFH flips where the property remained an SFH not because of the developer’s altruism, but because the plan to turn the property into a multi-unit building got derailed by money, permits, complications, etc.
        Also, how many people are looking for mansions in a neighborhood like Petworth? It’s still the case that many if not most DCers head for the ‘burbs once their kids hit school age. So it’s not like there are many couples looking for 4 or 5 bedroom houses.

        • There are LOTS of people in the market for a 4/3.5, as you can see by the recent sales in the area for those type of SFH’s in the $700-850 range.

      • There must have been a business reason for their choice whether it was cash flow, project timeline or ANC favor in the future, I can’t imagine any business forgoing profits for no reason.

        Corporations aren’t people because they have no souls, just bottom lines.

        • I suspect the “business reason” was wanting to be known for attractive renovations, which could pay off by their getting more interest from potential buyers.

        • Subdividing is a complex task both in terms of the construction and administrative work required. There is more risk involved. In the case of the NH house the developer had the option to keep the structure as a SFH and resell for twice what they paid, so why not do that?

          In the case of many big houses that are rented as rooming houses, owners will not sell for that low. As Mintwood observes, there’s just not a ton of demand for huge houses in Petworth. In cases like 16 Grant circle subdivinding makes way more sense. Downzoning (or current zoning in North Petworth) will contribute to blight for the largest properties in the neighborhood.

    • Actually, I think the downzoning will increase affordability. Want to know why? It would push the capital of professional investors and developers into real multi-family dwellings. They would need to focus their efforts on buying older buildings and vacant lots in commercial strips that will allow them to build larger, denser buildings. They would need to develop real apartment buildings and townhouses that would vary in size from 5 units all the way up to the large buildings going up by the 930 Club. Investors are investing that cash, they won’t sit on it. They’re chasing return.
      They would also no longer compete with families trying to buy SFHs. This would decrease the insanity you currently see in the SFH market, where developers swoop in with (borrowed) all-cash deals, do renovations on the cheap and then suck the equity out of the neighborhood. The issue with professional investors going after the SFHs is that it’s low hanging fruit. They are quicker projects that return a higher amount of profit per square foot in a very short amount of time. In other words, they don’t need to jump through the hoops of developing a real apartment building.
      All the people who decry the development restrictions and say “but you’ll restrict supply and raise prices!” neglect to mention that those investment dollars will just go chase other projects. Like 5+ unit residential development, which is what we need to be pursuing in a dense urban environment.

      • Hmm, I hadn’t thought of it from that angle, but that makes sense. It would be fantastic for areas like Park View and Pleasant Plains if developers could focus on the vacant lots on Georgia Avenue and build new apartment buildings like the Gibson, the Avenue, etc.
        THAT could make a real difference in terms of both housing availability and affordability, whereas adding pop-ups to SFHs and dividing them into as many condos as possible both ruins the historic architecture AND makes housing LESS affordable, because all these luxury condos drive up prices per square foot not only for comparably renovated properties, but also for non-luxury ones.

        • Yes, that is exactly my thinking as well. Subdividing houses into new luxury condos does nothing for affordability. All it does is decrease the housing stock available for families who want to have kids while setting new price records for a neighborhood. We need investor dollars focused on building new apartment buildings (or rehabbing and converting older commercial buildings) with a large number of units. Keep the investor dollars focused on the main thoroughfares (e.g., Georgia Avenue) and keep them out of the R-4 areas.

        • All things being equal, new construction, absent gov’t housing subsidies, is ALWAYS going to rent for more $ per sq. foot than rehabbed old buildings. So yes, encourage new construction on N/S thoroughfares, but know that will also drive increasing $/sq. foot valuations.

      • I don’t think this is right at all. Developers aren’t going to stop flipping SFHs once two unit conversions are off the table. You’ll just see 450/500K shells turned into 850K plus singe unit rowhomes. That’s what is happening around where I live.

        • Yes, that will still happen but that’s not where the profit is located. Developers are making waaaaaaaaaaay more $/square foot by buying a shell and turning it into 3 units. Dollars per square foot on a full house are MUCH lower, even for a flipped place. Such a change in policy would drive out many professionals as it’s not worth their time.
          What generates more profit on a per square foot basis: three 1000 square foot apartments or a single 3000 sq foot house?

          • I wouldn’t call many/most flippers “professionals”. Many are simply looking for a sure-fire investment opportunity to hedge their 401Ks; so many hack-jobs all over the place.

          • How many 3000 square foot houses exist in Petworth? To answer your per/sq profit question, I’ll use some examples from my neck of the woods. New build condos sold at 501 and 545/sq foot (penthouse), 527, 484, and 395 (garden level). SFH flips: 792, 494, 572, and 549 (these examples are all from the last 12 months). The pricing in my neighborhood doesn’t seem to support your claim that you get way more $ per sq. foot on a condo flip than on a SFH reno.

      • Its interesting to see that most folks here are concerned about the preservation of individual rights vs the preservation of a community. What one does to the exterior of the house affects the nature of public space, the character of the neighborhood vs what you do inside your house, is ofcourse your business. There have been atrocious renovations in Petworth and decent ones. The “mansard that ate the house” project on N hampshire and the glass box addition on New Hampshire are some of the atrocious, the 2 on the east side of N hamsphire just north of the metro with the simple extended mansards are more fitting. I am in full agreement that the way to go here is conservation neighborhoods, but all we have now is historic districts, and that is the only defense against profit driven ignorant designs. The other driver would be a public educated about what is good design and given the unfortunate positive opinions of the randolph st project, its clear that historic review is even more needed. Remember what Winston Churchill said “”We shape our buildings, and afterwards our buildings shape us.”

  • Dear Landmark Construction – Can you put up a nicer looking sign that reflects the quality of work you will be doing on this site? The cash for houses sign is also really tacky, btw.

    • +1. Cheap and tacky signs do not inspire confidence; they make people think that the project itself is going to be cheap and tacky too.

    • Am I the only person who actually appreciates the “Cash for Houses” sign? I own a 3 BR Petworth row house with a 2006 kitchen, only one bathroom and no A/C. My family & I find it very comfortable, but I’ve paid enough attention to the real estate market to know that when it’s time to sell, I’ll be talking to several cash-for-houses folks as well as real estate agents–the gap between what I’d get on the market for an “un-updated house” and what I’d get from a developer just about equals the real estate agent commissions.

      Landmark, you’re one of the companies I’ll call when the time comes.

  • It is unfortunate that there is a raze permit for this house. Despite the fact that this house needs a lot of work (structurally or otherwise)- every building on Grant Circle is the original historic building- so it is a big loss to have this single family house torn down and a larger condo building built. I hope the neighbors fight it and/or the developer actually tries to be responsible and respectful of the history of the Circle.

    Re: Commission of Fine Arts – this property is not in the CFA jurisdiction so unfortunately they will not have any oversight of the design.

    Re: Historic Districts — If a neighborhood decides to become a historic district, this does not mean that you have to toss everything out (astroturf, rear additions, odd windows, etc) that already exist. It is simply a way to protect the beautiful architecture and character of all of our great DC neighborhoods moving forward. Take a look at Bloomingdale these days – not protected – where developers are chopping off the turrets of these incredible architecturally rich row houses and building ridiculous flat front 3 and 4 story additions straight up that are completely incompatible in scale, style, and form.
    I would argue that many love living in DC because of the architectural character of these neighborhoods, and they are worth protecting.

    • What is historic about this building?

      • What makes it historic is the date it was built, the development of Petworth at the time these houses were built; etc. I have not read the history of the building, but it could also be a significant architect or style representative of the time period.

        • So you don’t know if it’s actually historic, you just know that it’s old, and that alone makes it worth saving?

          • when you say historic, are you asking if it is a landmarked building? It is not a landmarked building. The context, scale, architecture, and history are important and I would argue make it worth saving.
            The developer wants to make as much $ as possible so will tear it down and start new and max out the number of units he can for the lot size.

          • You previously said, “but it could also be a significant architect or style representative of the time period.” That indicates that you don’t know . . . and I’m not sure how you get from there to, “The context, scale, architecture, and history are important and I would argue make it worth saving.” What is the context? What is the architecture? What is the building’s history?
            I agree with carlos – it seems like you think the structure should remain as is (despite the issues the developer has laid out) simply because it’s old. I don’t think that’s a good enough reason, and there’s nothing in the zoning code that supports your position.

          • you can read about the history of Grant Circle and this particular house here:

            pretty cool stuff.

    • +1 for helvetica. Need to regulate these developers before they destroy the beauty of the city.

    • What I loved about living in Capitol Hill was that all the houses were varied in their design. You have row houses and apartment buildings/condos. What I don’t love about living in Petworth is that it was built as tract housing.
      It’s like someone saying, 80 years from now, that we should preserve a sub division in the suburbs that was cheaply built, simply because it’s of the era. No thanks, tear those McMansions down.
      We can’t–and shouldn’t–preserve every building just because it’s old. Houses in Georgetown, Capitol Hill, and even Shaw were built in different architectural styles, at different periods, using different techniques and materials. That is not the case in Petworth, which was mainly developed between 1910 and 1920. The builder of my house built literally thousands of houses in DC during that time (including some houses on Grant Circle), all over the city. It isn’t unique or something that’s in danger of being quoted out from the city, and it shouldn’t be protected just because it’s old.

  • Well that didn’t take long.
    from an e-mail:
    The DC Historic Preservation Office recently received and filed for hearing one historic landmark nomination.
    It is:
    16 Grant Circle NW
    Case 15-04 – ANC 4C
    -nominated by Off Boundary Preservation Brigade
    This nomination is currently posted on the HPO website at: http://planning.dc.gov/node/991302
    A public hearing for this nomination is tentatively scheduled by the Historic Preservation Review Board for March 26, 2015 under the authority of the Historic Landmark and Historic District Protection Act of 1978.

    • The address on the HPB form is in Columbia Heights. So now someone from outside the neighborhood is trying to prevent a blighted mess from being redeveloped into nice new condos? Nobody who actually lives in the vicinity wants that.

      • The applicant actually does reside in the neighborhood…on the circle too. I’m guessing that the applicant’s non-profit has a different address?

    • What is the goal of this landmark designation? To keep the house exactly as-is? To have a HABS-type survey of the house? To get more Affordable Dwelling Units included in the project?

  • Its interesting to see that most folks here are concerned about the preservation of individual rights vs the preservation of a community. What one does to the exterior of the house affects the nature of public space, the character of the neighborhood vs what you do inside your house, is ofcourse your business. There have been atrocious renovations in Petworth and decent ones. The “mansard that ate the house” project on N hampshire and the glass box addition on New Hampshire are some of the atrocious, the 2 on the east side of N hamsphire just north of the metro with the simple extended mansards are more fitting. I am in full agreement that the way to go here is conservation neighborhoods, but all we have now is historic districts, and that is the only defense against profit driven ignorant designs. The other driver would be a public educated about what is good design and given the unfortunate positive opinions of the randolph st project, its clear that historic review is even more needed. Remember what Winston Churchill said “”We shape our buildings, and afterwards our buildings shape us.”

    • Generally agreed.

    • I like the glass

    • Who gets to dictate the neighbor aesthetics? Who gets to create the definition of neighborhood character? A committee? Was there ever any great art or design created by committee? Prefer to take my chances and suffer some architecture I might not like since the alternative is such a potential nightmare, not just in one or two lots but city wide. And these particular “individual rights” you dismiss so easily are a cornerstone of the American Dream: home ownership, which is often the biggest lifetime investment a working person ever makes. You want to screw someone around on their property rights to satisfy “preservation of a community?”

  • According to their website this is what they plan to build : http://www.landmarkcd.org/the-flats—grant-circle.html

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