“How Do You Fix a Hated Pop-Up? With an Eye-Catching Mural!”

Rendering via PETA

From an email:

“A five-story pop-up house on V Street is so hated by its neighbors that it’s commonly called “the middle finger” and has even been tagged as “the monstrosity” on Google Maps—but PETA believes it can vastly improve the building’s image. In a letter sent this morning, PETA offers to wrap the side of the building with a colorful mural that encourages, “Peas on Earth.”

“PETA’s mural would make ‘The Monstrosity’ an eyesore no more while encouraging the world to make healthy, humane, environmentally sound choices,” says PETA President Ingrid E. Newkirk. “A colorful mural about green eating would make the V Street pop-up eye-catching in a positive way.”

37 Comment

  • It hadn’t occurred to me until this very moment that that building could actually be made even worse. I guess, however, that with creativity anything can in fact get worse than it already is!

    • That sign completely violates the building code. But so does the front projection on the front of the building, but DCRA approved it anyway. So we’ll see. The building code heavily restricts billboards to a list of billboards erected by 1930, after that billboards were made illegal and only those that existed were grandfathered. The loophole is that billboards are defined as boards, but today big signs are vinyl banners. Still, you can’t have signs on side walls, regardless of materials (DCMR 12A, Section N101.7.7).

  • Is it legal to place a mural or advertisement – presumably for a fee – on a residential-zoned block? Most murals I’ve seen are on residential buildings on mixed-use blocks.

    • Will this false data never die? This is a COMMERCIALLY ZONED block which is the ONLY reason they could build 65 feet high as a matter-of-right. So-called “monstrosities” like this can’t be built in residential zones without special permits that would need neighborhood support.

      • west_egg

        I know, right? I’m getting fed up with people on internet comment boards making the completely reasonable assumption that a block full of residences is zoned residential.

        • Why is that a reasonable assumption? It’s only reasonable if you don’t understand how zoning works, which should be a strong hint that you shouldn’t be offering your opinion on zoning issues.

          Most modern zoning (anything based on the Euclidean II concept) is designed as a hierarchy, with single-family residential zones at the top, followed by multi-family residential, commercial, and industrial zones (with sub-categories within these broader ones). Things that qualify for higher tiers can be built in lower tiers, but not vice-versa. This means that if someone wants to build an apartment building in a former commercial space, they can, and nothing has to be rezoned. Similarly, factories (zoned as industrial spaces) can be turned into commercial or residential lofts. This happens all the time in DC, which anyone paying attention should have noticed. The only thing you can’t do is build something in a more-restrictive zone, like building a multi-family or commercial building in a single-family area.

          • west_egg

            You’re right. Only a know-nothing would jump to the wild conclusion that a *residential* area might be zoned as *residential*. (See what I did there?)
            You & Ron could’ve used this opportunity to teach PoPville readers a thing or two (“Actually, it might surprise you to learn that just because a particular block consists of houses built >100 years ago, that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s zoned that way…”). Instead you proclaim that everyone else should be up-to-date on block-by-block zoning throughout the metropolitan area or STFU.

          • +1 to west_egg.

          • Wow, west_egg, you’re really doubling down on your defense of ignorance. You’re welcome to make whatever assumptions you want, but don’t be shocked when people correct you or suggest that being informed is a prerequisite to healthy debate.

      • Sorry Ron, but you still did not answer my question. Are there controls related to advertising on residential buildings that are not located on busy commercial corridors? This surely is not the same zoning as U Street.

  • This makes me wish that building was just a little bit taller….so I could see it while eating my pulled pork swachos at American Ice

  • Shaw I am with you. I really didn’t think it could get worse but sadly did. I wonder who is responsible for doing this. I don’t know the status of ownership – last I knew one unit was sold and one was under contract – though I heard it may have fallen though. Obviously all of the owners unit or developer would have to OK this, but if the developer owns one or two of the units, are they looking to recoup some of the money from that bad investment?

  • I am pretty sure that the mural would make selling the remaining units more difficult, not less.

  • It’s wild that anyone would suggest turning an ugly building into a billboard is somehow an improvement.

  • “A colorful mural about green eating” = BILLBOARD

    Honestly the popup isn’t that bad, from the perspective of a neighbor whose view isn’t impacted. All the photos online crop out the condos 3 doors down that are just as tall, if more proportionate in width. And a billboard won’t make those affected neighbors any happier. I hope PETA is just trolling.

  • You can’t make this kind of thing up!

  • Must resist commenting… Must resist commenting… #dontfeedthetrolls

  • Brilliant! Then nobody will buy those units and we can tear down that monstrosity.

  • did this building just jump the shark?

  • I was raised eating all sorts of meat — ham, bacon, sausage, pork, ribs, beef, buffalo, lamb, chicken, turkey, duck, quail, rabbit, fish, crabs, lobsters, oysters, scallops, clams, mussels, sea cucumber, etc. I also love preparing these dishes with eggs, caviar, cheese, milk, honey, yogurt, jell-o, butter, marshmallows, and lard while wearing silk boxers, leather pants, fur coats and of course my glasses which are made of Javan Rhino horn. However, this clever bit of viral marketing that photoshops this popup has made me reconsider my animal-eating ways. Henceforth I will be vegan.

  • It’s cute. I like the animal faces and like they said it’s something positive. Two thumbs up from me and I have to drive past this every day!

  • anonymouse_dianne

    Ingrid Newkirk, aka the Butcher of Norfolk, is a self-described “media whore”

  • kind of interesting angle of this photo — one you rarely see with this V Street pop up — is that you get to see The Beauregard condo building across the street, and lets you see that 1013 V Street is a little more in scale with the surrounding buildings than you would think. These 6 two story row houses are the last two story structures on this side of V – everything else is (or will go) multi-story.

    • There’s another 5 or 6 two-story buildings on V Street on the other side of the Beauregard .

  • Looks like a 2nd unit sold, and went to settlement last week. Sold for 750K with a 15K seller subsidy.

  • I think this would be a great addition to the neighborhood. It would be nice to see some sort of positive message while walking, biking, driving, running or whatever! I know many will make their meat jokes but I think PETA has a good idea and instead of complaining about this building people should start coming up with some creative ideas (like PETA has) if they hate this building so much cause the building isn’t going anywhere anytime soon. So start thinking and good job PETA!!!!

  • This won’t be much of a problem when all the row houses next to it go as tall as the pop up.

  • Who would pay 750K to live in that mess? Seriously, it doesn’t look like it could withstand the winter.

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