HPA No. 1987-437 (In re. Wolde Residence)
- HPA Number: 1987-437
- Case Name: In re 3414 Prospect Street, N.W.
- Location of Property: 3414 Prospect Street, N.W., Square 1204, Lot 41
- Date of Decision: August 12, 1988
- Type of Case/Type of Permit Sought: Alteration & New Construction Permit (to erect a balcony)
- Disposition: Denied
- Date of Case Summary: 6/7/2007
Summary of Decision:
William Wolde (the “Applicant”) requested a permit to approve an already completed addition, a balcony on the second level of the rear of a dwelling located at 3414 Prospect Street, N.W. in the Old Georgetown Historic District. The Applicant claimed that the addition was consistent with the purposes of the Historic Preservation Act (the “Act”), because the balcony was similar to nearby balconies and compatible with adjacent houses. Applicant’s architect testified that “the only real difference in these balconies was color and size.” The Mayor’s Agent denied the permit, concluding that the constructed balcony was not consistent with the purposes of the Act, and accepting the finding of the Commission of Fine Arts (the “CFA”) that “the character of the infill addition is inappropriate to this residential area and unsympathetic to the existing house,” because the balcony was five feet wider than adjacent balconies and five feet wider than the balcony on the first floor of the property, and differed in color and appearance from nearby balconies.
Mayor’s Agent – Procedural:
The Mayor’s Agent gave “great weight” to the recommendations of the CFA and Advisory Neighborhood Commission 2E (both recommending against issuing the permit).
Consistent with the Purposes of the Act:
The Mayor’s Agent concluded that the addition was not consistent with the purposes of the Act because it differed in size and appearance from nearby balconies. She found that it was “inappropriate to this residential area and unsympathetic to the existing house.” Testimony was offered that the subject balcony was constructed of unstained pressure-treated wood, distinguished from neighboring balconies that are “softened, for example, by wrought iron supports, awnings, staining and brick.” The subject balcony was also found to be about five feet wider than neighboring balconies.
The Mayor’s Agent found that the balcony was not compatible with existing structures surrounding and adjacent to the property, because it differed in color and size.
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