Maintaining historical architecture while maintaining growing populations of homebuyers can cause priorities to shift and pop-ups to go way too far. While we can admit that pop-ups have the potential to be tasteful (maybe ... sometimes ...), we also can't help but show off examples of ones that don't contribute to neighborhoods the way they should at all.
In a recent PoPville article, one Bloomingdale pop-up got the limelight for going a little overboard on just how much it's popped up. One resident went so far as to write, "Fuck U & Your Pop Up [sic]" on a sign in front of the building. Commenters on the PoPville article took to debate with their thoughts on the Bloomingdale pop-up as well as pop-ups in general.
Why on earth couldn't they match the window sizes of the original structure? Why. Why. Why..
On the one hand I like how they extend the bay window to the new addition but on the other wonder about the top floor and why they didn't do it for the very top. But I am going to wait and see. There are older/original versions of something similar and they look ok. It all depends on the execution so I will reserve judgement.
Looks a lot like the bigger 5-story row houses up in Boston. Seems like a good model for how to preserve the low-rise row house feel of the city, but still allow growth and density in established areas.
Of course it is too soon to judge how this will turn out. They could really cheap out on the exterior and just make it look like crap.
makes me sick to see this….this particular row is a row that visually defines the Bloomingdale neighborhood as it is the entrance from 1st and Seaton to the hood. The cupolas are iconic visually to denoting this hood …you even see them on the opening to House of Cards…. To see developers just rip them off and replace them with vulgar pop ups….just makes me think that there is some major shortsightedness in the preservation of the city's architectural heritage. I dont have any problem with greater density….build as many highrise condos as you want, but don't destroy the historic architecture and the character of the different neighborhoods.
Assuming they match the brickwork and architecture, I don't have a problem with this.
The pop up hatred kills me. The only people who care are the current homeowners who benefit from reduced supply and high demand in this city.
The alternative is developers come in, buy houses and tear them down and put up ugly square apartment buildings to meet the demand. That or the city just becomes like San Francisco…completely unaffordable for anyone outside of the top 10% income bracket.
(in response to Duponter's above comment)
Duponter, I disagree. I'm a home owner, I hate most pop-ups and I could care less about the value of my house. For most homeowners is not about reducing supply to increase the value of their properties, it's about the aesthetics of the neighborhood. Most of these pop-ups are done by developers who buy properties cheap and turn them into luxury condoms where each unit is more expensive than what they paid for the house. So they are not making things more affordable, they are pissing of the neighbors to make a bigger profit. Growing up in a city with skyscrapers I really appreciate that I can see the sky in DC.
(in response to fpopups' above comment)
Nobody likes an expensive condom!
(in response to Duponter's above comment)
Not quite true. I don't have an opinion about this particular pop-up. I do, however, have quite strong opinions about the way that the character of the city is changing — since I happen to like the row house neighborhoods that I grew up with — coupled with high rises ( a relative term, I know ) on the avenues and larger mixed use streets. Yes, I realize that cities change, and not always in ways that I personally would like. That's life when market values and economic values rule. What really troubles me though, is that the architecture of the city that I grew up in is being irreparably changed to meet the needs of the folks that have moved in during the past decade or so. If/when these folks move on, the city will be left with a legacy of crumbling boxes — with no way to ever recover the characteristic charm that distinguished DC from other cities that got crushed when the boxes were built.
My long-winded point is that there are values other than economic ones that actually do matter — at least to some of us.
(in response to Blithe's above comment)
This is the same old argument that has been made against aesthetic innovation since the dawn of time. If we stopped renovating and trying new things with our buildings, we would never have structures like the Eiffel Tower, which many Parisians despised when it was first built (and continue to despise – although others in the world love it!). Let's recognize that this pop up may not be a majestic work of architecture, but it is something that will bring another taxpaying, home-owning set of residents into the District and into this community – which I support. These pop-ups and condos often go to first time home buyers -many of whom are doing wonderful things in their communities across the city. Ultimately, the unit may become rental housing – an increase in supply that helps (in its own small way) to keep the costs of renting here down. Folks, be reasonable – someone adding a third floor on their home is not going to block your view of the sky. Writing a nasty note on someone's sign is anti-community, short-sighted, and counterproductive.
I think they should have said "f— you and the pop-up you rode in on." A real missed opportunity.
People need to get a life. It's just a house. Some people in DC have way too much personal identity wrapped up in DC row homes. As if their character is defined by residing in a historic row home. There's a lot more to one's life, if worth living.
· Strong Opinions about that Bloomingdale Pop Up [PoPville]
· Popping up in Bloomingdale [PoPville]
· Pop Goes the Rowhouse: A Photo Tour of 16 Bonkers Pop-Ups [Curbed DC]
· Two Eckington Examples Of Pop-Ups Gone Horribly Wrong [Curbed DC]