Last week, the Historic Preservation Review Board unanimously voted in approval for the Fannie Mae headquarters to be named Washington, D.C.’s newest historic landmark, and not everyone is pleased. When Curbed DC shared the news of the historic designation on Facebook, responses were mixed, varying from “exciting” to “ridiculous” to “Landmark, yes. Historic, no.”
The historic designation covers the original colonial revival buildings, located at 3900 Wisconsin Avenue NW, which were designed by architect Leon Chatelain Jr. The design of the structure was inspired by the Governor’s Palace in Williamsburg, Virginia.
Both the Historic Preservation Office and Advisory Neighborhood Commission 3C showed support to the landmark application, but not everyone has been in agreement. Washington City Paper argued that the building “possesses little architectural merit,” further describing the property as having “wrong” proportions and “bulky” projecting wings.
D.C. Preservation League Executive Director Rebecca Miller seems to disagree. In a letter sent to the Historic Preservation Review Board on October 30, 2017, Miller wrote, “It is significant ... for its association with the expansion of the insurance and mortgage industries after World War II, and ... for its embodiment of Georgian Revival Style during an era that idealized Colonial Revival aesthetics."
What are your thoughts? Let Curbed DC know by responding to the poll below.
Is Fannie Mae’s HQ historic designation exciting or ridiculous?
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I have no real feelings about the historic landmark status either way
I have so many feelings about this subject that I’ll leave a comment on this article with what I have to say
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