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Update on Proposed Development at 11 Jane Street

Signs provided by GVSHP for attendees of recent LPC public meeting on 11 Jane

Following a public hearing in June, in late July the Landmarks Preservation Commission (LPC) reviewed and discussed the application for demolition of a 2-story garage and construction of a 95 foot tall apartment building at 11 Jane Street. The Commission did not vote to approve the application, and had several critiques of the proposed plan and design. The ball is now in the applicant’s court to come back with a revised proposal to try to address the Commission’s concerns and earn their approval. 

The Commission’s feedback was:

  • Allowance of demolition of existing building.  While two Commissioners disagreed, the majority of Commissioners indicated they would accept demolition of the existing building. Commissioners who accepted demolition pointed to the 1969 designation report which spoke of the building as non-contributing to the district, and felt that from a present-day perspective, the building was not of any particular significance in terms of its architecture, typology for the location, or history.
  • Height of the proposed building.  Most Commissioners who spoke indicated some concerns with the height of the building, but were not specific about what degree of reduction or changes in the height they would require of the applicant. One Commissioner suggested that lowering the height of the streetwall by one story would be helpful, while another pointed to the additional two feet of height of the ground floor as compared to the other floors as a way to address this issue. Other commissioners urged the applicant to reconfigure the mechanicals on top (which currently reach 95 feet in height) to reduce their height and visibility from the street.
  • Design of the façade and choice of materials.  There was considerable disagreement expressed by some commissioners with the choice of materials and the design of the façade. Several urged the use of brick rather than cast stone, and a punched window façade rather than the currently planned very smooth façade. All expressed comfort with a contemporary design, but most expressed a need for it to have more in common visually with the existing residential architecture of the street. There was some critique of the windows and the lack of depth and volume to the façade.

There is no time frame for the applicant to return with a revised design proposal, and none has yet been officially filed. When it is, the LPC will schedule a public meeting on this item; that meeting will not allow public testimony, though the public will be allowed to submit written testimony in advance and listen at the hearing, as well as hold up signs urging rejection of the proposal as we did at the recent meeting. Once revised plans have been filed, we will post them on-line and share with all who have signed up to receive notifications on this application.

GVSHP thanks the hundreds of people who sent letters to the LPC about this proposal, attended hearings, and testified. While the LPC’s feedback on the proposal was weaker and more vague than we would have liked, it was clear that the issues we raised had an impact. Click here for more information.


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