Award of Merit
Owner: Golden Rule Plaza Inc. Properties; Mission First Housing Group; Henson Development Co.
Lead Design Firm: Hickok Cole
General Contractor: DAVIS Construction
Civil Engineer: VIKA
Structural Engineer: SK&A
Subcontractors: Goldin & Stafford (Excavation); Manganaro (Masonry), Mars Construction (Drywall), CB Flooring (Ceramic Tile); Integrated Contracting Group (HVAC and Plumbing)
Washington, D.C.’s first affordable housing residency for low-income grandparents raising children without a parent present was conceived by the founder of Bible Way Church. The project repurposed a strip of land near Interstate 395, but because developers couldn’t secure contiguous lots for the project site, designers were left with seven oddly shaped lots of land. The team overcame the challenge by making use of every inch of secured property. It even managed to wedge an outdoor recreation area and community vegetable garden into otherwise unusable land.
Rather than incorporate washers and dryers into the 223 individual units, central laundry areas on each floor create a gathering place for residents.
The 48-month project, whose cost was not disclosed, was delivered on time and on budget, the team says. This was achieved despite challenges in early construction, when the neighboring building didn’t give permission for the owner to use conventional underpinning methods to support it. After quickly reassessing the situation, the team says it used a “tangent pile earth-support system (excavation support alongside the neighboring foundation), which ultimately provided the strong foundation necessary for construction. After final review of the overall impact and negotiations with the owner, we collectively came to an agreement to extend the schedule by 37 days and added cost as change orders to the contract with the owner.”