Proposal for “Housing on the Avenue,” by Hugh Newell Jacobsen, 1974
Jacobsen’s conceit looked like a typical office building from the street level. But in its core, the building was an amphitheater of more than 1,500 townhouses. The tiered setting, reminiscent of an Italian hill town, had underground parking, shops and restaurants on the ground floor, offices above and then the apartments.
While other building proposals bundled into the 1974 plan for Pennsylvania Avenue were implemented, Jacobsen’s housing complex was not. “Things changed as attitudes changed,” says Moeller. Today, Market Square—two, curved, neoclassical residential buildings on the avenue—instead form a great arch around the Navy Memorial.