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Individuals and Projects in Dupont, Adams Morgan, Shaw Honored for Preservation Work

Accompanying images can be viewed in the May 2013 issue PDF

By P.L. Wolff

Among the honorees recognized at this year’s 10th annual Awards for Excellence in Historic Preservation on May 6th at the National Academy of Sciences were well-known, activist Dupont Circle residents Bob and Susan Meehan.

Singled out, along with the Meridian International Center in the 1600 block of Crescent Place in Adams Morgan, for a “Stewardship” award, the citation commended the Meehans for having “returned a bright shine to a rundown corner in the Mount Vernon Square Historic District creating historic and vibrant living spaces for their tenants.”

Since 2003, this annual awards program has honored over 125 outstanding projects, programs and individuals for exemplary work and commitment to historic preservation in the District.

A special highlight of this year’s ceremony was the presentation of the Individual Lifetime Achievement Award by Mayor Gray to longtime Washington Heights Historic District resident and preservationist Ann Hughes Hargrove. Active in the establishment of two historic districts –- Washington Heights and Lanier Heights, this veteran community zoning advocate was also commended for her work as a driving force in efforts to curb billboards in the District’s commercial historic districts.

Other notable projects receiving awards included the efforts that led to the “resurrection” of the Howard Theatre at 620 T Street NW, “one of the crown jewels of Washington’s Black Broadway”; the restoration of the internal and external finishes of the Argentine Embassy New Hampshire Avenue and Q Streets that “makes this South American embassy shine”; and the teaming up of Carr Properties with the congregation of the Mt. Vernon Place United Methodist Church at Mt. Vernon Square “to renovate an historic church and construct an adjoining compatible commercial building.” (We reported on this project in both the August and November 2005 issues; see page 1 at http://tinyurl.com/3w85sqb  and also page 1, bottom, at http://tinyurl.com/cm727mn, respectively.)

As Mayor Gray said about the purpose of this awards initiative, what is being honored is “the return to glory of some of our most cherished neighborhood landmarks and institutions. Further, the Mayor noted, “Historic Preservation is a driving force in the development and growth of the District of Columbia as more and more people are drawn to the vibrant historic neighborhoods of our beautiful city.”