I’ve long loved the abandoned building at New Hampshire and S, it’s very beautiful old building, and was majestically deteriorating. Most recently, it used to be the Embassy of the Republic of Zaire. From what I understand, the staff for the embassy for the Democratic Republic of Congo (former Republic of Zaire) were forced to vacate the building because it was in such poor condition.
The building was also on DC Preservation’s list of the most endangered buildings in 2008, and they give a lot more history into the building (PDF). It was the mansion of Joseph Taylor Arms, a banking and financial figure in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. The architectural firm of Hornblower & Marshall designed the building. They also designed, among other buildings, the Phillips mansion where the Phillips Collection now lives and the Smithsonian Museum of Natural History.
Walking by the other day, I saw that it is being renovated, with construction crews doing work. It’s unclear if the Democratic Republic of the Congo, the last known owner of the building, is doing the construction. A sign informed me that the Levine Group was responsible for the work. Their website reveals that the work they do seems to be all residential, making me feel like they will be renovating the building into either condos or apartments. I don’t have confirmation on that, though. I’m glad to see something done with the building so that it’s no longer in neglect. I just hope they preserve the facade of the building as it is so beautiful. It would also be a pretty cool building to live in.