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A Winery For Dupont Underground?

  • Feb 22nd 2013

by Shilpi Paul

A Winery For Dupont Underground?: Figure 1
The Dupont Underground

Three urban wineries are in talks with the team behind the Dupont Underground about the possibility of opening up in the space, architect Julian Hunt said at a talk at the District Architecture Center on Thursday evening.

Hunt, the founder and chairman of the Arts Coalition for the Dupont Underground (ACDU), said that the group is eager to engage the 75,000-square foot subterranean space with art galleries and other creative projects, but understands that a winery may fulfill the need for an economically viable use and also “fit our program.”

However, no specific timeline was given for a project that has intrigued DC residents for years, and any potential commercial uses are still in the earliest phases of brainstorming. ACDU, said Hunt, is moving forward more slowly and deliberately than the organizers of the previous attempt to revitalize the former streetcar station; the retail concept Dupont Down Under launched in 1995 and famously failed a year later.

A Winery For Dupont Underground?: Figure 2
A rendering of a potential park over Connecticut Avenue.

Other interesting ideas that have been considered for the space and the area around it include drilling through the medians surrounding Dupont Circle to create skylights and to bring natural light to the cave-like space, creating appealing, green entries at P Street NW and across from the Metro stop on Q Street NW, and decking over Connecticut Avenue between Dupont Circle and Q Street NW to creatable a walkable park area.

Currently, ACDU is in talks with the city to open up the eastern side of Dupont Underground to host temporary events, like visual art installations, musical events or pop-up retail.

At the talk, entitled Metamorphosis: Infrastructure to Civic Spaces, Hunt was joined by Scott Kratz, the man behind the 11th Street Bridge Park project, and Paul VanMeter of VIADUCTgreene, a Philadelphia project that is attempting to turn a former elevated rail line into green space.

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This article originally published at https://dc.urbanturf.com/articles/blog/three_wineries_in_dupont_underground/6693.

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