Perkins Eastman DC Celebrates Grand Opening of Reservoir Park in Washington, DC

First phase of PEDC's master plan for 25-acre site, formerly the McMillan Sand Filtration site, includes a 6.2-acre park and a new community center and pool

Washington, DC — Perkins Eastman DC, along with D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser, residents, and community leaders, celebrated the opening of the new Community/Aquatic Center and Park at the McMillan Sand Filtration Site, now known as Reservoir Park. This marks the completion of the first phase in a 25-acre mixed-use redevelopment of the historic water treatment plant site, master planned by Perkins Eastman DC and Nelson Byrd Woltz Landscape Architects.

Perkins Eastman DC Celebrates Grand Opening of Reservoir Park in Washington, DC
“For the first time in decades, this site is not only back to productive use, but open to the public,” said Mayor Muriel Bowser in a press release. “Today, we are celebrating the transformation of underutilized land into a beautiful new recreation center and play space for the community.”

Perkins Eastman DC led the design and approval process beginning in 2010, an intense multiyear effort that was followed by approvals by the DC Zoning Commission, the Historic Preservation Review Board (HPRB) and the Mayor’s Agent for Historic Preservation. In addition, the firm is the design architect for the community center and aquatic facility with Quinn Evans serving as the architect of record in a design/build team with Gilbane Building Company. Rounding out the overall master planning team are Robert Silman Associates and Thornton Tomasetti as structural engineers, Bowman Consulting and Wiles Mensch in civil engineering, EHT Traceries for preservation, and Rhodeside Harwell in landscape architecture.

Matthew Bell, FAIA, FCNU, principal-in-charge of the project notes, “We are pleased to see our design for the new community center and park completed. These projects emphatically represent the master plan strategies of balancing open space, historic preservation, and new development. Reservoir Park now begins its new life as a neighborhood and city-wide resource, offering terrific places to live, recreate, and work.”

Christian Calleri, AIA, associate principal and senior designer for the project, adds, “The result is a fine example of the Historic Preservation Review Board (HPRB) dialogue in the city with each iteration evolving towards a better and more complete design vision. This project is truly a “game changer” for residents in the area and shows how historic resources can be seamlessly integrated with sustainable new development.”

Over the next decade, the remaining 17 acres of the masterplan will be built out, including medical office buildings, rowhouses, a grocery store, multifamily buildings, and a new senior living building, all accompanied by new streets and open spaces.

The McMillan Sand Filtration Site opened in the 1880s and was considered an innovative model for water filtration for its time, supplying clean drinking water throughout the District including the White House. A new treatment plant opened in the mid-1980s, precipitating the site’s closure. The D.C. government purchased the site in 1987 and it was named a historic landmark site in 1991.

To read more about the McMillan Master Plan, click here.