Meridian Manor

Meridian Manor exemplifies the speculative middle class apartment buildings that were constructed in Washington in the 1910s and 1920s near the 14th Street streetcar line.

Meridian Manor is a significant example of the speculative middle class apartment buildings which were constructed in the 1910s and 1920s adjacent to the 14 Street streetcar line in Washington, D.C. The design of Meridian Manor by noted architect George T. Santmyers, and the choice of architectural vocabulary characterizes the architecture and development in this area by developers who attempted to capitalize on the proximity to the streetcar line, and the demand for solid, modestly appointed middle class apartment buildings. Meridian Manor is an important example of George T. Santmyers' early Colonial Revival designs, prior to his emergence and predilection for art moderne and gothic moderne vocabularies. Santmyers' 1926-27 design for the building resulting in a flat, symmetric facade detailed with colonial swags, and an arcaded rusticated stone entry reflects his early design aesthetic prior to moving into his most celebrated apartments in the Art Deco, Art Moderne, and International styles. The prominent building firm Biron & Son were responsible fore the construction and development of Meridian Manor.

As an example of the conventional mid-rise apartment form, Meridian Manor is reflective of the acceptance of middle class apartment buildings in Washington during the 1910s and 1920s, and the success of a moderate apartment developed along the upper 14 Street corridor during this period. Apartment design and planning were undergoing important innovations in the late 1910s and early 1920s in response to the pressing need for housing due to the city's rapidly expanding population. Developers saw the need to offer modestly appointed apartments that appealed to Washington's expanding middle-class population. The upper 14 street corridor apartments developed and were promoted as solidly constructed apartments with the convenience of streetcar accessibility to downtown.

National Register listing March 29, 2001
DC designation September 26, 2001

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1424 Chapin Street, NW