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1001 G Street Northwest 250W
Washington, DC, 20001
United States

(202) 333-4480

With a professional working relationship spanning three decades, Gary F Martinez FAIA and Thomas E Johnson FAIA founded Martinez+Johnson Architecture in 1994 to bring their design sensitivities to institutional and cultural projects in urban locations. The 25-architect firm has since established an expertise in three main architectural areas – the restoration and adaptive reuse of historic structures, institutional buildings in urban areas and community settings, and the design and planning of performing arts venues.

Known for a thoughtful design approach to public facilities, M+J develops an intimate understanding of the needs of users, patrons, and operators destined to inhabit the projects of the firm. M+J looks to the future in their design aesthetic even when the context may be firmly rooted in the past and executes creative solutions to facilities both new and historic, where flexibility, ease of operation, and high but versatile performance characteristics are requisite. Venues express aspirational values and goals of the communities within which they are located, and at the same time conform to issues of economic value at the highest levels of environmental sustainability.

Alban Towers


Alban Towers

Washington, dc

The Charles E Smith Residential Realty Companies commissioned Martinez+Johnson Architecture to design and execute the Historic Preservation Program for this project which included façade restoration, the restoration and adaptive reuse of interior public spaces, and the design of individual apartment units of which there are dozens of types due to the layout and structure of the existing building. Our scope of services grew to include the subsequent renovation and restoration efforts.



Located across Wisconsin Avenue from the National Cathedral, the c1929 building is a registered landmark, both for its exterior and interior architecture. As such, the project was a Historic Preservation Investment Tax Credit effort and a strong program and proven track record working with the Historic Preservation Office of the DC Office of Planning and the National Park Service was necessary for its success.

The Design Team sought to understand the building’s social and historical context in the design. Part of the challenge of the project was to modernize the building without affecting the original character. Examples of these situations are the architectural and fabrication of replacement suite entry doors that meet current accessibility standards. Other significant issues involve the restoration and consolidation of original materials such as limestone, brick, plaster, and tile and the sensitive replacement of historic doors and windows that were demolished prior to the current building ownership.



On the interior, M+J advised on over 200 units with several distinct layouts, inclusive of unit furnishings, finishes, and equipment. The main lobby and other historic public spaces were restored to their original condition, and building amenities were added for resident comfort. Such spaces include a fitness center with weight and cardio-machines, a lap pool, and locker rooms, a business center, and an underground parking garage. M+J’s scope of work on the exterior included window replacement of thousands of windows (which were reconstructed through photographic evidence and consultation with the Park Service), masonry opening repair, and the strategic introduction of flashing and waterproofing. An elaborate carved limestone porte cochere was carefully enlarged to accommodate contemporary automobiles.

Owner: charles e smith real estate c/o steve thompson

Completion: 2001

Size: 250,000SF

Cost: $22M

AWARDS: 2001 AIA  |  DC – Extraordinary Achievement in Historic Resources

2001 Associated Builders and Contractors – Excellence in Construction Historic Restoration

2001 Multi-Family Executive Award – Resort / Luxury Project of the Year

2003 Washington Business Journal, Real Estate Award – Historic Preservation


2005 NAHB Multifamily Pillars of the Industry Award – Best Rehabilitation of an Apartment Asset

2005 freddie mac – best multifamily community of the year