University to demolish Nashman Center building, move offices to Hillel building

Updated: Feb. 18, 2021 at 1:43 p.m.

Officials plan to tear down the Nashman Center for Civic Engagement and Public Service building later this year and move its offices to the new GW Hillel building soon to open on H Street.

Amy Cohen, the executive director of the Nashman Center, announced the University’s plans last week to replace the area surrounding the Nashman Center with green space “to create an enlarged outdoor space for community use.” Cohen said officials with the Division of Safety and Facilities will “coordinate the details of the move” of the Nashman Center’s offices into the third and fourth floors of the Hillel building before the end of June.

“We are excited to move this bright and welcoming space,” Cohen said in an email to local residents. “The building will serve as a gateway to campus, improving the Center’s ability to fulfill our mission as a crossroads for community-university partnerships. In addition, Hillel’s strong commitment to service and racial equity dovetails with the work of the Nashman Center, and we look forward to expanding our work together on these issues.”

Cohen said officials previously approved development at the site of the Nashman Center as part of the 2007 Foggy Bottom Campus Plan. The District accepted the University’s application for a raze permit late last month, authorizing the building’s demolition.

Senior Yannik Omictin, a member of the Foggy Bottom and West End Advisory Neighborhood Commission, said the ANC could approve the Nashman Center raze within three months.

While he’s “saddened” by news of the building’s destruction, Omictin said the new green space would help clear the corridor and create more sidewalk space.

“That whole block now with Rome, Phillips is destined for redevelopment at some point,” he said. “The building is much older. It doesn’t fit the style of GW. There are several plans ongoing right now to envision what a different building could look like on that site.”

ANC commissioner Adam Friend said he and other commissioners hope to learn more about the project as it progresses toward completion.

“From my perspective, I am optimistic that the space at 837 22nd Street can become a vibrant part of the campus and the neighborhood with the proper plan,” he said. “We on the ANC look forward to working with the community and GWU on guiding its improvement.”

This post has been updated to correct the following:
A previous version of this post stated the District has approved the University’s raze permit. The permit has been accepted but is still in the approval process.

The Hatchet has disabled comments on our website. Learn more.