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Transit Architecture (DC Metro Canopy Program)

Richard Chenoweth is a nationally recognized architect specializing in transit architecture, residential architecture, and historical resources.

Richard is the Principal Designer of the Washington Metro Area Transit Authority's (WMATA) Metro Canopy Program. Richard and his partner Jon Lourie, under the auspices of Lourie & Chenoweth LLC, won the 2001 national design competition for the prototypical canopy design, which has been replicated across the city. Click on the image below of Brookland-Catholic University Station to see the slideshow.

One of Richard's goals for the design was to create an iconic transit structure for Washington DC in the spirit of Guimard's Paris Metro canopies and Saarinen's Dulles Airport terminal. That goal has been achieved it seems - the Metro canopies are now memorable and navigable landmarks around town, are often photographed, and even appear in television episodes and backgrounds for news shots.

Lourie & Chenoweth LLC went on to contract with WMATA as Architect of Record, and designed and built 30 canopies between 2002-2007. Arup (Boston) was the Engineer of Record, and Grunley Walsh was the builder. Between 2013-2015, Richard and Jon designed a dome-like canopy for Dupont Circle North Station (a unique structure), and designed six alternate structures for special sites owned by the National Park Service.

Here's my Virtual Reality of the Dupont North Station - the crown jewel of the DC Metro Canopy Program.

Residential Architecture

Richard also specializes in residential architecture and particularly is adept at using formal languages that are both historical and modern.

You can read more here. The key is to assess your situation and your needs, and to plan a design or renovation at any scale - from a new house or addition down to custom millwork.

Essentially - architecture needs to fulfill people's lifestyles, adhere to the realities of structure and economy, and create meaningful and beautiful spaces for people to live and work in. This primarily is a typological approach to architecture - not a stylistic one.

That said, Richard is very knowledgeable of historical architecture and will work very closely with clients to achieve what they imagine, whether that's an adaptive re-purposing of an older structure, the preservation of an older house, or something entirely new.

Richard enjoys design-build and welcomes any and all inquiries about potential projects specializing in custom carpentry and cabinetry, stone, concrete, tiling, copper roofing, and tree houses.

Research Architecture
An architectural historian, Richard undertakes architecture and art projects based in digital forensics, that is, the scientific (architectural) analysis of physical evidence. Many great works of architecture that have been lost over the centuries (or perhaps never built) still have the power to capture peoples' imaginations or help weave together important narratives of human history.

Understanding that it's important to tell these stories descriptively and accurately, Richard developed methods of assembling information and piecing elements together as the original builders would have done. Luckily, software for creating descriptive geometry, texture-mapping, and image-based lighting quickly has become very robust, and Richard began to explore lost worlds of architecture and to create new ways of understanding architectural history - such as Virtual Reality.

News and Notes



Richard is proud to be a Visiting Assistant Professor at Mississippi State through 2020
Invited speaker at the AIA Alabama Conference in Gulf Shores AL
Metro canopy updates: Dupont North is being fabricated and National Park Service canopies are scheduled for review.
Richard has been awarded a research grant to study Latrobe's Egyptian Revival Library of Congress
Richard's submission for the American Military Hero Dog Memorial
All content on this site © 2019 Richard Chenoweth unless otherwise noted web design by pdartz