Location | About Brookland | History of 400 Evarts | Before and After Photos
The Ilora is conveniently located just a few blocks from
the Rhode Island Avenue Metro Station, a brand-new shopping
center featuring a Giant grocery store and Home Depot
and just steps from Trinity College and Catholic University.
Also very close to shops and restaurants of Brookland's
Historic Main Street district. With many projects in
the pipeline, this convenient and charming neighborhood
is a perfect place to invest!
The area gets its name from the Colonel Jehiel Brooks,
who settled on a 150-acre farm in the early 19th century,
and who's elegant Greek Revival mansion from 1840 still
stands at 901 Newton Street, N.E . In 1887 Catholic University
was established near the Brooks Mansion and soon developers
subdivided the old farm and built what was then considered
a suburb. The original houses were built in a variety
of architectural styles, including Victorian, Colonial
Revival and Craftsman.
soon became home to the largest cluster of Catholic institutions
to be found outside of Rome itself. In addition the Catholic
University, the only university in the United States under
the direct patronage of the Pope, institutions include
the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate
Conception, the largest Catholic church in the United
States, Franciscan Monastery with its Byzantine- style
Memorial Church of the Holy Land, and at least 60 Catholic
colleges, schools, houses of study, convents, and seminaries.
of Brookland's distinguished residents included Marjorie
Kinnan Rawlings, author of The Yearling; diplomat and
Nobel Prize winner Ralph Bunch; Robert Weaver, the first
black cabinet member (head of the Department of Housing
and Urban Development under President Kennedy); poet and
educator Sterling Brown; and singer Pearl Bailey.
the community is often referred to as "a small town in
town" and is graced with a small but thriving business
community centered around its Main Street on 12th Street.
Neighborhood restaurants include Col. Brooks Tavern, Island
Jim's, and Kelly's Ellis Island as well as a number of
Chinese, Jamaican, and Italian/Pizza carry out places.
Cafe Sureia is the popular neighborhood coffee shop on
12th St. Grocery stores include the Giant, Safeway and
a brand new Yes Organic market. Brookland retail includes
art galleries, home furnishings, hardware and other services.
of 400 Evarts:
of thirteen Washington projects designed by architect
Sam Novak, the Ilora Apartment Building at 400 Evarts
Street, NE was constructed by K.O.L. Construction Corporation
in 1940. Positioned at the corner of 4th and Evarts Streets,
close to Trinity University and the Catholic University
of America, the Ilora is part of the Edgewood neighborhood,
which borders the Brookland area of Northeast DC. Edgewood
takes its name from the 50-acre estate overlooking Glenwood
Cemetery that Salmon P. Chase, Governor and U.S. Senator
from Ohio, Secretary of the Treasury under Abraham Lincoln,
and Chief Justice of the U. S. Supreme Court between 1864
and 1873, and his daughter Kate Chase Sprague, who managed
her father's political campaigns, established during the
second half of the 19th century. The Chases built their
mansion just one block north of where the Ilora stands.
first building to be constructed on the site was likely
a frame structure that was built circa 1922 and demolished
by 1940 to make way for the 21-unit Ilora. Built of concrete
block with a brick veneer for an estimated $60,000, the
Ilora is a traditional apartment building that is enlivened
by Art Deco accents. It stands three stories tall with
an English basement and features paired, six-over-six,
wood sash windows. Geometric motifs that are characteristic
of the Art Deco style appear in the diamond-shaped and
sunburst panels on the street-side elevations and in the
doorways, which are framed by progressively-recessed concrete
columns of angled brick that adorn the edges of the building
and the two projecting towers on the Evarts Street side
reflect the Art Deco style's emphasis on verticality and
abstract geometric patterns. The triangular pediments
at the roofline also serve to highlight the vertical lines
of the building. The street-side elevations display good
examples of decorative brickwork, including the use of
colored, textured bricks and rows of patterned brick.
In 2007, the Menkiti Group developed the Ilora to create
21 condominium apartments for those who serve the DC community.