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Chelsea Cirruzzo
Aug 11, 2022 - News

Hains Point pool fight between D.C., architect

Hains Point pool.
Photo: Paige Hopkins/Axios

D.C. has been locked in a behind-the-scenes legal battle with an architect over the renovation of the pool at Hains Point — leaving it without any timeline for reopening. 

Why it matters: This makes six summers that the Olympic-sized pool — a popular destination for swim teams — has been shuttered.   

Catch up quick: The city had planned to replace the pool, pool deck, and bathhouse. 

  • But in 2020 the project was halted because the site kept filling up with groundwater as crews were working. 

What’s happening: The city proceeded to sue Hughes Group Architects for breach of contract and wants the company to pay more than $14 million to cover the project costs. 

Details: D.C.’s Department of General Services alleges that it received an “inaccurate” report from Hughes misstating the groundwater level, according to the lawsuit.

  • The groundwater depth was cited as 23 feet, the agency tells Axios — deep enough for the new pool. 
  • But once construction began, it turned out the level was “significantly more shallow,” the agency says, and the site “consistently filled with water.” 

The upshot: The renovation couldn’t go forward “without substantial additional investment,” per the agency. 

The other side: Hughes denies that it broke its obligation to the city and says that the city began construction without its own contractor flagging discrepancies, according to the company’s filings.

  • Additionally, when a potential solution for completing the project surfaced, "DGS failed to mitigate its damages by abandoning the project, and destroying some of the improvements made, instead of finishing it," per the filings.
  • A lawyer for Hughes declined to comment to Axios. 

What’s next: The city says that the Contract Appeals Board has a hearing scheduled for February 2023. In the meantime, staff is still working to stabilize the pool.

Meet the TikToker who's visiting every museum in D.C.

Noelle Harada at the Laurie Anderson exhibition at the Hirshhorn.
Harada at the Hirshhorn's Laurie Anderson exhibit. Photo: Noelle Harada

Washingtonians might leave museums to tourists, but D.C. resident Noelle Harada set out to visit every museum in town in just one year. So far, she's crossed 73 off her list and has about ten left to go.

What’s happening: Harada, who works in the Office of the Surgeon General, is documenting her journey on TikTok where she includes facts and tips about each museum and rates them.

"The Office Experience" is definitely worthwhile

Paige sits at the recreated set of the Office.
Paige answers the phone at Pam's desk. Photo: Axios

👋🏾 Paige, and HUGE fan of "The Office," here.

Scranton touched down in D.C. last week with the opening of The Office Experience, an interactive tour through a recreated show set. It’s chock full of real props and costumes used by the original cast, games, and tons of photo ops.

Editor's pick: My dog's favorite DMV walking trails

Kirby, a red merle Australian Shepherd, sits on a wooded forest trail.
Kirby the Australian Shepherd loves to spend time in nature. Where should we hike next? Photo: Kayla Sharpe/Axios

My Australian Shepherd Kirby recently got neutered, so after two weeks of bed rest (and the cone of shame), we're ready to make up for lost adventure time.

July 4 road closures in D.C.

The Washington monument is in the background with people sitting in front of it. Fireworks are going off behind the monument.
Photo: Craig Hudson/The Washington Post via Getty Images

Celebrating or not — be aware of big traffic and parking disruptions around town on Monday.

3 private pools to rent near D.C. starting at $70 an hour

Photo: courtesy of

Escape the summer heat with these swimming spots, all listed on pool-sharing company Swimply.

How it works: Pool owners can list their pools for chunks of time, just like homeowners list their properties on Airbnb.

Chelsea Cirruzzo
Jun 28, 2022 - News

Remembering D.C. art icon Sam Gilliam

Photo: Marvin Joseph/The Washington Post via Getty Images

Sam Gilliam, a prolific Washingtonian whose bold, colorful canvases and drapery pushed the boundaries of abstract art, has passed away at age 88.

Catch-up quick: Gilliam, who moved to D.C. in the early 1960s to teach art at McKinley Technical High School, first exhibited his work in 1969 at the then-Corcoran Gallery of Art, per the Washington Post.

Unwrap National Geographic's immersive "Beyond King Tut" exhibit

A screen displaying the exhibit name "Beyond King Tut"
Photo: Kayla Sharpe/Axios

👋🏿 Hi, D.C. editor Kayla here!

I'm guessing you probably don't have plans to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the discovery of Egyptian pharaoh Tutankhamun's tomb.

My suggestion: Walk like an Egyptian to the National Geographic museum's new immersive exhibit: Beyond King Tut.

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