There are 76 Charles Goodman homes in this quiet development with one entrance. The rolling landscape and native plants inform the architecture and siting of these midcentury modern houses.
Rock Creek Woods is nestled in a wooded valley between two creeks. It is located in Silver Spring, Maryland, roughly one mile north of Kensington, Maryland; 6 miles from the Washington, DC border at Chevy Chase Circle, via Connecticut Avenue; just over 4 miles to NIH, Walter Reed, Suburban Hospital and stops on both ends of the Metro Red Line — Wheaton and Grosvenor/Strathmore. Its three streets are Ingersol Drive, Rickover Road, and Spruell Drive.
Rock Creek Woods is desirable both for its homes and for its proximity to amenities such as the great music venue at Strathmore, the restaurants of Bethesda, and green spaces like Brookside Gardens.
National Historic Register of Places
Rock Creek Woods is listed on the National Historic Register of Places, which makes residents eligible for a 20% credit to Maryland income tax for approved projects that maintain the integrity of the home’s original Goodman design. For instance, a new roof can cost 20% less if it is in keeping with the original design. The National Historic Register of Places is not Historic Preservation. There are no restrictions on changes owners may want to make to their homes.
Rock Creek Woods Civic Association
There is a friendly little neighborhood association… with no fees, dues, or covenants.
Architecture and Landscape
Charles M. Goodman was the architect who designed the community. He was a leader in bringing contemporary design and creative site planning to the Washington, DC area. Goodman’s homes in Rock Creek Woods are full of innovative ideas, carefully thought out details, and sparse geometric design, based on panel blocks of vertical wood siding, glass, and brick and with gently sloping roofs and wide eaves. The houses take advantage of natural grades and slopes to provide siting that preserves privacy while giving light through the floor-to-ceiling window walls. The liberal use of glass gives the feel of an unbroken flow from inside to the natural world outside. A walk through Rock Creek Woods in spring offers a breathtaking view of the signature cherry trees. During the height of their blossoming, cherry tree petals blanket the yards and streets in pink.
Public schools in the area are highly regarded, including Rock View Elementary, Newport Mill Middle School and Albert Einstein High School. There is a Montessori nursery school just around the corner from the house. Several French-speaking children in the neighborhood attend Rochambeau, The French International School in Bethesda, Maryland. Einstein High School offers 4 academies: Academy of Finance, Business Management and Marketing, part of the National Academy Foundation; International Baccalaureate (IB) Program; Renaissance Academy; and the Academy of Visual and Performing Arts. The academies are committed to providing a meaningful, student-centered and challenging high school experience while preparing students for postsecondary education and a variety of career choices. Students have many opportunities to explore their interests while making real-world connections.
Bus – Walk two to three blocks to Connecticut Avenue and pick up a bus for a straight shot all the way into downtown Washington, DC.
Metro – Drive or take two buses to the Red Line Grosvenor/Strathmore subway stops. Or walk about 8 minutes to Veirs Mill Road and take a bus to the Red Line Wheaton subway stop (or drive). Parking is available at both stations, although may be filled during a busy morning commute.
Trains – Take the Red Line Metro to Union Station in DC, or drive the Beltway to the New Carrollton Amtrak Station, or pick up a MARC train at the Kensington train station.
Planes – There are three major airports serving the Washington, DC region. The closest and accessible by metro is Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport (airport code: DCA); and there is Washington Dulles International Airport (airport code: IAD) and Baltimore/Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport (airport code: BWI).
The Rock Creek Woods website — https://rockcreekwoods.org — provides information about the history of the neighborhood; community activities such as the book club, lunch club, movie night, and Labor Day picnic; recommendations by neighbors on caring for your home and car, professional services, restaurants and stores; and archived newsletters.
Library of Congress Goodman Archive
Back in 2016, Rock Creek Woods residents formed a committee to save the archive of Charles Goodman drawings at the Library of Congress (LOC). Residents contributed all of the funds necessary to inventory, photograph, and catalog the archive, and provide conservation treatment as necessary.
The Rock Creek Woods community can be very proud that all original drawings and selected blueprints in the Rock Creek Woods Collection in the Charles M. Goodman Archives at the Library of Congress have now been fully cataloged and digitized and are available for public access. And here they are!
Digitization of these fragile works on paper will help preserve Goodman’s legacy. Having this resource can help us protect the historic character of this community while at the same time supporting innovations.
Without this Rock Creek Woods project, the fragile Goodman drawings would have been tightly rolled up again and put back into deep storage off-site. Instead, anybody can now access these drawings online. Each drawing has a detailed bibliographic record and a high-resolution image is available to download for free.
4006 Ingersol Drive, Silver Spring, MD 20902 — SOLD October 2019!
Inspired by the organic architectural designs of Frank Lloyd Wright, this home by the acclaimed modernist architect Charles Goodman was renovated in 2015 under the direction of architect Amanpreet Birgisson, with a carefully considered approach to energy efficiency, connectivity, and to restoring many of the fine details of the original features, while adding new elements for today’s smart, social, design-led life.
Built in 1959, the 2600 square foot house with 4 bedrooms and 3 bathrooms, is located in Rock Creek Woods, known for its streetscape of cherry trees and 76 Goodman homes with brick chimneys, slightly pitched roofs, exposed wood-frame structure, open floor plans, and lots and lots of glass—the better to take in nature.
While the house looks quite modest from the road, the model known as The Starview employs a timeless architectural solution to the sloping plot and is nestled into the surrounding landscape.
Leading through planted beds, a flagstone walkway brings visitors to a fluted, frosted glass front door, Neutra house numbers, a modernist mailbox, and an illuminated, directly wired doorbell.
The entry-level floor has a sleek new kitchen with high end appliances, two of the four bedrooms and two of the three bathrooms, dining room with a sliding glass door to the front patio, large living room with wood burning fireplace and den (which could easily be converted back to a 5th bedroom), and tree-top views to the back deck and garden beyond. The house is built with a truss roof so none of the first floor walls are load bearing, meaning alternative layouts are easily accomplished. The corners at the rear of the house are glazed with floor-to-ceiling glass panels, so from the outside you see two vertical glass towers.
The beautiful new stairwell, with new treads and risers, cable rail and restored cypress paneling, leads to a lower level filled with natural light from its many windows and sliding glass door to an impressive sustainably sourced ipe deck. There is an L-shaped family room with new gas fireplace and great storage, two bedrooms – one with a walk-in closet, a third full bathroom, and a spectacular laundry room.
The exterior of the house is in excellent condition and the narrow frame to glass ratio of the original Hope steel windows was maintained when the fixed pane glass panels were replaced with double-pane windows.
Although the interiors have been modernized, they have been completed in a sensitive way so as not to mask the building’s important essence.
Inside: • restored oak floors, with non-ambering, matte finish • three renovated full bathrooms fitted with Panasonic automatic nightlight and humidistat fan, ADA-height toilets, commercial mirror installation, and new storage • sleek new kitchen; Samsung counter depth refrigerator, slide-in induction range with true convection oven (the owners prefer induction — a gas stove would be possible), over-the-range microwave, Bosch dishwasher, under-cabinet lighting and electrical outlets • laundry room with extensive storage • home office/bedroom with efficient and stylish built-ins • up-to-date closet systems • family room Heat & Glo gas fireplace with Italian porcelain tile surround in addition to the wood-burning fireplace in the living room • organic wool carpeting throughout the lower level • all solid wood doors with matte protective finish and lever handles • recessed lighting with paddle switches and stainless steel metal plates • extensive storage options, built in with leveled structural plinths • stairway with new treads and risers, restored cypress paneling, and cable rail • added insulation and improved ventilation • whole house dehumidifier • Google Nest products for energy efficiency and security • wired and wireless sound system and smart TV connections • new double-pane fixed glass panels and removable storm windows and screens for the operable windows, all with same narrow frame to glass ratio of the original Hope steel windows
Outside: • modernist hardscape that includes a hâ-hâ or saut de loup in the back garden, with flagstone steps down both sides, and landscape softened by turf and native plantings, totaling about 8770 square feet • private front patio with a horizontal wood screen on top of a low brick wall • sustainably sourced ipe steps leading to a grand deck totaling about 680 square feet, with cable rail • new gutters and motion-sensitive security lights that blend with the color scheme • utility deck for recycling bins.
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