East Shaw just published a good article on proposed school redevelopment in our area. In it they suggest redeveloping the Shaw Middle school between 9th & 11th north of Rhode Island Avenue. DC Public Schools has also proposed closed Garrison Elementary and Garnet Patterson. While I understand the need of DC public schools to consolidate, these are prime pieces of property. Development of these areas could add dramatically to the neighborhood – both positively ad negatively.
In many ways, parcels such as these need to be held in trust. While creating a new apartment block or supermarket center would benefit us, what needs will the community face down the road? As much as I hate to see buildings abandoned which I have spoken of many times before I think government buildings in a high density are needs to be reserved for necessary use. We are already having large buildings go up on 14th and around U Street. Until we understand the extent to which these large new units of housing will effect us (especially PARKING!!) we should hold off before selling our inheritance. The grass lawns at Shaw Junior and Garrison alone are an invaluable resource for us to play, walk, run and breath fresh air. If we let them fill up with large apartment blocks, we will change the feel of the hood.