Arts Desk

Does Go-Go Hurt Property Values?

Earlier this week, WAMU's DCentric blog interviewed me about my story about punk and go-go shows. In that piece, I reported that it took Eckington residents a year to shut down a punk venue, and just a week to quash a go-go show, as WAMU's Anne Hoffman nicely summarizes it.  And that conversation got me thinking: Do musicians hurt or help property values?

Economist Richard Florida argues that a high concentration of musicians is not only good for individual neighborhoods, but boosts the economy of entire cities. I wonder if D.C. neighborhoods, by pushing go-go venues to the 'burbs, could actually be depressing, rather than protecting, their property values. After all, go-go is perhaps D.C.'s biggest export after bureaucracy. (On the other hand, a rowdy club down the street does have a way of repelling prospective home buyers.)

In any case, I'll be tuning into the Kojo Nnamdi Show today at 1 p.m., to hear their report on the history of go-go.

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