Housing Complex

Tenleytown Library Project Rally Tomorrow!

I can't keep up with—nor do I want to keep up with—all the twists and turns in the Tenleytown Library saga. By this point, there have been so many acts in this drama, it's damn near impossible to recall them all.

But if you're new to this epic, allow me to offer a pithy summary: The Tenleytown library closed ages ago. The city wanted to construct a big, mixed-use development project (plus a library) at the building site, but residents disapproved. So now they want to move forward and simply get a new library. But the city officials are still hooked on the old concept.

(If you want more details, check out these recent updates: Tenleytown Library Project Moving Forward Despite Fenty Expectations 11/21/2008 and Albert Stands Ground On Tenleytown Library Project 1/22/2009.)

Anyway, now "the children" are involved! According to a press release I received from the Library Renaissance Project, parents will be rallying at 7:45 a.m. in the morning outside the old library site:

Parents in Tenley to Hold “Library Now” Rally

Washington, DC – February 24, 2009 – Parents of students at Tenley neighborhood schools, including the historic Janney School and St. Ann’s Academy, and their neighbors, will rally on Wednesday morning to demand the City proceed with DC Public Library (DCPL) plans for a new Tenley library

What:         Library Now Rally
When:         7:45 am, Wednesday February 25, 2009
Where:       Site of demolished Tenley Library, Wisconsin Ave & Albemarle St, NW

The Tenley-Friendship communities have been without a full-service library for over four years, since their branch was closed in December 2004.

Recently, the Janney School Improvement Team (SIT) rejected the City’s plans with developer LCOR for a Public-Private Partnership (PPP) that would delay a new library until 2013.  The PPP would also include construction of a 150 unit apartment building above a new library, but would not provide funds for, or speed up improvements to Janney — the principal reason long given by officials for supporting the PPP and justifying delay to the long awaited library.

Meanwhile, DCPL’s new plans for a stand-alone library are fully funded, and have been developed with — and embraced by — the local community. In November, after months of work with LCOR failed to yield adequate or timely results, Library Trustees voted to move ahead independently.  A construction contract for DCPL’s new Tenley Library is expected to come before the DC Council next month.

Image by Dawn Endico, Flickr Creative Commons

  • Cassandra

    If you're going to do a pithy summary, at least get the facts right.

    DCPL spent a year working with the community to design a branch library that is fully-funded and approved. When DCPL was ready to build, Fenty called the project off so he could negotiate with a developer to build apartments over the library and on part of the (adjacent) school soccer field. After 8 months of exclusive negotiations between DC and LCOR (the private developer), still no deal. And now our branch library is 8 months behind schedule because of these negotiations. We're fed up, especially as we see the three other libraries that were closed at the same time breaking ground and moving forward.

    The community wants its library back and its school intact and modernized as quickly as possible. Always has. DCPL agrees with us. Always has.