Friday, January 27, 2012

Disposal of Surplus School Buildings



The District will conduct a public hearing to receive public comments on the proposed surplus of the following District properties. The date, time and location shall be as follows:

Properties: Parcel No: 01410047 at 1375 Mount Olivet Road, (“Webb School
Parcel No: 01600045 at 820 26th Street NE, (“Young School Building”)
Date: Monday, February 27, 2012
Time: 6:00 p.m.
Location: Trinidad Recreation Center
1310 Childress Street, NE
Washington, DC 20002
Contact: Althea O. Holford, Real Estate Specialist
Department of General Services
202.478.2428 or althea.holford[at]


Anonymous said...

What does this mean? They will raze the building? sell it? dispose of what's inside?

ro said...

It means the property will be redeveloped at some point into something other than a school, assuming they find a buyer. that could mean repurposing the existing structure, but the most likely scenario is that whoever buys it will tear it down and start from scratch.

Anonymous said...

That sight has a lot of potential. What are our dreams for it? We can shape the request for proposals if we are organized. - Amy

Anonymous said...

Many times, these schools are sold to charter schools. I think that they have first dibs. Not the best use for a neighborhood in my opinion.. Kids are brought in from outside your neighborhood and well... Charter schools are there to make money, not to look out for the surrounding community's interest. Then there's even more money to be made on "troubled" youth,and you get even more antisocial behavior.
If you are lucky, the school will become housing, but it isn't likely.

inked said...

I could be wrong on this, but I think charter schools already passed on these properties.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous 4:01, I hear your cynicism - the outcomes will certainly not reflect community vision if we do not organize to weigh in on the process. If we do organize and put forward a vision perhaps some of what we want will be included. It is a big parcel to just let go by without trying to shape it.

A few points:
1. It is true charter schools get right of first refusal. If no charter goes for it then it goes through a second process.

2. Not all charters are 'there for the money'. No matter what you think about the charter v public school debate there is no disputing that a great number of charter schools are about improving educational outcomes for kids.

3. Seems there are already many 'troubled youth' right here in our neighborhood. What if we put forward a vision of a Harlem Children's Zone with educational, service, job training opportunities for the kids and families right here in our neighborhood?

I am not talking the lax, low quality, corrupt services that we sometimes see, but real high quality programs. There are several high quality examples in the city.

I know it is a long shot but if we come together and go on the offense instead of just playing defense we might get something better for our community.


Go back to the kitchen said...

Let the free market decide how best to utilize these properties. The schools have already passed them by for a reason. It's not economically viable. I'm sure Amy has great intentions, but she's really barking at the moon. The chances of the properties becoming doggie parks are greater. Sad, but true.

inked said...

Um, did you really just tell Amy to "Go back to the kitchen"?

I don't even know amy said...

Whatever the phrase is.... Go back to the kitchen .... Or drawing board... Or whatever. Start anew. Is that better?

ro said...

The property was already offered to charter schools and there were no takers. The next step is for a potential sale to a private developer. This is an opportunity for the folks who live around there to give their input on what they want on that site. Take advantage of it

inked said...

I don't even know,
Yeah, that's a much better phrase for what I thought you probably meant.

Anonymous said...

It is my understanding that the property is owned by the Dept of the Interior and NOT DC. The terms of DC use state something about the property staying in DC hands only if used for recreation and/or education. This is the space available to support Trinidad's long promised swimming pool. How about a pool and library/community education center? Deadwood caught long and hard to get the beautiful pool/library combo they now enjoy.

Let's promote this idea for the benefit of all Trinidad/Ivy City residents and DC!

Anonymous said...

That's "Deanwood fought" not "Deadwood caught"! Urgh, autocorrect!

Robby said...

How about we stop this crazy talk. DCPS owns the buildings not DOI. Also while not end this cumbersome process, and let the fair market do it's thing.

For example Hine Jr. WTF, why didn't we sell this years ago, we are a city with massive financial issues. It is a huge parcel of land near a subway station. That's not the only such example.

Let's stop playing socialist, these not not community buildings. They are public buildings that need to be disposed of , and quickly.

ingsta said...

Excuse me robby, what is the distinction you are making between "community" and "public"? Certainly citizens are within their rights to petition their representatives to use PUBLIC property for PUBLIC uses instead of selling it to developers for a song?

Anonymous said...

I was talking about the land that the school is on being owned by DOi not the school buildings being owned by the DOI.

By the way, I would prefer a civil discussion.

Anonymous said...

The Department of Interior may own the land but it has been an easy transfer to DC in other wards. I don't think that DOI wants to maintain these small urban parcels. Congresswoman Norton really should have had these lands transferred long ago, or maybe she is saving them for the Occupy folks.
Anyway, hopefully it will go to market, and become something that generates and pays taxes, rather than such up more tax dollars.

wylie coyote said...


we're not a city with "major financial issues". in fact, local revenue (from citizen income, sales tax and property taxation, etc) has been on the upswing for some time with no signs of reversing soon.

Anonymous said...

Whole Foods!

Anonymous said...

Wylie Coyote- Do you seriously believe we're a city w/o major financial issues? The DC council is facing a $600,000,000 budget deficit this year. We've already filed for bankruptcy once since home-rule and Forbes lists us as one of the most broke cities in America. Furthermore, our dept payments equal 12% of our total budget --a percentage which puts our bond ratings at some of the lowest in the country.
Also, one Anonymous mentioned that Charter Schools are there to make money and not to improve the neighborhood. I would just like to point out that it's a false dichotomy to insinuate that an entity is only either motivated by profits or the public good. Take for example profit motivated companies like Apple and Facebook which provides goods and services that contribute to the public good. I’d argue that the creativity and innovation for-profit organizations bring to our communities and the public good exceed not-for-profit or government organizations. So, bring on some developers to risk their capital, transform something ugly into something beautiful, and breathe new life into these old buildings. Hopefully, they’ll make some money while they’re at it that they can re-invest in a new project.

Anonymous said...

The free market alone will get you only bars and condos, and that's not what people want -- that's why you need actual planning, not just profit motive.

Anonymous said...

Not all Charters exist as for profit enterprises. Many are non-profits. Two Rivers PCS at 4th and Florida is one such non-profit and educates a diverse population of students from preschool through 8th grade.

oboe said...

The DC council is facing a $600,000,000 budget deficit this year. We've already filed for bankruptcy once since home-rule and Forbes lists us as one of the most broke cities in America.

I call bullshit. Link to the Forbes article? I'm almost certain your $600M figure was reported in Jan of last year as a projection for 2012. A month (3/2011) later that figure was revised downward to $322M.

What makes your analysis even more ridiculous is the story that broke yesterday, where the DC government found out it actually had a $240M surplus.

As PP pointed out, DC's population is growing, and that population growth has been almost entirely among households making more than $100k per year.

So far from hemorrhaging money, DC is a model of fiscal rectitude that most states would do well to emulate.

Anonymous said...

Just don't mess with the field next to the Webb school. That's where I get my Rocky work out on before dawn.

le poo des poos said...

heheh... obooe said 'rectitude'! hehehe...

on h said...

Condos and bars are exactly what people want...they want them so badly they're willing to pay for them which makes those types of projects profitable. Condos and bars also contribute to the public good by increasing the tax base, putting a roof over peoples heads and drinks in their hands.

Anonymous said...

Oboe, funny, I had posted that and just read the story in the post about the surplus this morning. You're right that the deficit was a projection. I found it interesting that the surplus came as a big surprise to everyone. Especially given the personal finances of our council members it makes you wonder how on top of things they are. Our debt is a problem and our debt payment as a percentage of the budget does affect our bond rating. I find that the success of the DC economy and growth in the tax base happens despite the DC council and I’m happy that they want to cut programs/waste/fraud and abuse instead of raise taxes.

oboe said...

I'm not sure that waste, fraud, and abuse is all that large of a problem when compared to total revenues. If we continue to add middle- and upper middle-class residents at anything close to the rate we have over the last 2-3 years, our revenues are going to be increasingly on solid footing. I think a case could be made that with a higher number of middle-class residents, we should see less tolerance for dysfunctional politicians as well. It's a virtuous cycle.

From WCP's Loose Lips columnist Alan Suderman:

One set of numbers that caught LL's eye is the breakdown of income tax revenues that illustrates the District's explosion of rich people in the last nine years and the city government's growing dependence on their wealth.

Between 2002 and 2009, the number of tax filers in the District grew by nearly 40,000, with almost all of that growth occurring in higher income brackets. In 2002, there were 27,209 tax filers who made $100,001 or more. In 2009, that number had grown by a staggering 88 percent to 51,407. The high earners paid more than $912 million in income taxes last year, accounting for 71 percent of all of the District's income tax revenue. In 2002, six-figure-earners accounted for just 57 percent of income tax revenue.

The number of filers making between $75,001 and $100,000 grew by 63 percent, and the group making between $50,001 and $75,000 grew by 36 percent. But the number of filers making $50,000 or less actually shrunk by nearly 7,000, or 3 percent.

Nobody ought to be shocked by now to learn that the District is attracting and retaining large numbers of high income residents. But LL thought a nearly 90 percent increase in less than a decade of six-figure-earners deserved at least a low whistle.


What you're seeing is DC's historic tax-base slowly seeping back into town.

Anonymous said...

Any idea what is to become of the building next to Miner Elementary School at 15th and G NE? It's behind the same fence as the school which leads me to believe DCPS still owns it, but I live across the street and have never seen any activity over there.