Major Construction Projects in Town Are Underway

Duke Ellington School on 35th Street, NW.
Duke Ellington School on 35th Street, NW.

Besides the dumpsters and service vehicles lined up for house renovations across Georgetown, major projects have gotten underway that involve schools, parkland and an old theater.

Duke Ellington School of the Arts is closed until September 2016 for redesign, renovation and additions. It is surrounded by a painted plywood barrier. The $82-million project will expand the historic school -- built in 1898 and originally known as Western High School -- to 294,900 square feet. The interior of the school will contain an atrium and a new 850-seat theater. The rooftop will have a classroom along with limited-use space. The school's main portico will be preserved.

Work on the addition for Hyde-Addison Elementary Public School is being set up. Here is what the D.C. Department of General Services has said, in part: "This project involves the construction of an addition to Hyde Elementary that will consist of approximately 9,500 feet of additional space as well as a Phase 1 modernization of the existing Hyde school. It is contemplated that the addition will house a 'Gymatorium,' a media center and building service space (i.e., additional bathrooms, custodial and circulation space). This project will NOT include interior renovations of the Addison building. Site work will be directed at conserving the existing parking availability, preserving existing playground areas and circulation management. Due to the historic significance of the school and surrounding neighborhood, this project requires presentation of the proposed design to the Old Georgetown Board, the Commission on Fine Arts and State Office of Historic Preservation."

Part of Rose Park at 26th and O Streets is closed for reconstruction "until sometime in November," says the D.C. Parks & Recreation Department and D.C. Department of General Services. The playground, tot lot, basketball court and recreation center, including restrooms, are closed. The tennis courts remain open as does the ball field along P Street. The tennis courts will close in late September for two weeks of resurfacing. For more details, contact David Abrams of the Friends of Rose Park at

Demolition and rehab work has begun on the old Georgetown Theater property with its iconic "Georgetown" neon vertical sign. Owner and architect Robert Bell contacted the Georgetowner concerning the upcoming reconstruction on the building at 1351 Wisconsin Ave., NW: "I will be removing the old sign and having it rebuilt by the original manufacturer -- Jack Stone Signs -- who still has all the templates and parts. I expect to have it removed in September and returned renovated in October, during which time I will be removing the faux stone and stuccoing the front façade to return it to the 1940 design."

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Sun, 25 Jun 2017 13:15:17 -0400

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