Cry the Beloved Library!

My darling, my beautiful 1950’s mid-century municipal with integrity Cleveland Park Public Library is on the chopping block of the forces of redevelopment.  How I hate these forces! If you live in DC and have any interest, including in the redevelopment of the MLK Library downtown – come to this meeting and ask your questions, PLEASE.  We are killing our history! Take the FBI Building, no problem. You can tear down that Brutalist Christian Scientific on 16th and I, but for the love of country, leave us our Cleveland Park Library! and MLK!

Saturday February 7 at 1 PM in the Cleveland Park Library: DCPL Executive Director Richard Reyes-Gavilan will speak on a new vision for DCPL, additionally DCPL Director of Cap Projects Jeff Bonvechio will also be on hand at the annual meeting hosted by the Friends of Cleveland Park Library.

The Cleveland Park Library built in 1953, and a structure of historic and architectural integrity is slated for redevelopment. This will close down the library for a longer period of time than the scheduled renovation to put in an ADA compliant elevator and of course cost more money.

This is the time to ask questions and save a lovely historic structure from demolition in your neighborhood. This  building was designed by Municipal Architect Merrell A. Coe; the site of the library was purchased for $75,000 in 1945. The Connecticut Avenue Citizens Association raised $30,000, and the rest was appropriated by Congress. When it opened, the Cleveland Park branch, one of the first of the D.C. libraries to be designed in a spare, Modernist style, was one of the largest in the D.C. Public Library system. It’s really one of the few in it’s kind in DC and should be saved.  

I hope you will join me in bringing your questions and concerns on Sat Feb 7.


Susana Raab

Connecticut Ave NW


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