Judging Buildings/Horse’s Ass Award Nominee – Truxton Circle

I’ve always thought this building has terrific potential. It is the former Langston school (located on P St, NW just west of North Capitol) and apparently at some point had a Jewish affiliation:

Anyone know the story? I know across the street there are plans to renovate an old school into senior housing (I think senior housing?).

Next door the (old) Slater School building (now a daycare?) could use a bit of an upgrade as well:

21 Comment

  • It must have been a Jewish neighborhood until it gentrified.

    • Thanks. Slater had a huge impact on the newly freed men of this region (for example >Hampton Institute >Booker T. Washington).

      Great man. Can’t see the building the same way.

  • When I lived in England I found a building with a Star of David on the top that I assumed was an old synagogue. I was surprised to learn that it was actually a masonic hall. Evidentally the star symbol is shared in both traditions.

    [http:[email protected]/3328655357/]

    • Kind of like Nazis and Hindus – a swastika is actually a Hindu symbol. Kind of threw me off when traveling in India.

  • That Star of David is a little out of place as the school was mainly a school for black children. At one point the Eckington Citizen’s Association (white civic group) complained about it in the early 20th cent.
    When a bajillion dollars and good sense fall down upon the people running Slater then Langston will get fixed. Until then it is just going to rot.

  • I bike past this every day and was wondering what the plans for the 3 schools were.

  • Renovate and turn into apartments/condos – old schools are so cool. With a dirth of cool loft buildings in this city, old schools fill the void nicely.

  • they were rfp’d not that long ago. Office of planning should have the info

  • FYI, the school across the street — the Cook School — is planned for a charter school and small housing component for homeless youth.

    The local ANC is fighting the development though — they seem to fight every development from Big Bear to this…


    • This is nothing like Big Bear.

      Man, if they add another school, this neighborhood is going to have the highest concentration of schools in DC on a per capita basis.

      • Historically, the neighborhood was a highly respected hub of African American education. Armstrong, MM Washington, Cook, Langston, Slator, and Dunbar. If all the schools were returned to full education use, pre-k through college, technical or otherwise and not handed out to whichever politically connected service asks, it would do wonders for the area

        • charter schools get priority when they apply for the rfp’s to surplused schools.
          the problem of the area is not a lack of schools.

    • Thanks for tossing out the usual NIMBY-labeling rhetoric.
      Unfortunately, aside from the ugly mess of big bear, saying the community is ant-development is simply not backed by fact.

      The community has supported and worked with other schools which wanted to move in(ex: CAPPS, one block away). In addition, if you look at the testimony given to DC in December most of the residents supported the charter school component. The project however is not a school with a housing component, It is a large (2/3) housing project with a school attached. Why has LAYC been 100% unwilling to consider alternatives to the housing?

      Also, the local civic associations had developed a wish-list of uses for the school and had actively worked with other groups which had submitted bids to DC.

      Aside from big bear, the ANC supported Rustik tavern and the continued failed attempts of Brian Brown to develop the firehouse on North Capitol.

      Before jumping on the city-paper bandwagon and labelling an entire neighborhood NIMBY, please look a little deeper first.

  • This is what you can do with the old school: Create one part that is a movie theater — in the auditorium. Use comfortable old chairs/sofas (Tryst). Show 2nd run movies. Put in a small pub, sell draft beers and pizza slices (contract with Radius? Red Rocks?). Have a beer garden courtyard in the old recess grounds. Make a heated pool area — discount membership for locals who show id. Keep the gymnasium the gymnasium — can be rented out/ for shows there/weddings. Have two-six other meeting rooms that can be rented out. Any extra classrooms are hotel rooms.

    I wish I had thought of all this myself. This is what they did with the Kennedy School in NE Portland. My family and friends stayed there for my wedding.

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