Pocket Park at 14th and Oak St, NW Looking Good in Columbia Heights

Wow, I feel it’s been a really long time coming but it looks like it’s gonna be worth the wait. This past weekend was the first time I’d seen what the space was looking like. Even though planting still needed to be completed – you can certainly get a taste of how it’s gonna look. It was bulldozed back in Sept. ’10. And of course this the former home to the benches.

From what you can tell now – do you think this is an improvement?

Ed. Note: Yesterday the Washington Post reported that:

“An outside investigator has concluded there was “no wrongdoing” by former D.C. Mayor Adrian M. Fenty in the issuance of parks and recreation contracts to firms with ties to his administration.”

I will return for more photos when everything has been planted and the weather warms up a bit.

34 Comment

  • I like the open look but thassalotta concrete!

  • An outside investigator has concluded there was “no wrongdoing” by former D.C. Mayor Adrian M. Fenty in the issuance of parks and recreation contracts to firms with ties to his administration.

    I don’t care if he was competent and clean! He didn’t suck up to the various suburban churches, which is the important thing.

  • pretty sweet. i wish this was there when i was living on that block.

  • Now we just need to remove the drug dealers who hang out there and people will actually be able to enjoy the park.

  • This looks pretty great! And just in time for the good weather. Can’t wait to check this out.

  • Lets be real, this makes no sense. Why not have done the park on the corner of 11th and Monroe first than this drug dealer, future felon hangout. Not one white person ever hangs out at this park(keeping it real)and those law abiding, tax paying citizens that have to walk by it usually do so on the other side of the street. The only good thing is that it might keep the rift-raft from venturing along other parts of the area. Columbia Heights is at a tipping point, a change is a commin’!

  • Good luck checking this park out. It is thug central as someone correctly noted. Glad we built them a nice park though.

  • I walk by this park everyday. Yes there are still some people hanging out but the neighborhood is changing very quickely. The people hanging out seem to be a little confused when they see all of the new people that have moved in walking by them unfazed. Must be how the dinosaurs felt.

  • Anything is an improvement over the previous dump that housed the thug drug dealers and their 16-yr old baby mamas hanging out there at all hours of the night (with their mutliple toddlers/infants at 2am). That said, they sure did use a lOT of concrete. I think the vast expanse of concrete and the minimal weird, tilted stools were part of the design plan to discouage anyone from hanging out there.

  • On a side note: I’ve been learning a lot lately about the importance of using only native plants in landscaping and was wondering if any horticulturalists or otherwise knowledgeable plant people know if the stuff they’re planting is native?

  • In person, this really does look like one big slab of concrete. Living on this block, so far I am pretty disappointed. Maybe the final adding of trees, etc, will improve the appearance. We’ll see.

  • “where the action is” = loitering, drug dealing, prostitution.

  • Perhaps I’m the only one who’s quite pleased that we’re slowly attempting to retake our neighborhood, one park at a time. Cheers to everyone involved in renovating this park. It might take another decade to get all the crappy elements out of this stretch of 14th Street, but remaking this park is a hell of a start. While the thugs play checkers, those of us invested in the neighborhood are going to be playing chess. This park is but one move.

    To those of you who pooh-pooh on this leap forward, and apparently often think that because some drug dealers might frequent a park it ought to be abandoned, I don’t think you’ve got a clue about what we’re trying to accomplish or how to go about doing it.

  • Look, I agree that the park is better renovated than not and I love Columbia Heights. I have lived up here for the past 8 years and have slowly watched the positive changes and its a much better place today than back then. Its just that the closer we get to turning the corner the less patient I become with the bad elements that I have tolerated for a long time..ie. drug dealers, gangs, the “ghetto” element of screaming down the block and littering all over the place. Its disgusting already and its ENOUGH! Change can’t come quick enough at this point. With half-million dollar condos and rents increasing I believe the majority for so long with fade into a minority or at least start behaving like people who care about their community and grounds.

  • This park is destined to fail as long as Jim Graham keeps Hubbard Place next door open. You can’t have nice things next to 300 section 8 housing units. Period.

    The upside is that there is no fountain for the kids to bathe in!

  • i thought they were planning on saving the tree. what happened with that?

  • those low-lying plants are going to look great in a few weeks once they’re covered with candy bar wrappers and utz bags.

    • This ‘park’ is ugly as sin – I only wish the sign announcing ’12 million invested in sidewalks and more concrete’ was still up as a reminder of how poorly this city chooses to spend taxpayer’s money. Same corner patch with less comfortable ‘benches’

      On a different note, the ignorance of some people never ceases to amaze me… ‘scary people’… you really wrote that? ChrisDC, if you’re concerned with a bunch of neighborhood kids hanging on the corner, because there are few positive opportunities for them take advantage of (in the gentrifying neighborhood where THEY grew up), figure out how to be a part of the solution – not just a critic. Otherwise, move to the suburbs or stay low my dude, Streets Are Watchin…

      • i think this park looked better with the benches. definitely seemed more like a park!

        maybe the city should have just bulldozed the whole park and built a massive speed bump.
        what a shame and waste of money.

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