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LED billboards to Go Up at Verizon Center?

Photo by PoPville flickr user Joe in DC

Thanks to everyone who forwarded emails from Vida Fitness:

Dear VIDA Members,
DC City Council will soon consider Bill 19-0517, which would allow enormous full-motion Jumbotron billboards to be placed anywhere on the exterior of the Verizon Center. The bill will exempt these billboards from most of the regulations that apply to all other billboards in the city.

As a VIDA Member, you need to be aware that one of Verizon Center’s planned Jumbotrons would literally cover the vast majority of VIDA’s leased space. One of the important amenities that we offer is floor-to-ceiling glass windows and the natural light is very much a part of what makes VIDA so enjoyable. Many of you value the scenic views of downtown DC you enjoy while utilizing our cardio equipment or simply walking the 3rd Floor during your weight lifting routine. This visual reinforces that this is truly a neighborhood where people work, live and work out.

The proposed bill allows for LED billboards of unlimited size, including signs that could wrap around the Verizon Center and cast light 7 or 8 blocks down G Street, meaning they would be visible from the Treasury Building, which sits right next to the White House. The authorizing legislation allows up to 9 Jumbotrons of any size in any location. The Verizon Center plan does not respect the local community of residences, offices, businesses, museums, theatres, and restaurants.

The billboards may hamper the residential development that the city is actively trying to encourage in the area. A recent study showed that billboards negatively impact the value of neighboring residences and drive down property values. This, combined with a decline in tenants interested in having their bedrooms bathed in glowing LED lights, would ultimately discourage residential development and result in a loss of property taxes collected by the city.
The legislation will be heard before the City Council on Jan. 23 at 2:00 PM. Your input is very important. Please join us by filling out the petition form at You may also call or email the DC City Council directly.

If you want to speak at the hearing, you must sign up before Friday, January 20th.
Contact Melanie Williamson at (202) 741-2112 or email her at [email protected]

The hearing is Monday, January 23, 2012 at 2:00 PM.
Room 123, John A. Wilson Building
1350 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20004

David von Storch
President & Founder
VIDA Fitness

Do you think the Verizon Center should be able to have LED billboards?

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