“Over 30 Street lights Out in Adams Morgan, Dupont Circle, and near Cardozo High School Near Where Recent Crimes Reported”

by Prince Of Petworth September 20, 2016 at 12:40 pm 29 Comments


From a press release:

“In the wake of a fatal shooting in the 2300 block of 11th Street NW last week near Cardozo High School, and a reported sexual assault in the 1700 block of 21st Street NW in the Dupont Circle area, as part of its on-going effort to improve public safety, staff did a walk through of parts of Dupont Circle last night, as well as around Cardozo High School and parts of Adams Morgan. Over 30 street lights were found to be dark – creating further safety concerns following the discovery of streetlight being out in Georgetown in the wake of sexual assaults there, as well as street lights being out in upper 14th Street, along Georgia Avenue and along U Street NW.

“It is simply unacceptable in this day and age to have all these street lights out”, says Executive Director Terry Lynch. “You have people using the streets who are less safe – people are coming home or going off to work, they are back from dining out or other recreation, visiting neighbors or friends …….street lights need to be working, he said. “The DC Government should do a 30 day citywide sweep to return all lights to working order, and also use current technology to be alerted immediately when street lights are out so they can be repaired within 24 to 48 hours”.

Street lights that were out were located at:

Adams Mill Road NW at Clydesdale Place, NW
Mintwood Place NW and Columbia Road NW (side of 1851 Columbia Road NW)
2300 19th Street NW
1901 Columbia Road NW
Wyoming and 20th Street NW, nw corner
Bancroft Place NW and Conn. Ave NW, nw corner
1633 Conn. Ave NW
3 lights out at Conn. Ave and Q Streets, NW – ne corner and nw and sw corners
4 lights out at P St. NW and 23rd Streets, NW – 2 on the nw corner and 2 by the sw corner
22nd Street NW and P Street NW – sw corner
21 Dupont Circle NW
2 out at Dupont Circle and Conn. Ave. NW, south side by metro entry
3 out near 1800 Mass Ave. NW, one in front of 1800 Mass and 2 across the street by the Circle
1601 18th Street NW at New Hampshire Ave NW
19th Street NW and S Street NW – ne corner
Florida Ave NW and 18th Street NW
16th Street NW and V Street NW, sw corner
2011 15th Street NW on V
13th Street NW and Florida Avenue NW near Cardozo HS
2 on / near 11th Street NW and Florida, east side of 11th across from Cardozo HS
Columbia Road NW and 13th Street NW, sw corner – where numerous incidents have occurred

“This was not a comprehensive survey – alleys were not inspected and many side streets were not viewed, these however were obvious to see from main streets that are often used at different hours”, said Lynch.

The street lights that were observed out have been reported to city officials for fixing.”

  • JS

    Sorry, who put out this release? It’s not explicitly stated in the article.

    • MRD

      +1 that was my first question as well.
      This is one of those things that makes me miss the days of Fenty. Unbelievable how responsive city services were.

      • kinuy

        Never thought I’d say it, but lots of things were so much better with Fenty.

    • textdoc

      My first question too.
      From Google, it appears that Terry Lynch is the Executive Director of the Downtown Cluster of Congregations, so I guess it came from them.

  • Ward 4

    Most if not all at Grant Circle in Petworth as well.

    • samanda_bynes

      yeah, i hang out there almost weekly at night and it’s fairly busy from like 9-11pm. BUT few more lights would be good…might make it a bit harder to drink a bottle of wine there though….

  • Ward One Resident

    I would assume because Terry Lynch is listed that it’s the Downtown Cluster of Congregations. Terry

  • NH Ave Hiker

    DC government incompetent in some way? Shocking…

  • Bloomies

    We have had a 311/DDOT request in for 2 weeks for a street in Bloomingdale. I called after the first week and they said the request had been “closed” – even though the light was clearly still out. They reopened it and assigned it “urgent” or “emergency” status. Super dark street, really inviting crime. I have tweeted every couple of days – no response from DDOT.

  • PSA 403

    Brighter street lights help to deter crime in many D.C. neighborhoods. I shared this article with Pepco’s President Donna Cooper, DDOT, MPD, Deputy Mayor for Public Safety, Mayor Bowser, and the D.C. Councilmembers representing these areas. Hopefully these lights will be back to working soon.

  • Kevin

    “It is simply unacceptable in this day and age to have all these street lights out”

    Hyperbole much?

    • Dave

      Nah… seems kind of unacceptable for big amounts of lights to be out in a city dealing with a bump in crime.

      No one’s claiming the world is ending, but this is low-hanging fruit that city government should be following up on.

      • Mike
      • Kevin

        It’s interesting to note that streetlights, in an of themselves, aren’t really the cause for a reduction in crime. The streetlights are but one facet…


        • textdoc

          “Results of this review indicate that improved street lighting significantly reduces crime. This lends support for the continued use of improved street lighting to prevent crime in public space. The review also found that nighttime crimes did not decrease more than daytime crimes. This suggests that a theory of street lighting focusing on its role in increasing community pride and informal social control may be more plausible than a theory focusing on increased surveillance and increased deterrence.”

        • textdoc

          I think Dave’s point stands, though.
          I haven’t read the whole linked article, but I’m assuming that by “improv[ing] street lighting” the study meant adding _additional_ street lighting. That’s not the same as making sure that all _existing_ street lights are working properly, which is what the press release is advocating.

          • Kevin

            That’s fair. I have to wonder how the community let it get so out of hand.

            In Bloomingdale, I’ve seen street lights go out. I’ve called 311, and within a week, the streetlights are fixed. I was in Petworth before this, and had the same experience.

            The hyperbole I mentioned comes from Lynch: does he really think DoT is going to drive around every day looking for burned out lights? This is similar to the pothole situation in DC: it’s only going to get fixed if we, as a community, work to inform those who curate the infrastructure.

          • textdoc

            “I have to wonder how the community let it get so out of hand.”
            But should it really be residents’ responsibility to report every last thing that needs to be fixed? Can’t the city do some proactive surveillance of its own for this kind of thing??
            I don’t expect DDOT to be driving through every last road/alley in the city looking for burned-out lights, but you’d think they’d have some kind of schedule for checking lights on major streets.

          • textdoc

            As PoPville reader I Dont Get It said in a 9/13/16 thread about non-working streetlights:”Reporting to 311 by citizens is a great supplemental tool but shouldn’t also someone from the city be aggressively monitoring street lights as part of public safety?”

  • MtP

    DC is SO SLOW at repairing street lights. We had one in our back alley in Mt. Pleasant a few months ago, and we reported it immediately. We had to follow up at least 3 or 4 times, and it still took over a month.

  • Jen

    Does the Executive Director ever cross 9th Street NW?

    I mean seriously…. if we’re going to have such diligent cataloging of street lights as it relates to crime, I’d assume there’d be more coverage of the street light situations in Trinidad and Bloomingdale, among other places.

  • stacksp

    I heard on the morning news that a city officials ordered a study to determine why these lights were not fixed or changed lol. How is that the initial reaction to this story? A study is great but maybe send out some repair crews immediately to fix the street lights. That should have been the response

    • textdoc

      Ehh, I think both are good. If people are reporting lights that are out and the city doesn’t fix them, then that’s a systemic problem and it’s worth looking into what the heck is going on. Otherwise people will continue to report lights that are out and the city will continue to not fix them.

      • stacksp

        I agree that the study is needed but I expected a right now action to accompany it. Maybe that is ongoing but was not verbalized on the news.

        • textdoc

          Fair enough.


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