May 24, 2021
Contact Nick DelleDonne
CMs Gray, McDuffie Show Interest in Affordable Housing
at Wardman Park Hotel
The idea of turning the bankrupt Wardman Park Hotel into affordable housing has begun to surface in the DC Council. Most recently, Councilmember Vincent Gray (Ward 7) said he “would be happy to go along with Councilmember Cheh [Ward 3] to take a look” at the site on Connecticut Avenue in Woodley Park. Gray was responding to an invitation from Nick DelleDonne, head of Dupont East Civic Action Association (DECAA) at Thursday's marathon eviction hearing. DelleDonne, who has been working with one of several citizen groups promoting the conversion, described the Wardman as a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to convert its 1,100 rooms into affordable housing, with 3- and 4-bedroom family sized apartments, along with day care, job training in the banquet-sized kitchen and other tenant and neighborhood friendly features, all on top of a Metro stop.
“I'm very familiar with the site, but not familiar with the purpose you propose,” Gray added.
Councilmember Kenyan McDuffie (Ward 5) supports converting the Wardman into affordable housing, even asking Mayor Bowser to include $140 million in her 2022 budget to buy the property. The Mayor will make her budget public later this week.
The Wardman conversion is a prime opportunity to apply principles of social housing, which for the first time is included in the Comprehensive Plan that the Council passed only last week. The social housing model provides for city ownership, tenant management and rents set at 30% of income. Councilmember Robert White (at-large) has assigned a staff member to investigate the concept.
“There are signs of a groundswell of interest in the Wardman conversion and in social housing,” DelleDonne said. “DECCA is ready to work with neighbors and city officials to turn interest into action for truly affordable housing.”
Join the neighborhood discussion and action forum, HearUsNow! https://groups.google.com/forum/#!forum/hearusnow
Visit DECAA’s website and sign our petition. https://www.KeepDupontGreen.org