January 24, 2011

Adopted on January 24, 2011 In A Unanimous Show-Of-Hands Vote


WHEREAS the Takoma Theatre is an icon in the community;


WHEREAS the Takoma Theatre “has not been used as a theater since February 2006”;


WHEREAS the DC Historic Preservation Review Board has determined that the Takoma Theatre is a contributing structure within the Takoma DC Historic District and twice (in 2007 and 2009) denied the owner’s applications to raze it;


WHEREAS, on May 21, 2010 the Mayor’s Agent for Historic Preservation of the District of Columbia reaffirmed the historical significance of the Takoma Theatre and denied the owner’s request to demolish most of the Theatre;


WHEREAS the owner, Mr. Milton McGinty, wrote a letter on August 17, 2010 addressed the deterioration of the building. (See attached August 17, 2010 letter)


WHEREAS the Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs notified Mr. McGinty of several maintenance violations on the Theatre property to be corrected by November 22, 2010;


WHEREAS the owner failed to abate the violations; consequently, DCRA is preparing a case for the Office of Administrative Hearings, and the owner will be fined;


WHEREAS the vacant, deteriorating property is an eyesore and, to some, feels like an area to be avoided; consequently, it is a negative pull against the economic revitalization of the 4th Street commercial corridor;


WHEREAS a community-based group, the Takoma Theatre Conservancy, has written to Mayor Vincent Gray requesting “the inclusion of $10 million in the District’s 2012 Capital Budget for the acquisition and initial renovation of the historic Takoma Theatre, located at 6833 Fourth Street, NW, as a multifunctional community cultural arts and education center”;


WHEREAS, due to declining revenues, the 6-year capital improvements plan (CIP) is now overbudgeted; consequently, the Mayor has called for a thorough review and adjustment of the CIP in order to stay within the 12% debt ceiling which Wall Street has placed on the city’s capital expenditures;  


WHEREAS the District of Columbia awarded the Takoma Theatre Conservancy a grant from the DC Budget Support Act of 2009 to conduct studies which will help plan for the future use of the Takoma Theatre building;


WHEREAS the Advisory Neighborhood Commission 4B is cognizant of the profound sacrifices and funding delays that many programs and projects are experiencing during the District’s fiscal crisis,




*  ANC 4B urges the District of Columbia to take a leadership role in exploring options for development of this key property consistent with:

a) the economic development of the commercial corridor;

b) providing space for programs, training and other current community needs and services in a community cultural arts and education center in order to enhance and strengthen local talents, skills and enjoyment and to serve people of all ages, especially in Wards 5, 4 and 3; 

c) preserving the theatre as a contributing structure in the Takoma Park Historic District. 


*  ANC 4B encourages the District of Columbia to consider including in the city’s capital improvements plan such funds as are necessary to help restore and develop this key property, the Takoma Theatre, for the purposes as outlined in the paragraph above as it becomes feasible to do so and in respectful regard for funding priorities of the Executive Branch and the Council of the District of Columbia. 


              *  ANC 4B encourages the community to incorporate Mr. Milton McGinty’s significant  

              contributions to the community in the fabric of the design.