Parks & Places

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Parks & Places

  • Franklin Park
  • About Our Parks

    DowntownDC is home to several public parks, memorials and plazas. Good parks improve the quality of life in a downtown, serving as oases in a densely built environment.  They are good for the public health, as they encourage physical activity and draw people out of their cars, offices and homes.  They are crucial to the air quality, as their greenery filters pollution and minimizes the urban heat effect, and they play an increasingly important role in stormwater management.  With green space at a premium, even a small pocket park can make a neighborhood more livable and enhance property values and rents.

    Almost all of the parks in the DowntownDC BID are owned by the National Park Service.  A few of the parks are large squares, part of the original L’Enfant master plan for the city.  These major parks have established designs, long histories, and may contain large landmarks such as statues or fountains.  Many of the National Park Service properties in the DowntownDC BID are smaller triangular parks, which are also part of the L’Enfant plan and help to reinforce the monumental core.

    National Park Service and the Downtown BID

    The DowntownDC BID has a general partnership agreement with the National Park Service.  This agreement, in place since 2007, enables the DowntownDC BID to supplement National Park Service trash collection, cleaning, and landscaping services within National Park Service parks.  It also allows the DowntownDC BID and National Park Service to plan for park improvements together, as with Franklin Park and Reservation 72 (Chinatown Park).

    In several cases, the care of a small park has been undertaken by the adjacent property owner through a partnership agreement with the National Park Service. These partnership agreements provide property owners with an opportunity to enhance the open space adjacent to their building.  The DowntownDC BID can assist interested properties in working with the National Park Service to improve these small parks.  For more information on partnership agreements, please contact parks@downtowndc.org.