By Alexis Neely
If you’ve taken a stroll through Chinatown recently, you may have noticed a fresh sense of vibrancy and color, the product of a new planter bed installation by the DowntownDC Business Improvement District (BID).
The plants, a mix of Winter Gem Boxwoods and Variegated Liriope, bring lush, green and colorful life to the bustling area right beside the Friendship Arch in Chinatown on H Street. Splashes of pink, red and white add a vibrant and refreshing touch, a goal of both the BID and the Mayor’s Office on Asian and Pacific Islander Affairs (MOAPIA) for this busy neighborhood.
According to the BID’s Acting Director of Public Space Operations David Pollard, the project is a part of the continued beautification of downtown and a recent push to increase landscaping efforts by the BID.
“Chinatown is the face of the city in a sense,” Pollard said. “So when tourists come in, especially in the summer, everyone goes right down into Chinatown. That’s why we consider that the entertainment district, and we’ve been trying to revitalize that particular part.” The project came to fruition with the help of District Cleaning & Maintenance Services.
Chinatown is home to plenty of foot traffic, so to protect the flowers, the planters are separated from the pathway by short, black fencing. The plants receive constant, proper care from the BID’s Safety/Hospitality and Maintenance ambassadors (SAMs) who are responsible for BID landscaping efforts.
In 2017, the BID joined with the US National Park Service and the US General Services Administration to beautify 212 planters along Pennsylvania Avenue. That effort was expanded this spring to include additional planters along Pennsylvania.
Check out these and other landscaped planters in DowntownDC this summer and tag us with #downtowndc!