Efforts are currently underway to transform Franklin Park (13th to 14th streets between I and K streets NW) into an active, flexible, sustainable and historic urban park connected to its community.
Franklin Park is located in the center of DowntownDC in the heart of the District and at nearly 5 acres, it is Downtown’s largest park. The park is served by Metrorail, Metrobus and the DC Circulator and it sits amid a thriving commercial district and a growing residential population.
The park is owned by the National Park Service (NPS) and is currently in need of many functional improvements and updates to enable the park to adequately serve the community. Additionally, the park’s size and location provide a unique opportunity to significantly impact the community and the local economy by reimagining this green space. NPS supports efforts to revitalize the park as part of its Urban Agenda and is exploring ways in which to partner with the city to achieve these goals.
A planning partnership was formed in 2012 between NPS, the District government and the DowntownDC Business Improvement District (BID) to transform the park and establish sustainable maintenance and operation of the park in perpetuity. The result of this planning effort, which included public outreach and stakeholder input, is a concept design and maintenance and operations plan for the park.
In August 2015, the National Park Service, in cooperation with the National Capital Planning Commission and working with the District of Columbia and the DowntownDC Business Improvement District (BID), completed an Environmental Assessment for the Franklin Park Vision and Transformation plan (EA). Based on analysis of the EA and consideration of public comments, the National Park Service determined that the work in Franklin Park will not result in significant impacts to the environment. NPS released a Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI) for a preferred design alternative.
In March 2019, President Donald Trump signed a federal lands package that permitted the District of Columbia to invest its capital dollars in the renovation and construction of the park through a cooperative management agreement with NPS.
A groundbreaking for the park is projected to take place in late FY19.
For more information on Franklin Park, please contact Ellen Jones at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- PRESS RELEASE: DowntownDC BID Supports House Passage of H.R. 2897
- House passes bill to allow District to invest in Franklin Park (Washington Post) January 18, 2018
- D.C. asks Congress for approval to invest in Franklin Square (Washington Post) June 16, 2017
- VIDEO: National Park Service’s Bob Vogel Champions Franklin Park
Franklin Park Events
The DowntownDC BID, together with partners, hosts annual events in Franklin Park including:
- DowntownDC Live: Free lunchtime concerts on Thursdays in June and July
- Jazz in Franklin Park: Free jazz on select Fridays in the summer with Wolf Trap
- Picnic in the Park: Free picnic blankets on Fridays during lunchtime in the summer
For more information visit downtowndc.org/events
The US House of Representatives passes H.R. 2897. January 2018 The Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee holds a hearing on S. 1956. February 2018
Delegate Eleanor Holmes Norton introduces legislation to enable the Mayor of the District of Columbia to enter into cooperative management agreements with the National Park Service. October 2017 Senator Lisa Murkowski introduces S. 1956 to enable the Mayor of the District of Columbia to enter into cooperative management agreements with the National Park Service. October 2017
Memorandum of Agreement Signed 3-Jun-2015 Property Owners Meeting 1-Oct-2015
Public Meeting - Presentation of the Design Alternatives 19-Feb-2014 Franklin Park Vision and Transformation Plan EA Released 2-Dec-2014 Consulting Parties Meeting 2-Dec-2014
First Franklin Park Partners Planning Meeting 11-Mar-2013 Technical Advisory Committee Meeting 18-Sep-2013 Public Meeting - Community Workshop 7-Nov-2013 Technical Advisory Committee Meeting 9-Dec-2013 Stakeholder Advisory Committee Meeting 9-Dec-2013
Meeting between DC Gov't, NPS, and the Downtown BID re: conditions in Franklin Park 28-Aug-2012