Monday, January 5, 2015

14th and Girard condo owners want preschool playground closed: claim it's too loud

This is something you hear every day. Some residents of a condo building at 14th and Girard, which shares a building with the Apple Tree Early Learning Public Charter School preschool, want the preschool's playground closed. They claim it's too loud.

The Post has an article about it, which is honestly kind of amusing. James Abadian, former president of the condo board had this to say:
“The noise. It’s real. It’s crazy,” he said. “With windows closed and everything, I can’t take a phone call.”
To which Bryan Weaver, former ANC commissioner and candidate for DC Council, and others tweeted jokes:  
Abadian claims he has to go to the bathroom to phone calls inside due to the noise, which has driven some people out of the building.

The school's president has a different take:
“The problem is that there are a few residents who don’t like the noise of children playing on the playground,” said Jack McCarthy the president and chief executive of AppleTree Institute for Education Innovation. 
“It’s one of these issues where you just say, ‘Hey, can we be reasonable?’”
Abadian claims that the condo board has the authority to close the playground, and McCarthy, the school's president, said if they removed the playground it could lead to litigation.

Columbia Heights seems to have more than its fair share of these kind of wacky debates; if you recall a few years ago, some people who live next to the fire station at 14th and Monroe were angry that the sirens were too loud.

UPDATE: I missed a funny detail of the article: Abadian said he asked if the school could limit playground time ro make it a "silent study area." Right, because preschoolers are great at being silent and have a lot to study. More reasonably, some residents suggested they use the 14th and Girard rec center playground about a block away.


  1. Ugh. I live in this building and this is all just embarrassing.

  2. The video on ABC 7 shows 'the playground' -- it's essentially a 6x10 block with a slide. Considering there is a nice community park nearby this seems ridiculous. If people are pissed you would think they would try to fix the issue seeing how they all live together.

    I am actually unsure why this is even news, as its a tenant dispute but whatever.

  3. I used to live on that block. This reminds me of a time when an innocent young boy was killed in a drive by shooting there. The mayor (Fenty at the time) came to the community center to talk to the neighbors about rising crime, the police response, etc.
    One of the neighbors, young and new on the block, stood in front of the crowd of concerned parents and longtime residents, took the microphone, and proceeded to complain that there was not enough parking on the block. Completely embarrassing and ridiculous.


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