Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Photos: Demolition of Brightwood Car Barn begins

Roof partially removed.

Interior of the Car Barn...look up, you can see sky where the roof used to be.

The Brightwood Car Barn, one of the few standing car barns from the era of DC's first streetcars, is now in the first stages of demolition, despite past efforts of the DC Preservation League and other preservationists to save it. Walmart and Foulger-Pratt have said that they intend to use the bricks from the car barn to construct part of the Walmart store that is planned to be built on the site.

UPDATE: I spoke with ANC Doug Smith and he confirmed what I suspected; the ANC was not informed that the demolition was moving ahead. This has taken everyone by surprise.

ANOTHER UPDATE: CM Bowser said that DCRA is sending an inspector over.

AND ANOTHER UPDATE: DCRA's chief building inspector visited the site last night (Tuesday, 9/6); here is what DCRA director Nicholas Majett had to say following the inspection.

UPDATE 09/08/11 12pm DCRA has issued a citation and a stop-work order to Foulger-Pratt.


  1. The roof trusses will also be reused in the construction of the Walmart.

  2. Destroy D.C. history so you can sell cheap stuff from China to enrich out-of-state corporation. So it goes.

  3. This is unacceptable. No permit - no notice. Fine them.

  4. About time. That car barn was just an excuse to stop any change on the land.

  5. Brightwood Car Barn? Isin't this the old Chevy dealership on GA Ave?? I think any "History" this buliding once held has long since been Forgotten

  6. Walmart said the roof trusses and the brickwork would be re-used in the new building but if you believe that, I have a bridge in Brooklyn I'd like to sell you.
    No permit obtained? DCRA should levy heavy fines on someone.
    The history has NOT been forgotten. There are a lot of us who recognize and appreciate DC's history and would like to see sites preserved and/or restored in a respectful manner.

  7. Pictures go a long way in preserving history. This is one of those cases where pictures would serve the community more than keeping that dilapidated structure. If there was no permit than good for DCRA in doing their job.

  8. Those pictures are not compelling me to yearn for the car barn and all of its history. I am sure this "historic" site will be much better served with a viable business. Or maybe we should just let it sit and decay further, allowing it to be even more of a blight!

    Did someone post the proof of "no permit"?