D.C. Councilmember Mary M. Cheh (Ward 3) today announced she is forming a Community Taskforce to study the potential public private partnership to build the Tenley Library and modernize Janney Elementary School.
"It is urgent that we explore the opportunity to move forward on two very important community projects", said Cheh. "The library site has languished for too long, and we now face a fleeting opportunity to capture the benefits of developing the site comprehensively. We can have a new library, a modernized school, and we can do it now."
Cheh plans to hold the initial task force meeting on June 4, 2007, to be followed by community-wide meetings.
"I'm hoping to have a broad coalition of community groups represented", said Cheh. The taskforce will include a representative from each of the following: ANCs 3E and 3F, community associations, St. Anne's, St. Columba's, Ward 3 Vision, CTSO, Janney school groups, the Janney principal, IONA, Washington Interfaith Network, Cityline Condominium Board, Community Council for the Homeless at Friendship Place, Tenley Historic Society, and Friends of Tenley Library.
"A public private partnership – if done correctly with full input from all stakeholders -- can benefit the entire community", said Cheh. "This could be a model that would benefit not only Ward 3 but neighborhoods across the District."
"It is important to act swiftly", Cheh said. "The library is moving forward quickly with its plans and there may only be a narrow window of opportunity to examine the advantages of a public private partnership."