Posted tagged ‘fire call boxes’

Park View Fire Call Box Harps Get Spruced Up

May 15, 2017

(Top of fire call box harp at Warder and Otis)

Recently, the three remaining fire call box harps in the neighborhood were spruced up. Each of them was painted black with gold accents. I especially like how the neighborhood name was added to the top of each.

While there are only three of these in the neighborhood presently, there were at least twelve fire call stations in Park View at one time. Over the past decade, I know of two harps that were taken out by cars, and the call box harp at Princeton and Georgia was nearly lost in 2011 when DDOT removed it during street construction. I successfully advocated for the harp’s return specifically with the idea that it could be part of an art project along with the other harps.

The recent improvements to the call boxes really enhance the streetscape where they are located. Perhaps, eventually, we’ll be able to incorporate some small art or images where the call boxes were once located as well.

(The call box harp at Warder and Otis is one of three in the neighborhood that have recently been repainted.)

Fire Call Box Harp Returned

July 19, 2011

Reinstalled call box harp

Thanks to all that alerted me to this. I really have to give DDOT props on this one. Less than a week after I called the project manager of the Middle Georgia Avenue Great Streets project, the missing fire call box harp at Princeton Place and Georgia Avenue was reinstalled.

While the location isn’t exactly where it once was, I think just getting it back was a huge accomplishment. With the return of this harp, the Park View area continues to have three of the original twelve fire call boxes that once served the community.

I think just getting the harp back is not enough, though. The next step needs to be to make it an attractive and valuable asset. One way to do that would be to have it serve as a historical marker as many other harps in DC do.

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Do We Want Our Fire Alarm Call Box Harp Back @ Princeton and Georgia?

July 8, 2011

View of the northeast corner of Princeton and Georgia, looking east-southeast from Georgia.

As I was reviewing the new sidewalk areas along Georgia Avenue yesterday, I noted that the northeast corner of Princeton Place and Georgia appears to be finished … with a significant exception — the old fire alarm call box harp that once graced this corner has not been reinstalled. When I first noticed that it had been removed in November 2010, I contacted DDOT which confirmed that they had removed it due to the Middle Georgia Avenue Great Streets project. At that time I asked if it would be returned and after a short conversation thought that DDOT had agreed to reinstall it.

At present, that clearly has not happened. I’m surely feisty enough to take this on and fight to get the harp returned to its rightful place. The chief benefit would be that the community could use it to display art as much of the rest of the city has done. My only remaining question is should I.

So, I’m throwing the question out to you. Would you like to see the call box harp returned and used to help beautify the community?

Pedestal and harp once located at Princeton and Georgia Avenue

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Park View’s Fire Alarm Call Boxes Continue to Dissappear

January 11, 2011

This area of Princeton Place, at the intersection of Georgia Ave., had a fire call box until recently

While it is impossible to tell if accidents, theft, or city employees are responsible for the vanishing fire alarm call boxes in the Park View neighborhood, one thing is sure … the community is now down to two existing call boxes. Both are on Warder, and at the rate they are disappearing, both could be gone by March.

When I took my inventory of fire alarm call boxes on November 23rd Park View still had four call boxes. One at Lamont and Georgia had recently been lost.

Since that inventory the call box on the southeast corner of Gresham Place and Georgia Avenue has vanished. This past weekend, I noticed that the call box at Princeton Place and Georgia Avenue has also gone missing.

What is most disturbing about the Princeton Place incident is that it would appear to be at the hands of DDOT. The location that once supported the call box now has four new storm drains as part of the Middle Georgia Avenue Great Streets Project.

The sad thing about the disappearance of these boxes is that not only is a significant and recognizable part of Washington’s historic streetscape gone, so is the community’s opportunity to use them in an artistic way as other neighborhoods throughout DC have done. Park View has little public art, and with our call boxes gone it looks like we’ll have fewer opportunities to do something about that.

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