The “Black Lives Matter (BLM) Plaza” had been forcibly created by the extreme left-wing demonstrators during the racial protests that took place with violence throughout 2020, on a main avenue and a few meters from the White House. Now the Democratic mayor, Muriel Bowser, announced that work has begun to expand and formalize a park in honor of the controversial organization in that space.
Construction began on July 19 to make the plaza “a permanent facility,” according to a joint statement from the Washington mayor’s office and the District Department of Transportation.
“During construction, DDOT will close all northbound and southbound travel lanes to vehicular traffic on 16th Street NW between H Street NW and K Street NW,” a DDOT press release said.
“The lane closures are necessary to install roadway pavers, bollards, and the permanent Black Lives Matter mural. Once completed, the permanent installation will protect pedestrian safety while accommodating vehicles and keeping with the spirit of the original mural design,” the release goes on to report.
16th Street NW in Washington D.C. is one of the city’s main arteries, which will be blocked for an undetermined period of time so that work can be done to improve the huge mural that reads “Black Lives Matter” written on the asphalt.
Construction workers will install road pavers and concrete bollards, in addition to the announced mural. The work is scheduled to be completed by October 1.
A rendering of what the plaza will look like shows that the middle of the street will be restricted for pedestrian use, with one lane of vehicular traffic on each side.
“Construction to make #BlackLivesMatter Plaza a permanent installation will begin on Monday and is expected to conclude by October 1,” reads a Twitter post published by DDOT, accompanied by a rendering showing what the new public space intervention will look like.
In June 2020, while the most violent demonstrations of the last decades in the United States were taking place at the hands of BLM protesters, Bowser lent her support to the organization when she renamed a section of 16th Street, officially calling it “Black Lives Matter Street.”
At the time, Mayor Browser proudly posted on her Twitter account, “The section of 16th street in front of the White House is now officially ‘Black Lives Matter Plaza.’”
BLM is an organization that claims that there is a kind of systemic racism in the United States and also in other countries and attempts to attack this alleged racism through violent protests and with extreme grievances such as defunding the police system.
The organization grew exponentially in popularity worldwide during 2020, following the death of African-American George Floyd in Minneapolis, Minnesota, after a confrontation with a police officer in a confusing episode.
As the protests became increasingly violent, the most conservative sectors and many Republicans repudiated his actions. Meanwhile, the Democrats, especially those more closely linked to radical left-wing politics, provided strong support, which facilitated its growth.
In 2021, the organization was involved in a great controversy after the resignation of Patrisse Cullors, one of its co-founders, accused of embezzlement and corruption.