September 6, 2019
702 H Street NW, Suite 400
Washington, DC 20001
Re: Proposed Detention Center for Unaccompanied Migrant Children at 6896 Laurel St, NW
Dear Mr. Jemal –
The Board of Directors of the Old Takoma Business Association is writing to urge Douglas Development to not proceed
with the Detention Center for Unaccompanied Migrant Children proposed for 6896 Laurel St NW in the Takoma
neighborhood of Washington, DC. We know that you, as property owner, have ultimate control over the tenants that
reside in your buildings.
As an organization that serves both Washington, DC and Takoma Park, MD, we are in support of the positions taken by
our elected officials – Washington, DC Mayor Muriel Bowser, Takoma Park Mayor Kate Stewart and Ward 4
Councilmember Brandon Todd, who have all made statements against such a detention center in our community.
We also recognize the safety issues associated with such a large facility in the center of our small commercial district. Based on news reports from other cities, it is clear that the presence of ICE personnel increases which incites fear in residents, visitors and employees, ongoing protests are common, and protesters have been the target of violent crimes.
These activities would detrimentally impact our small businesses by detracting visitors and residents alike from coming to
the Takoma commercial district.
Douglas Development has been a longtime member of the Old Takoma Business Association and we provide ongoing
support to all of your tenants – our small Takoma businesses. We ask that you consider the impact on the small businesses
in the community and the entire Takoma commercial district and urge you to terminate any lease activity for this purpose immediately.
Laura Barclay | executive director
Old Takoma Business Association
Your Main Street Takoma
Councilmember Brandon Todd
Mayor Kate Stewart
Shamil Mohammed, EF Language School, Director Operations/East Coast