Local downtown businesses are preparing for the worst.
After property damage resulting from protests over the summer and a multitude of incidents happening in past years, many D.C. businesses have decided of their own accord to board up storefront windows. "Better safe than sorry" they always say, and this upcoming Election Day has the potential for downtown D.C. to witness another bout of chaos.
Speaking with WTOP News, Leona Agouritis—the executive director of the Golden Triangle Business Improvement District—said, “The city has indicated that they are not expecting to have any protest or violence or any kind of incidents in the city based on what they know at this point...They are not recommending that people board up based on the information they have right now."
However, that being said, many store owners have decided to protect their property just in case. In June, more than 80 businesses reported the windows of their storefronts damaged, and some were looted.
Many shops have felt the financial impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and after taking damage over the summer, they worry they may not recoup from any further vandalism. The uncertainty of the times doesn't help either, and there's no way of knowing when bursts of violence could occur, if at all. As reported by the Washingtonian, an email from Mount Vernon Triangle Business Improvement District President Kenyattah A. Robinson was sent to members suggesting they prepare for more than just Election Night.
“While at this time there are no known or credible threats to the District, business and property owners should plan for the eventuality that something may happen on Election Night and the entire week following, particularly during the hours of 7pm-Midnight.”
Here's hoping that all of this preparation is unnecessary and the coming weeks will run smoothly, that the downtown area will return to normal in the near future. There is the Downtown Holiday Market to look forward to after all. But, like they always say, "Better safe than sorry."
Do you live in D.C. and have your own photos to add? How are things in your town looking? Are there any other Election Day preparations going on? Let us know in the comments!