The city has announced plans to build a conventional center at a cost of $110 million. Washington Post staff writer Louise A. Reid and staff photographer Linda Wheeler went to Mount Vernon Square and along F Street downtown to ask District residents if they believe the city needs a convention center.
Karen Bohan, 26, who lives in Northwest: "No. I do not think the city should build one. I'm from North Carolina and we built one down there and it wasn't worth the taxpayers' money. I think they should use the money for other things like restoration. The one we had in North Carolina was really expensive and has not pulled in the money. I think they ought to use the money to renovate the Willard Hotel. I just don't see the need for a convention center."
Roscoe Bridges, 20, who lives on 51st St. NE: "I think it's a good ideas, myself. It would be nice. It would be here in the District instead of making you go out to Maryland. The money would be used for a worthy cause."
Francine Lewis, 26, lives on Newcome St. SE: "No. I don't think they should build the convention center. They could invest the money in better housing. In the ghetto, they need better playing areas for children. Apartment areas wouldn't be as bad as they are if kids had better places to play."
John Jenkins, 31, lives on Bruce Place SE: "Sure, they should build it. All of these people here, Washingtonians like to get it on. Better to have a convention center here in our town than having to go all the way out to Maryland. The transportation there is so bad. They've got a lot of good reasons for putting it here. If they took the taxpayer's money and put it anywhere else, we wouldn't even see it."
Gary Jordan, 18, lives on 19th St. NE: "If it supplies more jobs I would think they should build it. It would help the community, or it least it should because of jobs. It would better the community.
Diana Greene, 21, lives on Rhode Island Avenue NW: "I just moved to this city about two weeks ago so I don't know that much about it. I do think D.C. needs one, through I think it would be useful."
Cherokee Johnson, 24, lives on Galveston Street SW: "No, I don't think we need one. There's no room for it. I really would like to see the money used differently. I think they should have a D.C. lottery and they should legalize prostitution. If they legalized it, that's revenue within itself. Anywhere you have a convention center, they're going to have prostitution."