Concerning your article on the Duke Ellington School of the Arts and its deteriorating building (“Tough Gig,” 2/18), it occurred to me that a great way to resolve the current Columbia Heights development dispute and help the school would be to use the Tivoli Theatre and the adjacent land to build a new academic campus. The students would get a great theater that they could rent out to raise funds, the school would be Metro-accessible and therefore much more convenient than at its current Georgetown location, and our community would gain a wonderful asset. The proximity to Bell Multicultural High School also might provide opportunities for coordinated programs.

Economic development is definitely needed in Columbia Heights, but we also need other types of projects that benefit the public good. The situation presents an opportunity for our elected officials and other community leaders to do something that truly puts the land and our tax dollars to good use. Let’s hope they rise to the occasion.

Columbia Heights