It was a fallout shelter during the Cold War and a short-lived food court in the 1990s. Since then, it’s sat vacant, the subject of much idle debate. But now, finally, the Dupont Underground is getting a new lease on life—-or at least a new lease.
The city is working on a three- to five-year lease to turn the former streetcar space under Dupont Circle into an art exhibition hall and public event venue, the Washington Business Journal reports. The Arts Coalition for the Dupont Underground submitted one of two bids for the subterranean location and was chosen by the city in 2010. After years of surveying the site and coming up with a strategy, the city is finally preparing to sign a lease with the coalition. The lease, the Business Journal reports, is in final negotiations.
The coalition plans to renovate about a third of the 75,000-square-foot chamber for arts functions. The short-term lease will serve as an experiment, with the future usage of the space still to be determined.
Photo courtesy of Arts Coalition for Dupont Underground