Pennsylvania Avenue could get new name
Thursday, January 13, 2011
WASHINGTON (AP) — Unconstitutional Avenue? No Vote Street? Statehood Way? Those are just a few of the suggestions that some Washington residents have proposed for renaming Pennsylvania Avenue — of White House fame — to highlight their lack of statehood.
Backers of the idea to rename the capital’s most prominent avenue, or part of it, say such a step would underscore the fact that the city’s 600,000 residents have no vote in Congress.
D.C. Council member Michael A. Brown planned a meeting Thursday evening to seek input on ceremonially renaming Washington’s most celebrated avenue. No one would take down any street signs if officials ultimately agree on a new name, but ceremonial street designation signs could go up under the existing Pennsylvania Avenue signs.
Because Congress has final say over city laws, any proposal could be rejected on Capitol Hill.
“Pennsylvania Avenue is the main thoroughfare between the Capitol and the White House. I think it represents government to a lot of people,” said Brown, who already has collected more than a dozen proposals for a new name. “It’s still our city street.”
The White House is at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave., but other important buildings also line the avenue.
The street is also famous for being part of the route a new president follows during every inaugural parade.