On the 25th of February, tenants from Museum Square and Mt Vernon Plaza backed by ONE DC and API Resistance showed up outside their landlord’s office in Clarendon, VA. Originally the plan was to send a delegation inside to deliver their letter demanding an end to illegal attempts to intimidate tenants into moving out. The tenants themselves though had another idea, with almost the whole group essentially storming the building and taking over the lobby. Bush Properties accepted their letter, but the person taking denied that they were even at the right office. Organizers knew better than to buy that excuse but everyone marched back outside, chanting “we’ll be back!”
Bush Properties has been stopped by the DC government from legally “clearing” the Museum Square propertie with mass evictions so now they are using intimidation tactics in defiance of the city government. Tenants have won nearly every stage of that fight in which the DC government has been involved so now Bush goes outside the law. At Mt Vernon Plaza they probably have the same objective, given that fancy new condos are right next door. Instead of the brazen notice of intent to evict everyone used at Museum Square, Bush Properties demanded a 50% rent hike. There too tenants organized to fight back and again tenants are winning but Bush properties is playing dirty.
Bush Properties should remember that playing rough is a game two can play. Back in December Congress Heights tenants facing eviction and teardown targetted an investor in their building, showing up and staging a demonstration not at his office in daytime, but rather at his home after dark.