Black Lives Matter Plaza will become a permanent art installation. D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser made the announcement Thursday about the future of the now-iconic downtown street in front of the White House.
It was a move that drew international headlines at the height of the Black Lives Matter demonstrations last summer: Bowser had the words painted in enormous bold yellow letters for the world to see.
"We had just an unprecedented experience with the president of the United States taking over on D.C. streets," Bowser said.
Speaking to the Washington Post, Bowser said she has new plans for the street that leads to the White House to make Black Lives Matter Plaza permanent and more of a destination.
"In fact, right now we're undergoing a process to make the installation more permanent, and with lighting and landscaping and all the things that you expect an iconic art installation … to install this piece of art with a very affirming message that not only our residents needed to hear, but people around the world needed to hear. And they really appreciated that Donald Trump couldn’t avoid it," Bowser said.
Right now, the street is in the midst of underground utility work that has the street in a state of disrepair.
It was disappointing for a family visiting from Houston, Texas, but they were cautiously optimistic about it becoming a permanent art installation.
"As long as the sentiment is actually that black lives actually matter and not just art, it will be pretty good," said visitor Calvin Murray.
For Jessica Roberts and her puppy, Black Lives Matter Plaza is a destination for their daily walks.
"I think it's really important that we recognize black lives and we have a space that’s so prominent in front of the White House," Roberts said.
The Bowser administration would not provide any specifics on what improvements or changes would be made or on a timeline for the work.