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Bowser Administration and Planet Word Museum to Break Ground on Franklin School

Friday, June 1, 2018

Chanda Washington [email protected] - (202) 727-6698

(WASHINGTON, DC) – On Monday, June 4, 2018, the Bowser Administration will join Planet Word Museum for a groundbreaking ceremony to mark the start of renovations for the historic Franklin School, located at the intersection of 13th Street NW and K Street NW in Ward 2. Delivering on the Bowser Administration’s commitment to the creative economy, the proposed development will transform the historic space into Planet Word, an interactive language arts museum and education space.

The event will include “First Look” media tours of The Franklin School beginning at 11:15 am.

The Franklin School, a National Historic Landmark built in 1869, was chosen to house Planet Word in large part for its historic connection to the museum’s mission. It was at Franklin School that Alexander Graham Bell made the first wireless transmission of the human voice – words – using a Photophone, (a precursor to fiberoptic technology), in 1880.

The three-story historic museum will have exhibits, classrooms, offices, an auditorium, event space, an outdoor café, and a restaurant and kitchen. A fourth floor is being added under the original soaring mansard roof, which will house a new event space and connect to the historic roof terrace.


Monday, June 4, 2018
Media "First Look" Tour: 11:15 a.m. at Franklin School building
Program in Franklin Park begins at 12 noon


Deputy Mayor for Planning and Economic Development Brian Kenner
Councilmember Jack Evans (Ward 2)
Founder, Chair and CEO of Planet Word Ann B. Friedman
2018 Youth Poet Laureate Aniyah Smith
Author Jason Reynolds
Local Projects Principal and Founder Jake Barton
Planet Word donor Ann Doerr
Planet Word board member Ralph Smith
Local singer/songwriter Jazzlyn Ford


Franklin Square Park, 13th and K Streets NW, across the street from the Franklin School building.

*Closest Metro: McPherson Square Metro Station*

Press interested in attending the event are asked to RSVP to [email protected]. To view the event online, visit or tune in on Channel 16.