Dave Thomas Circle being renamed; organizers ask for community input

Dave Thomas Circle is officially getting renamed.

The small triangle of property between New York Ave NE and Florida Ave NE was once home to a Wendy's restaurant and District residents commonly referred to the notorious traffic hotspot as Dave Thomas Circle after the founder of Wendy's.

In 2021, D.C. used eminent domain to acquire the property as part of a redesign project they say aims to make the intersections safer.


Wendy's restaurant at DC’s infamous ‘Dave Thomas Circle' to close Tuesday

The Wendy's restaurant at D.C.'s infamous 'Dave Thomas Circle' will close Tuesday according to Mayor Muriel Bowser.

Once completed, the intersection will realign and add two-way traffic to First Street, restore two-way traffic on Florida Avenue, add protected bicycle lanes, create three new public park spaces and make other safety improvements.

The project is scheduled to begin later this year, and now the NoMa Business Improvement District is partnering with the District Department of Transportation to invite community members to suggest a name for the new public space.

"We are excited about the new public spaces coming forward with the redesign of Dave Thomas Circle, and we look forward to the great ideas the community shares that capture the vibrancy and vitality of the corridor," said Everett Lott, Director of the District DOT.

Between April 17 and June 25, the public can submit a name recommendation for the trio of new spaces coming to NoMa by completing an online survey. Surveys can also be requested by mail.

Following this first round of nominations, a selection of four to five names will be presented for a community vote so the public can state preferences for a preferred name. The community’s vote will become the basis for the final naming recommendation for this trio of new public spaces to be submitted to both the DC Council and Mayor. Together, they will enact legislation to officially name the spaces.

"The redesign of the Florida Avenue/New York Avenue NE intersection will transform the current space to make it safer for pedestrians, bicyclists, and drivers, while also creating more than one acre of green space for the benefit of the community," said Maura Brophy, President & CEO of the NoMa BID. "We invite the public to submit naming suggestions for this new urban green space in NoMa that will include trees, plants, planters, seating, and public art."

For more details about the reconfiguration of the Florida Avenue/NY Avenue NE Intersection and the new public spaces that will be delivered through this DDOT project, click here.