Will pop-up shops help revitalize downtown DC? Mayor Bowser hopes so

D.C. is going to see a lot more pop-up shops this summer.

Mayor Muriel Bowser is launching a pilot program that allows pop-ups and art installations downtown to bypass the traditional permit process.

This effort to fill up some of the vacant space downtown is backed by $2.5 million from the mayor's 2025 budget.

"A vibrant and dynamic Downtown benefits our entire city," said Mayor Bowser in a statement. "Pop-ups not only help fill empty spaces – they represent an opportunity for entrepreneurs to grow their businesses by tapping into new audiences and for our creatives to activate low-cost, flexible spaces."


Downtown DC business owners thrilled as Wizards, Capitals stay put

Businesses around Capital One Arena are breathing a sigh of relief after the announcement that the Washington Wizards and Capitals will stay in Washington D.C.

Department of Buildings Director Brian Hanlon added that the agency is at the center of D.C.'s growth as a catalyst for economic development. 

"Through our new accelerated Pop-Up Permits process, we are collaborating with creators and the business community to bring vacant properties back into safe and productive uses that benefit the community," Hanlon said. 

Capital Fringe will take a vacant spot downtown between July 9 and July 21 as part of its annual arts festival.

For more information, visit dob.dc.gov/pop-up-permits.