Protesters Call for Reopening of Street

Kathleen Hennessey, AP, April 18, 2009

Protesters marched on the Las Vegas Strip on Saturday as they called for the reopening of a street described as a gateway into the city’s historically black neighborhood.

Nearly 100 people chanted and waved signs urging city and state officials to tear down the wall that blocks off F Street as an entry point to West Las Vegas. The neighborhood has long been the heart of the black community and was home to city’s black casino, The Moulin Rouge.

The street was closed in September as part of a highway widening project.

“We think we’re being segregated and redlined and that we’re no longer included in progress in this city,” said Trish Geran, the chairwoman of Stop the F Street Closure.

Geran is among residents and activists who argue the closure isolates the black community from the rest of Las Vegas and stifles possible development in the area.

Her group and two residents have filed a federal civil rights lawsuit seeking the immediate reopening of the street.

Las Vegas police Lt. Dan McGrath said officer estimated about 75 people rallied Saturday. The crowd chanted “No justice, no peace, reopen F Street!”

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