The Next Best Neighborhoods in DC
Nestled north of Capitol Hill, and south of Gallaudet University and the streets of Trinidad is one of The Next Best Neighborhoods in DC: The H Street Corridor, also known as the Atlas District. This eastern section of DC is comprised of a sizable residential grid of historic brownstones and mid-sized apartment buildings, as well as numerous accessible commercial spaces in the form of street level store fronts and shopping centers to the eastern outskirts of the neighborhood. The area’s proximity to Union Station and it’s public transportation accessibility to Capitol Hill have always made it an attractive residential area desirable to students, artists, and the working class alike. With The Washington Post listing average monthly rents in the $1,300 dollar range, and the revitalization in full force, this makes makes the H Street Corridor, the up-and-coming, well-situated location of opportunity.
The main artery here is H Street, which has become the focal point of this sector’s revitalization projects. Although these efforts have met with some controversy from the settled residents of the neighborhood, the overall myriad of public and private actions have converged to raise property values and ignite a renaissance in what was once a historic part of the District. This area was devastated due to Civil Rights rioting in the late 60s, leaving an indelible and hard-to-heal wound, that would not be fully addressed until the early 2000s. Spearheading the redevelopment, historic locales such as the Atlas Theater, a 1930s movie house in disrepair since the riots, have now been brought back to life as a refurbished dance studio and performance space. Other spaces such as the H Street Playhouse, Gallery O on H; and busy live music venues, the Red and the Black and the Rock & Roll Hotel, are fueling and nourishing the art and cultural rebirth of the sector. A flourishing restaurant and bar scene is also bringing in curious neighbors to the H Street Corridor as well as keeping the established residents returning to support their local businesses.
Another vital resource within reach is the United States National Arboretum, which serves as a natural oasis from the cement jungle. Nearly 450 acres of park sanctuary, only a mile and a half from the heart of H street.
As the gentrification and diversification story of the H Street Corridor continues to unfold one thing is predominantly clear: with an average of 54% of the residents in this sector being single and a median age of 35 it is very likely that the nightlife, the hustle and bustle, and the germination of culture and fresh ideas will continue to thrive.