Woodley Park, a high-end DC neighborhood next to the National Zoo

Straddling Connecticut Avenue south of the National Zoo is Woodley Park a high end district developed mostly in the early 20th century. The eastern half of the neighborhood is mostly rowhouses fabric, at least in the residential streets. Connecticut Ave has been mostly replaced with large apartment buildings between the 1910s and 1950s. The western half of Woodley Park is mostly high priced single family homes. There are two urban commercial nodes along Connecticut, the smaller one at the western gate of the National Zoo and the larger one at Calvert Street.

Overall this a pleasant but not spectacular urban district. It lacks the commercial district and mixed-use development to an elite DC urban neighborhood. Neighborhood strengths include its metro access, quality parks and walkable schools, and decent bike infrastructure. Along with being a wealthy enclave, many embassies have claimed the neighborhood’s large historic mansions. Like most of DC, Woodley Park needs more affordable housing options. It also has limited family households and retail and cultural amenities are a bit lacking (at least compared to adjacent DC neighborhoods).
Click here to view the Woodley Park album on my Flickr page

URBAN STRENGTHS:

* Very convenient access to DC with a metro ride of no more than 20 minutes, easy bike ride, or short car trip.
* Bike infrastructure is good, but not as good as other central DC districts.
* Good density likely due to the high concentration of large apartment buildings here.
* Great racial diversity here helped by the high concentration of embassies in the district. 
* Very safe neighborhood with really no blight.
* Good Park amenities with Rock Creek Park wrapping around the southern edge of the district and the Tergaron Conservatory to the north and some athletic fields associated with neighborhood schools. No really neighborhood parks though.
* Great tree canopy including lots of street trees.
* Nice mix of historic SF homes, rowhouses, and large apartment buildings from the 1910s-1940s. Urban in-fill is of a good quality as well.
* Good but not great cultural amenities including a nice cluster of Diverse restaurants, bars, and cafes along Connecticut Avenue. The biggest attraction is the Smithsonian Nat Zoo on the district’s eastern edge.
* Retail amenities is similar including a pharmacy, a hardware store, bookstore, and some creative retail and boutiques. No grocery store, library, post office, or larger retailer. All of these amenities are in the adjacent Cleveland Park district walkable to half of Woodley Park residents.
* Nice mix of walkable private, public schools within Woodley Park. 

URBAN WEAKNESSES:

* Medium income is over 100K but some economic diversity in Woodley Park.
* Only about 1/4 of households have children.
* Great concentration of rentals but expensive. Studios start in the low $1,000s and 1-bedrooms rent btwn 1.5K-2.5K, 2-bedrooms generally in the $2,000s and 3-bedrooms over $3,000s.
* For-sale options also expensive. The lower end are studio condos starting in the 200Ks. Most 1-bedroom condos sell for 300-400K, 2-bedroom condos range from 400K into the low millions depending if its luxury. Any 3 or 4 bedroom option selling over 1 Million. 5 bedroom generally over 2 Million. 

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