Washington | DC
The U Street Corridor is a commercial and residential district in Northwest Washington, D.C, U.S.A., with many shops, restaurants, nightclubs, art galleries, and music venues along a nine-block stretch of U Street. It extends from 9th Street on the east to 18th Street and Florida Avenue on the west. Most of the area is part of the larger Shaw neighborhood, with the western end entering the Dupont Circle neighborhood. It is served by the U Street Washington Metro station. U Street is largely a Victorian-era neighborhood, developed between 1862 and 1900, the majority of which has been designated a historic district. The area is made up of row houses constructed rapidly by speculative builders and real estate developers in response to the city’s high demand for housing following the Civil War and the growth of the federal government in the late 19th century. The corridor became commercially significant when a streetcar line operated there in the early 20th century, making it convenient for the first time for government employees to commute downtown to work and shop.
The U Street area has made redevelopment a priority to return the area to provide desirable commercial products. Examples of those development efforts are the Reeves Center, located at the intersection of 14th Street and U Street, by city investments totaling $50 million, increased accessibility with Metrorail and bus stops on U Street, the implementation of Capital Bikeshare, funding by the Department of Housing and Urban Development promoted historical significance known as “Remembering U Street”, new construction as well as rehabilitation projects provided more quality housing in the area.
U Street has long been a center of Washington’s music scene, with the Lincoln Theatre, Howard Theatre, Bohemian Caverns, and other clubs like on 9th Street at Harrington’s, and Chez Maurice Restaurants and historic jazz venues. The 9:30 Club, the Black Cat, DC9, U Street Music Hall, and the Velvet Lounge musical venues are located on the corridor, which is also home to the D.C. music collective Spelling for Bees. U Street also hosts the annual Funk Parade, a festival and celebration of funk music, community arts, and creativity. Public art, graffiti and murals can be found on almost every corner along U Street. In 2011, U Street NW was designated a Great Street among Great Places in America by the American Planning Association. It is said to have been selected for in recognition of the street return to its grandeur after several decades of difficulties. Once again, the street hosts the arts, food, and businesses.