U Street Corridor lies in the northwestern part of Washington, DC and stretches from 9th street on the east to 18th street and Florida Avenue on the west. The area also overlaps with the Shaw neighborhood and enters the Dupont Circle on the west. It is mainly a commercial cum residential district with many retails, bars, restaurants, music venues and art galleries. The district is also served by the U Street, Washington Metro station, which connects it to the rest of DC. In the earlier days, U Street was an important hub for African American business. Many of the trades continue till the present day.
Most of the present day U Street neighborhood was shaped during the early 1860 and 1900s and had Victorian era homes, built mainly for the urban migration after the civil war. Roads and streets came up, resulting in a healthy trade and commerce in the area. The U Street was chosen by the African American communities as the most desirable place to settle as a result of which the area became home to a large African American population. This neighborhood is considered as the Harlem of intellectual and cultural uprising of the African American community. The area has many streets and theaters named after popular African American figures. This is also the neighborhood where the great sensation, Duke Ellington grew up.
After the assassination of Martin Luther King Jr., riots broke out in several of the districts including U Street. In fact, U Street was amongst the most severely affected areas. Poverty hit hard during the 1960s and 1970s. Drug and violence started growing, as a result of which many residents drove out and population eventually declined. However, the area received major revitalization after the 1990s and 2000s, during which, a number of shopping malls, high rises and restaurants were opened. Today, U Street is known for its exceptional success in revitalization program.
There are a number of public schools in U Street. However, the average school test scores are 46 % lower than the national average. Other than that, 92.3% of the residents have completed 8th grade, 91.5% have completed high school and 81.5 % have completed a bachelor’s degree.
U Street is situated right in the heart of Washington, DC and is amongst the most easily accessible areas in the entire city. There are always some transportation options heading into and out of the area. U Street is served by the U Street – Cardozo Metro Station and the Adams Morgan – McPherson Circulator. The district also has several zip cars, a smart bike station and is traversed by bus routes. Apart from that, U Street is a very happening area and easily walkable with lots of activity going on everywhere.
Places to visit:
Meridian Hill Park
This park is also referred to by the locals as Malcolm X park. It is amongst the largest parks in this part of the city and has taken inspiration from the Italian gardens. The park looks splendid with 13 cascading fountains and perfectly manicured lawns.
It is not everywhere that you get to eat in an Ethiopian restaurant. So make the most out of your visit by dining on the U Street, which is lined with Ethiopian streets, they serve amazing spicy curries, bright colors and the special spongy bread known as injera.
U Street is lined with vintage retail stores where you can pick anything from classy accessories to clothes to interior decors to furniture pieces.
Happy bar is a great place for hangout, especially after a tiring day. They serve great food and drink and has the perfect ambiance for unwinding.