Living on the Edge of the District in Deanwood
Deanwood is a neighborhood perched just on the edge of Washington D.C., at the border of the district with Maryland. It’s sandwiched in between the Kenilworth and Eastland Gardens neighborhoods in the Northwest and West, the Burrville neighborhood in the Southeast, and Upper Central NE and Lincoln Heights in the South. Its borders are Highway 295, Nannie Helen Burroughs Avenue NE, Division Avenue NE, and Eastern Avenue NE.
Deanwood is one of the older neighborhoods in this corner of the District, and enjoys a lower population density than many of the other neighborhoods in Washington. The homes are mostly older and constructed of a combination of wood and brick. The abundance of trees and lack of larger apartment complexes gives the neighborhood a small-town feel.
Nannie Helen Burroughs, an early civil rights leader who founded the national Training School for Women and Girls, was a neighborhood resident at the turn of the 20th century, and and other neighborhood landmarks are named for her and other Civil Rights leaders.
Home Ownership/Home Preference
Deanwood is a community of renters and homeowners, with slightly more (55 percent) residents preferring to rent. Rents in the neighborhood are reasonable for D.C. and just slightly-higher than the national average at around $975 per month. Home values are also slightly-higher than the national median in the area at around $250,000. The most popular home styles in Deanwood are the Victorian and federal.
As mentioned above, the neighborhood is mostly made up of single-family homes and small multi-family housing. This is a turn of the last century bedroom community and has few large apartment complexes and housing projects.
Commute Information: Getting to and From Work and School
Residents of Deanwood enjoy relatively short commutes into downtown Washington and Central D.C. By car, most of the major employers in the area are reachable within twenty minutes. For those looking to commute via mass transit, trip times can be as long as fifty minutes to an hour via the Deanwood D.C. Metro station. Bicycle commuting to downtown takes about 45 minutes in good weather.
For those living in Deanwood who commute for work or school to the Georgetown University area, or to Howard University or American University in North D.C., commute times can be more than a half hour by car and over an hour by bus or train.
Parking is relatively easy to find in the neighborhood thanks to the lack of urban density mentioned above and the fact that the Deanwood contains no major employers.
There are very few options for residents of the neighborhood looking for outdoor activities in Deanwood. There are no public parks within the neighborhood itself and the closest workout facilities are at the HD Woodson Aquatic center in Burrville, or Your Body Your Business a mile or so away in Marshall Heights.
For those who enjoy gardens and gardening Lederer Gardens, a community garden administered by the government of the District, is just south of the neighborhood across Nannie Helen Burroughs Avenue. Additionally, Marvin Gaye Park is just outside the neighborhood boundary in Burrville; and Kennilworth Park and Aquatic Gardens, a National Park, with its facilities and paths is just across the Kenilworth neighborhood from Deanwood, along the Eastern bank of the Anacostia River.
20 percent of the households in Deanwood have children living at home. Crime statistics for the neighborhood can make raising children here a bit challenging, but given the small-town feel of Deanwood, this is one of the better affordable neighborhoods in terms of family-friendliness. The neighborhood is reasonably easy to get around in and enjoys a walk score of 51, a better transit score (61), and a reasonable bike score of 50.
Schools in Deanwood are respectably rated and include several public charter schools and prep schools. Additionally, the neighborhood school roster includes Roper Junior High School, Houston Elementary School, and The Monroe School. High school age children will find the closest public high school, H.D. Woodson High School, just one neighborhood over, adjacent to the aforementioned Marvin Gaye Park.
The Social Scene
The Deanwood neighborhood does not have any bars or clubs within its boundaries. Residents looking to go out for the evening and enjoy an adult beverage, show, or night of dancing commute to other nearby areas or into Central D.C. to find what they are looking for. Thankfully, the downtown Washington area, loaded with clubs and other nightlife options, is a short cab ride or slightly longer transit ride away.
The Deanwood neighborhood and surrounding area is home to only one pet-oriented business-Home Alone Pet Sitters. There are no off-leash areas or dog parks in the immediate vicinity, but with the trails of Kenilworth Park and Aquatic Gardens and the green space of Marvin Gaye Park within easy reach, not to mention the fact that a large percentage of the homes in the neighborhood have yards, Deanwood is more pet friendly than it might appear to be.
Those looking for the closest pet supplies will find them a quick freeway trip away at Petsmart in Fort Lincoln. And remember, whether you are planning to relocate to Deanwood with a dog or hope to get one once you’ve settled in, it’s important that you acquaint yourself with the District’s pet laws. Not picking up after your pet or letting your dog without a leash in public can carry very steep penalties.
As with pets, there are few senior services available in Deanwood and the surrounding area. In the North of the neighborhood, the Deanwood Recreation Center offers some limited senior programming. But for real senior oriented activities and community, the nearest resource is the Woodson Senior Recreation Center in nearby Burrville.
Culture & Arts in the Neighborhood
Thanks primarily to the fact that it’s in Washington D.C., Deanwood is only a few minutes from some of the best culture and arts programming in the world. With the National Mall and all the other museums and cultural institutions open to the public (many of them free of charge) in the area, it’s a given that the culture and arts in the neighborhood are worthwhile at the least.
That said, other than the Deanwood Recreation Center, there are no cultural or arts institutions, venues, or other establishments within the boundaries of the neighborhood. There’s an arts organization in a neighboring area, however Sign of the Times Cultural Workshop and Gallery is just a few blocks outside the neighborhood, and provides arts programming and workshops for all ages throughout the year.
As with the majority of the neighborhoods along the outer edges of the District, Deanwood’s restaurant scene is built more around convenience foods than it’s around fine dining or adventurous eating. You’ll not find any restaurants in the interior of the neighborhood, and only chains and small take-out and fast food establishments in the commercial areas along the main streets that border Deanwood.
While there are very few retail establishments in the neighborhood, and all of them clustered along the main roads that make up Deanwood’s boundaries, there’s good shopping to be found just a few minutes away in Fort Lincoln at the Shops at Dakota Crossing, and other retail services in nearby Benning at the junction of Benning Road NE and Minnesota Avenue. Additionally, just outside the District in Maryland at the CVS – Addison Plaza, there are several retail establishments.
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