Between the Washington, DC neighborhoods of Capitol Hill and the ‘Riverfront District', a rapidly developing area that includes the city's Navy Yard and new baseball stadium, lies a three-block long neighborhood that for decades has experienced decline and abandonment after the construction of the Southeast Freeway through its borders. Today, however, this neighborhood-the southern part of the area known as ‘Barracks Row' for its Marine Barracks - is on the cusp of a new and potentially vibrant future.
This report is part of a semester-long project undertaken by graduate planning students in the Urban Studies and Planning Program at the University of Maryland at College Park. With support from the local community and the District of Columbia's Department of Planning, this report makes recommendations as to how Lower Barracks Row can best respond to the changing neighborhood climate and evolve to help its current residents and surrounding communities. The borders of this study area were I Street SE to its north, M Street SE to its south, and 7th and 9th Streets SE to its west and east, respectively. The research question that guided this report asked the following question.
In the face of current vacancies and growing development pressures in the area, how can Lower Barracks Row grow into a vibrant corridor that better connects to Upper Barracks Row and the Riverfront District - by using tools such as streetscape improvements, zoning changes, freeway modification, and mixed-use development- all while reserving the historic character of Capitol Hill and strengthening the area's existing assets?