Are you looking for a community in a trendy, vibrant, and fashion-forward part of Washington DC to call home? Then look at Logan Circle.
Logan Circle is a densely-populated, hip area. The community is just a few blocks due north of the National Mall. The heart of the neighborhood is 14th Street NW, a street dotted with stores stocked with the most fashionable home accessories, furnishings, and clothing stores.
So, many newcomers to the area ask us about the name Logan Circle. The name of this trendy neighborhood comes from the historic traffic circle by that same name. Around that circle sits stately historical brick townhomes dating back to the late 1800s.
Pierre L’Enfant drew the circle into DC’s original plans when he initially drafted plans for the Capitol City. Looking forward to what would become a large city, he foresaw the need for growth. Initially, planners dubbed the traffic circle “Iowa Circle.”
However, Congress renamed it after Major General John A. Logan, soldier and later United States Representative who lived at 4 Logan Circle in 1930, after his death.
The Shopping Culture
In those earliest decades of the 20th century, 14th Street NW was the heart of the “suburbs.” Skirting the edge of downtown, shop rents were cheaper, and businesses, therefore, gravitated to the area. In particular, the community housed several showrooms for the automobiles that were arriving from Detroit.
And, the most well-heeled Washingtonians were trading their carriages for the new mode of transportation.
Some point out that even 100 years ago, we saw a flicker of the community that would become the trendiest in DC.
Fast Forward to Today
Logan Circle today has made a comeback. After several decades of the area being deemed “unsafe,” the area reinvented its identity.
What was once an abandoned auto garage is now a Whole Foods Market. And, abandoned hostels are now loft apartments. Formerly shabby blocks of buildings have been renewed, and the payoff for those who invested in real estate here has paid off big.
Thousands of chic people live in the area, gladly paying premium prices for their lofts and condominiums.
But what attracts them?
14th Street Revitalization
The restoration of 14th Street NW impacts property values and makes the area alluring to those who flock to this trendy district. Once a blighted area, condemned buildings are demolished and rebuilt. And, salvaged structures have been gutted and lovingly restored.
But what moved into those commercial spaces?
- Art galleries: Small galleries feature works of both local artists and draw art lovers from around the entire DC Metro area to shop.
- Live theater companies: Most notably, the Studio Theatre calls Logan Circle home. This theatre specializes in contemporary productions and showcases the top new playwrights of today.
- Retail stores
- Fine dining restaurants
- Wine bars and craft brewpubs
- Gay bars
The unique combination of historic buildings that dot Logan Circle itself and 14th Street Northwest and the contemporary, urban vibe make this neighborhood one of the hottest places to live and play in all of Washington DC.
Access to Everything
Another reason people love living in Logan Circle is nearby access to literally everything that DC has to offer.
Work in the city, but outside of the neighborhood? No problem hop on the Metro system and reach your office in minutes.
Have relatives come to the city to visit you? Plan walking tours to the National Mall and Capitol Building which are practically at your doorstep.
There’s entertainment, shopping, groceries, co-working spaces, and dining right in the neighborhood.
Final Thoughts on Exploring Logan Circle
If you’re arriving in Washington DC in search of a home in a neighborhood that’s happening—right now and in the foreseeable future—Logan Circle is it.
One word of advice, though. The townhouses, condos, and lofts that dot this neighborhood come with a steep price tag and a lot of competition. Inventory is somewhat limited, and sellers often entertain multiple offers. Work with a real estate agent who is both a skilled negotiator and an expert in closing deals in the most competitive environments.
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