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Neighborhood Profile: Rhode Island Avenue and Rhode Island Row

Washington DC has always been a city of contrasts: urban and natural, North and South, Democrats and Republicans. And throughout its history, one of the greatest contrasts was between preservation and renewal in the city’s neighborhoods.

One of the places where this is most clearly in evidence is along the Rhode Island Corridor, through DC, and into Maryland. Encompassing Rte 1 as it leaves the District and enters Maryland, this stretch of Rhode Island Avenue has undergone a revitalization that keeps expanding while also retaining much of the character that has made this such a beloved stretch of Washington DC.

Looking for a fun place to hang out and learn something new? Woodridge Neighborhood Library has programs for everyone, including Lego Club for the kids, American Sign Language classes, a financial boot camp, and more.

Rhode Island Row and Mt. Rainer

One of the newer mixed-use spaces along RIA is Rhode Island Row, a combination of shops, restaurants, and residences. Check out neighborhood favorite Carolina Kitchen  for Southern comfort food. And don’t miss the weekly farmer’s markets that run May through October.  Of course, Rhode Island Avenue has a number of beloved restaurants. Nido’s Mediterranean cuisine is especially appealing, with its emphasis on freshness and simplicity. Do not miss their weekend brunch featuring an emphasis on savory flavors and small bites.

As you enter Maryland on RIA, you’ll drive into the charming community of Mt. Rainier, an area undergoing revitalization. Home of Mount Rainier Artist Lofts, and Artspace live/work project, as well as Red Dirt Studios and the Washington Glass School and Studio, this community’s artistic and creative reputation draws makers from all over the world. And affordability draws many area residents, with single-family homes priced under $400,000.

The green architecture emphasizes the revitalization of this area, with highly efficient building projects like net-zero homes.  Offering style, functionality, and unmatched efficiencies, many area projects emphasize sustainable living.

Area restaurants include Bird Kitchen + Cocktails and Vigilante Coffee. Continuing just a few minutes up the road into Hyattsville you’ll find the new Pizzeria Paradiso location, the small chain’s first location in Maryland. Another five minutes will find you at the expansive ongoing development Riverdale Park Station, featuring a new Whole Foods and a variety of shops, restaurants, residences, and a soon-to-open hotel, as well as green spaces and outdoor activities like hiking and bike trails.


Revitalization of this area is just beginning, it seems, with a number of new projects proposed and currently under construction. Rising at the old Brookland Manor Apartments and Brentwood Village Shopping Center site, the RIA development is a centerpiece of the District’s revitalization of the Rhode Island Avenue Corridor. A multi-year study and development process is underway, and the goal is to facilitate the revitalization of this Northeast DC neighborhood and the attraction of new commercial and residential development in the area.

The project broke ground in 2018, and some mixed-use development is in place now. RIA is envisioned as a combination of retail, residences, a town square, pedestrian-friendly promenades, and green space.  The total project as envisioned will take at least a decade to complete and the goal, according to developers MidCity, is to create a model 21st century community that values and incorporates diversity through its planning both economically and socially. With a variety of types of homes and an attendant variety of price-points, developers hope to create an aspirational and vibrant urban community.

With new projects constantly being created and an emphasis on outdoor living, sustainability, and community planning, the Rhode Island Avenue Corridor looks to be one of the most exciting areas of the District and the DC metro area for many years to come. Want to explore your own little corner of RIA? Let your Eng Garcia Realtor help you find the right neighborhood for you. Sign in at our website and let’s get started!

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