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Takoma Community Guide Real Estate Lovely older homes with tree-lined streets

History and Flavor

Formerly part of Takoma Park, Maryland, Takoma was developed by Benjamin Franklin Gilbert in 1883 as a suburb for commuters on the Metropolitan Branch of the Baltimore and Ohio railroad line. Gilbert encouraged the Seventh-day Adventist Church to put down roots for their world headquarters and publishing house.

Along with a hospital and college (in next door in Takoma Park, Maryland), the community’s reputation improved from being known as the “malaria swamp’ of the city to a place of vegetarianism and “clean living.” 

Takoma was formed when it was decided to divide the towns since the D.C. boundary line ran right through Takoma Park. Takoma was the retail and exchange hub for the surrounding area. Before the build-up of nearby Silver Spring, Maryland, Takoma featured large shops and industrial buildings in the piece of real estate currently occupied by the Metro station.

Located on the extreme northeastern tip of the District, Takoma was DC’s first railroad suburb. Today you’ll find many impressive historic homes and lovely tree-lined streets. People often move to Takoma searching for reasonably priced older homes, many of which were built between 1920 and 1950.

Many residents of Takoma have lived there for generations. But you’ll find many younger families drawn to the neighborhood too.  Takoma offers a free local rec center, parks, and playgrounds. Dining options aren’t quite as plentiful, but the area provides an attractive, community-oriented atmosphere.

Takoma was originally the name of Mount Rainier in Washington State, translated from Lushootseed as “snow-covered mountain.” Gilbert wanted to rename the Brightwood train stop, and it was decided to name it Takoma in 1883 by D.C. resident Ida Summy, who believed it to mean “high up” or “near heaven.”

Entertainment

Music & Parks

  • Takoma Station Tavern Soul, jazz & various other artists play on a small stage in a cozy space with pub food & a full bar.
  • Karma DC Live Music Venue– A truly unique venue. An old warehouse feel with a vast stage and hookah lounge. The ambiance is casual, and the music is always great. This is a cool spot for a night out!
  • Washington Music Viva– A chamber music non-profit organization based in Takoma Park, Maryland, producing concerts primarily in Montgomery County MD (Silver Spring, Bethesda, and Takoma Park), northern Virginia, and Washington, DC. WMV is the home base of the Milo Trio, a professional piano trio formed by Celaya Kirchner, violin, Emma Hays Johnson, cello, and Carl Banner, piano.
  • Union Stage– Small, intimate venue for varied live-music performances & a bar with draft beer & pizza.
  • The Howard Theatre– The Howard Theatre is a historic theater located at 620 T Street, Northwest, Washington, D.C. Opened in 1910, it was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1974.
  • Takoma Dog Park– A gravel clay surfaced park where you can let your four-legged family members can socialize and get some exercise. You’ll find lots of benches, fun obstacles for the dogs, a separate area for smaller dogs, and there’s a water fountain! There’s also an abundance of shade from a big tree. The park can be found at 300 Van Buren St NW.
  • Takoma Playground– The play space at Takoma is located at 300 Van Buren Street, NW in Ward 4. The outdoor play area is adjacent to a field house and across the street from the aquatic center. The site currently features play equipment, fields, and various sports courts.
  • Takoma Community Center– A full-service facility that serves participants from toddlers to seniors.  The building is equipped with programs such as fitness classes, personal enrichment, and summer camps. It is home to a beautiful indoor aquatics facility.

Shopping/Restaurants 

Popular Shopping and Eats

  • Takoma Park Shopping Center Anchored by German-based Lidl, this 17 tenant strip mall has a variety of services from banking to manicures to Mexican food.
  • Takoma Park Plaza– Get your laundry done, a manicure, and pick up dinner all in one strip mall.
  • The Covered Market– Unique gifts or home furnishings can be found here. The Covered Market has ceramics, clothing, footwear, and more.
  • Amano– Amano started in Chile when the owners lived there for eight years. They made their own line of handknit sweaters there and sold them in the US. When they moved back to this area, they eventually opened their first store next to the current location in 1998. Inside, you’ll find comfortable shoes and unique clothing and jewelry for women.
  • Tabletop– Creative collections for your home, your life, and your friends.
  • DCTees.co– Unique art-based clothing for men and women as well as traditional wall hanging art.
  • The Big Bad Woof– Pet supply store stocking raw, organic & premium foods, plus eco-friendly grooming services.
  • Busboys and Poets– Busboys and Poets is a community where racial and cultural connections are consciously uplifted. A place to take a deliberate pause and feed your mind, body, and soul. It’s a space for art, culture, and politics to collide intentionally. Serving breakfast, brunch, and lunch.
  • ELife Restaurant Takoma Park– Cafeteria-style eatery offering vegan versions of soul food standards, plus desserts & a full bar.
  • Kin Da– Green walls & soft lighting set the scene at this storefront, serving sushi, curries & Thai fare.
  • Horace & Dickies– Locally-owned outfit for seafood takeaway & soul food sides in no-frills surrounds.
  • Trattoria da Lina– Heirloom recipes for Italian classics served in an old-world room with a family-friendly atmosphere.

Schools   

Best Public High Schools

Best Public Elementary Schools

Public Transportation

Buses/Trains

Tacoma Subway Station– Train

Tacoma Station Bay B– Bus stop

Georgia Ave & Eastern Ave– Bus stop

Georgia Ave & Juniper St– Bus stop

Butternut St & Piney Branch Rd– Bus stop

Aspen St & Georgia Ave– Bus stop

Georgia Ave & Piney Branch Rd.– Bus stop

Median Home Value

$493,643 as of 2021

Renters: 62%

Owners: 38%

Demographics

Population 10,682

Median household income –  $89,880

Median age: 36

Families with children – 17%

High school diploma or equivalent – 14%

College Degree: 77%

43% African American

34% White

17% Hispanic

4% Asian

2% Other