There are plenty of people, who have never heard of Brightwood, and the reason is simple – it’s so quiet and below the radar that it feels like the only mention of the neighborhood is among its residents. And that’s the way this northern D.C. community likes it, void of the stress and rush usually associated with D.C. Among other things the neighborhood can be proud about, it is noted for its rich African American heritage, and it is home to Fort Stevens, which played a large role in the defense of the city during the Civil War.
The Front Porch of D.C.
When coming down from the north, Brightwood is what greets you upon your entry into D.C. It has that quaint small town feel, characterized by beautiful row houses with great front porches, a friendly and helpful community with a simple lifestyle. Brightwood is home to a rich diversity of ethnic and cultural groups, all appreciating the benefits of a quiet and silent neighborhood, completely lacking all the traffic and hassle associated with big city life.
The main retail center of the neighborhood is Georgia Avenue, which flows through the center of Brightwood. It hosts a variety of popular chain restaurants, as well as smaller ethnic eateries, including Wapa Caf�, Julia’s Empanadas and Chez Aunty Libe. In December 2013, Walmart also opened a 106,000 square-foot store near the intersection of Georgia and Missouri Avenues, catering to the retail and grocery shopping needs of the area’s residents.
Not Busting Your Wallet
A quick inspection of Brightwood will reveal the predominant housing type. Rows of moderately-sized row houses line up the quiet streets of the neighborhood, with an unobtrusive art deco apartment building interposed here and there. The price range is remarkably low for D.C., with median home value at around $500,000, making Brightwood a very affordable option for young graduates and couples wanting to settle down for family life.
While Brightwood may be lacking in flashy commercial strips and modern entertainment options, it makes up for it in laid-back spirit and affordability. The neighborhood is just inside D.C., but far enough from Downtown to maintain the small town charm. It may not have all the amenities and services a bustling inner-city area may offer, but the sense of community and friendliness makes living in Brightwood much less impersonal, and much more rewarding.
SF Walmart opened in December 2013 - 106k
Increase in single-family home prices (2012–2013)2 - 14%
Average closing price for single-family homes in 20132 - $440k
Average traffic volume on Georgia Avenue - 23.8k
Source : Neighborhood Profiles: 2014 Edition. (2014, February 17). Washington, DC Economic Partnership, Retrieved from http://www.wdcep.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/02/np14_final_lowres.pdf