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Shaw Area Seeing Major Redevelopment

Like many communities on the outskirts of Washington D.C.’s long-established downtown and Dupont areas, the Shaw neighborhood  has been slower to change but is now welcoming a surge of enhancing development that’s triggering a hot housing market.

Referred to as the “Harlem of Washington D.C.” for its rich black culture, this area in Northwest along Florida Avenue is predominantly known for Howard University and the U Street corridor of bars, restaurants and shops. Now, its apartment, condos and Victorian row homes are in high demand.

Properties there range from a $267,000, 453-square-foot condo on Marion St. NW to a $1.2 million, 4,200-square-foot townhouse on Florida Avenue NW. House hunters can find 1880 Federal-style single family homes or brick row homes with renovated backyards. Thanks to Shaw development, prices here vary significantly, but lately they’ve been rising. The median home price for the area is about $550,000, up 12.9% from last year, according to Trulia.

The recent development in Shaw include two large-scale, mixed-use apartment projects – one with 300 luxury apartments and a second with ground floor retail and office space on Seventh Street, according to the Washington Post. The center of the Shaw community, where construction cranes are busy with develpment in about two square blocks of dirt just north of downtown, will soon house a renovated grocery store and a hotel.

The Shaw district includes three Metro stations on the green line – U Street, Mount Vernon Square and Shaw-Howard University. In a short walking distance are Logan Circle, Dupont Circle and Gallery Place.

Shaw needs this development – its commercial district, pocketed with vacancies for decades, has struggled to flourish. But one resident tells the Washington Post, that while he’s waited a long time for this boom, he’s welcoming “anything that’s being built to make the community more comfortable for people who live here.”

While longer term residents are eager for more progress, potential residents will find that they may be swayed to join the tide of incoming new homeowners when then learn about plans for Shaw development.

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