A Streetcar and Desire
Late last fall, Arlington, Virginia—the second largest city in the Washington, DC metropolitan area—cancelled plans that had been underway since 2006 to build a streetcar system. “I’m so glad we didn’t do what Virginia did,” muses Anwar Saleem, Executive Director of H Street Main Street, as a streetcar glides past the window of a café on H Street NE in Washington, DC.
A formerly vibrant commercial corridor, H Street is reinventing itself after several decades of decline. Back in 2002, the 13-block commercial corridor had a 30% vacancy rate. The street was poorly lit, in disrepair, and had issues with crime. At the time, Saleem recalls, “you didn’t walk through H Street. You ran through H Street.”
Today H Street has a dedicated Clean Team, a refurbished streetscape, a new grocery store, apartments, and more development on the way. What caused this transformation?
Read the full article: A Streetcar and Desire
This article was originally published in the Spring 2015 issue of Plan Canada magazine.
Honoured to be recognized for this research. Like so much of our work, it was a collaborative effort. In particular, thank you @BC_Housing @RethinkUrban @situateinc @EsquimaltBC @townofsidneybc @CityOfVictoria @TalktoARYZE and my own children, who lovingly illustrated the book. https://t.co/LBQEvid09Q
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