WOODLEY PARK

Neighborhood Profile

Woodley Park is a neighborhood that strikes a harmonious balance between urban convenience and natural serenity.

Woodley Park Neighborhood

Woodley Park real estate

Where else can you fall asleep to the roar of a lion or call of an exotic bird? Home to the Smithsonian’s National Zoo c. 1889, Woodley Park offers residents and visitors the unique experience of living in close proximity to an array of exotic wildlife.

The neighborhood’s historic appeal is evident in its well-preserved and newly renovated row houses, many dating back to the early 20th century. One distinct aspect of Woodley Park’s real estate landscape is the presence of architectural gems such as the historic Wardman Tower, an iconic residential community that has stood as a symbol of elegance and refinement since the 1920s.

Woodley Park’s historic Taft Bridge c. 1907, which spans Rock Creek Park and connects Woodley Park to Adams Morgan, is adorned with majestic concrete lions on each corner, adding a touch of architectural grandeur to the neighborhood.

The real estate market in Woodley Park features an eclectic mix of housing options, from stately single family homes to historic row and townhouses, and spacious condominiums.

Many of Woodley Park’s elegant row houses and apartment buildings were constructed in the early 20th century, featuring architectural styles such as Beaux-Arts and Georgian Revival.

The demand for real estate in Woodley Park is fueled by its central location, historic charm, and the accessibility to Rock Creek Park, providing residents with ample opportunities for outdoor recreation. The neighborhood’s unique blend of history, nature, and urban living sets it apart as a distinctive destination in the nation’s capital.

Why We Love It

  • National Zoo
  • Beautiful homes
  • Proximity to Mass Ave
  • Dining & retail options

Nearby

  • Observatory Circle
  • Washington Int’l School
  • Cleveland Park
  • Tregaron Conservancy
  • St Albans School
  • National Cathedral
  • Woodley Park Metro Station
  • Woodland Normanstone Terr Park
  • Adams Morgan

CAREN

“While other ​agents said, “​T​his is what you need to do;” The Isaacs Team said, “​W​e can do this for you!” Our process was smooth and quick, and they designed a strategy and negotiated a sale well above our asking price; and a purchase price below asking – both in the same market.”

Woodley Park Market Data

Woodley Park History

Kervand’s “Woodley”

The earliest settlers in what is now the Woodley Park area were wagon and carriage pioneers who traveled dirt roads in search of good land.

By the mid-to-late 1800’s, Woodley Lane had become the main route for travelers. The only businesses in the area until the 20th century were the grist and lumber mills in Rock Creek Valley. In 1875, Mrs. A.E. Kervand divided her property, which was centrally located at the heart of today’s Woodley Park, into 18 lots. She named the project “Woodley” after Philip Barton Key’s estate. The subdivision was planned to mimic the city’s successful suburbs such as Mount Pleasant and LeDroit Park, but didn’t garner buyer interest due to the lack of transportation in the area at the time.

By 1878, the land had been subdivided again, this time into 31 lots, but Woodley Lane was still a dirt road lacking public transport and prospective buyers held back. By 1888, real estate investors Thomas Waggaman and John Ridout had acquired Kervand’s land. The partners renamed the subdivision “Woodley Park” and offered lots drawn to showcase the varied topography. Key to the plan was their charter of a Rock Creek Railway streetcar line that would travel along Columbia and Woodley Roads into Woodley Park.

Land Regulation

Unfortunately, Waggaman and Ridout lacked foresight and Capitol Hill planning intel when purchasing the development, because that very year Congress passed an “Act to Regulate the Subdivision of Land Within the District of Columbia.” The Act extended L’Enfant’s street grid to areas outside the original city boundaries. New subdivisions in Washington County were required to follow the city’s established alignment of orthogonal streets and diagonal boulevards. Subdivisions like Woodley Park that were designed with curving streets were faced with the possibility of total street redesign and the potential for condemnations of property to conform to these requirements. This halted new development in Woodley Park.

Influence of a Senator

During the late 1890’s, Senator Francis G. Newlands of Nevada and William Stewart founded the Chevy Chase Land Company. After purchasing several thousand acres along the route that would become Connecticut Avenue, they extended the thoroughfare from Calvert Street to Chevy Chase Lake and constructed The Chevy Chase Line. The new streetcar line ran past the NW boundary of the District, linking the area to downtown.

Newland and his partners also acquired the charter for the Rock Creek Railway Company, which Newlands altered to cross Rock Creek on Calvert Street and to extend service northward along a new route — Connecticut Avenue Extended.

Beginning in 1892, streetcar service began from Chevy Chase to downtown, providing reliable transportation to suburban commuters. Newlands also influenced the government’s decision regarding subdivision layouts. When the Permanent Highway Act was passed in 1893, he made sure the prominent landscape design firm of Frederick Law Olmsted was hired to assist the Engineer Commissioner in drawing up the accompanying maps. Under Olmsted’s influence, curved streets that responded to the natural topography of the land north and west of Rock Creek were integrated in the City’s plan and streets aligned with the existing grid were no longer required.

It was a boon for Woodley Park, which fnally began to develop at a rapid pace.

Woodley Park’s Architecture

Woodley Park’s architectural style is dominated by streets of stately 20th-century rowhouses and townhomes designed and built by a variety of notable area architects and builders. The majority were constructed between 1905-1929.

Source: Wikipedia, Library of Congress, DC Historic Preservation NPS

Woodley Park Schools

OYSTER ADAMS

Public BiLingual• Grades PK-8

MARET SCHOOL 

Private • Grades K-12

JACKSON-REED HS

Public • Grades 9-12

THE RIVER SCHOOL

Private • Grades Pre-K-3

ST ALBANS

Private Boys • Grades 4-12

GEORGETOWN DAY SCHOOL

Private • Grades K-12

HOLTON ARMS

Private Girls • Grades 3-12

SIDWELL FRIENDS

Private Co-Ed • Grades Pre-K-12

NATIONAL CATHEDRAL SCHOOL

Private Girls • Grades 4-12

For a full, updated list of schools, visit EBIS. Click the cap to go to school website. School data by SchoolDigger

Where do you want to live?

THE ISAACS TEAM

Compass
1313 14th St
NW DC 20005

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