Washington Examiner on Kingman Park Neighborhood
The Washington Examiner's Real Estate section has a really nice article about the Kingman Park neighborhood, read below.
Kingman Park: An eclectic neighborhood with big dreams
By: Dean Bartoli Smith, Kingman Park, real estate, townhouse, townhome, Rosedale
July 22, 2009
Sunflowers and cornstalks greet you like sentries from an alley entrance near 20th and E streets NE. The Kingman Park/Rosedale Community Garden is in full bloom. Once filled with abandoned vehicles, the lot now serves as the social hub of this Washington enclave.
Kingman Park neighborhood. William Clayton For The Examiner (Examiner)
The garden represents a microcosm of the neighborhood — where people from different backgrounds, ages and ethnicities work the soil and water plants together. The Rosedale Citizens’ Alliance is trying to buy the land from the city to ensure that the space remains a garden well into the future.
“I wasn’t interested in gardening whatsoever,” said Patrick Jordan, one of the garden’s founders. “I thought it was a great way to meet folks and hear stories about the neighborhood.”
As for stories, there’s a bumper crop — from what’s going to happen with nearby RFK Stadium and when the Environmental Center will be built on Kingman Island to who could be stealing tomatoes from the garden. The people in this neighborhood passionately care about keeping things clean and safe.
“It’s a stable neighborhood,” said Joan Johnson, a resident for more than 60 years. Like many of her neighbors, she lives in the house she grew up in. “It’s centrally located. People like taking their morning walks or going jogging.”
Each eclectic block presents a different style of row home — from Federal to Wardman — many with front porches, some renovated and most well-maintained. Brick, stone and wooden homes of various sizes can be purchased from $200,00 to $500,000. There are beautiful elm trees and spectacular crepe myrtles. On hot summer days, neighbors converse from their porches.
It remains one of the few affordable areas in the city to buy a house.
“My brother now lives in the neighborhood,” Pat Jordan said. “My best friend moved in across the street. If you are willing to deal with city living — it’s a good option.”
With green awnings and Formstone facades, some of the streets look as if nothing has changed for decades.
“Kingman Park is a total mystery,” said resident Brit Wyckoff, who moved to D.C. from Westchester, N.Y.
The lore surrounding Kingman Park and its twin hamlet Rosedale dates back to the 19th century, when neither appeared on a map of the city — the parcel was part of a Maryland farm. Legend has it that 19th Street used to divide Rosedale (the white section) from Kingman Park (the black section). Now, it all blends together — working class, young professional, Asian, Hispanic, Caucasian and African-American.
Wyckoff is diligently working with his daughter Dana on a project to replace the Rosedale Recreation Center with a new community center. The old recreation facility needs an upgrade, more space and a decent library.
“If we can teach kids and adults,” Wyckoff said, “we can open up their lives.”
Ground will be broken on the new community center in September — despite a budget reduction from $40 million to $14 million.
“It’s a tiny, close-knit community,” said Peter Vankevich, a former resident and garden co-founder who has identified more than 40 species of birds in the area for his column “Spotted on the Hill.” “We bought all our vegetables at the RFK farmers market. The way the Metro train rose up at dusk was like being in New York. On those two little islands — Kingman and Heritage — you didn’t even know you were in a city.” It’s good to finally be on the map.
Top Reasons to live in Kingman Park
Location - Minutes from downtown and next to I-295, Kingman Park is well positioned. Buses and metro are close by. The neighborhood is walking distance to H street restaurants, Kingman and Heritage Islands, and Langston Golf Course - also close to the Arboretum and Capitol Hill.
Kingman and Heritage Islands - Residents can explore over 50 acres on these two island habitats. Comprising wooded trails, river views, and wetlands the parks are open for walking, hiking, and bicycling. Visitors can also enjoy viewing a variety of plants and animals native to the area.
The Langston Golf Course and Restaurant - Originally built as a segregated golf facility to provide African-American golfers with a course they could call their own, Langston is home to the international Pro-Am tournament, the Capital City Open, a renowned event that has attracted such celebrities as Bob Hope, former President Gerald R. Ford, and Joe Louis. Langston Bar & Grille is a popular local establishment featuring southern cuisine.
Average sold price in the 20002 zip code: $328,000
Average list price in the 20002 zip code: $345,000
Average days on market for homes sold: 172
Average sold price in the 20002 zip code: $332,000
Average list price in the 20002 zip code: $346,000
Average days on market for homes sold: 79