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About Ward 4

About Ward 4

Ward 4 is a largely residential area located in the northernmost portion of the city, straddling the northwest and northeast quadrants. Georgia Avenue bisects the ward, and serves as its major commercial spine, extending from the Petworth neighborhood into downtown Silver Spring, Maryland to the north. Smaller, local commercial areas include 4th Street, NW in Takoma, Kennedy Street, NW in Brightwood and portions of 14th Street throughout the Ward. Petworth is the southernmost neighborhood in Ward 4, notable for its rich architectural variety of townhouses, broad boulevards and circles.

Brightwood, one of the largest neighborhoods in the city, sits in the center of the ward, and is made up of a variety of housing types, including townhouses, small apartment buildings, comfortable single-family homes, as well as the amazing Walter Reed Campus. Grand and gracious buildings line 16th Street, NW, including churches, schools, ambassadorial residences and private homes.

Fort Totten and Lamond-Riggs are both solid, middle class neighborhoods of apartments, townhouses, and single-family detached homes. The neighborhoods along 16th Street, such as Crestwood, 16th Street Heights, Colonial Village and Shepherd Park, contain large single-family detached homes and townhouses, nestled against Rock Creek Park and its tributary parks. The Takoma neighborhood abuts the City of Takoma Park, Maryland – together they made up a late 19th-century streetcar suburb, and now share a commercial center that straddles the DC/Maryland border and an architectural heritage emphasizing Victorian and bungalow style single-family homes.

Ward 4 also includes the neighborhoods of Barnaby Woods and Hawthorne and portions of the Chevy Chase neighborhood west of Rock Creek Park. This area is dominated by single-family detached homes.

Planning in Ward 4

The Comprehensive Plan for the National Capital: District Elements has Area Elements (chapters) that provide geographically-specific policy guidance. Area Elements that cover neighborhoods within Ward 4 include:

  • Rock Creek East – This area element covers all of Ward 4 east of Rock Creek Park, plus the Armed Forces Retirement Home.
  • Rock Creek West – This area element completely encompasses the neighborhoods in Ward 4 west of Rock Creek Park, along with all of Ward 3.

The Comprehensive Plan’s Area Elements use planning boundaries, not Ward boundaries. The Comprehensive Plan is a 20-year plan, while Ward boundaries are political boundaries that can change every 10 years due to redistricting following the decennial Census.

The Comprehensive Plan Amendment project web page is plandc.dc.gov. Questions, comments and feedback on the Comprehensive Plan should be emailed to [email protected].

Neighborhood and corridor plans for Ward 4 include:

Development Review in Ward 4

Historic Preservation in Ward 4

Ward 4 Maps and Data


Jonathan Greene, Community Planner
[email protected]
(202) 442-8816