almost no one, other than the President of the United States, makes his home among the office blocks of downtown and the Golden Triangle. And it shows. Despite being the single densest employment center in the metropolitan area, holding more Greater Washingtonians at any one time than any other place in the region, the streetscape is strikingly--sometimes shockingly--bleak.
I would add that Adams Morgan continues to be the most vibrant neighborhood in town precisely because its residents have steadfastly fought off various ill-conceived urban renewal efforts by government. The one that slipped by is the Marie Reed Learning Center, an awful eyesore and dead space which nearly cuts Adams Morgan off from Dupont Circle to the south and U street to the southeast.
What is missing in Adams Morgan is daytime businesses, and that, I'm afraid, is because the resident activists lack consistency in their fight for diversity. It's really just a few anti-business Nazis, some of whom I know, who have made it difficult for any large business to move in. Just ask Harris Teeter.
The bottom line is that zoning regs are pure evil, and the enemy of diversity. They are vestiges of the high modernist era, a time in which social planners arrogantly disregarded the interests of the Everyman, the man on the street, as it were, and pretended to have an elite access to and interpretation of information. But the high modernists are dead. Can we not move on now?