Image by the author.

This article was first published by the DC Policy Center.

Ward 3 and Ward 6 both include some of the most highly-valued residential neighborhoods in the District. Both are predominately composed of single-family homes, as shown in the maps above, yet the look and feel of each ward is strikingly different.

Most of Ward 3 (shown in blue in the chart below) is composed of detached single-family homes in large lots, while residential areas in Ward 6 (shown in green) are mostly made up of row homes. As such, the housing density in Ward 6 is almost twice that of Ward 3.

Image by the author.

These differences are important as we consider the future of housing affordability and inclusivity in DC, as single-family zoning occupies 75% of all tax lots in DC and 43% of all surface area not owned by the federal government. As this example shows, even small increases in allowable density in single-family zones could have significant impacts across the District.

If you’re interested in learning more, check out our recent publication: Single-family zoning and neighborhood characteristics in the District of Columbia.

Yesim Sayin Taylor is the founding Executive Director of the DC Policy Center. With over ten years of public policy experience in the District, Yesim is recognized by policymakers and advocates as a source of reliable, balanced analyses on the District. She holds a Ph.D. in economics from GMU and a bachelor’s degree in Political Science from Bogazici University, located in Istanbul, Turkey.