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Map: A half-mile walk to Metro

PlanItMetro made this cool map showing what's within a 1/2-mile walk from each Metro station. It's easy to see how the street network affects where you can walk.

Map by PlanItMetro.

As contributor Dan Reed points out, the walkshed is bigger in areas with a street grid and short blocks. On the other hand, barriers like highways, rail lines, and superblocks reduce the area you can walk to.

What patterns do you see?

Be sure to check out the full region map for stations outside the core.

Aimee Custis is a wonk, communicator, and professional advocate at the Coalition for Smarter Growth. Her writing represents her own views, though they're often aligned with her employer's. Weekends, you'll find Aimee at home in Dupont Circle or practicing her other love, wedding photography


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If PlanItMetro is interested, they are free to use our walkshed maps built off a 10 minute walk for the new Silver Line stations in Tysons as well, but note some areas rely on privately owned walkway systems. No need to stop at Orange anymore, we got a Silver Line now after all.

by Navid Roshan on Aug 4, 2014 11:41 am • linkreport

Where is the rest of the Yellow Line? Especially Braddock Rd and Old Town?

by Thad on Aug 4, 2014 11:45 am • linkreport

Didn't see the link earlier, but found it ...

by Thad on Aug 4, 2014 11:46 am • linkreport

The Rhode Island and Fort Totten stations really stand out. Especially considering how old those stations are, it's stunning how little DC has done to integrate those stations into their neighborhoods.

by Tom Veil on Aug 4, 2014 11:47 am • linkreport

@Thad --

You can see the rest of the yellow line (and other stations outside the core) over at the original post on PlanItMetro.

by Aimee CUstis on Aug 4, 2014 11:48 am • linkreport

I just see massive holes in the map. Huge areas where metro could be, but is not.

by Jasper on Aug 4, 2014 11:50 am • linkreport

Interesting how there's kind of a no-man's land around 16th and P NW and just about all of Adams Morgan, despite those being busy core neighborhoods. There is good bus service there though, especially if you factor in the Woodley-Franklin Circulator route for frequency.

by iaom on Aug 4, 2014 12:07 pm • linkreport

I second Tom Veil's comments about Rhode Island and Fort Totten. Rhode Island is hampered, I believe, by the station's location on the east side of the railroad tracks. If it were on the west, the grid of Eckington/Edgewood would be more accessible. Fort Totten should have been built directly atop Riggs Road where it intersects the train tracks.

by Nick on Aug 4, 2014 12:35 pm • linkreport

A technical question: how was a "1/2-mile walk from each Metro station" determined? From the center of each station, or from each entrance of the stations? I'm thinking of stations where entrances are far away from each other, like the Farraguts or Navy Yard or Stadium-Armory.

by Birdie on Aug 4, 2014 12:47 pm • linkreport

A new Blue Line to Georgetown, along M Street, and then to Union Station would fill in some of the gaps below R Street (and Georgetown obviously). If it kept going along H St NE, then there'd be huge gains in terms of coverage.

by jh on Aug 4, 2014 12:51 pm • linkreport

The Rhode Island Ave station will get a lot better access to the West when the pedestrian bridge to the Met Branch Trail opens.

by MLD on Aug 4, 2014 12:52 pm • linkreport

It would be interesting to see the same map with frequent bus lines (<15 min rush hour headways) added in. I think a lot of NW and areas east of the river would then be included in the walk shed.

It's also kind of crazy that a large portion of the mall is not within the walk shed. I guess I knew this, but it just makes it more surprising that many car-dependent tourists still make the schlep. There really isn't any other viable option.

by DC Transit Nerd on Aug 4, 2014 1:19 pm • linkreport

Also this underscores what I've said before about the areas around North Capitol Street being kind of badly served, and population around there (at least south of Soldier's Home) is getting denser and denser. It's bad even when Metro's running, and especially it's terrible late at night when every bus along that corridor heads off to a closed Metro station where you have to wait around in the dark to transfer to another bus that'll take you another few blocks up North Capitol before heading to yet another closed Metro station. There really should be night owl service heading straight up North Capitol, possibly terminating in Takoma or bearing off on Blair Road to reach downtown Silver Spring.

by iaom on Aug 4, 2014 1:45 pm • linkreport

@DC Transit Nerd:

Oh man, I've had lots of visitors this summer and I am now extremely familiar with how the Lincoln Memorial seems to be in the very middle of a Metro avoidance zone. (Lots of long walks to Foggy Bottom or Farragut North!)

by Andrew on Aug 4, 2014 2:39 pm • linkreport

@Tom Veil, Nick - Fort Totten and RI Ave are mostly a reflection of the land uses that already existed in these areas. The huge blank dot south of Fort Totten is mostly Fort Totten Park and a trash transfer station. South of RI Ave is the Brentwood postal facility and the WMATA yard. Given how long it has taken to develop other better situated real estate throughout the system, and given recent developments at both of these stations, there's nothing remarkable about either station. The only thing interesting about RI Ave is that apparently Edgewood Terrace is not reachable; probably the strip mall with the old Safeway blocks it off from the 1/2 mile radius.

by massysett on Aug 4, 2014 2:46 pm • linkreport

PDFs suck

by movement on Aug 4, 2014 2:54 pm • linkreport

It really does look like there could be a good argument for an infill station between Petworth and Ft. Totten.

by JR on Aug 4, 2014 3:59 pm • linkreport

Interesting that none of the proposed McMillan development is anywhere close to a metro. In the maps prepared by Vision McMillan Partners, it looks so close.

by Bargain on Aug 4, 2014 4:43 pm • linkreport

I just see massive holes in the map. Huge areas where metro could be, but is not.

That's pretty glaring for me too. And a lot of those areas are pretty well populated. The big chunks of NE and SE are especially glaring. Look at that map and imagine a line going more or less up Bladensburg and curving around to join Union Station, Cap South and maybe Waterfront before steering into that big, empty gap in the middle of SE.

Well, a guy can dream, can't he?

It really does look like there could be a good argument for an infill station between Petworth and Ft. Totten.

There was one originally planned there, if I remember the post a week or two ago correctly- Georgia Avenue and Petworth would have been different stops. Where you see the big gap now is where Petworth would have been. I agree completely- time to build it.

by Zeus on Aug 4, 2014 4:44 pm • linkreport


PlanItMetro had a post a couple months ago where they describe a transit walkshed.

by Froggie on Aug 4, 2014 5:50 pm • linkreport

The only thing I would add is that quality is very important too. A half mile can be a pleasant walk or scary depending on where you are.

by BTA on Aug 4, 2014 8:22 pm • linkreport

Aimee - can't see local streets in the expanded picture

by asffa on Aug 5, 2014 5:36 am • linkreport

Now make me a unified business directory for all those nodes that form "Metro City"

by crin on Aug 5, 2014 7:32 am • linkreport

Kind of funny that one of the only places downtown that's not in the walkshed is 14th and P, which was declared by this blog to be the best location in DC :)

Also, is there really the population density to justify a station between Petworth and Ft. Totten? Unless you get zoning approval to build high rises in the cemetery, I can't see how a station here would be justified.

by Jay on Aug 5, 2014 11:00 am • linkreport

This reinforces to me how important it is to have these walksheds overlapping and a continuous urban fabric, rather than isolated villages. Big difference in vibrancy of the conjoined areas and those that are islands around Metros.

It also serves as proof that a separated Blue Line should continue down H Street and into Trinidad and othe parts of NE. The density requirement for new Metro lines is a self-fulfilling prophecy, and a map like this shows exactly why developers are building higher where they are.

@Jay: I think, if you figured out the right spot for an infill station, you could get a walkshed that looks kind like Fort Totten, only larger as there's even more nearby.

by Low Headways on Aug 6, 2014 9:36 am • linkreport

@LowHeadways - my point was not about the square mileage of the walkshed. It's about the number of potential people/jobs in the walkshed (how much multi-family housing is near any potential infill station? any employers at all?) and the difficulty of redeveloping the area into something higher density.

I highly doubt in coming decades that this area between Petworth and Ft. Totten will be a priority for a station.

by Jay on Aug 6, 2014 10:48 am • linkreport

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