I drove through the worst parts of Washington, D.C. This is what I saw.

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Published on 22 Sep 2020 / In Travel & Events

Washington, D.C. sure has changed!!

For this video, I drove southwest along I95 from Baltimore. My plan was to visit the absolute worst Washington DC hoods I could find. I had done my homework and knew I would be heading to DC’s Ward 8, on the southeast side of the city.

The day was Sunday, February 23, 2020 at about 1 in the afternoon.

Now way back In 1992, Washington DC was the murder capital of America, mostly because of crack. It’s still rough in many areas, but it’s actually getting way cleaner and far safer. That’s the case with many of the other cities I’ve visited - places which took hard turns in the 60s, 70s and 80s are now seeing a bit of a I guess good clean scrub.

Nonetheless, I had to see what was left of DC’s true hoods. So I ventured into Ward 8, also known as Anacostia, pretty much the only real terrible large neighborhood in our nation’s capital anymore.

There were blocks and blocks of housing projects here, but overall, as you’ll see, it wasn’t terrible. I never felt unsafe here. It was like a scrubbed down version of the ghetto hood that used to exist. Just block after block of cleaned up public housing, like someone had taken a firehose to the whole Ward and washed away all of the grime and the grit.

This part of town and MUCH of the southeastern and northeastern part of DC were absolutely the worst place you could live 20 years ago. But now, this whole city, including large parts across the river, are undergoing the most intense gentrification project in the nation.

They’re renovating large parts of this city, tearing down old ugly buildings. This has meant more homeless people for one. And many of the poorest people who once lived here have been pushed further out into the suburbs - into areas like Baltimore and to Prince George County just across the border in Maryland - an area with the nickname Ward 9.

So, we’ll let this run for about 15 minutes or so so you can see what is left of our nation’s historical true ghetto hoods.

And as we leave the DC area, off in the distance is the US Capitol dome, which we saw earlier from the hillsides across the river. But before we left the area, we wanted to check out other former ghetto hoods in the DC area.

This surprised us - this is the Capitol Hill neighborhood. It was once a horrible place for crime and blight. Look at IT now. And, we also saw the H street corridor in northeast DC. This place was also very blighted and dangerous not too long ago. But look at IT now.

So, we had come to see the dangerous hoods of DC, and instead, got a front row seat to a quickly changing urban revival project, as grimy neighborhoods of old are being resurrected into newer, modern safer and wealthier neighborhoods of the future. In terms of cleaning up its shitty areas, this city is FAR ahead of its neighbor to the north. Baltimore’s ghettos are still on another level. It may be another two decades before Baltimore makes its comeback.

As, Washington DC continues to lower crime and clean up its own neighborhoods, it must now battle with its next big challenge - homelessness.

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