Washington DC Wharf Revitalizes Waterfront

Washington DC Wharf
Washington DC Wharf

On October 12, 2017, Phase 1 of The Wharf opened to the public, reestablishing Washington, D.C., as a true waterfront city and destination. The $2.5 billion, 3.2 million square foot waterfront neighborhood features new residential, office, hotel, shops and restaurants, cultural, marina, and public uses, including 10 acres of public waterfront parks, promenades, piers, and docks, all designed by one of the most impressive lineups of architects in the nation. The mix of uses offers something for everyone, with an incredible mix of best-in-class brands, local favorites and renowned chefs and shops. The Wharf is the largest waterfront development in the nation and the first significant redevelopment in Southwest D.C. in more than 50 years, drawing inspiration from waterfronts around the world and designed to bring the community to the water’s edge. The Wharf impacts the region in many ways from generating funding and employment opportunities, creating sustainable infrastructure, incorporating public spaces, reconnecting people to the waterfront, and making the region more accessible.

Built as a public-private partnership that began more than a decade ago, this monumental waterfront neighborhood opens with a six-month long celebration of events and public activities, beginning with a four day celebration on October 12-15, 2017. A full schedule of Kickoff Celebration events can be found here. During the Kickoff Celebration Weekend on October 12-15, The Wharf is hosting free concerts on three outdoor stages and strolling entertainment, art exhibits and more, with more than fifty entertainers. The headlining event is a free, public concert on District Pier with The Bacon Brothers, the folk rock soul country band made up of award-winning actor and singer Kevin Bacon and his brother, Michael.

Through the construction of The Wharf there has been an expansion in the usage of the waterfront from a previously private, fenced off boat parking lot to an active harbor with public access across the entire site in addition to upgrades made to all existing facilities. The Wharf introduces stunning community spaces including public parks and four public piers, which offer seating, event spaces, firepits, swings, public kayak launch, transit options, as well as seasonal uses like ice skating, in addition to ongoing public events and programming.

  • Music – The Wharf is becoming one of the premier entertainment destinations in the country. It is home to four live music venues where you can see a 6,000 person show at The Anthem, an intimate performance at a bar on Pearl Street, or a public event on the floating stage.
  • Dining – With restaurants, bars and food concepts ranging from chef-driven fine dining to innovative fast casual, The Wharf added an entirely new centralized culinary hub to the city’s renowned collection of restaurants, turning Southwest into DC’s newest food destination. Opening October 12 are: Ben & Jerry’s, The Brighton, Cantina Bambina, Del Mar, Hank’s Oyster Bar, Kirwan’s Irish Pub, Kith/Kin, Requin, Shake Shack, Taylor Gourmet and Velo CafĂ© at District Hardware.
  • Shopping – The Wharf offers a mix of stores and boutiques, from internationally known brands to local favorites. The Wharf’s open-air shopping hub, District Square, features a mix of stores and boutiques including a new location for DC’s iconic Politics and Prose, Martha Spak Gallery, A Beautiful Closet, Ligne Roset, d/Eleven and more. Additional shopping open along the waterfront and The Wharf’s romantic cobblestone streets include: Cordial Craft Wine, Beer & Spirits, Anchor on Board with West Marine Pro, CVS Health, The Press, BLINK Optical, Bella Moda Salon & Spa, and District Hardware and Bike.
  • Transportation – The Wharf is expanding transportation options and making the region more accessible. The waterfront is activated with the addition of a regional water taxi, free jitney service to East Potomac Park, docks for transient boaters, kayak/stand-up paddle board rentals, Southwest Shuttle bus service, underground parking, as well as additional infrastructure including bike trails and parking.