Glover Park, Washington, DC

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Glover Park Resident Explorer Documentary

Glover Park resident explorer and environmentalist Robert Hyman has produced a documentary film after returning from an expedition to the Rio Platano Biosphere Reserve in Honduras. Link to video here:

Paradise in Peril Film Description

The Río Platáno Biosphere Reserve, Honduras – home to the highest level of tropical biodiversity in Central America, homeland of the Pech and Miskito Indians, and keeper of hundreds of unexplored archeological sites – is in danger. Non-indians are invading the Reserve from all sides, poaching endangered wildlife and fish, slashing and burning ancient forests to sow pastures, and forcing indigenous inhabitants off their ancestral lands. Paradise in Peril follows an expedition organized to document the destruction of this UNESCO World Heritage Site and collect testimony from the native peoples who rely on the Río Platáno for survival. Fewer than 400 individuals have ever completed this strenuous expedition from the rivers headwaters to the Miskito coast of Honduras.
Please go to  or
to see this short documentary.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Stoddert Field Fencing Removed

The fencing around Stoddert Field finally has been removed after two years of being sequestered during its reconstruction, in tandem with the construction of the Stoddert Rec Center which was completed last year. The baseball/softball diamond has been completely re-built with dugout fencing, benches, backstop and a nice level infield. Unfortunately, the extensive engineering effort to improve drainage at the dugouts and home plate seems to have failed, as that corner remains swampy. Stoddert Field's new turf is amazing - let's hope it holds up to the onslaught of soccer games! The new field backs to a new Stoddert Community Garden, which was created by the efforts of many volunteers led by Glover Park residents Lauren Biel and Sarah Bernardi. This will be a great addition to help children learn about gardening.

The baseball diamond remains fenced but hopefully will be opened shortly so softball and Little League baseball can resume.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Chipotle to open in April!

Chipotle, the popular burrito chain, is planning to open a store in Glover Park in the long-vacant former Pizza Hut space next to the Post Office. at 2338 Wisconsin Ave.

See Chipotle's website:

And they are hiring now for the Glover Park location:

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Update on Glover Park Property Values

Glover Park houses continue to maintain their value despite the prolonged downturn in the economy and the real estate market nationwide. The chart below shows average rowhouse sale prices, number of annual sales, and percent change year-over-year for the past seven years. No, we are not seeing the double-digit (or even single-digit) gains in average property values that we experienced back in the first half of the decade, but we are not seeing the painful drops in property values that have upset the lives of so many homeowners in the region and across the country. Average prices in 2010 are roughly at the same level compared to the height of the market in 2005; and we've been creeping up ever so slightly since a modest drop from 2005 to 2006.

Why have we fared so well relative the region and the nation? There are a number of reasons:

- The obvious reason is the strong federal jobs market here in DC. While other cities are seeing entire industries decimated, Washington continues to attract qualified homebuyers accepting or keeping federal jobs as well as private sector jobs linked to the operation of the federal government.

- Our neighborhood has seen a bit of a demographic shift in the past 10+ years in which more and more families with small children are staying put rather than moving to the suburbs as soon as their kids are old enough to walk. Also, more and more families with children are buying houses in our area and sacrificing some space for a shorter commute and a vibrant urban (or less suburban) lifestyle.

- Glover Park continues to be a popular rental area near universities and for new workers who view their well-paying jobs as potentially transient and wish to rent instead of buy. Rents have risen significantly since 2000 and rental houses are in great demand, which buoys property values.

- Move-up mobility has decreased due to the tight credit market and lack of equity to roll over, so more and more homeowners are staying put longer. One of the most striking statistics from the chart above is the roughly 40% drop in annual turnover of houses (down to 30 houses in 2010). With a tight supply, and steady (unfrenzied) demand, prices levels will be maintained.

- Rowhouse foreclosures and short sales are rare. We’ve seen a couple of instances in the last few years, but they have not had any noticeable impact on property values. The condo market in the neighborhood has seen more short sales and foreclosures with a bit of an impact on their respective buildings in the short term, but still nothing like the experience of most of the rest of the region and nation.

- The run-up in the market through 2005 sparked a renovation boom. Owners flush with equity or cash from home equity loans felt secure in spending money to do major home renovations, and sellers often felt these renovations could get a good return on re-sale. Back in the 80's and 90's seeing an opened-up kitchen with extended granite counters and stainless steel appliances was a rarity, but now it is commonplace in the neighborhood. This trend helped to raise the average home price.

Will prices rise when the economy finally recovers? I don't have a crystal ball, but much of the eye-popping rise in prices in the early part of the decade was due to the lending free-for-all, in which you could get a mortgage if you could simply prove you had a pulse. The credit market has gone to the opposite extreme now, and it is difficult even for many qualified buyers to finance a purchase. These changes are likely to loosen somewhat in the years to come, but we will not be back to the free-wheeling days until our collective memory is erased and we forget about the crisis. It will happen again - it always does - but considering the magnitude of the economic disaster this time, that will not happen again for a long time to come. The good news is that as long as we don't experience some other major unexpected economic shock, we can feel secure in the value of our Glover Park properties.

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Glover Park Neighborhood Signs

Glover Park has two new neighborhood signs now installed along Wisconsin Avenue! One is at Calvert Street, which you see driving south, and the other is just below W Place, seen driving north into the neighborhood. Neighbors have long discussed the possibility of adding the signs as a visual enhancement and identity for the neighborhood, similar to the Palisades neigborhood signs installed along MacArthur Blvd. years ago. The signs are tastefully done and represent the typical streetscape of the Glover Park neighborhood with old brick and painted rowhouses along a tree-lined street.