Washington, DC

When Cities Don’t Accept Cash for Public Services

This year saw a wave of backlash against cashless retail, but what about when cities like Washington, D.C., want to move toward all-digital payments?

photo: passengers in D.C.'s Metro

The ‘Namewashing’ of Public Transit

D.C.’s Metro plans to raise extra revenue by having companies buy naming rights for public transit stations. But corporate “namewashing” may not be easy money.

What Happens When a City Tries to End Traffic Deaths

Several years into a ten-year “Vision Zero” target, some cities that took on a radical safety challenge are seeing traffic fatalities go up.

A colorful mural with a woman's head and words reading "take me out to the go-go."

How Go-Go Music Became Kryptonite for Gentrification in D.C.

Go-go has become the soundtrack for a growing anti-gentrification movement in Washington. Now a city council bill wants to make it D.C.’s official music.

photo: Bike and pedestrian advocates participate in a "die-in" for better traffic safety in Washington, D.C.

Are D.C.’s Streets Finally Getting Safer?

As the District lagged on its Vision Zero goals, bike and pedestrian advocates in Washington turned traffic fatalities into a rallying cry, and got results.  

D.C.’s Vacant Stadium Dilemma

RFK Stadium is taking up a very desirable plot of federal land in Washington, D.C.—and no one can agree what to do with it.

How Architects Are Making Concrete Walls Look Like Crumpled Paper

“We’re pushing the limits of what this material can do,” says a designer behind the Kennedy Center’s new building, describing its experimental concrete treatments.

a photo of Los Angeles in 1962

Mapping the Effects of the Great 1960s ‘Freeway Revolts’

Urbanites who battled the construction of the Interstate Highway System in the 1960s saved some neighborhoods—but many highways did transform cities.

Here’s What the Heat Island Looks Like in East Coast Cities

Maps of urban heat islands show where residents can find pockets of cooler air in Boston, Philadelphia, Richmond, Baltimore, and Washington, D.C.

The Future of the City Is Childless

America’s urban rebirth is missing something key—actual births.

A Designer’s Airport for the Jet Age

As this 1958 Charles and Ray Eames film shows, Dulles was truly designed for modern air travel.

a photo of man in a D.C. Metro station.

D.C.’s Metro Is Insanely Windy. Why?

Unpredictable and sometimes alarming, the weirdly powerful winds that sometimes whip through subway stations might be explained by some basic rules of physics.

U.S. Cities Are Seeing a Big Drop in Tourism From China

Travel from China to the U.S. fell for the first time in over a decade. That could mean money lost for big cities as well as smaller places near national parks.

Cars sit in a crosswalk.

What if More People Could Issue Parking Tickets?

Washington, D.C., considers training a group of residents to give tickets for some parking violations. Would it make streets safer for pedestrians and cyclists?

How I. M. Pei Shaped the Modern City

The architect, who died yesterday at the age of 102, designed iconic modern buildings on prominent sites around the world. Here are some that delight and confound CityLab.

The Problem With D.C.’s New Apple Store

The city has converted a cultural gem entrusted to the entire city into an exclusive outlet that serves only the few.

A photo of cherry trees in D.C.

The Uncertain Future of D.C.’s Cherry Blossoms

The cherry trees at the Tidal Basin look beautiful, but daily flooding at high tide and crumbling infrastructure are threatening their survival.

a photo of people waiting for the metro

A Zine That Captures the Many Faces of Washington, D.C.’s Metro Riders

Photographer Patrick Wright carried his camera on the city’s rapid transit system for four years, taking photos of over a thousand riders.

The Latest Trend in Co-Working: Child Care

In the booming co-working industry, some companies are standing out by opening their space up for children and working parents alike.

Think You’re Faster Than the D.C. Streetcar? Think Again.

Streetcars without dedicated lanes tend to be on the slow side. But beating this much-maligned public transportation mode on foot wasn’t as easy as it looks.