The long-delayed DC Streetcar finally opened on Saturday (4 years after it’s originally announced start date), shuttling thousands of excited and curious riders down H Street and Benning Road in Northeast DC. The lengthy process has been well documented by Greater Greater Washington, WAMU, and the Washington Post, and the jury is still out on whether the $200 million project ($50 million for the car barn at end of line and $20 million for test line in Anacostia that will never be used) will be worth it.
What’s undeniable is that the Streetcar will be ripe for drinking excursions (though not on Sunday, since it’s not open, at least not yet)-particularly while it’s free for at least the first six months (SmartTrip will never be accepted, BTW). After walking most of the route and taking the ride the entire length, Barred in DC has discovered which drinking spots are closest to each of the stops. Although full blown bar crawls may be complicated to organize due to the restrictions on them for the eastern half of H Street, nothing stops you from grabbing some friends and hitching a ride, hopping from bar to bar.
How to Get There
To get to the beginning of the DC Streetcar from the Red Line Metro station, take the Amtrak/MARC exit, go up the escalator by Amtrak Gate C and follow the signs through the parking garage and past the intercity bus station. It takes about 5 minutes to walk to the Streetcar’s first stop in the median of H Street on the Hopscotch Bridge above the railyard.
13th St/H St
Eastbound: Sol Mexican Grill & Cantina, Smith Commons (right at stop)
Westbound: Sally’s Middle Name (150 feet) [closes at 11p]; Da Luft (215 feet)
Expect this stop to one of the most popular-there are at least 20 places to drink on the 1200 and 1300 blocks of H Street.
15th St/Benning Rd
The Argonaut (380 feet)
19th St / Benning Rd
Langston Bar & Grille (260 feet)
Oklahoma Ave/Benning Rd
Langston Clubhouse Grill at Golf Course (500 feet) [open til 3p during winter, till early evening rest of year]
RFK Stadium [half mile]