U Street, King Street named best streets in America 2011

Two area streets — D.C.'s U Street and Alexandria's King Street — are famous locally for being oppressively crowded on weekends, but now they're famous nationally as two of the top 10 great streets in America. Which means now they'll be even more oppressively crowded on weekends.

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Compiled by the American Planning Association, the list places the roads alongside the likes Santa Monica Boulevard in West Hollywood, Calif. and Main Street in Nantucket, Mass.

Here's what the APA had to say about U Street:

U Street has gone through difficult times, particularly the lingering aftermath of devastating riots following the 1968 assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Today the street is pulsing again with the music, businesses and life that, in the early 1900s, distinguished it as the main street of Washington's 'city within a city.'

And King Street:

Historic, vibrant, and eclectic, King Street has been enhanced by active planning and implementation through its evolution from an 18th century colonial seaport and 19th century center of trade to a center of 21st century commerce and tourism. Planning and preservation have ensured that King Street, part of the 'Old and Historic District' in Alexandria's 'Old Town' neighborhood, balances the past with the present. The city's Archeological Protection Code, adopted in 1989, requires impact assessments on cultural resources for new development and a Board of Architectural Review ensures that designs for new construction and exterior alterations blend with the street's historic buildings.

Davis Street in Culpeper, Va., also made the list.


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