The Columbus Day weekend is packed with festivals, happy hours and big exhibitions, from Taste of DC to “30 Americans” at the Corcoran.
But for those who live in Columbia Heights, partiers bound for U Street or folks planning a visit to Shaw, there’s one huge obstacle. Okay, more like a dead end: Metro is closing the Shaw, U Street and Columbia Heights stations beginning at 10 p.m. on Friday and continuing until Metro’s opening Tuesday morning. So if you’re taking the Green or Yellow lines, you’ll have to hop a bus between Georgia Avenue and Mt. Vernon Square. Hardly convenient when it’s 1:30 a.m. and you’re ready to head home.
But you can still get to U Street and major events without Metro; here are three ways to avoid the Green and Yellow lines.
The trip: Bus it to U Street
It’s actually not hard to get to U Street and Columbia Heights without their eponymous Metro stations.
Those Metro stations are served by some of the most popular (and crowded) bus lines in the city, including the 90/92/93 buses, which connect Adams Morgan, U Street and Southeast D.C., and the 52/53/54 buses, which run down 14th Street from upper Northwest into the heart of downtown.
Honestly, if you’re dying to get to the new late-night oyster happy hour at Blackbyrd or catch a football game at Meridian Pint and you don’t live within walking distance, grab the Circulator’s “Green” line, which runs from McPherson Square (Orange and Blue lines) to the Woodley Park station (Red Line), stopping at Logan Circle, U Street, Columbia Heights, Mount Pleasant and Adams Morgan. It’s faster than the regular bus, it’s only $1 and it drops you off right in front of Blackbyrd’s front door. The Black Cat may suggest that you walk to shows from Dupont Circle this weekend, but trust us: It’s faster to take the bus. And the Circulator runs later than Metro anyway; the last buses of the night leave at 3:30 a.m.
The trip: “30 Americans” via Capital Bikeshare
The Corcoran is stacked with stuff to do this weekend, from its new exhibit, “30 Americans,” to Sunday’s screening of “Downtown 81,” about Jean-Michel Basquiat and the art scene in early 1980s New York. If you feel like biking, grab your bike from a Capital Bikeshare rack at the Columbia Heights Metro station, 16th and Harvard, Adams Mill and Columbia roads, or 11th and Kenyon streets, and ride to one of the four Bikeshare stations all within four blocks of the museum. (The closest is at 19th and E streets NW.) For more Bikeshare agendas, check out our new itineraries.
There are also Circulators running from Union Station and Columbia Heights to McPherson Square, not to mention several bus lines such as the 16th Street “S” line.
The trip: Taste of DC via Metro and walking
The bad news: If you were headed to Taste of DC this weekend, remember that one option — taking the Green or Yellow line to the Archives stop — may be difficult (you can switch from the Red Line to either line at Chinatown, but how frequently the trains will run and how crowded they’ll be is anyone’s guess). There are a couple of quick ways around any glut, if you want to avoid it: Take the Orange or Blue lines to Federal Triangle (note that there’s a bump in Orange Line service this weekend, too, between East and West Falls Church), and walk north about a block to Pennsylvania Avenue NW. A better option for avoiding what could be huge crowds at that station could be to take the Red Line to Chinatown, exit on the galleries side and walk south a few blocks to Pennsylvania Avenue.