Nestled in the northeastern quadrant of Washington, D.C., Brookland is a charming neighborhood known for its green spaces, arts scene, and significant Catholic institutions. Its quiet, tree-lined streets, diverse architecture, and thriving community spirit give it a distinctive character that sets it apart.
Brookland derives its name from the Brooks Mansion, the 1840 estate of Colonel Jehiel Brooks. In the early 20th century, as the city expanded, Brookland evolved into a streetcar suburb, boasting a mix of residential styles, including Victorian, craftsman, and brick rowhouses.
The neighborhood's moniker, "Little Rome," stems from the presence of prominent Catholic institutions, including the Catholic University of America, Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception, and several monastic communities.
Arts & Culture
Brookland is a burgeoning hub of the arts. The Monroe Street Market is at the heart of this, featuring a variety of artist studios, galleries, and shops. The Arts Walk here is a vibrant promenade that houses over two dozen artists in open studios, where you can explore a myriad of art forms and meet the artists themselves.
In addition, Dance Place is a leading center for dance education and performance in the neighborhood, offering an exciting array of shows, workshops, and classes.
Landmarks & Institutions
Brookland is home to the Catholic University of America, the national university of the Catholic Church in the United States. Its campus is an oasis of green with beautiful architecture.
Adjacent to the university, the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception is a must-visit. As one of the largest Roman Catholic churches in the world, it's renowned for its intricate mosaics and Byzantine-Romanesque architecture.
Another Brookland gem, the Saint John Paul II National Shrine, explores the legacy of Saint John Paul II and promotes the Christian heritage.
Dining & Shopping
Brookland has a growing food scene. 12th Street NE is the neighborhood's main commercial corridor, offering a selection of restaurants, cafes, and bars. Brookland's Finest Bar & Kitchen serves American classics in a cozy, neighborhood-friendly setting, while Menomale is a go-to spot for Neapolitan pizza.
For shopping, Monroe Street Market is home to a variety of stores and boutiques, and the weekly Brookland Farmers Market offers locally sourced produce, baked goods, and artisanal products.
Brookland is blessed with plenty of green spaces. The Franciscan Monastery Garden is a peaceful retreat with beautiful gardens, while the Metropolitan Branch Trail provides a great path for walking, jogging, or cycling.
Brookland is a community that enjoys its festivities. The annual Brookland Day Parade and Festival brings the community together with a parade, music, food, and family activities. The Monroe Street Market also hosts regular community events, from arts festivals to holiday markets.
With its blend of historic charm, cultural institutions, vibrant arts scene, and community spirit, Brookland is a unique slice of the D.C. landscape that's worth exploring. Whether you're a history buff, food lover, arts enthusiast, or nature seeker, Brookland has something to offer you.