This map I made shows the accessibility of the Metro. Each circle has a 1/2 mile diameter and centered about the points of entry to Metro Stations - they represent a 5 minute walking distance (1/4 mile) to each station. Clearly, there are a lot of holes and “access deserts,” the largest of which includes the greater Capitol Hill neighborhood (which is one of DC’s oldest and most dense neighborhoods). Further, this is a map focused on the core of the historically planned city of Washington, the access deserts only get worse as you zoom out to the entirety of the District and includes areas of the city that are most economically and socially depressed.
There is also another layer of information here that is often overlooked in evaluating transit access. Not only do these gaps, holes, and deserts make the livability of a city suppressed for residents who live outside of access areas, but this lack of access also makes the knowing, understanding, and therefore ownership of a city much more difficult for all those who live there.
This summer I lived in Logan Circle, an area located in the larger gap of the NW portion of this map. Luckily for me I mostly biked everywhere (and I loved it), but on the occasion that I needed to take the metro somewhere it became much more of an inconvenience. For example, I never once made it out to Lincoln park, which is the large red square in the center of Capitol Hill and nearly impossible easily get to (same goes for the H Street corridor about 8 blocks north). Its funny because this was something I had really wanted to do and while it would have been only a 15-20 minute walk from the Eastern Market Metro station, I never ventured further north than the Market itself. I also very easily could have biked there considering each weekend I was biking up to 40 miles around the greater Washington area and it would have taken me probably only about 20-25 minutes from my apartment. However there were some mental barriers I had to contend with. The most direct way to Lincoln park would have been down Massachusetts Avenue, but Mass Ave is a nightmare on a bike. As a major thoroughfare without bike lanes it would have been dangerous and stressful in traffic. I also could have taken some back streets but I met mental barriers there as well — the notion that NE DC tends to be on the rougher side. Bus access isn’t much better. Toward the end of summer I met some friends way out at H and 14th NE and upon discovering that the bus only runs once every 30-60 minutes I instead opted for a cab home - a considerably more expensive option but better than waiting on a street corner for 30 minutes at 2 am.
The point I’m trying to illustrate is that I hardly got to explore this huge swath of city purely out of the fact that access is limited and either time or monetarily expensive - not exactly conducive to ownership for a city that one lives in.
EDIT: This was just a quick 5 minute study. My next iteration of this will show 5, 10, and 15 minute walk circles as well as population density for for entirety of the city. Also the black push pin is Metro Center