H Street is everywhere these days, touted as the new Adams Morgan or U Street of Washington DC's nightlife – and for good reason. The H Street corridor is currently the target of a city-sponsored revitalization plan, and it's humming with new eateries, bars, and restaurants.
H Street was one of Washington's earliest and most bustling commercial districts, but began to decline in the latter part of the 20th century. Then came the riots of 1968 after Martin Luther King's death, and H Street became a wasteland.
In 2002, city initiated community-based efforts to rebuild the area, which divided it officially into three districts: a residential district between 2nd and 7th Streets, a retail district from 7th to 12th Streets, and an area to focus on arts and entertainment from 12th to 15th Streets.
This latter area is anchored by the Atlas Theater, recently refurbished as a dance studio and performance space. Also added is the new H Street Playhouse and other live performance venues including the Red and the Black and the Rock & Roll Hotel.
Several new hip and eclectic bars have also opened, including Lucky Bar and Big Hunt, owned by entrepreneur Joe Englert who says he plans to open a total of eight bars and clubs in the area. In addition, the original H Street Martini Lounge and Rose's Dream Bar and Lounge contribute atmosphere to a neighborhood that was recently known for its boarded-up storefronts.