Welcome to the Palisades

The Palisades area is located in Northwest Washington along the Potomac River, between Key Bridge and Chain Bridge. Hugging the Potomac River with its high bluffs and breathtaking sunsets, the Palisades is a treasure of green spaces in the nation's capital.
(PHOTO CREDIT: Hakan Lonaeus)

Welcome to the Palisades

Our area is laced with winding parks where dappled light filters through canopies of old trees. It's filled with quiet streets and dotted with houses all of varying styles, from a loving home originally built as a late 19th century dance hall to detailed Victorian designs to the more modern homes.
(PHOTO CREDIT: Hakan Lonaeus)

Welcome to the Palisades

Ask anyone why we consider this a small town in a big city and you're likely to get the same answer: the people who live here. They are some of the friendliest in Washington.
(PHOTO CREDIT: Hakan Lonaeus)

Welcome to the Palisades

We're an eclectic mix of all ages and sizes, lots of families (and pets) and folks with wide-ranging interests and incomes. But we all care about our community and give a lot to make it special.
(PHOTO CREDIT: Hakan Lonaeus)

Welcome to the Palisades

Whether it's maintaining flower beds in the median lining MacArthur Boulevard, rebuilding the children's playground and landscaping at our local Recreation Center, or creating our own tax-exempt fund to support community projects, this is definitely a community of doers.
(PHOTO CREDIT: Hakan Lonaeus)

Welcome to the Palisades

Our annual July 4 parade, sponsored by local businesses and Palisades t-shirt sales, is a DC tradition after more than 45 years.
(PHOTO CREDIT: Hakan Lonaeus)

Welcome to the Palisades

And increasingly, we're becoming the choice location for a growing number of educational institutions, including our outstanding public Key Elementary School. Our merchants are friendly and our restaurants include some of the best in the city.
(PHOTO CREDIT: Hakan Lonaeus)

Welcome to the Palisades

We are fortunate to call the Palisades our home -- close to the vibrancy of the city yet surrounded by beautiful nature.

Community Announcements


A Letter from Avi Green, PCA President

Updated August 2, 2019

Dear Neighbors,

I suppose I am still relatively new to the Palisades, having moved here in 2005, but it’s hard to imagine that the neighborhood has faced many moments like this with so many major issues in play at precisely the same moment. Here’s a brief rundown on where things stand…

Towards a Palisades Trolley Trail Compromise

The DC Department of Transportation plans to improve 0.65 miles of the Palisades Trolley Trail from Galena Place to Nebraska Avenue in order to encourage non-motorized access to the Palisades Rec Center and in conjunction with the replacement of the Arizona Avenue Pedestrian Bridge (project site). In order to guide the City's planning process, the Board of Directors of the Palisades Citizens Association endorsed the creation of a working group tasked with identifying a compromise vision – a vision that preserves the trail’s existing natural characteristics while promoting greater access, usability, connectivity, and sustainability at a safe neighborhood speed.

As part of that process, input was solicited from the community regarding the following draft compromise principles over a month-long period. 260 residents who live in the area reviewed the draft, and 143 residents left comments. 88 respondents expressed general support and 42 expressed general opposition for the direction of the proposed principles. We promised to keep the respondents' names/addresses confidential, but you can view the comments themselves here

The Site Formerly Known as Palisades Safeway
The oldest Safeway on the East Coast, arguably the anchor of the Palisades, has now closed. Kudos to Stephen Gardner and a slew of community partners and volunteers for giving the Palisades Safeway staff the spirited and earnest send-off party they deserved. Now that the day of reckoning has come, we need to look to the future. The Trammel Crow Company (TCC) has assumed control, and the hard reality is that the site will likely be vacant for at least three years as the planning and building process unfolds.

Review a full readout from our recent meeting with TCC representatives.

In summary, TCC wants to use much of the site as a senior living facility. The community wants to ensure that the site continues to provide retail and other benefits to the public at-large – including a grocery. The good news is that the zoning layout of the site is such that it is in TCC’s interest to compromise, and based on our first meeting, I am hopeful that is the direction we are headed. The bad news is that the return of a supermarket on the scale of the Palisades Safeway is off the table – and we can’t blame TCC for it. Middle-sized supermarkets like Palisades Safeway do not get built any more. A new Trader Joe’s is being built exactly two miles away on Wisconsin Avenue, a new Wegmans is opening at the old Fannie Mae HQ on Wisconsin Avenue, and a MOM’s Organic Market is likely coming to Spring Valley. One could say that the transition of the Palisades Safeway is happening five years too late. Nonetheless, there are opportunities to develop vibrant new retail along both Macarthur Boulevard and 48th Place as well as pursue other community amenities. TCC plans to present to the community once their plans become more solidified. Until then, let’s start thinking about how to decorate the new wooden fencing that will be ringing 4865 MacArthur Boulevard for the next three years.

The Old Hardy Public School Endgame 

The Palisades Citizens Association and the Key Elementary School PTO jointly launched the Keep Old Hardy Public Coalition (www.kohp.org) this past February on a shoe string PCA budget and a strong sense of determination. Since then, ten other PTO’s, ANCs, and other community organizations have joined our cause.

When Old Hardy was closed by DCPS in the late 1990’s due the population decline at the time, our City Council specifically declined to dispose of this public building permanently because they were concerned it may be needed in the future for public education. That day has come. All the elementary schools in Ward 3 are operating at or above capacity today with 25% additional growth projected by 2027. By the numbers, Ward 3 will need two new elementary schools by 2027. The Old Hardy Building is the ONLY facility left in Ward 3 that is owned by DCPS but is not currently in use.

Nonetheless, the Mayor has introduced legislation that will allow the city to dispose of Old Hardy to a private school without following the city’s own legally required process for declaring a public building surplus (i.e. un-needed). Why is this legislation being pursued by the Mayor? Because the Old Hardy Building would never pass the regular surplussing process since it is…quite simply, needed. Although the Mayor’s “emergency legislation” has been turned back, it may be raised as regular legislation on short notice. We are so grateful for the support of Councilmember Mary Cheh on this matter, but we will need a groundswell of public support to ultimately turn the tide. So, take a moment and sign up for the update list at www.kohp.org, and get ready to mobilize to Keep Old Hardy Public!

Avi Green
President, Palisades Citizens Association


Airplane Noise

Updated May 20, 2019

To file a noise complaint, click here.

To file a noise complaint using a mobile app, click here.

To learn more about the Airnoise Button, click here.

To read DC releases aircraft noise study showing adverse impacts - Click here

To read Detrimental effect of aircraft noise on student learning - Click here

Click here to see Pierre Oury's slides from his recent presentation at the library, A Pilot's Perspective

Check out this story on jet noise that aired on WAMU in October 2016.


Palisades Farmers Market

The Palisades Farmers market is thriving! Please visit on Sundays, 9:00 - 1:00pm on 48th Place. It's open all year round. Visit their website for more details! Check out this short promotional video by Chelsey Gabrielson.

Hillcrest Neighborhood

Find out what is new in the Palisades’ sister neighborhood, Hillcrest!