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Located at the center of a forest, Mount Rainier includes 415 acres of a natural expanse with thriving communities at its heart. Rhode Island Avenue separates the southern quadrant of the neighborhood, creating an easier commute for drivers into surrounding cities. The border of this area divides rustic, historic Maryland from the modernized world of Washington, D.C.

Crisscrossed with suburban streets leading to rural residences, the neighborhood is home to a diverse population with a collision of cultures. The perfect balance of suburban solitude and city hubbub combine in Mount Rainier, giving locals the best of both worlds.

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Rent Trends

As of August 2017, the average apartment rent in Mount Rainier, MD is $760 for a studio, $1,047 for one bedroom, $1,272 for two bedrooms, and $1,532 for three bedrooms. Apartment rent in Mount Rainier has increased by 5.2% in the past year.

Beds
Avg Sq Ft
Avg Rent
Studio
468
$760
1 BR
666
$1,047
2 BR
831
$1,272
3 BR
1,410
$1,532
Beds
Avg Sq Ft
Avg Rent

Ratings

80 Walk Score® Very Walkable
57 Transit Score® Good Transit
53 Bike Score® Bikeable

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Restaurants

Queens Chapel Road and Rhode Island Avenue have the most dining opportunities in Mount Rainier. The divergent selection cooks up a smorgasbord of cultural favorites, such as Chinese, Italian, American and Mexican.

Sweet & Natural caters to vegans with passions for traditional Southern dishes. The fried chicken, a local favorite, consists of tofu dipped in batter and fried to golden perfection, then served alongside collard greens, potato salad and macaroni and cheese. The restaurant doubles as a bakery, displaying after-dinner pastries, such as donuts, cinnamon buns and brownies, at the storefront.

The Urban Eats Arts and Music Café provides customers with a beatnik lounge experience with homemade menu options. Keeping odd hours that shift depending on the season, this café features live music, a full bar and the works of local artisans on the walls. Natives love how affordable this restaurant remains, and favorite local meals include kale soup, the Mount Rainier cheeseburger, tofu hash and French toast.

When cruising for nightlife and local entertainment, the best go-to bars in town include Looney’s Pub, a traditional sports bar on the outskirts of Mount Rainier in College Park. Known for its full bar, knowledgeable bartender and nightly drink specials, this pub stays open until at least 2 a.m. every night except Sunday. Mondays and Tuesdays are designated trivia nights.

History

Named after the famed mountain in Washington State, Mount Rainier was founded by a group of developers in 1891. Their hopes were to make this a thriving neighborhood, intersected at different angles by the streetcar lines of 1899. Streetcars, also known as trolleys, attracted interested residents, creating a demand for affordable housing in 1902.

Over the next century, the growing area flourished into towns, shops, restaurants and official government buildings, while preserving its historic artifacts and documents in a collection of district museums.

Founded to promote African-American culture and education, Prince George’s African American Museum and Cultural Center celebrates Mount Rainier’s blend of influential backgrounds. Featuring diverse artistic contributions, public events and unique exhibits that highlight African-American history, this museum seeks to bring the community closer together through understanding of varying cultures.

Transportation

Over 80 percent of Mount Rainier errands can be run on foot, as the sidewalks and pedestrian-friendly trails create a walkable environment. The same can be said for bicyclers on designated trails following Sligo Creek, Northwest Branch Anacostia River and Indian Creek. The trails come full circle around the neighborhood, conveniently branching to side streets to drop cyclists at their homes.

Public transportation in the neighborhood includes bus stops and rail stations. Rural avenues lead to major highways, and the residential roads rarely experience congestion. However, Rhode Island Avenue, Bladensburg Road, Eastern Avenue Northeast and Queens Chapel Road present stop-and-go traffic problems during weekday mornings and rush hour. Sargent Road and Chillum Road provide handy detours to major highways, and affordable public parking is available on 43rd Avenue, Adelphi Road and Otis Street.

Hailing a taxi in Mount Rainier requires patience, as the labyrinth of side streets are a suburban challenge to cab companies. The most popular options in the area, Yellow Cab Taxi and V.I.P. Cab Company, could take half an hour to navigate through the residential roads. However, once on the highway, these cab companies are reliable options for commuting to surrounding cities.

Cost

The costs of living in Mount Rainier is generally 1.8 percent lower than the city average, with the average rental rate at $942 for a one-bedroom apartment. After indulging in a $7 pint at a local bar, consider taking the bus back home for $1.75 per ride. When Monday morning rolls around, commuters can expect to pay 4 percent more than the national average on gas.

Parks

With a number of parks scattered throughout the area, Mount Rainier benefits from a recreational environment that is suitable for families and their pups. The free Mount Rainier Nature and Recreation Center provides expansive meadows of running space for dogs to play and exercise, while bird-watching trails offer the best scenic views of migrating geese, blue birds and red robins. Lake Artemesia also brims with life, providing the perfect opportunity for kayakers, fishermen and swimmers to do what they love most.

Located off the cusp of Sargent Road, the Maryland National Capital Park & Planning Commission plays host to seasonal family events, such as the Festival of Lights, an annual, illuminating celebration from November to January. Most of these holiday occasions take place in parks within a short driving distance from Mount Rainier, such as North Michigan Park and Barnard Hill Park.

Shopping

Major chain stores are few and far between within the border of he neighborhood, but Family Dollar reigns supreme. The area features local favorites such as the Rainbow shop, an apparel store specializing in junior and plus-size women’s clothing, located within a short drive of Sargent Road. On the east side of the Northwest Branch Anacostia River, the Cookbook Bazaar prides itself on an expansive collection of cookbooks and unique recipes for bakers, professional chefs and neighborhood home cooks. The selection of books span the gamut from the 1960s to now, exploring worldwide cuisines for reasonable prices.

On Tuesday afternoons, you can catch local farmers selling the highlights of their seasonal harvests at the Hyattsville Farmers Market. During this market, fresh fruits and vegetables line Gallatin Street in convenient carts. For everyday grocery essentials, SHOPPERS Food on Chillum Road and Save-A-Lot off of Sargent Road sell the necessary essentials.

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