Southwest (SW) is the southwestern quadrant of Washington, D.C. located south of the National Mall and west of South Capitol Street. It is the smallest quadrant of the city. SW is frequently referred to as a neighborhood in and of itself. However, it actually contains four separate neighborhoods.

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SOUTHWEST FEDERAL CENTER, also called the Southwest Employment District, is the area between the National Mall and the Southeast/Southwest Freeway (Interstate 395). Southwest Federal Center contains the Smithsonian Institution museums along the south side of the Mall – including the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, the National Museum of African Art, the Freer Gallery of Art, the Arthur M. Sackler Gallery, the National Air and Space Museum, and the National Museum of the American Indian – as well as the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, the United States Botanical Gardens, L’Enfant Plaza, and a large concentration of federal executive branch office buildings for various Departments as well the U.S. House office buildings.


SOUTHWEST WATERFRONT, also called Near Southwest, is between I-395 and Fort Lesley J. McNair. Southwest Waterfront is a primarily residential neighborhood. It also is home to several Washington DC marinas, including the Washington Marina, The Capitol Yacht Club, the Gangplank Marina, and the James Creek Marina. It is also home to the Maine Avenue Fish Market, Arena Stage, Fort McNair, and Hains Point [East and West Potomac Park], a conjunction of two national parks between I-395 and the National Mall that contain the Tidal Basin, the Jefferson Memorial, and the Franklin Delano Roosevelt Memorial (West Potomac Park continues into Northwest and includes the Lincoln Memorial and World War II Memorial, both of which straddle the Southwest/Northwest boundary).  Southwest Waterfront is in Ward 6, except for the unpopulated East and West Potomac Parks, which are in Ward 2.


BUZZARD POINT, a largely undeveloped industrial area between South Capitol Street and Fort McNair. Buzzard Point was the home of the U.S. Coast Guard, which was headquartered in a building at the confluence of the Potomac and Anacostia Rivers. The headquarters moved to the former St. Elizabeths Hospital campus in 2013. Buzzard Point is the home of the new soccer stadium, Audi Field, and MLS team DC United.


THE BELLEVUE NEIGHBORHOOD occupies all of the Southwest land between South Capitol Street (to the east) and the Anacostia and Potomac rivers (to the west and north). Included is the small Hadley Hospital. Bellevue is in Ward 8.The rest of the area of Southwest that is south and east of the Anacostia River contains Joint Base Anacostia-Bolling together with the Naval Research Laboratory and the Blue Plains Advanced Wastewater Treatment Plant, Job Corps Center, and Fire Department Training Center. This area is in Ward 8.


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