Axios D.C.

Picture of the D.C. skyline.

Good morning! Make it a great Tuesday.

☀️ Today's weather: Sunny with a high of 40.

📍Situational awareness: Democrats debating last night over whether to move the new FBI headquarters to Maryland or Virginia temporarily held up the omnibus bill to avoid a government shutdown. While a compromise was reached, the headquarters location is still uncertain.

Today's newsletter is 1,093 words — a 4-minute read.

1 big thing: Your neighborhood's emissions

Solar panels on a D.C. house roof

Solar panels on a D.C. home. Photo: MANDEL NGAN/AFP via Getty Images

D.C.'s denser, more transit-friendly neighborhoods such as Navy Yard tend to have lower carbon emissions than largely single-family neighborhoods like Palisades, according to new research.

Why it matters: The data shows that planet-warming emissions can be reduced by both leadership decisions — such as building more housing near public transportation — and personal lifestyle choices like driving an electric car or cutting down on air travel.

What they did: With help from consulting firm EcoDataLab, researchers at the University of California, Berkeley measured household CO2 emissions by analyzing transportation, housing, foods, goods — like furniture and appliances — and services — like education and health care.

Map: The New York Times. Used by kind permission

Zoom in: In Northern Virginia, carbon emissions in the low-density, affluent Great Falls area are much higher than the national average across all five categories.

  • In contrast, urban parts of Arlington along Metro corridors have emissions equal to or below the national average.

The big picture: The Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments has a goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 50% by 2030. It exceeded its 20% reduction goal in 2020.

  • Further progress will require more solar power and net-zero energy buildings, and increased opportunities for transit, teleworking, walking, and bicycling, according to the group.

Go deeper: Zoom in on the map to find your neighborhood.

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2. 🥙 DMV food halls, ranked

The inside of The Roost food hall.

Our top pick food hall. Photo: Paige Hopkins/Axios

Hey, Paige here with the toughest assignment (😉) I've had to date: ranking D.C.’s top food halls. 

Why it matters: Our region has seen an influx of food halls over the years. It’s hard to figure out which ones are worth a trip, so I did the heavy lifting for you. 

Methodology: I considered ordering methods, unique food options, seating, ambience, and vendor variety. 

1. The Roost

The Capitol Hill food hall opened in 2020. It snagged our top spot because it's perfected the classics from burgers to tacos — everything I tried was truly delicious. Plus, it has great variety without too many options. 

Must-try: Taco Night in America (beef, queso, pico) from Hi/Fi Taco.

For a quick bite: Grab a funfetti cookie from Cameo.

Bonus: There’s a Shop Made In DC inside.

Address: 1401 Pennsylvania Ave. SE

Crispy pork belly poutine from Red Apron.
I scream, you scream, we all scream for poutine (from Red Apron). Photo: Paige Hopkins/Axios

2. Union Market

Yes, I know, you’re surprised to see Union Market take second place. It is a fantastic food hall that represents so many different food traditions, but for those of us who get overwhelmed by lots of options (🙋🏾‍♀️) it’s not the easiest to navigate. Plus, the ordering systems and seating options could use some improvement.

Must try: Puddin’s bread pudding. Even if you think you’re not a fan, this rendition will change your mind.

Always a hit: Bun’d Up. The gua bao with a Taiwanese twist never disappoints. 

Address: 1309 5th St. NE

3. The Block (Annandale)

The Block is Asian fusion heaven. It has three locations all with different vendors, but Annandale has great variety. 

  • It feels intimate without being cramped. The perfect spot to share a cozy meal with good friends. 

Must-try: Fried chicken tacos served on roti canai flatbread from Balô Kitchen.

Sweet tooth: Choose your own adventure at SnoCream Company with dozens of toppings and treats to add to their specialty ice cream/shaved ice hybrid. 

Address: 4221 John Marr Dr., Annandale

Fancy meatloaf from Great Lake Diner at The Assembly.
Meatloaf just like mama made it. Read the full story to learn where it's from. Photo: Paige Hopkins/Axios

Find out how we ranked your favorite food hall

3. 🥶 Oh, the weather outside is frightful

A map showing below average temperatures for Christmas

Christmas temps are forecasted to be below average by about 20 degrees in the D.C. area. Image:

Instead of a white Christmas, expect the coldest one in decades. An Arctic blast is forecasted to bring frigid temps and strong to potentially damaging winds of 40-50 mph on Friday.

🧊 Threat level: The bitter cold sweeping across the lower 48 states (and D.C.) will impact holiday travel, Axios’ Andrew Freedman writes.

  • The combination of bitterly cold temperatures and a powerful storm system could halt pre-Christmas travel across the Ohio Valley and the rest of the Midwest, the NWS warned.

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4. 📚 Chart du jour: Suburban slump

Change in D.C. area fall school enrollment, </br>2019 to 2022
Data: Virginia Department of Education, D.C. Public Schools, Maryland Department of Education. Chart: Axios Visuals

Public school enrollment in our region has dipped since 2019, especially in suburban school districts.

Why it matters: The declines might be caused by decreased demand for public schools during the pandemic and lower birth rates, per the D.C. Policy Center.

By the numbers: Fairfax County saw the largest enrollment decline of 4.7% between 2019 and 2022. Arlington County schools saw a smaller 2% decrease.

Yes, but: Public school enrollment is slowly inching back toward pre-pandemic levels, but has yet to make a full recovery, per data from local school officials.

  • Enrollment gains for the 2022-2023 DCPS school year were the highest since before the pandemic.

5. Around the Beltway: The rats are going to love this announcement

Illustration of a Washington Metro sign edited to read "Around the Beltway."

Illustration: Brendan Lynch/Axios

🐀 Three Littles toy store near Union Market sells stuffed rat toys and, to our surprise, they’re a big hit. (Washingtonian)

💸 An officer at the D.C. jail is accused of using union funds to travel to New York City to see "Summer: The Donna Summer Musical," attend an NBA game, and spend $4,000 at a Times Square hotel. (Washington Post)

🗳️ Arlington will be the first Virginia county to try ranked-choice voting in its local primary elections next June. County officials have also considered extending the trial for next November's general election. (DCist)

🏈 Virginia Gov. Glenn Youngkin has proposed spending $500,000 to study how to woo the NFL into bringing a Commanders stadium to the state. (Washington Post)

🎓 A long read worth your time: When D.C. residents return from incarceration, they find barriers to employment. Hear from three natives who enrolled in a certificate program at Georgetown University to pursue their career goals. (Washington Business Journal)

Take your career to the next level

💼 Check out who’s hiring on our Job Board.

  1. Director of Advocacy, Criminal Justice at Arnold Ventures.
  2. Business Development Specialist at International Republican Institute.
  3. Managing Director, Policy & Strategy at American Gas Association.
  4. Communications Director at National Electrical Manufacturers Association.
  5. Operations Manager at Oneg.

Want more opportunities? Check out our Job Board.

Hiring? Post a Job.

6. 🏡 VIP real estate in 2022

Illustration of a front door to a house with a door knocker and the number 2022 on it.

Illustration: Brendan Lynch/Axios

The D.C. area had a roller coaster of a real estate year, but that didn't stop these famous locals from closing on luxury homes in 2022.

  • We combed Washingtonian and Washington Business Journal for real estate transactions of bold-faced names. Here’s who bought in our area this year. 

🏡 Caps player T.J. Oshie and Lauren Oshie bought a 9,890-square-foot McLean new-build. They paid: $7.5 million. 

  • Their former home in Langley Farms sold six months later for $6.4 million.

🏡 D.C. council member Brianne Nadeau and Embedded Healthcare director Jayson Harpster bought a renovated four-bedroom, four-bathroom Columbia Heights row home. They paid: $1.15 million.

🏡 Wizards head coach Wes Unseld Jr. and his wife Evelyn bought a 10,733-square-foot Potomac home. It has a basketball court that sits on a two-acre lot. They paid: $3.7 million.

🏡 Mission Group (Mission, Salazar, Hawthorne, the Admiral) cofounder Reed Landry bought a six-bedroom, eight-bathroom colonial home in McLean with a massive wine cellar. He paid $5.25 million.

Keep reading for more celeb homes

🍪Hey, Paige here! Thanks to all of you who shared your favorite holiday traditions and 2022 pictures.

  • My favorite holiday tradition is the Hopkins family cookie decorating contest. My mom always wins, but having sugar cookies to snack on all week is the real prize.

Today's newsletter was edited by Kayla Sharpe and copy edited by Patricia Guadalupe.