The Museum District // City of Richmond
The Museum District, also referred to as 'West of the Boulevard', is located just west of the Fan District and the Boulevard. It is north of Carytown and extends to an area considered the Near West End. The Museum District derives its name from the numerous museums located there, including: The Virginia Museum of Fine Arts (referred to as the VMFA), the Virginia Historical Society, the United Daughters of the Confederacy, an area which is now the VMFA campus and the site where Confederate soldiers were cared for after the Civil War. Interesting enough, the elegant, classical building on the VMFA campus facing Belmont Ave has been used by filmmakers as a set staged to represent the White House.
Crossing the Boulevard heading west, the architecture and lot sizes become dramatically distinct from the Fan District. Major building developed here in the 1920s, and although there is a Victorian presence, the architecture speaks directly to the 1920s and 1930s. True to its urban DNA, multi-family buildings dot its geography. Its not uncommon to find apartment buildings next to mansions along Monument Avenue.
A big appeal to the Museum District is its proximity to Carytown, Richmond's oldest shopping district. This 8-block strip is lined with charming shops, restaurants, and the historic Byrd Theatre. The lack of chain stores, and instead, its small, locally-grown businesses offer a fresh alternative to area shopping malls.
Another appeal to the Museum District, is its adjoining neighborhood, Byrd Park. Offering a short jaunt to tennis courts, lakes, jogging trails, and the lovely green spaces of the Carillon, Byrd Park is a favorite of many who crave the proximity to the urban amenity package, yet prefer a higher degree of privacy.