If the Subway located at 1100 New Jersey Ave. SE were anywhere else besides the retail Dead Zone that is the Navy Yard, its status as the busiest Subway in the District of Columbia might actually mean something. As it is, the title means that along with the Five Guys next door and the popcorn vendor who works the sidewalk on weekdays, the few dining options in the area aren’t nearly enough to fill the neighborhood’s bellies.

David Mandell, a consultant at BEA on M St., has worked in the area since 2002. When making a Subway run, he tries to get there before 11:30. After that, the line stretches through the restaurant to the very back, by the bathrooms. Today, he managed to make it to the front in relatively quick order with daughters Carly, 12, and Sarah, 13, who are accompanying him as part of Take Your Daughter(s) to Work day.

With his ID card on a lanyard and safely tucked into his front pocket, Mandell waxes on about the way things used to be near the Navy Yard: “nothing but burned out buildings.” He credits the Nats for bringing the area’s only decent sandwich shop. “The ball park has changed everything around here,” he says.

Carly and Sarah don’t seemed terribly jazzed. Both describe spending the day with dad as an equal mix of being bored and impressed (the latter adjective clearly used to please Dad, who did buy lunch after all.)

Reporting by Jule Banville.