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A Historic Bank May Become D.C.'s Newest Museum

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When there are over 225 museums in Washington, D.C., does the District really need another? Sure, why not! There are plans to convert the Riggs National Bank only a block away from the White House into the Museum of the American Educator. The ground floor of the development will become a publicly accessible exhibit space, while the upper floors will house offices and conference rooms. In the basement floor, there will be an exhibit area, MEP spaces, public restrooms, and a kitchen. The architect of the project is Shalom Baranes Associates, and the location is 1503-1505 Pennsylvania Avenue NW.

While built in c. 1899, the property has experienced many changes since its construction. Appleton P. Clark, the architect behind the Embassy of Syria, designed an addition to the structure around 1922. Afterwards, interior balconies, rooftop mechanical equipment, and a fire escape were installed. In order to convert the bank into a museum, there are plans to renovate and restore the existing exterior. The proposed development will expand the fifth floor and add a sixth floor, lifting the property to 79-feet-high, just one foot lower than the height limit.