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The Arlington Memorial Bridge in Washington D.C. The bridge spans over a body of water and is connected to an area with many trees that have multicolored leaves. Shutterstock

Washington, D.C.’s 15 most important neoclassical structures, mapped

The White House, the Jefferson Memorial, the Commerce Department, the American Red Cross headquarters, and more—these creations typify the District’s most prominent architectural style 

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Tall columns, symmetrical shapes, triangular pediments, domed roofs—neoclassical features can be found anywhere and everywhere in the District.

Just the city plan demonstrates Washington's architectural style, with its consolidated scheme and central forum with city services.

To see just how far the Neoclassical style reaches, check out this map of the District’s 15 top examples, from memorials to museums to bridges.

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The Fessenden House

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An heir to the Giant Food fortune built this Forest Hills single-family in 1994 to house his art collection. According to a 2015 listing, the building pays tribute to English architects James and Robert Adams. The Kuwaiti government bought it the following year for $18 million

16th Street Bridge

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The 16th Street Bridge was the first parabolic arch bridge constructed in the U.S.

It spans 272 feet, and is made of reinforced concrete and steel with hollow spandrels between the arch and abutments. It's also known as the Piney Branch Bridge. Construction wrapped in 1910.

The 16th street bridge in Washington D.C. The bridge spans over a parkway.

Ashburton House

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The Ashburton House is also known as the St. John’s Church Parish House or British Legation.

Built in 1836, it served as a home for British diplomats, and was the site of 10 months of U.S.-British negotiations that eventually led to the Webster-Ashburton Treaty of 1842. It is currently used as offices and meeting space for St. John's Church.

The building has been heavily renovated, but still includes original details such as the six marble- and one wood-mantled fireplaces, four floor-length marble columns on the first floor, and lintels above the doors.

National Museum of Women in the Arts

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The National Museum of Women in the Arts occupies the old Masonic Temple, a neoclassical building that is listed on the U.S. National Register of Historic Places.

The museum’s collection includes more than 4,500 paintings, sculptures, works on paper, and decorative art.

The exterior of the National Museum of Women in the Arts. The facade is yellow with columns. Shutterstock

The White House

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Built in 1800, the White House might be the most well-known neoclassical building in America.

It was designed by architect James Hoban to resemble the Leinster House in Dublin. George Washington wasn't so keen on Hoban's Georgian-style submission, so he requested the development be widened and more ornamental.

In 1824, architect Benjamin Henry Latrobe added the portico to the building and is said to have been influenced by the Château de Rastignac, a country estate in France.

The exterior of the White House in Washington D.C. The building has columns flanking the entrance area. Shutterstock

U.S. Treasury

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The Treasury Building was built in four phases from 1836 to 1869. It was declared a National Historic Landmark in 1971, and serves as the headquarters for the U.S. Department of the Treasury.

It features a three-story-high ionic colonnade and a full entablature unbroken by a pediment.

The exterior of the United States treasury in Washington D.C. The facade has columns and a statue of a man in front. Shutterstock

U.S. General Services Administration

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According to the GSA website, the GSA building was the first truly modern office building that the U.S. government constructed. It served as a model for federal offices through the early 1930s.

Built in 1917, it was the first federal building to use limestone facing. The building features an E-shaped plan allowing for open courtyards.

The exterior of the United States General Services Administration. The facade is white and there is a statue of an eagle on top of the entryway. Shutterstock

American Red Cross Headquarters

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The American Red Cross National Headquarters serves as both a memorial to the women who served in the Civil War and as the headquarters for the American Red Cross.

It's composed of white marble with a corinthian entrance portico and corinthian columns. The construction for this building ended in 1917, and it was declared a National Historic Landmark in 1965.

The exterior of the American Red Cross Headquarters in Washington D.C. The facade is white with columns. Shutterstock

The John Wilson Building

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The building dates from 1908, and houses the offices and chambers of Washington’s mayor and City Council. Philadelphia firm Cope & Stewardson won a competition to design the structure. 

The exterior of the John Wilson Building in Washington D.C. The facade is white with multiple windows. Shutterstock

DAR Constitution Hall

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John Russell Pope designed this 1929 building. 

Housing D.C.’s largest auditorium and designated a National Historic Landmark in 1985, the DAR Constitution Hall was originally built to host the Daughters of the American Revolution’s annual convention.

The exterior of the Daughters of the American Revolution’s building. The facade is white and there are columns flanking the entrance. Shutterstock

Herbert C. Hoover Building

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The Commerce Department’s headquarters includes Indiana limestone walls, bronze doors, a Vermont marble base, and accent flooring. 

When built in 1932, it became the largest office building in the world with with more than 1.8 million square feet of floor area, forming almost the entire west side of the Federal Triangle from Constitution Avenue to E Street.

The exterior of the Herbert Hoover Building in Washington D.C.  The facade is tan with columns. Shutterstock

National Gallery of Art

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Two buildings compose the National Gallery of Art: The West Building that John Russell Pope designed and the East Building that I.M. Pei designed. 

While Pei’s design is more modern, Pope’s design features all the characteristics of neoclassical architecture, including a symmetrical shape, tall columns, and a triangular pediment. 

Construction on the West Building wrapped in 1941.

The exterior of the National Gallery of Art in Washington D.C. There is a large staircase and columns on the front of the facade. Shutterstock

United States Capitol

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The Capitol was designed to resemble an ancient Roman temple, and construction would last from the 1790s well into the 20th century as the federal government expanded the complex and added its famed dome. 

The exterior of the United States Capitol building. The facade is white with a domed roof and columns. Shutterstock

Arlington Memorial Bridge

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Built in 1932, the Arlington Memorial Bridge is a stone arch bridge composed of masonry, steel, and a central bascule that crosses the Potomac River.

It spans 2,163 feet, and was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1980.

The Arlington Memorial Bridge in Washington D.C. The bridge spans over a body of water and is connected to an area with many trees that have multicolored leaves. Shutterstock

Jefferson Memorial

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Designed by architect John Russell Pope, the memorial features circular marble steps, a portico, a circular colonnade of ionic order columns, and a shallow dome.

To build the memorial, Pope made references to the Roman Pantheon and Jefferson’s own design for the University of Virginia’s rotunda. Construction wrapped in 1943.

The interior of the Jefferson Memorial in Washington D.C. The roof is domed and there is a statue of a man in the center of the room. Shutterstock

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The Fessenden House

An heir to the Giant Food fortune built this Forest Hills single-family in 1994 to house his art collection. According to a 2015 listing, the building pays tribute to English architects James and Robert Adams. The Kuwaiti government bought it the following year for $18 million

16th Street Bridge

The 16th street bridge in Washington D.C. The bridge spans over a parkway.

The 16th Street Bridge was the first parabolic arch bridge constructed in the U.S.

It spans 272 feet, and is made of reinforced concrete and steel with hollow spandrels between the arch and abutments. It's also known as the Piney Branch Bridge. Construction wrapped in 1910.

The 16th street bridge in Washington D.C. The bridge spans over a parkway.

Ashburton House

The Ashburton House is also known as the St. John’s Church Parish House or British Legation.

Built in 1836, it served as a home for British diplomats, and was the site of 10 months of U.S.-British negotiations that eventually led to the Webster-Ashburton Treaty of 1842. It is currently used as offices and meeting space for St. John's Church.

The building has been heavily renovated, but still includes original details such as the six marble- and one wood-mantled fireplaces, four floor-length marble columns on the first floor, and lintels above the doors.

National Museum of Women in the Arts

The exterior of the National Museum of Women in the Arts. The facade is yellow with columns. Shutterstock

The National Museum of Women in the Arts occupies the old Masonic Temple, a neoclassical building that is listed on the U.S. National Register of Historic Places.

The museum’s collection includes more than 4,500 paintings, sculptures, works on paper, and decorative art.

The exterior of the National Museum of Women in the Arts. The facade is yellow with columns. Shutterstock

The White House

The exterior of the White House in Washington D.C. The building has columns flanking the entrance area. Shutterstock

Built in 1800, the White House might be the most well-known neoclassical building in America.

It was designed by architect James Hoban to resemble the Leinster House in Dublin. George Washington wasn't so keen on Hoban's Georgian-style submission, so he requested the development be widened and more ornamental.

In 1824, architect Benjamin Henry Latrobe added the portico to the building and is said to have been influenced by the Château de Rastignac, a country estate in France.

The exterior of the White House in Washington D.C. The building has columns flanking the entrance area. Shutterstock

U.S. Treasury

The exterior of the United States treasury in Washington D.C. The facade has columns and a statue of a man in front. Shutterstock

The Treasury Building was built in four phases from 1836 to 1869. It was declared a National Historic Landmark in 1971, and serves as the headquarters for the U.S. Department of the Treasury.

It features a three-story-high ionic colonnade and a full entablature unbroken by a pediment.

The exterior of the United States treasury in Washington D.C. The facade has columns and a statue of a man in front. Shutterstock

U.S. General Services Administration

The exterior of the United States General Services Administration. The facade is white and there is a statue of an eagle on top of the entryway. Shutterstock

According to the GSA website, the GSA building was the first truly modern office building that the U.S. government constructed. It served as a model for federal offices through the early 1930s.

Built in 1917, it was the first federal building to use limestone facing. The building features an E-shaped plan allowing for open courtyards.

The exterior of the United States General Services Administration. The facade is white and there is a statue of an eagle on top of the entryway. Shutterstock

American Red Cross Headquarters

The exterior of the American Red Cross Headquarters in Washington D.C. The facade is white with columns. Shutterstock

The American Red Cross National Headquarters serves as both a memorial to the women who served in the Civil War and as the headquarters for the American Red Cross.

It's composed of white marble with a corinthian entrance portico and corinthian columns. The construction for this building ended in 1917, and it was declared a National Historic Landmark in 1965.

The exterior of the American Red Cross Headquarters in Washington D.C. The facade is white with columns. Shutterstock

The John Wilson Building

The exterior of the John Wilson Building in Washington D.C. The facade is white with multiple windows. Shutterstock

The building dates from 1908, and houses the offices and chambers of Washington’s mayor and City Council. Philadelphia firm Cope & Stewardson won a competition to design the structure. 

The exterior of the John Wilson Building in Washington D.C. The facade is white with multiple windows. Shutterstock

DAR Constitution Hall

The exterior of the Daughters of the American Revolution’s building. The facade is white and there are columns flanking the entrance. Shutterstock

John Russell Pope designed this 1929 building. 

Housing D.C.’s largest auditorium and designated a National Historic Landmark in 1985, the DAR Constitution Hall was originally built to host the Daughters of the American Revolution’s annual convention.

The exterior of the Daughters of the American Revolution’s building. The facade is white and there are columns flanking the entrance. Shutterstock

Herbert C. Hoover Building

The exterior of the Herbert Hoover Building in Washington D.C.  The facade is tan with columns. Shutterstock

The Commerce Department’s headquarters includes Indiana limestone walls, bronze doors, a Vermont marble base, and accent flooring. 

When built in 1932, it became the largest office building in the world with with more than 1.8 million square feet of floor area, forming almost the entire west side of the Federal Triangle from Constitution Avenue to E Street.

The exterior of the Herbert Hoover Building in Washington D.C.  The facade is tan with columns. Shutterstock

National Gallery of Art

The exterior of the National Gallery of Art in Washington D.C. There is a large staircase and columns on the front of the facade. Shutterstock

Two buildings compose the National Gallery of Art: The West Building that John Russell Pope designed and the East Building that I.M. Pei designed. 

While Pei’s design is more modern, Pope’s design features all the characteristics of neoclassical architecture, including a symmetrical shape, tall columns, and a triangular pediment. 

Construction on the West Building wrapped in 1941.

The exterior of the National Gallery of Art in Washington D.C. There is a large staircase and columns on the front of the facade. Shutterstock

United States Capitol

The exterior of the United States Capitol building. The facade is white with a domed roof and columns. Shutterstock

The Capitol was designed to resemble an ancient Roman temple, and construction would last from the 1790s well into the 20th century as the federal government expanded the complex and added its famed dome. 

The exterior of the United States Capitol building. The facade is white with a domed roof and columns. Shutterstock

Arlington Memorial Bridge

The Arlington Memorial Bridge in Washington D.C. The bridge spans over a body of water and is connected to an area with many trees that have multicolored leaves. Shutterstock

Built in 1932, the Arlington Memorial Bridge is a stone arch bridge composed of masonry, steel, and a central bascule that crosses the Potomac River.

It spans 2,163 feet, and was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1980.

The Arlington Memorial Bridge in Washington D.C. The bridge spans over a body of water and is connected to an area with many trees that have multicolored leaves. Shutterstock

Jefferson Memorial

The interior of the Jefferson Memorial in Washington D.C. The roof is domed and there is a statue of a man in the center of the room. Shutterstock

Designed by architect John Russell Pope, the memorial features circular marble steps, a portico, a circular colonnade of ionic order columns, and a shallow dome.

To build the memorial, Pope made references to the Roman Pantheon and Jefferson’s own design for the University of Virginia’s rotunda. Construction wrapped in 1943.