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Lafayette Building

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1941, A. R. Clas. 811 Vermont Ave. NW

The eleven-story Lafayette Building is one of the few privately developed office buildings constructed in the city during the Second World War. It was intended to house expanding government agencies bloated by the demands of wartime Washington. Clas designed the building in cooperation with Holabird and Root of Chicago. It was admired for its simplicity and direct, businesslike character. The building facade is divided into three major portions: a two-story base, a shaft rising from the third story to the tenth, and a setback eleventh story serving as the capital. The walls are of brick clad in limestone. At the base of the building, the narrow windows that are two stories tall suggest a colonnade. The nearly decoration-free structure was enlivened with a few limestone window frames.

Writing Credits

Pamela Scott and Antoinette J. Lee


What's Nearby


Pamela Scott and Antoinette J. Lee, "Lafayette Building", [Washington, District of Columbia], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

Print Source

Buildings of the District of Columbia, Pamela Scott and Antoinette J. Lee. New York: Oxford University Press, 1993, 202-202.

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