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Lafayette Center

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1979–1987, Welton Becket. 1120 20th St. NW

A cluster of four red brick buildings located in the center of a city block, Lafayette Center attracts pedestrians to its site by enlarging the arched entrances on its 20th Street facade, just where one enters an interior walkway to 21st Street. Black wrought-iron balconies at each ninth-floor window provide a modest three-dimensional effect to an otherwise flat surface of red brick walls and black glass windows.

The pedestrian then turns a corner and proceeds through a walkway lined with sculpture, dotted with coordinated planters and trash cans, and lit by oversized Baroque sconces. Midway along the walkway is the Galleria, a special events facility available for use by corporations and associations. An effort was made to add amenities and public functions to a speculative office building project.

Writing Credits

Pamela Scott and Antoinette J. Lee


What's Nearby


Pamela Scott and Antoinette J. Lee, "Lafayette Center", [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, 229-229.

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