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Roosevelt Center

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1937, Resettlement Administration. 107-131 Centerway.
  • (Photograph by James Rosenthal, HABS)
  • Mother and Child sculpture in plaza, from south (Photograph by James Rosenthal, HABS)

Clarence Stein regarded Greenbelt’s commercial center as the project’s largest contribution to the development of the planned “new town” concept. Later dubbed the Roosevelt Center, the commercial node included two streamlined concrete and brick veneer buildings flanking a plaza. A pedestrian underpass provided access to the plaza from the residential areas on the other side of Crescent Road. Sculptor Lenore Thomas’s stylized Mother and Child, funded by the WPA, sits at the north end of the plaza. The original two-story commercial buildings feature curved corners, bands of raised brick, and steel sash casement windows. Services such as a soda fountain, variety store, post office, and beauty shop were housed on the ground floors, with town offices and meeting spaces above. A movie theater incorporated into the east building has angular buttresses like those at the Greenbelt Center School and a reproduction of its original Art Deco marquee.

Writing Credits

Lisa P. Davidson
Lisa P. Davidson
Catherine C. Lavoie



  • 1937

  • 1947


What's Nearby


Lisa P. Davidson, "Roosevelt Center", [Greenbelt, Maryland], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

Print Source

Buildings of Maryland, Lisa Pfueller Davidson and Catherine C. Lavoie. Charlottesville: University of Virginia Press, 2022, .

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