This post 1st appeared in The Prices Do DC on May 27, 2012
|An alternate Washington Monument|
And, of course, in almost every case, they weren't the only designs considered. Can you imagine a Washington Monument with a giant round base at its bottom? Or a Pentagon with a 24-story tower rising from its middle courtyard? Or how about a Venetian style canal leading to the steps of the Capitol?
Well, architects could. And not only could they envision them, they drew up complex plans for such structures. And it is these plans and designs that formed the basis of Unbuilt Washington, an exhibit that just ended Memorial Day at the National Building Museum.
|How about this for the Lincoln Memorial ...|
Many of the plans on display featured pyramids and domes and British-style gardens that are virtually impossible to equate with DC given the way it looks today.
Some of the more interesting projects are those that never came to fruition. For example, in 1940, the famed architect Frank Lloyd Wright designed a massive project for Washington which was named Crystal Heights for the amount of glass it woulds contain. If built, Crystal Heights would have been the largest hotel and apartment complex in America. It would have included a shopping arcade, a theater, and underground parking for 4,000 cars.
|... or this for our Capitol?|