Washington, D.C.

Mid Mod Scene: Washington DC

There’s more to Washington DC architecture than big Georgians and Victorians.

During the post-World War II period, Mid Century Modern architecture moved into the Washington metro area. Hundreds of thousands of returning soldiers first worked for government agencies before disbursing into the private

House in Hollin Hills neighborhood of Fairfax County, Virginia. Designed by architect Charles M. Goodman.Photo courtesy of Clarissa Peterson and Wikimedia Commons
House in Hollin Hills neighborhood of Fairfax County, Virginia. Designed by architect Charles M. Goodman. Photo courtesy of Clarissa Peterson and Wikimedia Commons

sector. The rapid population expansion that followed demanded neighborhoods . . . and fast.

Soon, Mid Century Modern housing developments rose in Alexandria, Arlington, Fairfield County and Silver Spring. While California and Arizona’s modern homes were basement-free single-levels, the hilly terrain around Washington made basements and several stories more practical. After all, building up meant less property to buy. The split level common in these neighborhoods fit better into the land (a modern principle) while giving families more room.

Prominent Washington D.C. Mid Century Modern Architects:

  • Nicholas A. Pappas
  • Robert Davenport
  • Charles Goodman

Washington D.C. Mid Century Modern Neighborhoods:

  • Hollin Hills
  • Holmes Run Acres
  • Moyaone Reserve
  • Carderock Springs
  • Wessynton along Little Hunting Creek

Washington D.C. Mid Century Modern Events:  

  • Washington DC Modernism Show
  • Design DC
  • Architecture Month
  • Fall Design Fete

Washington D.C. Mid Century Modern Societies:  

  • Art Deco Society of Washington DC
  • DC Preservation League
  • AIA DC

Washington D.C. Mid Century Modern Museums/Exhibitions:  

  • Hirschhorn Museum
  • The Phillips Collection
  • Renwick Gallery
  • Museum of Modern Art, Smithsonian Institution

Washington D.C. Mid Century Modern Tour Companies:

  • DC Design Tours
  • Modern Architecture + Design Society (MA+DS)
  • AIA DC