Washington D.C, or “The district” as it is sometimes called, is the capital city of the United States of America. The city is located in the District of Columbia, which is located along the Potomac River within the state of Maryland. However, as per the U.S constitution Washington D.C falls under the direct jurisdiction of the U.S Congress and is therefore not part of the state of Maryland or any other U.S state. Covering an area of 68.3 sq mi (177.0 km2) it was named in honor of General George Washington, the first president of the United States, and was founded in 1791 to serve as the capital. Each of the three branches of the U.S government are located in Washington D.C including the White House, home of the U.S President. It is also home to many famous monuments and museums.
Who designed the Washington DC?
The U.S constitution made provisions for a district to be established that would become the capital for the country. This district was not to exceed ten miles square. Land was donated by the states of Maryland and Virginia and a ten mile by ten mile square was marked out for construction of the capital on the north bank of the Potomac River. The land given by the state of Virginia was returned to them in 1846.
When the capital was founded in 1791, President George Washington commissioned a French-born architect and city planner to design the city. Pierre (Peter) Charles L’Enfant designed a city based on architectural drawings of European cities, such as France, Milan and Amsterdam. His design included wide streets and avenues that spanned out from the city center in rectangles. It included a wide avenue, lined with trees stretching 1 mile (1.6 km) long and being 400 feet (120 m) wide. Due to conflict amongst various commissioners and the designer, L’Enfant was dismissed by George Washington in 1792. Andrew Ellicott who had been working closely with L’Enfant was left to complete the design. Ellicott made some slight modifications to the design prior to implementing it. Despite this, Pierre L’Enfant is still credited with the design of Washington D.C.