Neighborhood
Downtown

Smithsonian Arts and Industries Building

The Smithsonian Arts and Industry Building opened in 1881. It was the second Smithsonian building, after the Castle, and was set back slightly from the Mall to allow a clear view of the Castle from the Capitol. The architects were Adolf Cluss and Paul Schulze, who designed the building in the High Victorian style. The building is in the shape of a cross with a central rotunda. The exterior is brick, in a bright maroon color, with several other colors forming patterns. It is on the National Register of Historic Places.
The building has been undergoing renovations since 2004, and the scaffolding has recently come off the exterior. The main renovations have been completed, but the Smithsonian does not have sufficient funds to finish the renovation of the interior and fund the maintenance costs, so the building will remain closed for the indefinite future.