Top 10 Tallest Buildings In Washington DC in 2024

Have you ever wondered why Washington, DC has such tall skyscrapers even though height limitations apply? Certain structures break convention and reach heights of more than 200 feet, bringing a unique atmosphere to the city. In 1894, Washington DC got its first tall building named The Cairo, an Apartment Building that had 14 floors, and the height of this massive project was 164 feet tall.

More tall buildings quickly rose, but in 1910, Congress made a new rule called the Height of Buildings Act. This law said buildings could not be taller than 130 feet. Because of this rule, only a few tall buildings have been built in Washington, D.C. since then. Only a few buildings are being built, and some are just in the planning stage. Here is the list of the top 10 tallest buildings in Washington DC.

List of 10 Tallest Buildings In Washington DC

  1. Washington Monument
  2. Old Post Office Pavilion
  3. Washington National Cathedral
  4. One Franklin Tower
  5. 700 Eleventh Street
  6. Healy Hall
  7. Onyx on First
  8. Thomas Jefferson Building
  9.  Renaissance Washington DC Hotel
  10.  Capitol View on 14th

1. Washington Monument

Symbol of American history, The Washington Monument is an iconic building located on the National Mall in Washington, DC. It stands as evidence of American ingenuity. This renowned building was completed on December 6, 1884, it honors the nation’s first president, George Washington. Designed by architect Robert Mills, this colossal structure reaches a towering height of 555 feet, making it the world’s tallest stone structure and the tallest obelisk globally.

Built with more than 36,000 stacked pieces of white granite and marble, the monument’s grace and purity capture attention. Using an interior lift, millions of visitors can reach the highest point and take in incredible views over the capital of the United States. After a thorough restoration process, this historical site reopened to the public on September 19, 2019, following its closure for renovations in 2011 due to earthquake damage.

2. Old Post Office Pavilion

The Old Post Office Pavilion, located at 1100 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Washington, D.C., stands as an architectural marvel and a testament to the city’s rich history. Originally completed in 1899, this iconic structure underwent a transformative renovation, reopening in 2016 as the Trump International Hotel. Standing at an impressive 315 feet, the Old Post Office Pavilion held the title of Washington, D.C.’s tallest building for several decades.

Designed by Willoughby J. Edbrooke, the building’s Romanesque Revival style and clock tower at the top. The tower’s clock, one of the largest in the world, boasts a diameter of 12 feet. The Old Post Office Pavilion has witnessed significant historical events and has served various purposes over the years, from housing government offices to its present-day incarnation as a luxury hotel. With its unique blend of architectural grandeur and historical significance, the Old Post Office Pavilion remains a towering symbol of Washington, D.C.’s enduring legacy.

3. Washington National Cathedral

Standing tall on the highest point in Washington DC, the Old Washington National Cathedral is a remarkable architectural gem with a rich history dating back to its cornerstone laying in 1907. Boasting an impressive height of 301 feet, this Gothic masterpiece became the sixth-largest cathedral in the world upon its completion in 1990. Designed by architect George Frederick Bodley and later completed by Philip Hubert Frohman, the cathedral’s intricate details and mesmerizing towers have made it a prominent landmark in the nation’s capital.

Constructed from Indiana limestone, the Old Washington National Cathedral is a testament to the dedication and craftsmanship of countless artisans over the decades. Its central tower, rising above the city at 676 feet, houses a set of 10 bells, including the Great Peter bell, which weighs a staggering 12 tons. Beyond its architectural significance, the cathedral has played a pivotal role in national events, hosting presidential funerals and other notable ceremonies, solidifying its place not only as a religious sanctuary but as a symbol of American history and resilience.

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4. One Franklin Tower

One Franklin Tower is the city’s tallest building, standing proudly at 305 meters (1,001 feet). This massive project was completed in 2022. It is a symbol of modernity and innovation. Designed by renowned architects, it features a sleek and contemporary facade, adding to the city’s dynamic skyline.

Rising above the capital, it offers stunning panoramic views of Washington, DC. Its strategic location in the city center makes it a focal point for both commercial and residential spaces, contributing to the vibrant urban landscape. The construction process involved cutting-edge technologies and materials, showcasing the latest in engineering and design.

As the tallest building in the nation’s capital, One Franklin Tower is not just a physical presence but a representation of progress and architectural achievement, leaving an indelible mark on Washington, DC’s skyline.

Also Read: Tallest Buildings in the United States

5. 700 Eleventh Street

700 Eleventh Street commands the cityscape as one of Washington DC’s tallest buildings. Completed in 1992, this architectural marvel reaches a soaring height of 410 feet (125 meters) and boasts 12 sleekly designed stories. The structure’s impressive facade features a striking combination of glass and steel, creating a modern aesthetic that harmonizes with the city’s historic charm.

Designed by renowned architect Arthur Cotton Moore, 700 Eleventh Street has become an integral part of Washington, DC’s skyline. Its strategic location in the vibrant Penn Quarter neighborhood places it within proximity to iconic landmarks, government offices, and cultural institutions. The building serves as a hub for commercial activities, housing diverse businesses and contributing to the economic vitality of the city.

Beyond its sheer height, 700 Eleventh Street stands as a testament to architectural innovation and urban development, symbolizing Washington, DC’s continual evolution as a dynamic and cosmopolitan metropolis.

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6. Healy Hall

Healy Hall, located on the main campus of Georgetown University in Washington DC, is an iconic symbol of the institution’s rich history and architectural grandeur. Constructed in the late 19th century, this Romanesque Revival masterpiece was completed in 1879 and named after Patrick Healy, Georgetown’s first African-American president. The building’s imposing facade, adorned with intricate carvings and a clock tower, reaches a height of 200 feet, making it one of the tallest structures in the city.

Designed by renowned architect Paul J. Pelz, Healy Hall has served as the focal point of Georgetown University, housing administrative offices, classrooms, and the Riggs Library. Its interior features awe-inspiring vaulted ceilings, ornate stained glass windows, and a historic portrait gallery. Over the years, Healy Hall has witnessed countless academic milestones and continues to be a cherished symbol of Georgetown’s commitment to education and tradition in the heart of the nation’s capital.

7. Onyx on First

Onyx on First is a remarkable testament to architectural prowess and urban innovation. Soaring into the city skyline, this towering structure stands at an impressive height of 300 feet, marking its prominence in the capital’s architectural landscape. Completed in 2008, Onyx on First is a residential skyscraper that encapsulates modern living with its sleek design and luxurious amenities. This 14-story marvel was developed by Faison and the National Capital Revitalization Corporation, adding 266 residential units to the vibrant Capitol Riverfront neighborhood. The building’s contemporary façade, featuring glass and steel elements, reflects the dynamic spirit of the surrounding urban environment. Boasting a seamless integration of form and function, Onyx on First provides its residents with breathtaking views of the city, including iconic landmarks such as the Capitol Building.

Beyond its aesthetic appeal, Onyx on First contributes to the city’s ever-evolving skyline, serving as a symbol of Washington DC’s continuous growth and commitment to architectural excellence.

8. Thomas Jefferson Building

The Thomas Jefferson Building, standing proudly in Washington, DC, is an architectural gem that contributes to the city’s iconic skyline. Completed in 1897, this historic structure is the primary building of the Library of Congress. Its architectural grandeur reflects the Beaux-Arts style, characterized by its neoclassical elements, ornate detailing, and monumental scale.

Soaring to a height of 189 feet, the Thomas Jefferson building has played a pivotal role in preserving and providing access to knowledge. Its construction marked a significant milestone, aligning with the Library of Congress’s mission to serve as the nation’s premier repository of literary and cultural resources. Over the years, the building has undergone renovations and expansions, adapting to the evolving needs of a growing institution.

Visitors to the Thomas Jefferson Building are greeted by the Great Hall’s stunning architecture, adorned with murals and sculptures that narrate the nation’s history. As a symbol of intellectual pursuit, this towering structure continues to stand as a testament to the enduring legacy of knowledge in the heart of the nation’s capital.

9. Renaissance Washington DC Hotel

The Renaissance Washington DC Hotel, standing prominently in the heart of the nation’s capital, is a testament to architectural excellence and urban sophistication. This towering structure, completed in 1989, graces the skyline with 16 stories and a height of 186 feet, making it one of the prominent landmarks in Washington DC. Its strategic location just steps away from the iconic Washington Convention Center, positions it as a prime destination for both business and leisure travelers.

Boasting 807 rooms and 64,000 square feet of event space, the Renaissance Washington DC Hotel is a hub of luxury and convenience. The hotel’s design, by renowned architect Michael Graves, seamlessly blends modern aesthetics with classic elements, creating a visually stunning and functional space. Over the years, it has become synonymous with upscale accommodations, hosting numerous high-profile events and dignitaries.

As an integral part of Washington DC’s skyline, the Renaissance Washington DC Hotel offers panoramic views of the city and stands as a symbol of the city’s dynamic spirit and commitment to architectural innovation.

10. Capitol View on 14th

Capitol View on 14th stands as a towering emblem of architectural prowess in Washington, DC. Soaring above the cityscape, this structure commands attention with its impressive height of 187 feet and 13 stories. Completed in 2009, Capitol View on 14th is a modern residential complex that offers panoramic views of the Capitol Dome and the Washington Monument.

Designed by SK&I Architectural Design Group, the building seamlessly blends luxury living with contemporary aesthetics. Boasting a LEED Gold certification, it exemplifies sustainable construction practices. The development comprises 171 condominium units, contributing to the vibrant urban fabric of the city.

Capitol View on 14th’s strategic location at the intersection of 14th Street and Constitution Avenue places residents in the heart of the nation’s capital. Its height and design symbolize Washington, DC’s evolution, and the city’s commitment to sustainable urban development. As a landmark on the skyline, Capitol View on 14th stands as a testament to the city’s architectural innovation and commitment to a greener future.

Washington Monument555 (169)31884
Old Post Office Pavilion315 (96)121899
Washington National Cathedral301 (92)71990
One Franklin Tower210 (64)121989
700 Eleventh Street200 (61)131992
Healy Hall200 (61)4.51879
Onyx on First197 (60)142008
Thomas Jefferson Building195 (59)71897
Renaissance Washington DC Hotel187 (57)151986
Capitol View on 14th171 (52)132007


Visiting the tallest buildings in Washington DC is like going on a treasure hunt in the city. Each skyline, such as the Washington Monument and others, feels like finding a hidden deep meaning that makes the city interesting and attractive. It is like a big playground of tall structures where every building has its tale to tell. 


What is the tallest skyscraper in Maryland?

The Transamerica Tower was completed in 1973 and is located in Baltimore, Maryland. It is the tallest skyscraper in the state. It stands at a height of 529 feet (161 meters).

What is the shortest tallest building in the United States?

The title of the shortest tallest building in the United States goes to the Bank of America Plaza in Atlanta, Georgia. Despite being the tallest building in Atlanta, it has a height of 1,023 feet (311 meters), making it comparatively shorter than the tallest buildings in some other major U.S. cities.

How many floors is Central Park Tower?

The world’s tallest residential building, Central Park Tower, has 131 floors. It offers a truly iconic symbol of architectural grandeur and luxury living.

What is currently the tallest building in New York City?

One World Trade Center holds the title of the tallest building in New York City, reaching a height of 1,776 feet (541 meters). 

Oleksandra Mamchii

Working as a academic lead at Best Diplomats.

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