National Building Museum

National Building Museum The National Building Museum is a cultural institution dedicated to the built environment. Est. 1980

OUR MISSION
The National Building Museum inspires curiosity about the world we design and build. OUR VISION
The National Building Museum educates, entertains, and engages people about the built environment and challenges them to advocate for a sustainable and equitable future. Since it was founded in 1980, the National Building Museum has transformed the public’s understanding of the impact of arc

hitecture, engineering, landscape architecture, construction, planning, and design. Through exhibitions, educational programs, and special events, we welcome visitors of all ages to experience stories about the built world and its power to shape our lives, our communities, and our futures. The Museum resides in the historic Pension Building, which contains one of the most awe-inspiring spaces in the nation’s capital: a soaring, expansive Great Hall featuring eight colossal Corinthian columns. On the exterior, a 1,200-foot-long terra cotta frieze wraps the building.

Do you know a kid between the ages of 8-12 who is curious about the built environment?Come join us on Saturday for our J...
01/08/2024

Do you know a kid between the ages of 8-12 who is curious about the built environment?

Come join us on Saturday for our January STEAM Saturday! This is the perfect way to teach kids how engineering and technology help build the world around us.

Register now at nbm.org!

01/03/2024

Building Stories is coming! 🚨

Our upcoming exhibition, Building Stories, will open on Sunday, January 21 and we can't wait for you all to see it! Check out this sneak peek of award-winning author and illustrator David Macaulay painting a gorgeous archway in a part of the exhibition.

Learn more about Building Stories: nbm.org/national-building-museum-announces-opening-date-for-building-stories-major-new-exhibition-inspired-by-beloved-childrens-books/

2023 was quite an incredible year!
12/31/2023

2023 was quite an incredible year!

Looking for holiday activities? Why not check out our museum!Get tickets now at nbm.org!
12/30/2023

Looking for holiday activities? Why not check out our museum!

Get tickets now at nbm.org!

Happy  build day! Need a new   set? Shop the Museum Store in person Thursday through Monday 10 am to 4 pm or online 24/7...
12/27/2023

Happy build day!

Need a new set? Shop the Museum Store in person Thursday through Monday 10 am to 4 pm or online 24/7.

Museum hopping during the holiday season? Make sure to add the National Building Museum to your list! :D
12/26/2023

Museum hopping during the holiday season? Make sure to add the National Building Museum to your list! :D

A guide to Washington, DC's must-visit museums and attractions.

12/23/2023

Check it out! Our awesome Collections Team found this cool toy in one of our collections that has a dedication dated to Christmas 1880! 🤯

We hope Maude enjoyed the gift!

The National Building Museum is in the holiday spirit and thinking about our Gingerbread Workshop earlier this month!Tak...
12/22/2023

The National Building Museum is in the holiday spirit and thinking about our Gingerbread Workshop earlier this month!

Take a look at some of these amazing Gingerbread houses. If you skipped the workshop and took the kit home, we'd love to see what you created! Make sure to tag us on social so we can see! ❄

Did you miss out on this fun event? Become a member to stay in the loop for fun events all year! Learn more at nbm.org

As you plan your holiday outings, we just wanted to remind you that we will be closed on Christmas Day. Don't fret! You ...
12/21/2023

As you plan your holiday outings, we just wanted to remind you that we will be closed on Christmas Day.

Don't fret! You can visit us Thursday through Monday from 10 am to 4 pm during the rest of the holiday season! ☃❄

Are you looking for last-minute holiday gifts? (Don't worry, we've all been there.) 🎁   Find incredible gifts for anyone...
12/19/2023

Are you looking for last-minute holiday gifts? (Don't worry, we've all been there.) 🎁
 
 
Find incredible gifts for anyone you love in our award-winning gift shop! Check out our shop during museum hours 10 am- 4 pm Thursday-Monday and shop online 24/7!

We are SO EXCITED about our upcoming exhibition, Building Stories, which is scheduled to open on Sunday, January 21, 202...
12/18/2023

We are SO EXCITED about our upcoming exhibition, Building Stories, which is scheduled to open on Sunday, January 21, 2024!

Thank you PoPville for the recent piece about it! Keep an eye out for more details about the opening weekend!

"In the “Building Readers” gallery, visitors explore the intersections between the alphabets and simple shapes that form the basis of storytelling and design. CREDIT: Rendering courtesy Plus & Greater Than / National Building Museum" From the National Building Museum: "The National Building Muse...

Looking for the perfect gift for someone this holiday season? Give the gift of membership this season!Learn more about o...
12/17/2023

Looking for the perfect gift for someone this holiday season? Give the gift of membership this season!

Learn more about our membership options at nbm.org!

12/13/2023

Have you checked out Mini Memories yet? See so many mini marvels in our latest exhibition! Get your tickets to check it out now at NBM.org 💓

We have been pretty quiet about our upcoming exhibition, Building Stories, which is scheduled to open Sunday, January 21...
12/08/2023

We have been pretty quiet about our upcoming exhibition, Building Stories, which is scheduled to open Sunday, January 21, 2024. 🤫

However, we are excited to share some of the progress made so far! In a Washington Post Book Club newsletter exclusive, Ron Charles goes behind the scenes of the exhibition-in-progress. Read his full review and stay tuned for more information about the opening weekend of Building Stories! 📚🎉

David Macaulay paints a Roman archway in the "Building Stories" exhibit coming to the National Building Museum in Washington in January. (Ron Charles/The Washington Post)

ICYMI:   was recently held at The Museum! This unique design-build competition benefits the Capital Area Food Bank throu...
12/06/2023

ICYMI: was recently held at The Museum! This unique design-build competition benefits the Capital Area Food Bank through donations of canned goods. Teams from architecture and design firms in Washington, DC construct incredible structures made entirely out of cans. Congratulations to the winners and all participants!

To stay up-to-date with cool events like this, subscribe to our newsletter at nbm.org.

12/04/2023

THURSDAY: Join us for our next INTERSECTIONS chat on December 7 with Chelina Odbert, founding principal of Kounkuey Design Initiative.

Odbert and Horacio Christian Terraza, lead urban specialist of the World Bank, will discuss the intersection of gender equity and racial and environmental justice and elaborate on her work developing the World Bank Handbook for Gender-Inclusive Urban Planning and Design for a global context.

Reserve your spot now. ⬇️
http://go.nbm.org/site/Calendar/412868580?view=Detail&id=131431&fbclid=IwAR262fMJPVvoMBwvc4bzRiDjuHlGNv1KXTvyUDM3Ij5acQw9X_Mm7EVeqIc

Monday views from the National Building Museum 🌤As a reminder, we are open:🗓️Thursday-Monday🕑 10 am- 4 pm🎟️ Get tickets ...
12/04/2023

Monday views from the National Building Museum 🌤

As a reminder, we are open:

🗓️Thursday-Monday

🕑 10 am- 4 pm

🎟️ Get tickets at nbm.org

This month, we are commemorating the life and achievements of Robert Lautman, an extraordinary photographer who left a l...
11/30/2023

This month, we are commemorating the life and achievements of Robert Lautman, an extraordinary photographer who left a lasting impression in the world of photography. Throughout his career, he worked alongside some of the most renowned architects and publications, and for more than fifty years, he played a crucial part in revolutionizing the field of photography.

While we wish we could show you all of the 60,000 prints and negatives of his lifework we were gifted, please take some time to learn more about the man behind the camera at nbm.org/collections/robert-c-lautman-photography/.

LAST CALL! ⏰There are only a few more hours left to give this  ! We need your help to reach our goal. Show your support ...
11/29/2023

LAST CALL! ⏰

There are only a few more hours left to give this ! We need your help to reach our goal.

Show your support for the National Building Museum by donating NOW to help us reach our one-day goal of raising $20,000. Your gift will help us bring our mission to inspire curiosity about the world we design and build to life.

Donate now! https://15890a.blackbaudhosting.com/15890a/Annual-Fund

We are off to a great start this  ! However, we still need your help to reach our goal before MIDNIGHT! ⏰With your suppo...
11/28/2023

We are off to a great start this ! However, we still need your help to reach our goal before MIDNIGHT! ⏰

With your support today, we can continue to develop thought-provoking exhibitions for all ages, like our latest exhibition Mini Memories, and our future exhibition, Building Stories, our first permanent exhibition to open in a decade.

Please consider donating and sharing: https://15890a.blackbaudhosting.com/15890a/Annual-Fund

11/28/2023

Happy ! ❤️

We hope that you will consider donating to our Museum today. Your gift to the Museum allows us to tell stories about our built world through our dynamic exhibitions.

Through our passion for innovation and high design, our exhibitions help inspire creative thinking and incubate the innovators of tomorrow.

Show your support by donating to help us reach our one-day goal of $20,000. Your donation today will be matched 1:1!

Give today: https://15890a.blackbaudhosting.com/15890a/Annual-Fund

REMINDER: Join us for our next INTERSECTIONS chat on December 7 with Chelina Odbert, founding principal of Kounkuey Desi...
11/27/2023

REMINDER: Join us for our next INTERSECTIONS chat on December 7 with Chelina Odbert, founding principal of Kounkuey Design Initiative.

Odbert and Horacio Christian Terraza, lead urban specialist of the World Bank, will discuss the intersection of gender equity and racial and environmental justice and elaborate on her work developing the World Bank Handbook for Gender-Inclusive Urban Planning and Design for a global context.

Reserve your spot now. ⬇️

Members must be signed in to access discounted tickets. For instructions. Members will still see this message once logged in.

The Museum is proud to be participating in Museum Store Sunday! Shop original items from books, home décor, toys, games,...
11/26/2023

The Museum is proud to be participating in Museum Store Sunday! Shop original items from books, home décor, toys, games, and ornaments, among others. Happy Shopping!

Shop online at nbm.org!

Happy Thanksgiving! 🍁🧡We’re grateful for the support and generosity of every member and visitor, every Trustee and staff...
11/23/2023

Happy Thanksgiving! 🍁🧡

We’re grateful for the support and generosity of every member and visitor, every Trustee and staff member, who has supported our work to inspire curiosity about the world we design and build.

Just as a heads up our museum will be CLOSED tomorrow for Thanksgiving! We will be open to the public again on Friday! 🦃...
11/22/2023

Just as a heads up our museum will be CLOSED tomorrow for Thanksgiving! We will be open to the public again on Friday! 🦃🍁🍂

REMINDER:   is one week away! Next week, please consider donating to the National Building Museum. Your generous donatio...
11/21/2023

REMINDER: is one week away! Next week, please consider donating to the National Building Museum. Your generous donation will help our museum continue to tell stories about how we design and build our world.

EXTENDED: ICYMI our exhibition A Better Way Home: The Housing Affordability Breakthrough Challenge will not be leaving t...
11/17/2023

EXTENDED: ICYMI our exhibition A Better Way Home: The Housing Affordability Breakthrough Challenge will not be leaving the museum just yet!

This exhibition delves into six bold solutions that challenge how we confront housing affordability in the U.S.

Make sure to visit A Better Way Home before it leaves in January. Get tickets now at nbm.org!

Address

401 F Street NW
Washington D.C., DC
20001

Opening Hours

Monday 10am - 4pm
Thursday 10am - 4pm
Friday 10am - 4pm
Saturday 10am - 4pm
Sunday 10am - 4pm

Telephone

+12022722448

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Our Story

The National Building Museum inspires curiosity about the world we design and build. Transform your understanding of the history and impact of architecture, engineering, landscape architecture, and design. Through exhibitions, educational programs, and special events, we welcome all ages to experience stories about the built world and its power to shape our lives, communities, and futures. The Museum resides in one of the most awe-inspiring places in Washington, D.C., with a soaring Great Hall, colossal 75-foot-tall Corinthian columns, and a 1,200-foot terra cotta frieze.

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