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The Best Forgotten Parts of Washington DC

With its wealth of monuments, museums and other points of interest, it's not hard to see why some of Washington, DC's hidden treasures escape notice.  Following is a quick list of "forgotten" parts of the City uncovered with help from local experts.

Francis Gregory Library

Located on Alabama Avenue, SE, the library first opened in 2012, immediately drawing notice for its distinctive architecture at the ribbon-cutting ceremony.  Designed to be environmentally-friendly and anticipating LEEDS certification, the library offers a number of energy-efficient features as well as floors of computers, a children's program and meeting rooms open to the public.

SunTrust Building on 15th and New York

Situated across the street from the U.S. Treasury and within sight of the White House in the Penn Quarter neighborhood, this landmark building is distinguished by its red brick facade and copper piping.  Designed by architect James T. Windrim, the 125-year-old structure is the former National Savings and Trust Company Building.  The building still functions as a branch location but is coveted more for its handsome looks than for the number of transactions taking place there.

National Harbor

National Harbor is a 300-acre mixed use waterfront development just south of the City in Maryland on the shores of the Potomac River.  Many locals consider the area a great place to escape the hustle and bustle of DC while taking advantage of the cluster of restaurants and shops.  The Harbor features an active calendar of events, including an international Beatles festival, outdoor concerts and annual ice sculpture exhibition.   A favorite attraction is the Capital Wheel, a 175-foot ferris wheel on a pier that extends into the Potomac. 

Upshur Recreation Center

Many adults think parks are all pretty much the same. Open space, picnic tables, playground, a lake and maybe a few sports fields.  Check, check, check.  However, this center on Arkansas Avenue, NW, in 16th Street Heights is quite different with brand new, brightly colored playground equipment in many different sizes and shapes. Rubberized flooring helps to prevent injuries and free Wi-Fi is provided throughout.  An Olympic-sized pool is open in the summer.

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