Originally built in 1800, the Treasury Building is the third-oldest federal building in Washington D.C. – preceded only by the White House and the U.S. Capitol.
It’s a unique place to work that’s imbued with a deep sense of history. Like any older building, however, it needs repairs from time to time.
In fact, the Treasury Building has been through a lot over the years. It was partially destroyed by a fire in 1801. Later, during the War of 1812, it was burned by the British.
And similar to a few other historic landmarks in Washington D.C., the largest earthquake in the history of our nation’s capital and its aftershocks caused some damage to the Treasury Building.
After the earthquake on Tuesday, a team of structural engineers examined our building and determined that it was safe for employees to re-enter and continue working. Yesterday, however, we discovered that a decorative granite railing on the roof had sustained some minor damage. Since this damage wasn’t apparent during the initial inspection of the building, we believe it likely took place during an aftershock that occurred early Thursday morning.
There were no signs that any debris from the railing had fallen below. And the building itself is safe for employees to work inside. But out of an abundance of caution, the Secret Service has closed down the 15th street sidewalk adjoining the Treasury Building as we assess the damage and determine what repairs are necessary.
We appreciate your patience and sincerely apologize for any inconvenience. We invite you to check back to our website for updates as we work to resolve this issue.
Dan Tangherlini is Assistant Secretary for Management, Chief Financial Officer, and Chief Performance Officer at the U.S. Department of the Treasury.