Lead: Brilliant or not, dealing with the designer of the District of Columbia was tough going.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: From his arrival in America French engineer Pierre Charles L'Enfant earned a reputation for brilliant design, careful construction, and prickly personality. When the deal was cut to place the new Federal city in the south, George Washington chose the Pierre L'Enfant to lay it out. In mid-March 1791, L'Enfant began combing the territory which was in a geographical depression at the juncture of the Potomac and Anacostia Rivers. His plan called for avenues 160 feet broad and a huge mall extending west from the base of Jenkin's Hill the future location of the Capitol Building. Instead of laying out street while running survey lines, he selected dominating cites, a Capitol on the promontory, the President's house on flat low ground, and as his unique contribution to urban planning he laid radial avenues which theoretically at least, made travel within the city more efficient.