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TEMPLE'S SOARING SPIRES CALLED SIGHT FOR SORE EYES

Published: Tuesday, May 23 1989 12:00 a.m. MDT

About the only heavenly view from the freeway surrounding Washington is that of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints' suburban Maryland temple, according to the Washington Post Magazine.

In a story about the best and worst of the Washington beltway, the magazine said Sunday: "Best View on the Beltway: As you drive past Kensington at night along the Roller Coaster (the freeway stretch between Connecticut and Georgia avenues), the soaring spires and golden highlights of the Mormon Temple are always a thrill - however incongruous."Known affectionately by locals as Oz, this alabaster vision has inspired several generations of graffiti guerrillas to frequently spray `Surrender Dorothy' (currently painted out) on a nearby overpass."

The magazine had only one runner-up for best beltway view: that of a large shopping mall at night. And for "worst view on the beltway," the magazine gave the award to "everything else."

The temple, which does look somewhat like the movie version of the city of Oz, has become a well-known landmark in Washington and is often used as a reference point for traffic reports. Motorists also enjoy driving up hills near the temple because the building seems to pop up from nowhere on top of the road.

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