McLennan County Courthouse, 501 Washington Ave.
With a dome perhaps influenced by St. Peter’s Cathedral in Rome, the courthouse’s opulent character speaks to the prosperity of Waco when it was built in 1901 at the peak of Texas cotton wealth. This is one of only two courthouses designed by famed courthouse architect J. Riely Gordon in the Neo Classical Beaux Arts style, a departure from his more typical and earlier Romanesque Revival buildings. It is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
Continue south along Austin Avenue toward the corner of Austin and 8th, noticing the “canyon” created by the commercial buildings on either side of the street.