CFA 15/FEB/07-3


National Portrait Gallery and Smithsonian American Art Museum (Old Patent Office Building)
7th and F Streets, NW
United States

Smithsonian Institution
National Portrait Gallery and Smithsonian American Art Museum (Old Patent Office Building)
South stair reconstruction and perimeter security
Review Type
Revised concept
Previous Review


Dear Mr. Rombach:

At its meeting of 15 February, the Commission of Fine Arts reviewed the revised concept for perimeter security and the south stair reconstruction at the Old Patent Office Building housing the National Portrait Gallery and the Smithsonian American Art Museum.

The Commission approved the general concept for perimeter security, including the new 26-inch-high stone-capped perimeter wall and the reinforcement and relocation of the existing fencing. The Commission recommended further study of the proposed bollards at the Metro station escalator and suggested a more coordinated treatment at this location.

The Commission also approved the refinements to the concept for the south stair reconstruction, with the recommendation that metal gates would be preferable to the alternative of glass doors at the sidewalk portals. The Commission suggested that the Smithsonian consider reducing the size of signage on the entrance facade and eliminating the museum names, with the identification of the specific component museums occurring within the building.

As always, the staff is available to assist you in future submissions.


Thomas E. Luebke, AIA

Harry Rombach, R.A.
Associate Director for Facilities Master Planning
Smithsonian Institution
PO Box 37012
MRC 511
Washington, DC 20013-7012

cc: Elizabeth Broun, Smithsonian American Art Museum
Marc Pachter, National Portrait Gallery
Mary Kay Lanzillotta, Hartman-Cox Architects