Lincoln Memorial Circle
Dear Ms. Mendelson-Ielmini:
In its meeting of 18 September, the Commission of Fine Arts reviewed the proposal for temporary security barriers opposite the east front of the Lincoln Memorial. The Commission reluctantly approved the proposal with the understanding that the installation will be an interim solution for the bicentenary year of Lincoln’s birth while the design and funding of the comprehensive permanent solution are finalized as promised by the National Park Service.
The Commission acknowledged the National Park Service’s effort to redesign the previously approved scheme for perimeter security on the east side of the memorial which had been supported in their letter of 28 November 2007. However, the Commission members expressed dismay at reviewing another temporary installation which could delay the development of an appropriate final design; they also expressed concern that the proposed line of barriers, while momentarily expedient, would be in the wrong location for a permanent solution. The Commission members noted that the proposed barriers will have a visual impact that detracts from the beauty of the Lincoln Memorial and its setting; several members voted against approval of the proposal.
Given the importance of the Lincoln Memorial and the long history of developing an appropriate design for its perimeter security, the Commission asked that the National Park Service submit without delay a comprehensive design that minimizes the negative impact on the memorial. As always, the staff is available to assist you.
/s/Thomas E. Luebke, AIA
Lisa Mendelson-Ielmini,Acting Regional Director
National Park Service, National Capital Region
1100 Ohio Drive, SW
Washington, DC 20242
cc: Peter May, National Park Service