Lincoln Memorial Circle
Dear Mr. Lawler:
The Commission reviewed the revised concept for the design of the Lincoln Memorial security perimeter at its meeting of 21 July 2005. While the Commission members appreciate the efforts of the National Park Service to resolve the security design, they expressed their regret for the need for this intervention which compromises the sanctity of the Memorial.
The Commission members voted unanimously to accept in concept the treatment of the security barrier below the Memorial Circle roadway, following the third option presented which increases the distance between the bollards and the base of the stairs at the center section only. The Commission members also recommended that the design of the bollards be differentiated in form or material to respond to the varying conditions of their context, whether adjacent to a curb, across a primary vista, or along landscaped areas. They also agreed to the proposed system of cable fence between hedges at the outside edges of the stairs from the level of the Reflecting Pool to the level of the roadway.
Regarding the treatment of the bollards at the Memorial Circle roadway, the Commission members were also unanimous in their assertion that the east-west relationship of the Lincoln Memorial to the axis of the National Mall, the Washington Monument, and the Capitol beyond should be emphasized and the security design should strengthen the linear quality of the Memorial in its context. As at the last meeting of the Commission on 17 June, the Commission asked to review an additional design where bollards frame the central plaza and exclude the curving portions of the Memorial Roadway to the intersections with Bacon and French Drives.
The Commission members also recommended strongly that the treatment of the curving portions of the former roadway be differentiated substantially from the center rectilinear plaza in character and material, possibly to include the use of grass or other landscaping. Upon further discussion, they noted that the termination of the retaining wall at the inner perimeter of the Memorial Circle be located more deliberately to correspond to where the bollards turn to cross the roadway.
The Commission looks forward to the resolution of these refinements of the design as well as further development of the design of the bollards, and recommends the highest caliber of design be pursued in all elements of the design and materials. As always, the Commission staff is available should you require further guidance.
/s/Thomas Luebke, AIA
Joseph M. Lawler, Regional Director
National Capital Region
National Park Service
1100 Ohio Drive, SW
Washington, DC 20242
cc: John Parsons, NPS
Sally Blumenthal, NPS
Vicki Keys, NPS
Ron Kessler, McKissack and McKissack
Walter Schaepper, McKissack and McKissack