CFA 21/MAY/09-1

National Park Service
National Mall and Memorial Parks
Pedestrian Guide Sign Program. Designs for new sign types
Review Type
Revised concept
Previous Review


Dear Ms. O'Dell:

In its meeting of 21 May, the Commission of Fine Arts reviewed the revisions to portions of the Pedestrian Guide Sign Program for the National Mall, which includes operational, wayfinding, and identification signs. The Commission approved the operational signs as a final design and approved the wayfinding signs as a concept design; the final review of the wayfinding signs was delegated to the staff, except for the treatment of color which should be presented to the Commission for its review. The identification sign component of the sign program was not submitted and will be reviewed at a later date.

Regarding the wayfinding signs, the Commission members approved the lower (9'-2") of the two heights presented for the tall pylon, and recommended that its design—including the base, cap, and other details—be simplified. They stressed the critical role that iconography will play on the wayfinding signs, and suggested that the placement of pylons be studied in relation to the location maps. In the case of the short pylon, the Commission recommended that the size of the lettering be increased to improve legibility, with a small proportional increase in the pylon's scale as necessary.

The Commission members noted the importance of the treatment of the color icons in the design. They recommended exploration of further options for the next review, which may include a monochromatic gray scheme; a two-tone scheme in related hues; and the original scheme of colors but rendered in a uniform value.

The Commission appreciates the intention to consolidate signs on the National Mall and anticipates further review of the identification signs as well as the treatment of color on the wayfinding signs. As always, the staff is available to assist you with these submissions and the delegated final review of the wayfinding signs.


/s/Thomas E. Luebke, AIA

Margaret O'Dell, Regional Director
National Park Service, National Capital Region
1100 Ohio Drive, SW
Washington, DC 20242

cc: Peter May, National Park Service
Wayne Hunt, Hunt Design