Dear Mr. Delfs:
In its meeting of 21 October, the Commission of Fine Arts reviewed the revised concept proposal for the Barracks Row murals on the Southeast Freeway overpass at 8th Street, SE. The Commission approved the revised concept and delegated final approval to staff with the following recommendations.
The Commission members expressed appreciation for the development of the proposal, particularly for the treatment of the murals under the overpass. However, they questioned the character of the artwork proposed for the north face of the bridge, commenting that the organic decorative patterns presented would deny the tectonic power of the overpass itself. They advised that this surface would better be treated with a strong geometric pattern more closely related to the structure, perhaps derived from specific structural elements, that will visually enhance the bridge's structural form and prepare a pedestrian or driver for the experience of viewing the murals beneath the bridge.
The Commission members supported further coordination between the project team and the D.C. Department of Transportation to develop appropriate lighting for the murals. They recommended the installation of better lighting fixtures than those currently in use, if possible, and improving the spacing and placement of the fixtures to enhance the appearance of the murals.
In accordance with its delegated authority, the staff looks forward to working with you to bring this project to a successful conclusion and is available to assist you with the next submission.
/s/Thomas E. Luebke, AIA
Branch Manager, Strategic Planning
D.C. Department of Transportation
2000 14th Street, 6th Floor
Washington, DC 20009
cc: Martin Smith, Barracks Row Main Street
G. Byron Peck, City Arts